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Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by CreateFaces on Thu Sep 23, 2010 8:41 am

Judy wrote:I gave a quote to an automobile workers union and they said no way would their members pay a 'facepainter' that rate when their welders, mechanics and electricians don't even get 1/2 that rate per hour!! (I quoted them $55/hour)

But the same type of organization will shell out $300-$500 for a couple of hours to a DJ. Professional face painting is a relatively new event service, at least compared to say DJ's and catering and I think it will be some time before the public at large realizes the difference between craft paint toting volunteers and us.
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by BluAngL83 on Thu Sep 23, 2010 9:52 am

Well yeah i too used to charge $50/hr and get gigs every weekend, and yes I would burn out. But now I charge $100 min (unless its a non profit) + travel if applicable. I still work every weekend and i get more gigs then I did PLUS i get paid 2x as much. I can now see the profit $$ coming in. Its worth working sometimes 7 days a week.

I too would suggest giving yourself at least a $10 raise this year (i would add $25) and just watch how you will still get a lot of clients if not more!
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by Michelle Heffner on Thu Sep 23, 2010 12:35 pm

wmeventservices wrote:I guess because I hate getting the phone calls of people trying to barter my prices down. ... I guess it makes me second guess myself a bit and maybe wonder if I should lower my prices as well?

First of all I don't think you should lower your rates.

Second, even though there are many other painters in my area who charge less than me, I have never been asked to lower my prices. I feel that has to do with my confidence in stating my price over the phone. They either want me and are willing to pay the $$ or they move on and find a cheaper painter. No haggling though.

~Heff
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by Michelle Heffner on Thu Sep 23, 2010 12:40 pm

Bec wrote:Its just pure capitalism. I make enough money charging what I charge ($50/hr) in my area. I don't travel more than about 30 minutes anywhere. I have been busy every weekend since mid july and I have been told by almost every client that they checked into other facepainters before they found me and they DIDN"T go with the other guys because they charged upwards of $120/hr.

I'm a good painter, check my website. If I can paint as good (and in a couple of cases better) than the competition, and I get the job because I don't charge as much, then its a win for me. $50/hr in my pocket is better than charging $100/hr and not getting hired.

The thing is, you and the $120 guys have different client bases.

You chose to go with the bargain hunters crowd. They will turn on you in a second the next time there is a talented newbie charging $35 on Craigslist.

Your competition chose to go in the opposite direction.

~Heff
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by Perry Noia on Thu Sep 23, 2010 1:16 pm

it's a little different but illustrates a point.... a little over a year ago, I worked a VERY SMALL event where there were two of us doing face painting. Knowing that we would both be there, I called her to see what her pay per face rates were so that we could be on the same page.... her USUAL rates were $1 and $2 - - and she's GOOD and she uses good paints. My usual rates are $5 and $8 or $5 and $10 depending on the event. We agreed to meet "halfway" and both charged $3 and $5 for that particular event... I have NEVER had so many people trying to haggle my prices as I did that week. When you charge less, they think less of you... when you charge more, they don't question you because you are now the authority on what it is worth.
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by Keesha on Fri Sep 24, 2010 10:41 pm

Where I live there are not many people who are in the party entertainment buisness and fewer still are face painters. The only other face painter that I know of uses craft paint and only does cheek art. The first time I painted at a fair people were amazed (my work really wasnt that good though) because they had never seen anyone do designs like me before. Around here most people don't really throw big parties, so I feel like I have to keep my prices low to get any work. It seems like everyone here is looking for a hand out. At one street festival that I did this year, I had not one or two but many complain that I wasnt doing my painting for free and I was charging no more than $5 for anything!
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by AngieAnders on Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:48 pm

I'm in the They-Won't-Last-Long camp. I've found that a lot of people WANT someone who charges a "professional" rate. They respect us more, and they GET more for their money. To stay in business against these under-cutters, we have to be smart. We have to market ourselves wisely (have a nice website, offer referral incentives, make sure people know we are here - get exposure!) and spend a little money on quality set-ups, banners, business cards, postcards, etc. Being successful in this profession is about several factors, not just pricing. It's about quality, skill, professionalism, self-promotion, follow-ups, friendliness, and ability to adapt. In the long run, we will last. Our $30 per hour competitors will either sink, or raise their prices. Hang in there!!
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by tanyamaldo119 on Sun Sep 26, 2010 8:35 am

I had a very hard time trying to come up with fair rates because I noticed that alot of face painters were charging $90- $150 an hour in the area and I figure that since I am still fairly new to all of this that perhaps I should charge less. I settled on $79 the first hour and $65 each additional hour. But now I have people calling me for prices and when I tell them they say "ok I will call you back" but then they never do. I know the economy is bad right now and people are trying to save more than spend but part of me is thinking maybe I should go lower. Maybe that is the same frustration that those other painters are going through. Maybe they just want to make any kind of money and get there name out there rather than sitting at home eith there equipment wondering what are they doing wrong. But I am a little more stubborn than that. I keep saying to my self " I gotta be worth at least $60 an hour" so I am going to wait to see how things turn out.
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by AngieAnders on Sun Sep 26, 2010 8:05 pm

How confident do you sound when you speak with clients on the phone? This makes a big difference too, and it's HARD to do especially when you aren't really convinced you are worth it. If you don't believe it, no one will. Very Happy

I have learned to spill it all out in a matter-of-fact and confident way when people price shop with me.

Them: How much do you charge?

The Old Me: Well, I usually charge $80... *silence*...but if you think that's too much I could go down to $50... *chirp chirp*

The New Me: I charge $100 per hour, and I can paint 12-15 full designs in that amount of time, or 20+ simple designs. I can do themed events like princess or superhero parties, or I can bring my full menu with all of my designs on it. I'll bring all of my own supplies, glitters, chairs and such so all you'll need to provide is a 4x4' space for me. What type of party are you planning? *answer* What date are you thinking about? *answer* etc etc.

Talking for a while after telling them your rates will help them to get over any shock they may feel tongue and start thinking again. If they aren't ready to commit, I let them off easy with a friendly "Okay, just think it over and if you want to book me give me a call back, thanks!". They are left feeling like I'm NOT desperate (desperation kills businesses) and that I may just be worth the money.
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by estelle on Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:17 am

in France we are not likely to practice face painting and organizers often do not have much budget to spend on this movie, I practice a low price (compared to the work closest to my home) and is justified by my lack of experience, is never to steal customers, I think my prices increase by 1 year, when I feel really professional.
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by wmeventservices on Mon Sep 27, 2010 11:25 am

I think that is exactly where I have found my problem. I am confident when I tell them my rate, but as soon as they hear my price, they cut me off and ask about a discount or say that's not what they are looking for. I have never negotiated with any of them or lowered my rate for any of them, but I am still getting the haggling phone calls. I never really got them that much in Jacksonville, FL where I just moved from. A friend of my said that it is more common in this part of the country since I live 7 miles from the Mexican border. But I'm wondering if I should tell them all about myself and quality of work first and then give them the price?
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by AngieAnders on Mon Sep 27, 2010 12:38 pm

I wouldn't do well with hagglers. Embarassed I'm thankful not to have that problem here. I have people who politely ask for discounts for non-profits, and I'll usually give a small discount, but so far everyone has been respectful of my prices, even if they don't intend to pay them.
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by creative lady on Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:48 am

What I have found in my area for competition is most someone from a group that is doing the Face Painting with craft paint and charging next to nothing.
How do you compete with that? I do point out that my paints are professional grade and I'm insured.
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by Psalmbook on Thu Sep 30, 2010 11:21 am

creative lady wrote:What I have found in my area for competition is most someone from a group that is doing the Face Painting with craft paint and charging next to nothing.
How do you compete with that? I do point out that my paints are professional grade and I'm insured.
Creative Lady

That's easy to compete with... just show your work... craft paint can't compare Very Happy

Also, be super safety minded & have a pic of what craft paints can do(I saw a lady bug shaped rash on another forum).

Does anyone here have that pic or similar ones?
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by Mirandas on Thu Sep 30, 2010 2:38 pm

That would be nice to see and compare!!
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by Terina on Thu Sep 30, 2010 3:00 pm

I had a few new painters low ball the prices for some business and church events. I would not lower my price. It was hard because I of course wanted the gigs. But, I told the clients in both cases that I used professional FDA approved paints and really that for the quality of my work I could not see coming down to match the prices. I do not understand how anyone can work for $30 an hour. One person told me that they were quoted $130 for an entire day of painting children, From 9 a.m.until 7 or 8 that night.There was no way I could do that...I kindly told them I would not be able to cover my cost for that price.

I was glad later that I had turned them down. People get it in their mind that you are worth the price you set. You my lose a few bookings here and there. But I do understand the frustration about trying to compete with people slashing their prices so low. It is very difficult.

I agree with sounding firm and knowledgeable on the phone. I usually give them the quote, tell them what paints that I use, and the years of experience that I have in the fine arts field and with working with children/or whatever their events is. Still, there are some that don't want to pay it. I have found that other businesses are the worst. They want you to paint to promote their business often for free, and then I will have most moms totally wiling to pay the average rate. It is weird...
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Re: Rates... URGGGG!!!!!

Post by Kristal on Thu Sep 30, 2010 3:18 pm

Someone on here told us what she said (re bouncy castles) was: "Our competitors do not match our standards, so we cannot match their prices." (It's totally on a post-it beside my computer!)

Yesterday I got an inquiry from a business about an all weekend event. I came up with 3 quotes - for 1 full 8 hour day, 2 full 8 hour days, and 2 full days with 1 artist on Sat and 2 on Sun. She wrote back, said her colleague (a mum who's daughter's party I did in August) said I'd quoted them $400 for a full day, instead of the $750 I'd quoted them earlier, and would I be able to give them that price?

Um, no?

I looked up my emails - I'd quoted her $500 for 6 hours + no travel, and definitely not $400 for 8 hours (I knew I'd never quote so little!). I finally got my rear in gear, sat down and figured out day rates, so I could stop fussing with numbers every time I needed to do a quote. Emailed them to her, but said that for this particular event, I would honour the $500 for 6 hours - and haven't heard back yet.

Which yes, sucks, as $400 is more than $0 (!), but I don't want to set a precedent for fp for less than half of my corporate rate, because I know I'm worth it, and I know that I would be spectacularly grumpy if I'd said yes.

I tend to list off all of the pro's before the price, but I'm wondering if the other way around is better?

Now I have my regular rates, non-profits, corporates, day rates, and travel fees ALL figured out - hallelujah! No more mind stumbling over numbers!
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