5 Tips for Project Price Negotiation

Negotiating the price range for your work as a writer or a translator comes down to several factors. It’s very difficult to determine what the perfectly reasonable price point is for particular projects.

However, holding onto several ground rules of price negotiation will help you determine the perfect middle ground between your expectations and your client’s resources. Without further ado, I’d like to talk about several tips and pointers for project price negotiation and how you can use them to your benefit as a professional writer.

  1. Set personal expectations

The truth is that no two clients are alike in any regard. Some people have small firms and very limited budgets but high amount of knowledge about the industry. Others might be prepared to pay a fortune for a good copy but don’t have the first clue about what they really need.

This means that you need to manage your expectations per-project basis. Don’t compare clients or projects with what you face today. Create an internal system that works for you personally and stick to it.

Prepare for every client meeting by doing some basic research about them and their recent practices and reviews. This will give you ample ammunition for price negotiation once you sit down and talk.

  1. Ask casual industry questions

It’s often a good idea to break the proverbial ice by chatting about the industry you both work in. Don’t be too direct or pushy but make sure to get a good pulse on how knowledgeable your client really is.

If they are popular and trustworthy in their niche you should be careful not to overestimate your abilities and charge more than you should. However, if they only have a vague idea of what content writing is, you can present yourself as a fair professional with a price point that suits their needs accordingly. It all depends on the scope and complexity of the task at hand, which in turn depends on the expertise of your client and the scope of their brief.

  1. Don’t oversell or undersell

Self-reflection and personal development plays a huge role in the success of a writer. Just like any other predominantly freelance profession, writers need to know how to sell their knowledge to the clients.

Your inner salesperson will have a field day with every client that comes your way since the final price will never turn out the way you expect. Some clients will be ready to pay more while others will do whatever they can to lower your price point to absurdity. Set a personal lower barrier which you are uncomfortable with crossing and refuse anything less than that.

It’s sometimes better to lose a client than to bury yourself with unappreciated work with very little payoff. The same rule applies for overselling your abilities and delivering a half-baked final draft that doesn’t reflect your initial promises. Find the golden middle and stick to it as you develop your writing career.

  1. Talk about the budget – openly

Writers are introverts with polite and calm behavior as a result of their choice of work. However, as difficult as it may seem, your client’s exact budget is an important factor to discuss.

You should talk about the budget your client has allocated for your writing from the get-go before working out the details of your content. There is no point in discussing further cooperation if your client isn’t willing to pay for the work they are asking you to do.

After all, your livelihood and monthly revenue directly relates to how much you make from each writing project. Be polite and professional but ask about the budget before you start putting in the hours.

  1. Per hour VS per project

The general consensus of whether you should charge per hour or per project often falls on the latter choice. However, it all depends on how much work there really is when it comes to a specific project.

Copywriting projects tend to take less time but make far more money for your clients than article pieces would. In contrast, the very same articles take far more time to write but should be charged for per hour or per word due to their complexity.

If you sense that there are a lot of hours needed to finish a project properly you can charge your client per hour. Otherwise, stick to per project pricing model and set clear budgets from the get go.

Every word matters (Conclusion)

It can be easy to devalue your own work when it comes to writing, design or other creative niches. However, don’t lose sight of your expertise, professional development and personal dedication to the industry. Every project you finish effectively raises your ability to charge more for your work. Don’t let anyone take advantage of you.

6 Ways to Properly Collaborate with Your Translator

Translation is a two-way process. Indeed, most of it falls on the translator – who has to provide the actual translation of the text. However, there are certain things that have to be respected by the client as well. In this domain, collaboration is key if you want the final product to be of the highest quality.

Still, sometimes, collaborating with your translator can be rather difficult – particularly if you are a first-time client. Those who are new to translation might not understand how the process works – and how important the role of the client is.

Regardless if you are collaborating with an independent translator or an agency, here are some tips to make sure the final result is a success.

  1. Submit the Correct and Final Documentation

When a translator receives a text, that text generally goes through a certain process: first translation by the actual translator, followed by the proofreading and editing by the editor. This is to ensure that the final product is top quality.

Now imagine what would happen if you gave a document to your translator, and right before the deadline, you show up with additional changes to the text. An “Oops, can you add this too?” might not make things very easy for your translator – mainly because they would have to start the process all over again. This will take time – which they would normally put to better use on another task.

Plus, these changes will not be good for you either. By coming with last-minute changes, you’ll be extending your deadline – which will not help you at all if you need those papers fast.

Sending the final version of the documentation is the most important part of collaborating with your translator. It will ensure that everything goes smoothly, without any delays.

  1. Understand the Costs

When it comes to translations, the costs are based on the document word count along with the time it takes to do a certain task. This means that things such as last0-minute edits or design changes are not covered by the initial costs.

As mentioned in the point above, each of these changes takes extra time – and we all know that time is money. When you come up with additional demands, you have to be prepared for extra charges.

To avoid these extra costs, you may want to provide the correct documentation from the very beginning. Furthermore, if you have questions about the whole process and its costs, do your best to address them from the very beginning. This will prevent any surprises from coming along the way.

  1. Be Active in the Translation Process

The translator may be familiar with the topic at hand, but the client will always know their product best. Make sure that you are always available to answer any potential questions your translator has. If you do this, not only will the process go smoothly without any delays, but it will also ensure that the final product is of the highest quality.

  1. Provide Reference Material

As part of collaborating with your translator, you need to ensure that they have everything they need to provide a high-quality document. Many clients seem to think that translators are gods that know everything by heart – but some brands may have a specific terminology that a translator may not know about.

Therefore, if you have glossaries and reference materials, do not hold it for yourself. By all means, share it with them. They will definitely appreciate it and use it to create the perfect translation.

  1. Respect the Set Deadline

Whenever a translator receives a document and a deadline, they work their schedule to properly work on your paper while also dealing with other tasks. This schedule involves time for proper writing, time for researching – and every respectable translator will allocate a certain time per day to work on your paper before sending it to editing.

This means that if you go ahead and change the deadline, asking for it to be delivered sooner, you will disrupt the entire process. Indeed, the project manager will do their best to deliver your document when you want it – but you have to be aware that you’ll be rushing it and putting stress on the team.

Since you’ll be cutting from their time, the quality of the final result may be compromised.

  1. Provide Feedback

Never underestimate the power of feedback – regardless if it’s positive or negative. This will help the translator properly understand the needs of their clients – and also improve their skill if there’s something that needs particular attention.

Final Thoughts

Translation is, in every way possible, a collaboration between the client and the translation agency. By working together, you will ensure that the final product is of the highest quality, without any “surprises” along the way.

Translation VS Localization in Today’s Global Market

Content writing has become a pivotal factor in marketing new products and services on the global market. With so many brands and seemingly endless array of choices on the market, customers have a hard time choosing what’s best for them.

When it comes to the marketing side of things, companies usually have two choices at their disposal – translation and localization. Taking into consideration that 90% of Europeans rarely browse pages in languages other than their own (or even make purchases), it’s easy to see the appeal of pushing into a global market.

Choosing one or the other can cause an avalanche of new customers to flock around your brand or for you to lose tremendous amounts of resources and revenue. What exactly is the difference and importance of choice between translation and localization in today’s global and digital market?

What’s the difference?

  • Translation

We are all familiar with the term “translation” by now. In short, translation represents direct interpretation of information in one language and transforming it into another.

There is no room for improvisation, missed information or any additions in translation writing. The writers are not allowed to make any changes, cut any corners or basically “think” while they work on their projects.

This type of writing is viable for technical documentation, legal documents, medical files, engineering sheets, etc. Some niches have particular lingo, phrases and terminology that others don’t and have to be followed through to the letter.

  • Localization

On the other side of the spectrum we have localization – and this is where things get complicated (and interesting). Localization represents a type of interpretation of the original writing without having to translate text word for word.

This means that the writers are able to be more creative and take liberties with their writing (on the condition that they are familiar with the target language’s specific culture). Localization takes local culture, beliefs, moral code and civil history into consideration.

It is a very viable type of translation when it comes to blogs, non-scientific writing, film media subtitling and other non-academic writing forms. Choosing one or the other can have far-reaching consequences on the perception of your business in that specific language.

Which one do you need?

  • Type of content

Before anything else, make sure that you are clear on the type of content you are about to market internationally. If you are translating your company website into other languages, don’t localize anything. If you are pushing through to new markets with your products and expect sales and revenue streams – localize your content.

As you can see, the type of content you are about to push forward directly dictates the type of writing you will have to employ. Use logic and reason as well as the advice of your translation expert or marketing team before making the final call.

  • Specific international regions

No two regions are alike when it comes to the choice of translation VS localization. For example, China has a large demographic with very different set of content expectations in the North as opposed to the South. Japanese people have a very different culture and ideology as opposed to Vietnamese, Korean or Australian audiences.

Don’t generalize regions based on their continents and vicinity of each country to one another. Take cultural factors into consideration as it is often smarter to opt for localization in these circumstances. That way you will ensure that no party is offended or threatened by your product, service or web content due to cultural differences.

  • Target demographic

Translating or localizing your content for youth and millennials isn’t the same as creating content for industry professionals. As you can see, the factors that should be taken into consideration always come back to your own content and what it is you are actually translating or localizing.

Younger generations are far more lenient towards localization mistakes or translation misunderstandings than their older counterparts. If you mistranslate important web content which can cost you clients and support in a certain region, you will have effectively failed in that market.

The bottom line

The choice between translation and localization isn’t an easy one. This is mostly due to the fact that any mistakes usually end up going viral on the internet which can hurt your reputation and standing in the industry.

Pay close attention to your competitors’ choices in this matter and do proper research about the countries you are preparing content for. Rushing into a marketing campaign blindly will likely result in a negative outcome. Choose your content optimization option wisely.