Spark Members Only Event: How to Control Money Conversations with Clients - Illise Benun

By Heidi Trost

Few designers feel completely comfortable talking about money. However, the conversations we have with clients about money are extremely important. Illise Benun, founder of Marketing Mentor and co-producer (with HOW Magazine) of the Creative Freelancer Conference, gave us a few tips to ease the anxiety associated with talking about money:

1. Sometimes clients are reluctant to give out their budget. Try giving these clients a low and high range to gauge if their budget will be sufficient for the project.

2. Find out if your client worked with a designer before. If not, make sure you work the extra time you will spend with them into your budget.

3. Revisions add up. Make your revision process as transparent as possible by clearly marking every round. Explain to your client that extra revisions result in additional fees.

4. Be matter-of-fact when talking about money. Use analogies from the client's industry to help them understand your design fees.

5. Make sure you close the deal. Illise suggests using phrases such as "Are you ready to make a decision?" or "Once the contract is signed, I can get you on the schedule." And, if the client isn't ready to start the project make sure you stay in touch!

What advice do you have about talking with clients about money? What strategies do you use?