How to Eliminate Scope Creep and Get Paid What You’re Worth

By Jason Swenk on May 11, 2020

Do you struggle with pricing? Is your agency getting paid what it’s really worth? Are you a victim of scope creep but not sure how to put an end to it? The sooner you can recognize the value of your service and begin charging appropriately, the sooner clients will begin paying you what you deserve.

In today’s episode, we’ll cover:

  • How relationships play a role in agency pricing.
  • 3 ways to determine what you are worth.
  • #1 way to eliminate scope creep.

Today I sat down with Brian DeMarco, CEO of Draftr Media. If you’re a longtime football fan, you might recognize Brian from his time as an NFL offensive lineman. But today, Brian’s here to talk business. He’s here to talk about a topic many agency owners struggle with — how to start charging what you are worth.

How Relationships Play a Role in Agency Pricing

We’ve all been there — that internal battle about how much to charge for your services. Brian says one of the things that helps him feel comfortable charging a specific price is the relationships his agency has built with their clients. Brian says he always likes to ask his clients about their family and their lives and actually get to know them as people. It’s not just good manners; it’s good business.

It seems counterintuitive — you’d think the more you get to know someone, the harder it would be to ask for more money. But the opposite is true. The more you get to know your clients, the more they get to know you. When you build a rapport and gain trust, your clients are more likely to recognize your value instead of questioning your price.

3 Ways to Determine What You Are Worth

Great. You’ve built the relationships and feel comfortable charging for your services. But how much exactly is that? This is a question many agency owners struggle with and nine times out of ten they err on the side of undercharging instead of overcharging. So how do you determine what you are worth?

  1. Ask other agencies what they are charging. Yes, it’s that simple. Talk to your mentors, your partners, and industry leaders. You can get a good idea about what type of pricing is appropriate just by asking.
  2. Know how good you are. Brian says the world will pay you exactly what you think you are worth. So it’s extremely important that you know what you are worth. You created an agency because you are good at what you do. Own it.
  3. Be confident. Sometimes you just have to throw out a number and see if the client will bite. You’d be surprised how often they do. If you choose this route, you have to do so with confidence. If you question what you are charging, the client most definitely will.

#1 Way to Eliminate Scope Creep

Ah, scope creep — an agency’s worst nightmare. We’ve all experienced it. The important thing is to recognize scope creep before it happens. The fact of the matter is, most clients don’t realize what they are asking for is out of scope. It’s up to you to stop it from going too far.

How do you do this? Start at the beginning. Be very clear and specific with clients on what you do and what is included for the price. Explain to them when something they are asking for is out of scope even when you decide not to charge for it. The sooner you recognize scope creep and put a stop to it, the less likely it is to get away from you. Scope creep is a slow killer. The more you let it continue to happen, the more it eats into your profit margin.

You have to know what you are worth and ask for it. When you start doing that, you’ll find yourself in the driver’s seat instead of your clients.

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