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New to freelance Motion Graphics charges

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Vishal VargheseNew to freelance Motion Graphics charges
by on Feb 27, 2016 at 5:21:06 am

Hello,
I a Motion Graphics Designer. I have been working for over 2 years for a Motion Graphics Studio and now has started freelancing. Since I'm new to freelancing I don't know how much to charge for each video. The studio I used to work for does projects for about $2000-$3000 for every 60 seconds.
I'm not a beginner in Motion Graphics but not an expert either. Since it's my first time freelancing I would like some suggestions on how much to charge. I'm not expecting the same budget(or anything close) the studio takes up, I would like an expert's opinion on this.

for reference here's the link to my demo reel 2015 (some of the works I did at my previous employer's)

https://vimeo.com/150357504

Thanks

Regards,
Vishal V


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Mark SuszkoRe: New to freelance Motion Graphics charges
by on Feb 29, 2016 at 5:19:16 pm

Nice work. Could use some kinetic typography pieces and 3-d pieces to broaden the appeal.
You could just start by charging what the company used to charge. But there's a lot involved in calculating a rate, and I recommend you charge using an hourly and/or day rate, with an estimate of the time the project will take, versus just offering a one-size-fits-all "package" price. That's temptingly simple, but not always in your best interest.

You well know, not every project goes fast or smoothly. Sometimes you can throw something together with existing or re-cycled elements already on-hand; other times, everything has to be designed and "built" from scratch: textures, materials, font work, animation setups, maybe new plug-ins have to be bought and loaded in. Or the client takes a "pinata approach", that is, they have you keep taking blindfolded whacks at interpreting what's in their head, while they review and tell you over many review cycles, if you're getting closer or not to what they originally had in their head. If you charged a fixed-price for situations like that, you'd end up losing money from all the time spent.

Another reason to not blindly charge what the company used to charge is, you really need to know all the other costs they had in setting that price, and how your costs compare. Compare apples to apples.

So you have to figure out the rate plus costs of things you might have to go out and buy to finish the project, like cleared legal music clips, fonts, textures, cleared photos, etc. or effects plug-ins and maybe special software.

There's a huge, huge back-catalog of detailed instructions on "how to set a day rate" in this forum, if you use a keyword search. It will take some time: pack a lunch and drinks before starting. But look thru those and their associated links, do the exercises to work out YOUR day rate, YOUR hourly rate, and the price below which you dare not go. Then, do some homework, ask for rate cards from peers in the area, see what the locals seem willing to pay. You want to be in the middle to upper middle of that range.


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Vishal VargheseRe: New to freelance Motion Graphics charges
by on Feb 29, 2016 at 5:50:59 pm

Thank you. That was very informative. I've decided to settle for a humbler amount for the time being, I would like to build a good reputation in the market first before increasing to higher rates. I've also decided to talk to local freelancers so I get an idea about local rates too.
Thanks.

Regards,
Vishal V


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Mark SuszkoRe: New to freelance Motion Graphics charges
by on Feb 29, 2016 at 7:35:37 pm

Good luck to you. Don't let tough negotiators intimidate you into "low-balling" your price. A price that's too low makes it hard for you to raise it later without leaving current clients and having to find all new ones.


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Vishal VargheseRe: New to freelance Motion Graphics charges
by on Mar 1, 2016 at 3:54:29 am

Thank a lot. I will keep that in mind.

Regards,
Vishal V


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