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Henrythetrain

Drafting your Bill as a Freelancer

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Hi guys,

Bit of time since I was last here but was looking for advice from the Freelancers (past & present), how do you go about setting prices for your work on projects? are there certain factors that always come into play.

I ask because I have been working for a gentleman doing sound for his Iphone game, I was under the impression it was unpaid but he contacted me yesterday and told me to estimate a figure for the work I have done I did no programing of audio into the game just sent him .Wav files, 4 sound effects and a small loop of menu music. This is my first time freelancing and basically trying to put a price on something I have created is what I'm finding tricky!

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time spent * your hourly rate.

Normal rates where i am is between 30 and 200 euro per hour. (depending on where you live you might have to pay taxes, social security fees, VAT, etc so take that into consideration when setting the price) (Some jurisdictions will allow some tax free income from hobbies which would allow you to use lower prices if you only do a couple of small jobs each year)

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1. Subject: Drafting your Bill
2. trying to put a price on something I have created is what I'm finding tricky!

1. You mean "writing your invoice." But I gather you are not actually asking how to write an invoice (you can just Google how to do that).
2. As Simon said, one standard practice is to use an hourly rate. The other is to use a per-piece rate (X dollars per minute of music, X dollars per sound effect, etc.). The rates Simon quoted you are extremely high for a novice to ask. Since you were expecting to do this work for free, you need to reply to "the gentleman" and ask him to make you an offer. He's asked you to name a figure first - your reply should be to ask him to name a figure. If you quote him 30 Euro per hour (which is very high for a novice), you might never hear back from him (he could just disappear on you).

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2. As Simon said, one standard practice is to use an hourly rate. The other is to use a per-piece rate (X dollars per minute of music, X dollars per sound effect, etc.). The rates Simon quoted you are extremely high for a novice to ask. Since you were expecting to do this work for free, you need to reply to "the gentleman" and ask him to make you an offer. He's asked you to name a figure first - your reply should be to ask him to name a figure. If you quote him 30 Euro per hour (which is very high for a novice), you might never hear back from him (he could just disappear on you).


I think this makes the most sense for my postion, thats the major concern for me at the moment (getting steady work from him) and as I was'nt expecting any money from this anyway it might be best for him to suggest a figure first Thanks for all the advice

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If your working with indie devs, I would advise against an hourly rate. It's much better, simpler, and more convienent, to get get paid by each track set in stone. An hourly rate is too much because who says your even working on the projects? You could be doing something entirely different with your time

I do agree with Tom Sloper, just work with the developer and ask what's his budget. That way you don't short change yourself and give yourself room to negotiate

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It very much depends on your relationship with this developer...
I might approach it with "here are my usual rates, but I realize you're an independent developer and really like this game and working with you, so Iet's make this fit within your budget..." Then see how he comes back..
one note on Invoicing-- In a situation like this, I find it's best to put in the invoice your "real" rate, and then list a discount, to arrive at the actual price.
That does a couple things--
It keeps your perceived value higher (since your high price is on the invoice)
It lets the developer know you value working with him, and so you're reducing your rate "just for him."
It doesn't set a precedent of your working for very little.
In marketing-esque, you're setting whats related to an "anchor price"-- the first # out there that sets the value of what you are providing.

So it's often better to have
3 Minutes of Music @ 750/minute 2,250
Music Discount (1,750)
net Music: 500

Than to have an invoice that shows
3 minutes of Music @ 166/minute $500

My 0.02, anyway :)..

Brian Schmidt
Registration Now Open for GameSoundCon 2012, San Francisco. Oct 24/25

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