How Much Do I Charge to Design a Newsletter?

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Question: How Much Do I Charge to Design a Newsletter?

Charging for newsletter design is much like setting your rates for any other type of desktop publishing or graphic design project. You need to know what tasks are involved and how long they will take in order to give an estimate or set up fixed rates.
A typical question: "What should I charge for writing, designing, or publishing a newsletter? How do I set a price?
Is there a way to come up with a single price when there are so many variables in newsletter formats?"

Answer:

For pricing newsletters specifically, here are some random thoughts and comments in no particular order.

Break Newsletter Design Into Components

A client might want a per page or per newsletter figure but before you can give them that you'll need to determine what the job involves.

Estimate time for the various components such as initial design (and all that involves such as creating a nameplate, selecting fonts, setting up a grid, drafts, experimenting, etc.), writing (short articles, long articles, headlines, fillers), editing/copyediting, proofreading, typing (such as when they don't give you text on disk), selecting graphics, scanning photos, photo touch-up, actual page layout, printing (yourself or preparing for an outside printer, etc.) -- whatever you and the client determine is needed for that job.

From there you could multiply your time estimate by your hourly rate to get a full package price, divide it by number of pages to give an average per page price, or provide a breakdown by task ($X for writing X articles, $X for design/layout of X pages) etc.

Target Clients With Sample Newsletters

Create sample or dummy newsletters for fictional businesses similar to your target clients.
These examples can serve multiple purposes: hone your skills (and build your confidence), help you in estimating the amount of time required for various newsletter writing/design tasks so you can determine pricing better, provide examples for your graphic design portfolio, allow you to create a variety of different styles of newsletters to show clients to help them see and decide what kind of newsletter they want or need.

Offer Newsletter Packages

Resumé consultants often offer different packages to clients such as "1/2 hour consultation, 10 originals, a cover letter, and choice of white or beige paper for $XX.XX" or "1 hour consultation, 15 originals, 5 cover letters, free envelopes for $XX.XX" etc. Based in part on your experiments with creating sample newsletters and other research you might create 2 or 3 specific newsletter packages that you specialize in, such as "1 four page, b&w monthly newsletter, using X-amount client-supplied copy and X-amount copyright-free filler for $XXX.XX" or "single page quarterly, 2 color, blah, blah, blah, for $XXX.XX."

One way this can help you and the client: it simplifies decision-making and pricing for both of you (client can pick a plan that fits his budget and needs; because you use a pre-designed template and have done your research (right?!) you know how to budget your time for this job and not lose money and can crank it out quickly/efficiently.

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