How to charge for a slideshow?

A client wants me to design a PowerPoint presentation for the launch of her new novel. She has some content ready, some photographs and a piece of music selected. My job is to add to those and beautify it. I am also supposed to select a new piece of music if I feel it doesn’t work. I will probably have to create the content as well after reading the book. There’ll be around 24–25 slides I’ll have to design.
It’s my first job of this kind and I have no idea how to go about calculate a fixed price. Please help.

Probably not much help, but all I can suggest doing is trying to pin down the client on exactly what she wants done, then doing your best to estimate how much time it will take before settling on a price.

In these kinds of one-off, nebulous jobs that just don’t fit comfortably into the standard routine, I’ve always had a conversation with the client about the difficulty of pricing an evolving job with fuzzy edges. What I’ve typically tried to do is quote a hard figure on those things that can be easily quantified, then written into the contract an hourly figure for those items that can’t quite be pinned down.

As long as you and your client reach a common understanding and have that understanding written into the contract, things ought to be fine. (Well, there’s no guarantee of that, of course. :wink: )

That’s sound advice, B. You’re right about this being a nebulous job.

I’ll try and explain that to the client. Let’s hope she’s receptive to the idea.

You’re supposed to read her entire book as part of the work?

Yes. I should have done this on a job I just finished. I ended up eating a lot of time because:

  • I gave the client a hard quote instead of including an hourly rate.
  • I didn’t have the client show me exactly what she had in mind.

So yes, listen to fearless leader Just-B.

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