How and why to productize your freelance services

tweet share share pin email

Confession: I don’t think I’ll ever stop having “fellow freelancer” envy.

I’ll never stop comparing my website’s design with someone else’s.

Join 35,000+ people just like you who get our free newsletter.

I’ll never stop comparing prices and calculating comparable incomes.

I know it’s not healthy, but I do it anyway. And I can’t stop.

And it was in one particular binge of looking up other successful freelance writers and checking out their offerings/services/hire me pages that I noticed something.

For the most part, the ones that seemed the most successful sold their services in packages with cutesy names… not as a la carte menu items where you pick and choose what you need and tally the total cost.

I didn’t make any changes right away after noticing that, but it definitely got me thinking and was on my mind constantly.

Then one night, when I was in the shower, this phrase hit me: “Power Trip.”

(The name of my business is Copy Power, so I knew it was a perfect match.)

When I got out, I started this mad scramble to outline a package of services with that name, and ended up coming up with two great offerings: a Mini Power Trip and a Mega Power Trip.

Sidenote: Once you finish, read how 4 freelancers built recurring revenue models that changed their business. You'll love it.

I didn’t know how well they’d perform, but I announced their availability on my blog and put them on the top of my Hire Me page, above all my a la carte options.

And you know what?

It worked!

Now, when people got in touch with me, 50% of them mentioned one of those two packages, even though they make up just 10% of my total offerings.

Cha ching!

Why selling packages works so well

It turns out, people like latching onto packages for a lot of reasons, but these are the main ones:

• You eliminate a big part of the decision-making process for them.
• You present a cure-all solution, which is really what they’re looking for.
• You give them a bit of a discount, to make them feel like they’re getting a great deal.

That first one is huge.

Most of the time, your clients know they need your services, but they don’t know exactly what would be best for them. (After all, they’re not the experts here, you are.) They just approach you with their best guesses.

So when you offer them more comprehensive solutions, spell out the benefits, and offer a bit of a discount from your a la carte prices, those groupings are really hard to say no to.

But how exactly do you go about deciding what your packaged offerings should be?

Don’t worry my friends, I’ve got some great guidelines for you:

How to package your services for more sales

1. Notice what your clients should buy from you, but don’t.

Maybe they buy sales pages, but don’t bother with the ads that will actually be driving traffic to those pages.

Maybe they want you to write a sales page, but still have crappy Home and About pages.

Maybe they want you to implement a huge blogging strategy, but they’re not paying any attention at all to their sales funnel.

Each scenario will be different, but if you’ve been in business for any amount of time, you’ll have already started to notice some patterns.

2. Notice what your prospects come to you requesting.

This is what they think they want before a sales conversation with you, and not necessarily what they need.

But even if it isn’t their most pressing need, it’s what they’ve convinced themselves of, and if you want to work with them rather than against them, you need to work with that.

3. After you work with their clients, is there anything they tend to do that makes your work less effective?

For me, it was them not keeping things in order.

I’d write a really well-constructed, long sales page that took a lot of time, thought, energy, and knowledge of how the buyer’s brain works.

Then, they’d take my copy, chop it all to bits, and completely sabotage the point of paying me thousands of dollars. (And they’d sabotage their conversion rates too, and then wonder what happened.)

It was infuriating.

Sure, I’ve started doing a better job with client education, but I knew if there was anything I could do about it in the short-term, I wanted to.

4. Package the items from step 1 and 2 together and give them a fun, promising name.

Like “Power Trip,” which is what I used.

5. Offer a discount on the package if that makes sense for you.

6. Put parameters in place so even your “discount” makes you extremely profitable… and minimizes the risk we talked about in step 3.

For example, in my Power Trip packages, I don’t write from scratch.

I take existing copy and re-write what exists within the space parameters already given.

This does two things:

Normally, I have to write a lot less. There’s also a lot less structuring from scratch, and I don’t have to take potential design into consideration. (Nor do I have to spend time on the phone with a designer.)

This makes the project more profitable for me, despite offering a discount.

Plus, by giving clients text they can just copy and paste into the spaces available, it’s a lot less likely they’ll jumble up my work and render it less effective.

Your assignment: come up with your first package

If offering a service package is a new idea to you, I’d encourage you to try it.

They honestly don’t take that long to come up with, and adding them as an offering won’t cost you anything.

The worst case scenario is that no one will buy it, but the best case scenario is that a lot of people will buy it, boosting your revenues.

To do this, write down your answers to 1-6 above, and come up with your first package idea.

Put a price on it and add it to your offerings/hire me page. For bonus points, write an enthusiastic blog post announcing it and see how people respond.

Psst…. As I said, I love learning from other freelancers. If you have experience selling packages (or just some ideas about the concept) let me know in the comments!

tweet share share pin email
About Chelsea Baldwin

Chelsea Baldwin runs Copy Power, where she teaches how to reverse-engineer copywriting based on psychology to get your readers hooked on you forever. She wrote a free ebook that’ll help you keep your traffic from bouncing and get more leads and conversions on your site.

Leave a Comment

*

Comments

  1. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about packages. This article helped me to put some structure around my ideas.

  2. Absolutely love this. Productized consulting is one of the quickest ways for anyone to start making money online. If you have expertise there is practically no startup cost and you can target the exact people you want to work with.

  3. Genius! Any thoughts on how you could make this work for portraiture? Generally people get in touch for a single final product, but I really like this idea since my customers rarely know what kind/size of portrait they want, despite me listing the options, inevitably, they must choose!

    • Totally!

      If there’s a pattern in the sizes most people prefer (or a size that’s better/easier for you), you could “package” it & list it as a fun-named option.

      Or maybe even give the different sizes different names.