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benhp
Community Member

How do I handle client asking for additional work?

Hello Community,

 

I just lost my entire post and I need some coffee, so this one is the abbreviated version.

 

About the client:

He has several jobs in his history and all of them have a positive rating. He has verified payment. The job is to complete several blogs for his company; however, he has asked me to "explore a few ways each blog post could be broadcasted on social media, along with the vision of the company as a whole."

 

I don't mind exploring ideas, but, I do mind offering up free strategies. Should I do as he requested with the hope that it will possibly lead to future work and build a foundation for a relationship with this client? Do I make him aware that he's requesting me to do something outside of the job he posted?

 

I'm unsure of how to handle this situation and I really could use some guidance from those who have experience here. If there's any information I haven't mentioned that could help with feedback, let me know and I'll answer to the best of my ability.

 

Thank you in advance for taking the time to read my post and offer any feedback.

 

Regards,


Ben

24 REPLIES 24
luce-neidert
Community Member

You just don't have to accept anything you don't feel like doing. Just find a nice way to decline that person's offer.

lysis10
Community Member

ahh, the ol' visionaries. It must be nice ripping bongs while mom brings you tendies for lunch and asking freelancers to come up with ideas while you figure out what tshirt isn't dirty cuz when your 40-year old self goes to the bar you gotta tell the girls you just like to look broke so they don't get your entrepreneur money.

benhp
Community Member

lol, loved the intro, however,  I don't think that's the type of client I'm dealing with though.


Any thoughts on how to handle it?

tlsanders
Community Member


Benjamin P wrote:

lol, loved the intro, however,  I don't think that's the type of client I'm dealing with though.


Any thoughts on how to handle it?


Then it sounds like maybe it's a client you don't want, unless you're willing to throw that extra (and largely unrelated) work in for free.

 

I would just say something along the lines of, "I do offer social media/content marketing strategy services as well, but typically take on that sort of project on an hourly basis. If you're interested in pursuing that, let me know and I'll put together a separate estimate for you."

tlsanders
Community Member

Double post.


Jennifer M wrote:

ahh, the ol' visionaries. It must be nice ripping bongs while mom brings you tendies for lunch and asking freelancers to come up with ideas while you figure out what tshirt isn't dirty cuz when your 40-year old self goes to the bar you gotta tell the girls you just like to look broke so they don't get your entrepreneur money.


lol - this is the kind of stuff I come to the forum for ... I bow my head to such mastery with words...


Martina P wrote:


lol - this is the kind of stuff I come to the forum for ... I bow my head to such mastery with words...


I cry myself to sleep every time I realize I have to go into the open marketplace for the week. My one consistent off-platform client moved into a different position, and I think that one is about to come to an end. That means open marketplace bidding for me, and like 95% of that place are just broke people thinking their lame idea is the next facebook. The struggle is real.

 

Not getting invites anymore either. I have no idea if it's the changes or bugs or what, but it looks like I'll be hating life this week as I look through the job feed. It's not even the job feed that makes it terrible. It's the people that respond and I can't say what I'm thinking but jeeez I'm surprised these people have the brain power to breathe.

martina_plaschka
Community Member


Benjamin P wrote:

Hello Community,

 

I just lost my entire post and I need some coffee, so this one is the abbreviated version.

 

About the client:

He has several jobs in his history and all of them have a positive rating. He has verified payment. The job is to complete several blogs for his company; however, he has asked me to "explore a few ways each blog post could be broadcasted on social media, along with the vision of the company as a whole."

 

I don't mind exploring ideas, but, I do mind offering up free strategies. Should I do as he requested with the hope that it will possibly lead to future work and build a foundation for a relationship with this client? Do I make him aware that he's requesting me to do something outside of the job he posted?

 

I'm unsure of how to handle this situation and I really could use some guidance from those who have experience here. If there's any information I haven't mentioned that could help with feedback, let me know and I'll answer to the best of my ability.

 

Thank you in advance for taking the time to read my post and offer any feedback.

 

Regards,


Ben


You do this:

Dear Jim,

I am very interested in working with you and your company. I've read your blog posts and I estimate that I am able to finish them in 4 hours, we can do a fixed price job for x USD for that, if that works for you. 

I see the task of finding a strategy for your company as a separate task, though. We could do that hourly, if you like. I think that I can get a good grasp on what you are looking for in x hours. I think we will need to discuss this in  more detail, though. 

What do you think?

Martina,

 

There's already been a price that was agreed on for the blogs. 

 

He hasn't actually asked me to develop a strategy, he just wants ideas.  That to me is almost the same thing because one of those ideas could end up as a strategy.

 

We have a time that's been set up to discuss details tomorrow morning. Perhaps, that's when I could use the time to mention that I feel like I have a solid grasp on how I could broadcast them across social media.  If he'd like, we could discuss those ideas, which I've estimate would take x amount of time at x rate

martina_plaschka
Community Member

hey, you went from hopeless profile to interview real fast, Ben! Congrats!

๐Ÿ˜‰

Thanks, Martina!

 

Ironically it was a proposal from my old profile lol but he may have looked at the new one first being that I heard from him last night.  It has the potential to be a decent sized project and he's already said that"if he likes my work there's a lot more work to be offered in the future."


Benjamin P wrote:

Thanks, Martina!

 

Ironically it was a proposal from my old profile lol but he may have looked at the new one first being that I heard from him last night.  It has the potential to be a decent sized project and he's already said that"if he likes my work there's a lot more work to be offered in the future."


My most lucrative work is with long-term clients, every one of which began with a single project and NOT ONE OF WHOM EVER said that. I've had two unhappy experiences on UW and one of them featured that notion in the initial conversation (which came about as a result of a Talent Specialist's invitation, I might add). 

Just sayin'...if this turns out to be the start of a beautiful friendship, it'll be in spite of that carrot dangle, not because of it.


Benjamin P wrote:

Thanks, Martina!

 

Ironically it was a proposal from my old profile lol but he may have looked at the new one first being that I heard from him last night.  It has the potential to be a decent sized project and he's already said that"if he likes my work there's a lot more work to be offered in the future."


Oh, the promise of more work in the future! Second what Phyllis said. 

Anyway, that all sounds good, and don't forget to stick with the basics: no free work, no work without a contract, no payment outside of upwork, and no checks for anything. 

lysis10
Community Member


Benjamin P wrote:

It has the potential to be a decent sized project and he's already said that"if he likes my work there's a lot more work to be offered in the future."


lol oh you cute little doe-eyed freelancers. So beautifully naive and precious.

 

Voice chat is fun cuz there is no record that Upwork can look at, so you can let the comments flyyyyyy. Tell him to kick rocks when he tells you that he'll give you lots of work if you work cheap.

 

And in case you haven't picked up on it, there is no future work. He's telling you that to work cheap.

benhp
Community Member

Thanks for the insight from some of your experience.  He's not asking for cheap work at all, it's actually nice compensation.  As long as I'm paid for my time, I won't lose any sleep over getting lead on because it isn't the first time and certainly won't be the last


Benjamin P wrote:

Thanks for the insight from some of your experience.  He's not asking for cheap work at all, it's actually nice compensation.  As long as I'm paid for my time, I won't lose any sleep over getting lead on because it isn't the first time and certainly won't be the last


What we're trying to tell you is that "getting led on" is to be avoided. There's more than one way to corner an inexperienced FL into working cheap. One way is to play the warm/fuzzy card to start with and then bully them into endless also's. If you're smart, you'll put any mention of future work right out of your mind when finalizing contract terms. Otherwise, you are setting yourself up for scope creep which will eat you alive. 

Hi Phyllis,

 

I appreciate all of your valuable feedback. I'll definitely implement all of your advice when I'm dealing with clients.

jmlaidlaw
Community Member

@Ben --

 

You yourself have hit upon the central issue:  

 

Quote: "He's not asking for cheap work at all, it's actually nice compensation.  As long as I'm paid for my time, I won't lose any sleep..."

 

Listen to what your good buddy Ben is telling you: "As long as I'm paid for my time" !! 

 

Has this client paid you for your time to think this out/create strategies? Has this client made a plan to pay you for your telephone or Skype time? If yes, then you have a good client on your hands. If not, then your good buddy Benjamin P. might suggest to you that the client is not paying you for your time!

 

(FWIW: I do a fair amount of work with clients over the phone. I also put in a fair amount of time in planning and preparation. I generally do not let my time investment in either case go beyond 15 minutes before I charge my usual hourly rate. And I find that my best clients respect my time and either offer to pay me BEFORE I even bring it up, or else are apologetic when I mention the issue, indicating that they should have thought of this themselves, and that they don't want to "take advantage" -- which is how most of them phrase it. That is, "I don't want to take advantage" is the phrase I hear from a good client, right before the client pays me for my consulting time.)

 

I work almost exclusively on an hourly basis. (See Preston's comment below.)

prestonhunter
Community Member

Very simple. This is an HOURLY CONTRACT.

 

You can not accept a fixed-price contract which does not have a specific deliverable.

 

If somebody wants to have you use your time to do something which can't be clearly defined, then you need to charge for your time.

Preston,


I'm curious what makes you say this is an hourly contract. I mean that simply because I'm new to Upwork and to freelancing.

 

He wants me to write several blogs for him.  Some of the blogs (the number hasn't been discussed yet) will require interviews. Aside from writing the blogs, he's asked me to think of some ways how the blogs could be broadcast across social media.

 

Developing a strategy with social media was not part of what we first discussed. I haven't entered into an actual agreement yet.  Tomorrow morning I'm supposed to have a video conference with him to iron out the rest of the details and that's where I plan on mentioning that the social media is a separate job.

petra_r
Community Member


Benjamin P wrote:


I'm curious what makes you say this is an hourly contract.


He means that contract should be an hourly contract, or you will go down a rabbit hole of endless brainstorming / think-tanking / ideas giving / bla bla for free or next to nothing.


Benjamin P wrote:

Preston,


I'm curious what makes you say this is an hourly contract. I mean that simply because I'm new to Upwork and to freelancing.

 

He wants me to write several blogs for him.  Some of the blogs (the number hasn't been discussed yet) will require interviews. Aside from writing the blogs, he's asked me to think of some ways how the blogs could be broadcast across social media.

 

Developing a strategy with social media was not part of what we first discussed. I haven't entered into an actual agreement yet.  Tomorrow morning I'm supposed to have a video conference with him to iron out the rest of the details and that's where I plan on mentioning that the social media is a separate job.


Quagmire alert. Do you have experience doing this? If so, feel free to stop reading now. If not, be sure your pre-contract conversation nails down:

- how many and which blogs need interviews conducted

- how it's determined who to interview

- will setting up the interviews require cold-calling? will the subjects have any predisposition at all to participate?

- max number of interviews, max length of interviews

- does client expect verbatim quotes in teh blog pieces?

- will intvws be recorded? transcribed?

 

Do you have a base of experience that will inform your budgeting process, i.e. how many hours to budget for prep, scheduling, interviewing, reviewing notes/recordings? Be sure the client doesn't think a half-hour interview will only take 30 minutes of your time.

 

In all seriousness... if you trust a client, you can let them hire you with nothing more than "do work for me" as a job description.

 

If it is an hourly contract.

 

Because you're getting paid for your time.

 

Sometimes people hire me just so they can call me and talk about a project idea they have, while I log time. It's consultation. We don't use much of a project description.

 

I have no idea how long they'll take. Could be 10 minutes. Could be 10 hours. I don't know. It doesn't matter.


But when you have a fixed-price contract, you need to know EXACTLY what is going to be done. You need to know this so precisely, that once you click the "Accept" button to start the contract, you can COMPLETE the job without EVER SPEAKING to the client again.

Preston,

 

I just wanted to thank you for taking the time to give me in-depth feedback.

Being new to Upwork and the community, I really appreciate all the feedback I can get.

 

The community seems to be filled with highly experienced and insightful people. It's nice to know that there are people on here that actually take the time to read my posts and offer valuable feedback.

 

I'm sure I'll have more questions in the future and I've no doubt that there'll be someone to help me out.  I look forward to any future communication with you.


Thanks,


Ben

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