In my business (which is copywriting), there is a subset of copywriting services that offer ridiculous pricing on copywriting. Prices that are hard to believe, quite honestly. Like “$5 for a 500 word article” pricing.
To be clear, I’m not talking about “regular” competition. We all have competition – I understand that. But certain businesses, especially creative businesses, have a subset of competition that must live in mud huts, because their prices are sooooo ridiculously cheap. Web designers go through this. So do graphic artists and marketing people. And, like I mentioned, us copywriters go through this.
Here’s what I’m up against in this respect: like I mentioned above, there are companies out there that will produce a 500 word article for $5
I’ve written a LOT of 500 word articles. Depending on the topic, it’s anywhere between one and three hours work. Sorry, but like most professionals and/or business owners, one to three hours of my time runs into the hundreds.
To me, there are only three ways this can happen: a machine is copying existing articles and changing a few words to pass plagiarism checks; a third world person is writing them from the high speed connection in their mud hut; or the company “crowdsources” and has hundreds of wannabe writers “compete” for a “chance to be published” (which these days means “on a blog somewhere”). And in the fine print, the writing is property of the company, so they always have hundreds of articles that they didn’t pay for. Personally, I think it’s more #1 than anything. I think a lot of copying/editing/pasting is going on.
So how do I handle this? Simple – I don’t even give them the time of day. If a client brings up “hey, I can get this done for $5”, I say “go ahead”. Fortunately, the writing is sooo God-awful, only the most desperate person would do such. I won’t even acknowledge the price in a negotiation – no “let’s meet in the middle” stuff. It’s so out of the norm (and the writing is pretty bad too) that it doesn’t even exist on my radar.
In other words, I sell / negotiate on writing quality that’s on a par with my writing. And I’m a damn good copywriter. Given sufficient visitors, I will raise sales every time.
THAT’S how you handle that kind of competition folks – you don’t even give it the time of day (well, save perhaps writing a blog post on it.) And good clients are ok with that (unless they are living in mud huts themselves, I suppose.)