When it comes to pricing creative projects it helps to keep three primary things in mind: Value (worth), caliber (oomph level!), and investment (what can or should be spent). And while there is a wide range for each of these, the ideal cost is what’s most appropriate for that project. No matter what, think of it as a range—from basic and simple, to advanced and higher level.
The “value”— is what it’s really worth. Think of gold vs. a sheet of paper. And when it comes to your project, is it valued high like gold or as a simple piece of paper. Is your project high profile, important, to get high exposure, and have a big impact on the audience? Or is it a simple, one-off, very basic project with little exposure?
The “caliber” is the “oomph level”—meaning how much oomph you want it to have. Putting more work into it affects the outcome. If you spend more time on designing it, using certain fonts, images, colors, etc… you will have more quality there. If you spend more time on the animation or website you will get more impact.
The “investment” is what it sounds like—how much you “should” invest. I emphasize that because mistake number 1 is that people think its about what they WANT to spend. If you want to spend $50 on a logo, you will get a lousy $50 logo. Whereas if you SHOULD invest in a real solid brand— spending the time, working a high caliber, and investing value behind it, the outcome will be tremendously different. And it’s not to say you should always spend more— in fact the opposite. Some projects SHOULD be a low cost. Some projects warrant simple, low cost solutions.
So consider these three pieces when pricing your creative projects. It will help you figure out the ideal and appropriate amount to spend.
Here are a few worksheets to help visualize the cost curves on certain projects.