I’ll spare you the long, winded story: Over the last few months, I have been piloting a new proprietary system for assessing and recouping the value of my creative work with clients. It’s not all that revolutionary or new, except that I don’t think any other creative agency has ever done it. The system includes a custom-built payment gateway that allows the end-user (the client) to choose the amount they want to pay for services rendered. Or, in other words, a user-friendly widget that allows the client to pay what they wish.

Here’s a video with some backstory and a little more information:

Hey thank you so much for making the time to watch this. I didn’t want to burden your calendar with like a full length conversation.

So you carving out a little bit of time in the day for this really means a lot. I wanted to share an update on something.

I was hoping to work it into like check-ins, but it’s happening sooner than I thought. So I wanted to share an update on something that’s kind of affecting the way that I’m doing business with clients.

And it’s something that I’ve been really excited about for the last couple of months and something that I’m like really looking forward to and something that I really anticipate clients yourself included really, really loving.

So, but before I share the thing that excites me most, I want to take a step back and kind of talk about the process behind it.

So maybe we’ve talked about this. Maybe we haven’t, but I’ve been really reflecting a lot over the last year, year and a half on the, I guess it’s rooted in the value that my work brings clients, but more so along the way that that value shows up in the work.

And it’s different for everyone. So if, and I guess it completely depends on where we’re at in terms of collaboration.

So if it’s really early in a collaborative relationship with someone, the value tends to be at the forefront. If we’ve been in collaboration for a number of months or even a number of years, that value is scattered out throughout the work.

And then it’s always kind of just like left up to someone to, and by someone I really do mean either party to kind of just condense all the work over the year and then determine the value, but then that check-in never happens.

So a lot is kind of like loss. And when I say a lot, I mean, communication, the deeper knowing all that stuff.

So one of the ways, or the way that I really thought I could bridge that gap and make the work so much better for both of us, I think in a really fun, it is like a really fun way is to pivot to more of a value based revenue model, which the word value comes up a lot.

It’s come up a lot in this video. The value is the only reason anybody does anything, obviously. And in terms of creative and professional services, value is imposed in the relationship and often like sticky and stuffy and like traditional way.

And there’s nothing traditional about like what we’re doing.

Like even when we’re building a traditional website, right, with like no e-commerce functionality and it’s all informative, it’s all engagement, it’s all entertainment focused.

There’s, that’s all like deeply rooted in tradition. And then even when we’re disrupting a space through powerful e-commerce or powerful custom systems or powerful custom content, there’s still a lot of tradition in that the project is proposed.

That number is reviewed, it’s accepted, it’s denied, it’s put on hold. And regardless of what that outcome of prospect or opportunity turns out to ultimately be, I found that the answer is always yes, and the barrier is the financial value that’s tied to the work.

So I thought, what if I could just like, get rid of that? I mean, I’m not mother Teresa and I can’t sell everything that I’ve gotten live in the streets and just type away as much as I would love to.

But I was like, how could I like break down that barrier? Like how could I, how could I support the decision-making in a better way that doesn’t compromise my values as a creative who sees and understands about you, it was work sometimes, and maybe you’re familiar with this.

Maybe you’re not, but sometimes as a creative freelancer or as any creative professional at all, we have to kind of, we have to compromise our values more often than not in accepting jobs for a lesser rate or doing a few more things and what we promise just to show value.

And that really shouldn’t be the way that business is done. And not just because of convenience. I love jumping through hoops.

But just with respect to our core values and that’s more on the emotional front. So you’re probably wondering how have I decided to support in the financial decision making before I show you the thing I’m most excited about the way I’ve decided to do this is by allowing clients to essentially pay what they wish, which is kind of a tagline that I wanted to like draw out, but I just had to say it out loud.

I have created a tool that is going to support the payment processing process. That essentially allows me to send you a link, show you the amount of time and resources that have been committed to a project neither of which would ever be a surprise.

So taking a step back, we have a conversation, you have a goal or an idea, and I have a creative process that can bring us there.

I let you know how much time and whatever other ancillary resources might need to be pumped into, said, project. I get to work.

I bring the project to life. And then at the end, the finalization process, I send you a link and I let you finalize the project.

And that finalization process looks like a quick review of what we’ve discussed. Again, no surprises. And then you work through a two step process of choosing how much you’d like to pay this custom widget that I built, which I’m going to show you in a quick second is designed to give you three payment options.

So you can get a suggestion for payment options, actually.

You get the suggested value of the work based on the earlier conversation and what you know, to be true about my terms of service, the rate that I collect and what all, if all of it, all of the expectations add up, this is what the suggested cost of service would be.

And then you can make a selection of whether you want to pay a little bit less or a little bit more, or, and those numbers adjust automatically based on data I’ve accumulated over the last couple of years in terms of client expectations.

And then the fourth option is a custom amount. So you can go in and you can manually select what you’d like to pay for something.

If a little less is too less, or if a little more is too much more, you can find your own happy medium there.

And I want to kind of quickly introduce you to this new little widget that has taking me forever to build.

But I’m so excited. So I’m going to minimize myself. And so what you’re seeing here is the first iteration of this new tool that walks you through this entire process.

So essentially what you would receive at the end of each project is a link. Maybe you’ve already received one a link that will take you to finalize the, the project.

This link leads here, which is an auto-populated form and a collection of data from all over the place. Most of which comes from either a project or a monthly account summary.

So this is dummy data just for the purpose of this video.

And what we see here is a suggested of $350.

And that is to compensate for two hours of creative time and then $50 in costs or expenses. And then this tool gives the client the option to pay a little less and you can see the price is automatically adjusted at the top.

You can pay a little more and you can see how that’s influx there, or you can set a custom amount in which case the cost is automatically dropped down to suggest a higher rate than that, for sure.

And then once it is approved, you can proceed to payment. The payment is processed through Stripe, which is a leading payment processor.

It’s I would, I don’t have the data directly in front of me, but I would say they’re the number one payment processor for online payments.

Next two, if not above PayPal they’re the only they’re one of the only people that allow like the seamless integration of apple pay, Google pay and all that stuff.

So I just went with like, who I know to be the trusted leader in that space. And then the payment process really looks like just entering in first name, last name, credit card information, and then an email address for receipt.

You’ll agree to terms of payment and then you’ll select pay now and you’ll be good to go. Again, so have you find that as cool as I have for the last couple of months, it was crazy putting that thing together, but I really do think that it’s something that clients are going to get a lot of use out of.

And it’s something that’s going to make the collaborative process so much more streamlined and not just streamlined and efficiency, but streamlined in overall compatibility.

And I’m really excited about it. So I hope I haven’t kept you too long. I and I hope you enjoyed the quick little walkthrough of this.

If you have any questions about any of this, or if you want me to elaborate on anything I I’m happy to do it.

You know where to find me, have a good day. 😉

Pay What You Wish pricing is currently extended exclusively to existing clients with proven reliability within my practice, however, similar functionality will be adopted to the traditional proposal and acceptance process by summer (2022). You should consult my Terms of Payment and Terms of Service documentation when it comes to all new creative projects and keep an eye here (on my site) for more information as the program evolves.

Please note, this does not change any of the following policies: Payment is still expected only in United States dollar (crypto and other foreign currencies must be exchanged ahead of collaboration). Pay What You Wish doesn’t mean “or not pay at all,” clients simply make a selection to “pay a little less” or “pay a little more” based on a suggested value rate; uncompensated work is subject to traditional invoice and collection efforts.