Deciding how much to charge is one thing.  Figuring out how to say it is another.

Never, ever say “This will cost $500″  or “This will cost you $900 per month.”   No, no, no.  You don’t want to be a cost factor.  (Even if you are.)

Never, ever say “I charge $50 per hour” or “I charge $500 per page/photo/day/logo.”  Or worse (and I actually heard a photographer say this once) “For a half-day shoot, I like to get at least $500.”   No, no, no.  That brands you as an amateur-moonlighter-tinkerer.

And never, ever let the dollar figure hang by itself at the end of the sentence.  That makes it echo in the silence.  Better to end with what they get.


“The budget for the new web content would involve thirty-five hundred, which would cover all the product content we spoke about, as well as the application stories you’re looking  for.”

“You could handle the logo re-design and new stationery for about 4K, and have it all buttoned up within 30 days or so.”

“It would involve between fifteen hundred and eighteen hundred for the on-site shoot, or even less if the conference doesn’t run as long as you’re anticipating.”

“For  about 750 each, you could have a complete template for every type of page or .pdf.”

“As a rule of thumb, the more complex versions run about nine hundred.  But the pieces you’re talking about are more in the 650 range.”

“Figure on eleven eighty per day, per team, for the six-hour sessions you were thinking of, and the leave-behind summaries.”

“It’s all based on a 750 day rate for the six to eight days we’re estimating for the chapter illustrations in the style we had talked about. And you’d always get to approve  rough before we go to final”

“Most of my clients invest anywhere from twelve to eighteen hundred for a concept to show around.  Yours would be entail only a thousand, since you’re working with only a few elements.”

Always talk money with confidence, as if the amounts are all routine and perfectly normal and nothing to bat an eye over.  You never want to sound unsure.  Never flinch, waffle, or apologize.