Rates and Billing

Discuss setting rates and find billing resources and information.

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Old 12-07-2011
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Default Rate Increase
Hello,

I started some clients out on a lower rate because I was new and wanted to gain their trust. I said in my contract I would raise the rate after x amount of months.

It is now that time to start sending out a rate increase letter. I am not a very good copywriter and was wondering if anyone had a template or an example I could refer to when writing out a letter to my clients. I find it hard to start writing one of these letters as I have never had to before.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you!
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Old 12-07-2011
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Default Re: Rate Increase
HI Olivia, I don't have a template but I would advise against saying the work increase. When I did this I said "Rate Adjustment" and it seemed to help. I got that advice from this amazing forum!

Good Luck!
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Old 12-08-2011
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Default Re: Rate Increase
Why not hire a copywriter to come up with something for you? I've used one for several of my documents, it really helps to have a fresh pair of eyes look at it and doesn't cost very much at all (esp if you keep your clients rather than scare them off!)
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Old 12-09-2011
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Default Re: Rate Increase
It's really not in my budget at all. I will just have to write something on my own.
But I will make sure to put "Rate Adjustment" in my letter. Thanks.
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Old 12-09-2011
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Default Re: Rate Increase
Olivia,

When the time comes to raise my rates (make an adjustment) I don't put together a letter. I don't think there is a need to do so.

I just send an email 30 days before the rate is scheduled to increase. I state, "...per our contract, on DATE your rate will adjust to $xx.XX."

I create an addendum to the contract which states the same...effective DATE, Client rate will adjust/increase to $XX.00...and send that via EchoSign for their signature. That's all I do.

I don't feel there is a need to write a letter or to explain reasons for incurring a rate adjustment. It's business and that's the way it is.

If the Client tries to 'make a deal' which often happens with clients who start out at low rates, please stick with your contracted adjustment.

Kudos to you for putting an increase heads-up in your contract! That made the process much easier.

Good luck!

Janine
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Old 12-10-2011
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Default Re: Rate Increase
When I offered a reduce rate for new clients, I simply sent out an email that stated that their new rate was about to take effect - just a few lines to remind them.

Can I make a suggestion? This would make an ideal time to ask them for a testimonial.

So something like:

Dear client,

This is a quick reminder that your new rate of XXX will take effect on XXXX. I hope you've been as happy with the service as I have been working with you.

Now that you've had a chance to see how my services benefit your business, I would love a short testimonial.

Good luck!
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Old 12-10-2011
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Default Re: Rate Increase
Monday Morn,

I wouldn't suggest asking for a testimonial and a rate increase in the same note. While I understand the reason for your suggestion, if the Client does not like the rate adjustment, as some do not, asking for positive feedback may not fit in with a negative reminder.

I would make the rate adjustment a separate statement from the testimonial. The best time IMO to ask for a testimonial is during the mid-timeline of the client/va relationship; before any rate adjustments.

Janine
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Old 12-21-2011
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Default Re: Rate Increase
Hey Oliva!

Actually just read a great blog article about this yesterday. Here's the link if you'd like to take a look at it. http://networkedblogs.com/rOH1Y

Danielle Keistler is awesome...I love reading her stuff.
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Old 12-22-2011
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Default Re: Rate Increase
Thanks everyone for the help.
Luckily I've already received a testimonial from my client! So I don't need to ask that.
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Old 12-23-2011
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Default Re: Rate Increase
I think mentioning the increase like YVA suggested is great. "...per our contract, on DATE your rate will adjust to $xx.XX."

That way, it's a reminder that they have already agreed to the rate & not something up for negotiation.
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