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Once upon a time I worked in an agency where securing retainers was the order of the day. Turning freelance I thought this was what I was supposed to do.
I was wrong.
The reality is that retainers are rubbish:
- They make you feel like you’re locked into a long-term agreement that you’re not sure whether you want/need.
- You become worried that you won’t have enough work to give me, which means you’ll end up paying me to do nothing (which believe me, feels rubbish so I definitely don’t want to do that).
- And the emphasis is on you to feed me work, which means you’ll end up throwing me random bits and pieces (again, not fun).
And all of this makes them really hard for me to sell, which if I want to make my business sustainable with regular income, I need to do.
So what I now offer is…
Block-booking is similar to a retainer, in that you ‘retain’ some hours with me.
- The commitment only lasts as long as the project.
- There is a project that either you, or we have scoped, so we both know exactly what needs doing, and by when.
- And now everything is properly planned – every piece of content has a purpose and isn’t being produced for the sake of giving me something to do.
And if the project is running over a number of months, I’m happy to break-down the total cost of the project into regular monthly payments to make budgeting easier for you.
When block-booking my time, all I ask is that you book at least three days.
In return I will:
- Guarantee you the time in my schedule and prioritise your project.
- Include all briefing time for free.
- Offer a 10% discount on the total project cost.
I’ve created a portfolio on my website that provides previews of some of my work, with links to view the pieces in full.
But if there’s something specific you’d like to see, or if you want to see a range of similar content (for example, ghost written articles) to see how I can adapt my writing style and tone of voice, please let me know.
Please know that there is certain content that I cannot share because I’m under a non-disclosure agreement (NDA).
One of the great things about choosing clients that are within a 30-minute drive of my house is that I can come and see you (and bring you cake!) all the time. And I try to visit my clients at least 1-2 times a month to say hello and catch-up.
In the past I have worked on client site, which is great when I need to speak to various subject-matter experts for briefings. But it can become a distraction. And when it comes to deep-working, or when I’m on a tight deadline, I need silence in order to get my head down and therefore prefer the comfort of my home office.
Yes, because I live in a world where anything is possible!
I’ve worked in B2B marketing since 2006, sitting both agency-side and in-house, so I know how things tend to land last minute and need turning around within a matter of days (sometimes overnight!).
In these situations, we all need to be flexible to hit that deadline – so if you can get me the information/briefing quickly, and be on-hand to answer any questions/fill in any gaps, I’ll turn that first draft around asap.
So yes, please ask the question. And if I genuinely think it’s going to be a push to produce something of the right quality within the timescale, or I’m unavailable, I’ll let you know.
So I can balance being a mummy to my two boys with a work I simply adore, I’m currently working three days a week: Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. And unless I have prior meetings booked in my diary, I’m available any time from 08:30 – 17:30. I’m an available freelancer!
In September 2019, my eldest son starts primary school. I will then be switching my hours so I’m available five days a week, from 09:30 until 15:00.
One of the joys of being a freelancer is that I get to set my own hours, which means I’m happy to work occasional evenings and weekends – so even if you’re on a tight deadline it’s always worth asking the question!
Unless I’ve done something crazy, like book out every day, evening and weekend before a holiday (which I’ve done once and never intend to do ever again!), I’ll always try to help and am happy to move things around to meet your deadline.