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How Much do YOU Charge Per Hour? Avoid the Question by Setting up Passive Income Streams
If you work with clients, at some point in your career, you've probably been asked, "What's your hourly rate?" or "How much do you charge per hour?"
Now, you and I both know this question isn't totally relevant, even if you provide services like I do. Because it doesn't really matter how much I charge per hour. What the client really wants to know is, "How much is this going to cost me?"
But they don't want to pay some astronomical hourly fee, either. They want to feel like you put some effort into their work.
So what you really need to know is, "How much is it worth to this client to have this problem solved?"
Sure, I could quote an hourly rate. But usually I don't. They'd be shocked. Because I've been doing what I do for about 30 years, so I can often write a brochure in "record time," which wouldn't pay me enough to stay in business.
So I don't charge an hourly rate. I charge for my "smarts" -- my knowledge and experience. And if the project rate is within the client's budget, they're willing to pay it.
But how'd you like to get out of the piecework business altogether? I know I would!
That's why lots of people take the risk of commissioned sales. That is, they sell something and then get paid a commission--no salary. And some programs, like Mary Kay, are two-tier commissioned sales--meaning you get commissions on what YOU sell AND you get commissions on what your "downline" sales force sells.
So you and your underlings go out and beat the pavement, looking for new and returning customers to sell makeup to. You also keep your eye out for more sales reps who want to join your team, too. You'd never think of advertising your product in the newspaper, would you? No, because Mary Kay is direct sales.
Well, the online world of marketing has taken this a little farther. It's called affiliate sales.
Some programs pay one-tier and some pay two-tier commissions. It's basically the same as Mary Kay. But what's different is that usually you're being paid for "electrons" instead of makeup.
Someone writes an ebook that you decide to sell for them through your website. You put it up in your store, and then you forget it. Every once in awhile, someone buys it and you get a commission. Maybe you've recruited others through your affiliate link to sell the same product. They put it up on their website and make sales. You get a commission every time you sell the product AND every time your downline affiliate sells the product.
AND you have the option to advertise the product using pay- per-click campaigns on Google and Overture (and other places). You write such a good ad that tons of people click on it and visit your website. Because you have such a terrific sales page for the product, let's say that half the people buy it when they visit.
Now you're cookin'!
You also improve your search engine rankings--meaning you do all the right things and every time someone searches on your keywords, you come up on the FIRST PAGE of search results. So more people visit your website.
And while they're there, they might buy something or not. Or, they might see a Google ad that interests them and click off to someone else's site.
You got it! You make money on that, too! And after awhile, your website becomes your product.
Now you want to add more revenue streams to your business (firing every difficult client you have and replacing that revenue with something else...wouldn't that be great?!!?). So you write your own ebooks or nifty little software product that you can sell the same way you sell other people's electronic products, as well as through an ezine. But this time YOU KEEP ALL THE MONEY. Because it's your product.
Unless, of course, you recruit affiliates to sell your product for you. And who wouldn't? It gets your product out to LOTS more people. So you have to pay them 40% of the sales price. What does it cost you? Zip. Zero. Nada. It's just electrons.
You did all the work up front, so you can collect the money over and over and over as sales are made.
THAT'S PASSIVE INC0ME!
Lois Carter Fay, APR, is a 30-year veteran in the P.R. and marketing field. She now produces three marketing ezines, Brainy Tidbits, Brainy Flash, and Success Secrets of Women Entrepreneurs. All are free.
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