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15 Scenarios When to Pay Freelance Writers Higher Rates

15 Scenarios When to Pay Freelance Writers Higher Rates

Are there situations when it is best to pay a contract author extra? The reply is sure. Not all tasks are created equal. If the task requires a direct turnaround, consists of further analysis, requires journey, calls for a number of rounds of revisions, or consists of duties past writing, anticipate to pay extra.

In accordance to MarketingProfs’ 2017 Content material Advertising Benchmarks, Budgets, & Tendencies research, 56% of corporations lean on outsourced writers for his or her content material advertising efforts. This yr it’s greater than ever earlier than.

It’s no secret that companies supply gifted and certified freelancers to meet their content material advertising wants. As well as to the financial advantages of outsourcing freelancers — like not having to pay for a full-time wage or advantages, workspace or know-how — freelancers are an amazing answer for locating material specialists who’re ideally suited to a selected writing challenge.

Freelance writers supply worth past phrases

Freelancer writers are shortly evolving to grow to be more and more very important to the workforce, presenting manufacturers with a excessive degree of experience, professionalism, grit and tenure. They provide methods to additional enhance what you’ve already established and may:

  • Make sure that content material is fact-based and credible.
  • Prioritize delivering content material high quality versus amount.
  • Develop a unique perspective, recognizing issues and alternatives inside your content material ecosystem.
  • Current an skilled viewpoint, drawing from outdoors market information.
  • Ship content material on a timeframe that helps the necessity of your model.
  • Pitch new content material concepts, talking to the wants of your viewers.
  • Permit you to concentrate on extra strategic efforts, like technique, oversight or measurement.
  • Enhance a model’s operations, permitting you to give attention to what you do greatest.
  • Additional promote your model’s content material, with social affect.

Paying freelance writers isn't always as easy as following a set pay rate. Often should pay freelance writers when a number of scenarios come into play.

How a lot do you have to pay freelance writers?

In 2016, ClearVoice polled dozens of freelance writers on their common charges (see our 2018 survey outcomes). Right here’s a recap of the findings:

Common Per Phrase Pay Fee 

  • 60% cost $zero.10 – $zero.19 per phrase
  • 20% cost $zero.20 – $zero.35 per phrase
  • 15% cost $zero.50 – $1.00 per phrase
  • 5% cost $zero.35 – $zero.50 per phrase

Common Per Venture Pay Price

  • 40% cost $100 – $300 per undertaking
  • 28% cost $50 – $100 per venture
  • 12% cost $25 – $50 per venture
  • 12% cost $500+ per challenge
  • eight% cost $300 – $500 per undertaking

Common Per Hour Pay Fee

  • 47% cost $35 – $50 per hour
  • 32% cost $15 – $40 per hour
  • 16% cost $50 – $100 per hour
  • 5% cost $100+ per hour

Whereas these costs run the gamut of freelance pay charges, it’s lacking one factor: factoring in further providers or contingencies.

When do you have to anticipate to pay freelance writers larger charges? 

The savviest freelancers know that every shopper, marketing campaign or task is minimize from totally different material — which means commonplace charges don’t all the time apply. Manufacturers ought to educate themselves on situations the place they could have to pay a premium for sure efforts.

Justin McKinley, ClearVoice’s Director of Content material, says, “Regardless of a writer’s savvy, always consider paying a writer a premium if you know the work requires more time and effort than usual, or is contingent upon special circumstances.”

Listed here are some situations the place freelance writers can cost a premium:

1. You instantly want an task rotated in a number of hours.

Have you ever requested a author to flip round an task in 48 hours, however initially gave them every week? Many writers are prepared to accommodate your tight deadline, however it’s good to pay them for it.

If you suddenly change project direction on an assignment already given to a freelancer, you should also expect to readjust their pay rate higher.

2. You modify instructions.

Organizational content material priorities change, evolve or pivot regularly. In case your dispatched task wants to help the brand new organizational path, and the author has already drafted one thing, you continue to want to pay them for his or her time. One other state of affairs is should you dispatch an article with one idea in thoughts, however after mulling over the subject, you need to go a unique path.

three. The task requires a big quantity of analysis or grunt work.

You must anticipate to pay a better fee for those who require a freelancer to:

  • Learn and distill greater than 2,000 phrases of data, complicated in nature (eBooks, research, case research, webinars, shows, annual stories, informational guides or long-form weblog posts).
  • Develop a corresponding knowledge research to show the validity of the content material’s assertions or speculation.
  • Extensively analysis a brand new product, concept or idea.
  • Check a services or products.

If you move a project deadline up, you should expect to pay a freelance writer extra for delivering content earlier than previously agreed.

four. You modified the challenge timeline.

Issues change shortly, particularly within the enterprise world. In the event you want to transfer across the due dates related to a venture — like a primary draft, revision or ultimate evaluate — it impacts a freelancer’s schedule. Most freelancers juggle a number of shoppers, so a schedule shift might have an effect on their capacity to full tasks for different shoppers. Be aware of this state of affairs. If it occurs, a freelancer may ask for extra compensation.

5. You’ve received a nasty case of “scope creep.”

So your freelancer’s task shortly transforms from a small animal to a beast. Maybe your task started at 1,000 phrases, however due to complexity of the content material you want extra phrases to absolutely clarify it; or, you didn’t take the time to supply readability and element in a marketing campaign temporary, task or idea given to the freelancer for course. Within the undertaking administration world, “scope creep” refers to unchecked, uncontrolled modifications in a undertaking’s scope at any level after the venture begins. It occurs within the content material world on a regular basis. And when it does, don’t be stunned to pay extra for it, particularly if you would like to shield your credibility.


If you content requires interviews with experts, you should expect to pay a freelance writer a higher rate.

6. You require interviews.

Are main sources mandatory? It takes time to discover, vet, attain and interview the most effective people for a narrative. Sadly, not all writers perceive the artwork and protocols of interviewing, so anticipate to pay additional for journalistic experience. You additionally ought to think about paying a further premium for a author who will go the additional mile to land an distinctive interview (e.g., with a hard-to-reach professional or superstar).

7. You need them to optimize the content material for a number of channels.

By no means assume a author will present search engine optimisation metadata (e.g., meta descriptions, alt picture textual content), apply applicable inner hyperlinks (linking excessive worth webpages in your web site), or embrace publish copy for various social channels, and so forth., until you ask them. Though together with optimization as a part of your task tips is sensible, be aware of how a lot additional work your require in complete. Ask for an excessive amount of, and also you’ll pay extra.

eight. You request a number of rounds of revisions.

Revisions take time. Even the most effective author might have to make revisions to their work, particularly in the event that they’re new to your model and tips. For a 600-word submit, revisions take at the very least 15 minutes to make — and typically hours. For those who request unreasonable or extreme rounds of modifications, you must anticipate to pay additional.


If you expect a freelance writer to also include images or creative assets, you should expect to pay them a higher rate.

9. You require artistic belongings.

Small bootstrapped corporations have restricted assets, and freelancers are sometimes the go-to answer because the jacks of many artistic trades. Some freelancers are expert writers and designers. At a minimal, they might assist with picture choice, which may typically be a burdensome activity for manufacturers. Some freelancers may even create infographics, graphics or video to help a bit of content material. If so, pay them additional for it.

10. You need ideas pitched. 

Pitching ideas takes time. A author wants to analysis your editorial tips, evaluate beforehand written copy, and achieve a superb understanding of your model’s mission. The truth is, it’s not exceptional for a author to spend round 30 minutes on a pitch. Author and editor Meagan Krause stated in a current ClearVoice publish, “To get the jobs that pay the big bucks, you have to sink some effort into it.” Don’t overlook that, and if attainable, think about pitch time right into a freelancer’s cost, particularly should you had numerous back-and-forth with the author earlier than dispatching the task.

11. You need them to promote content material.

When you hit “publish” you need to develop a receptive viewers for the content material. In case your author has experience in not solely content material creation, however amplification as nicely, issue that into the scope of the challenge. It’s all the time good to leverage a further viewers.

12. The author should attend an occasion.

Have you ever employed a author to cowl a specific occasion, commerce present, live performance, rally, guide studying or convention? Manufacturers ought to cowl the price of the occasion, on prime of the admission fee. Additionally think about meals eaten out and journey time. Issue all these parts into the freelancer’s price. Most frequently, establishing a flat price for the challenge beforehand works out greatest for each events.

If you need ghostwritten content, expect to pay more than a writer's average rate.

13. You want ghost-written content material.

Bylined content material generates nice publicity for writers, and lots of will cost you when you strip their identify from their work. Many freelancers generate new enterprise from their bylines, in order that they miss out on the chance for additional publicity if their byline is eliminated — and that comes at a premium.

14. You’re hiring the author for a one-time gig.

One-time assignments might come at a premium for some writers. As soon as a author will get in a groove, understanding your model’s nuances and preferences, merchandise/providers, and communication methods turns into simpler. With repeated tasks, the writers can sometimes write content material quicker as they work on increasingly content material. So, in the event you suggest ongoing, high-dollar quantity work together with your freelancer, you could get a reduction. Freelancers love steady revenue streams in order that they don’t have to maintain pitching to new shoppers.


If a writer is also an influencer, they might request a higher rate.

15. You employed a author and an influencer.

Many several types of writers exist, together with generalists, material specialists, or influencers. Tyler Kurbat, a content material advertising supervisor at Lane Terralever, says he would pay a premium for “any sort of contractual amplification or syndication to ensure the content is shared within key markets.” Hiring an influencer typically comes at a premium as a result of they’ve a related, engaged and broad viewers they will forged your content material to.

Why do you have to pay the premium? 

Don’t attempt to minimize corners or discover the low cost freelancers. The truth is, ClearVoice lately carried out two research on freelancer charges within the journey and know-how industries, each validating the generally assumed correlation that greater paid writers produce larger high quality content material. Via the research it was confirmed that larger wages appeal to extra succesful, dependable and high-quality freelance writers. The truth is, each research revealed top-tier writers have been extremely editable, adopted editorial course nicely, demonstrated a pure information of the subject material, had few grammatical or spelling errors, and correctly attributed sources.

Lengthy story brief, if pay and high quality are related, don’t be afraid to pay for it.

How do you have to pay the premium?

A author in various methods units a premium. Whereas the “add-on” service cost is usually is mentioned through the preliminary brainstorming part or throughout challenge kick-off, this isn’t all the time the case. In case you are utilizing a system like ClearVoice, the writers work inside the platform to set a specific fee based mostly on all added providers. Premiums might be set as an added proportion, per additional exercise carried out, as a flat charge per further service provided, or simply factored into the general charge projection.

It’s greatest to negotiate pricing together with your freelancer from the get-go so you aren’t stunned after they ship you an bill. However in some situations, a author might contact to you after a request has been made for extra work to justify billing you for a premium service carried out. Regardless of the state of affairs, you must pay it. They’re doing extra work and also you owe it to them.

Parting phrases

At ClearVoice, we equally advocate for manufacturers and writers. We expect manufacturers ought to give you the chance to entry the easiest content material producers for his or her given business in a single place and we ardently help the freelance workforce. We do that by providing recommendations on enhancing their expertise, discovering extra shoppers, opening up a market to join with hiring manufacturers, and clarifying business writing price averages. Keep tuned for our complementary article from the freelancer author’s perspective shining mild on why some assignments take extra time — and demand larger pay charges — than others.

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