Brennan Dunn
brennan dunnBrennan Dunn is the founder of Double Your Freelancing and helps teach freelancers and consultants how to earn more money and work with better clients.

We’re delighted and honoured to have you join us for the very first episode of Happy Porch Radio. Season one is going to be all about the long haul. We’re going to be digging deep into how to build long-term client relationships, recurring revenue, repeat business, and more.

On today’s episode, we’ve invited Brennan Dunn on to the show to talk all about the ins and outs of recurring revenue and how the concept of productised services can fit into our agencies.

Listen to the episode below

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Tune in to this week’s episode to find out:

  • How Brennan started as a freelancer and grew a company to 11 employees.
  • What led Brennan to start a community to help people improve on the business side of freelancing.
  • How Brennan defines a retainer and recurring revenue and why he believes they are important.
  • What it means to offer a productised service.
  • The importance of having a good off-boarding process.
  • The benefits of allowing your clients to work without a commitment or offering them a money-back guarantee.

Mentioned in the episode:

Transcript:

It’s not about thinking, like ‘how can I milk my clients for more cash’ it’s more about, from the beginning, if your sales process is built on you actually thinking ‘where are they now?’ and ‘where do they want to be?’ Ideally, in the project development you get them to where they want to be but then long term you can get them beyond where they even thought they could be. – Brennan Dunn

Barry O’Kane: Hello. Season One, Episode One and we’re going to hit the ground running. I’m Barry and I’m delighted and honoured that you are joining me on the journey. Season One is all about the long haul. We dig deep into building long term client relationships, recurring revenue, repeat business, referrals and more. Everything that’s vital to building an agency that not only survives but grows.

In this episode, we take a look at recurring revenue, and how the concept of productised services can fit into our agencies. So let’s dive straight in.

I am absolutely delighted and incredibly excited to have Brennan Dunn here with me. Hi Brennan.

Brennan Dunn: Hello Barry. How are you?

Barry: Very good, thanks. Thanks again for joining me.

Brennan: Of course.

Barry: Before we start and get into the meat of the discussions, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.

Brennan: Sure. So back in around 2008 I decided to – actually 2006 is when I went out on my own as a freelancer and then in 2008 I decided to start to scale beyond myself. So, I was getting a good amount of referrals, I was getting a lot of inbound work and I could either turn it away or grow. So, I grew and then I got the company to 11 employees. It took a few years to get there and a lot of trial and error. When I got to that point, I started to realise that I was missing out on a lot back at the home and I was traveling often, you know and so on. Which is all good and well but it wasn’t fitting the lifestyle that I wanted.

So I exited the agency to start a software company called Plan Scope and through that company – it’s a project management tool for agencies and freelancers – and what ended up happening was people started to contact me through the support channels, asking me about things related to pricing or getting clients or just really general consulting advice. One thing led to another and eventually I released a book on pricing and I then I released something more in depth on getting clients.

One thing led to another and now that spun off into its own business and I just sold Plan Scope because I couldn’t balance both any longer and now I’m all in on what’s called Double Your Freelancing. It’s kind of a community resource centre, I guess, for people who are looking to get better at the business side of freelancing.

Barry: Obviously, that’s brought a range of really valuable experience. Double Your Freelancing stuff is how I connected with you and I find that incredibly valuable. One of things I find that’s interesting about that is that a lot of that applies to, not just freelancing, but also the process to building teams and building agencies.

Brennan: Well, I mean realistically it’s just a difference of scale. So, you know, selling and marketing and everything else, when you have an agency, obviously, it becomes a lot more important because you need to keep your team fed, instead of just yourself fed, but, it’s really just, a lot of the core concepts are similar. How do you position yourself, how do you select a niche, how do you – like we’re going to be talking about today – how do you set up retainer agreements and so on. But with a team then you’re also dealing with personnel and team culture and things that don’t always apply when you’re on your own.

Barry: As you said there, what we’re going to dig into now is retainers and recurring agreements and so on. The first series of this podcast, Happy Porch Radio, is all about building long term relationships and so I think this is an excellent, very directly applicable topic.

I reached out to you because of a very detailed, really valuable post that you wrote about retainers and how they might be structured or a different way to think about it. To start, it would be interesting to hear, just to be clear on the definition, how you define, what we mean by retainer and recurring revenue and why that’s important.

Brennan: Yeah, so the traditional model of retainers, it means to retain. It means to keep somebody around on an ongoing basis. It creates a monthly fee that a company pays to retain. Often times you hear it with lawyers. You know, you might have a lawyer on retainer who is there to help should your business need help, in any given month.

Often times with freelancers the way it’s model is, you end up selling your availability at a discounted rate but on a monthly basis. So, you might tell a client, ‘Hey, we just built this great website for you but now let’s switch into, I will give you up to 20 hours a month’, you know, ‘My usual rate is $100 an hour but instead I’ll give it to you at $1600 a month and you’ll get 20 hours of my time, each and every month’. There is benefit to the client. At that point you already know their business. You built their website. Getting in the back of your line wouldn’t really make a lot of sense for them, long term.

So, often times that’s what ends up happening. And it’s not a bad thing, I mean, most freelancers don’t like to sell. So, it’s just $1600 a month in revenue that doesn’t require needing to go out and actively sell a client on making that. You know, in a way, I mean, it’s good for predictable revenue. The only downside is, and this is really the thrust of that post, is you end up bottlenecking yourself into getting a lower income than you would if you were working traditionally with clients on more of like an active engagement and it’s just always divisible. So, if you’re saying ‘I’ll give you 20 hours a month’ and it’s $1600 a month, the client is, often times, going to come back and say, ‘well that’s $80 an hour, can I just pay you that when I need to?’

So, I’m a big fan of really taking the old kind of discounted future time model and making it more of like a productised service that might include some a la carte time but also includes a lot of very benefit focused deliverables that happen each and every month.

Barry: Yeah. I think that applies. You see that so often, and I’ve done that myself, of just thinking ‘oh well, if I just package up some time that would be great because, you know, there’s the recurring thing. Problem solved, the money’s coming every month. Tick.’ As you say, it’s totally not that very often. In the post you talk a little bit about, there’s a limit to that, you know, there’s only so many hours and then there’s other issues like scheduling and rolling over hours. It just suddenly becomes – it’s not as simple and clear cut as it seems.

Brennan: Let’s say you had a service that delivered an eBook a month. Actually, a good example of this is Audible.com. So, audible has audio books and they have a monthly service that you pay each month and you get X many credits a month and you can use those credits on audio books. And for them, it’s cheaper doing it that way than it would be to purchase the book outright without that subscription model.

You know, the thing about them though is that whether they have 10 customers or 10 000 customers, there’s not a correlation between, you know, effort. It’s a very good business model for them because they get that predictable revenue and, you know, everything else but with us, we’re service providers. So, there’s only so many hours a week that we’re able to work. And if all that time is booked with retainer work then you basically have created a ceiling for yourself of earning potential.

Barry: If you have a team it’s the same principle, it’s just larger. On top of that you have this scheduling conflict. So, I have X amount of hours that my clients may need me for retainers but I also might have one or two projects and then we have this constant pressure on the project’s timescale. Maybe we’ve got the same people we need to schedule in a few hours here and there. It just becomes a bit confusing and messy.

Brennan: Right. It’s still about hours worked, right. So, you’ve got – you’re trying to cater for your current clients who are paying you for, let’s say, an active project. Then you need to deal with your legacy clients who are paying you a monthly retainer for hours and then you end up overworking and there’s burn out, everything else.

Barry: You described that as the traditional model and then you mentioned the significant alternative being productised service. Can you, I know you mentioned it already, but just to recap on what you mean by productised service?

Brennan: Right. So what I mean by that is a productised service is just a service that is sold for its benefits. So, an example would be, my podcast for instance. I pay somebody a few hundred dollars a month. Any time I have a new recording, they edit it for me, the put the intro, the outro, they upload it to the podcast host, they add a new entry to my site, they write the show notes and everything else but I have no idea how long it takes them to do it. I don’t even know who does it. I know my point of contact there but I don’t know who’s actually the one doing the work. But it doesn’t matter to me because I’m not actually paying for anyone’s time. I’m paying for four podcast episodes a month.

That’s the example that I like to give which is, it’s just something where I’ve purchased this subscription service because I wanted the benefit of what they were offering. I wasn’t saying I will retain an audio engineer for X many hours a month.

Barry: Yeah, that’s really interesting. The time is irrelevant. What you’re interested in is the value you’re getting, which in this case is the episodes.

Brennan: That’s right. Find a way to deliver some form of business value monthly. Especially, if you’re in the business of building websites or applications for clients. We all know the first version is never perfect. There’s always, once people start using it, you’re going to learn things. I mean, no website on the planet looks the same day one as it does right now. It’s advantageous for them to not only keep you around for your domain knowledge but also because there’s a lot of room for – and I break it down into three different focuses. There’s room to optimise, there’s room to insure and then there’s room to train. My argument is find ways to mix and match those benefits into a monthly product you can sell to your clients.

Barry: And we’ll dig into that just now but the thing that I think is interesting is that there’s value added for both sides there. You’re not just selling the time and then having to sort of justify every hour and minute on this sort of nebulous value offering, so you’re benefiting on that. But the client is actually benefitting as well in that you’re able to clearly define and therefore offer that ongoing value rather than just saying ‘hey, I’m available.’

Brennan: Exactly right. That’s exactly it. The thing is, when companies are paying somebody monthly, or they have a fixed monthly expense, if they don’t know what value they’re getting for that it’s very liable that they’re going to come to a point where they’re saying, you know, ‘why are we paying Barry this much money a month?’ and if they don’t have an easy answer to that even though they know, well, you know, ‘Barry does this thing every month for us but, you know, what is it actually helping us with?’ It’s not good for you and it’s not good for them.

So, I mean, the benefit of a benefit-focused productised service that you sell monthly is that the benefits are obvious but it also solves the ‘I want predictable income each month without needing to sell my time each and every month’ problem.

Barry: Absolutely. That is 100% critical, I think. Even if you are providing the value, if you aren’t demonstrating that value you’re, obviously, going to come up on the, you know, when the finance director comes in or whoever and says ‘what’s this for’ and ‘can we cut it, we need to make some savings.’ Unless there’s an easily understood internal answer to that question then it’s going to be a challenge.

Brennan: Exactly. Exactly.

Barry: The CEO Ready Report, what you’ve called it there, CEO Ready, is really important because that makes you think more about, instead of just listing what I did, you actually look at, okay, well, here’s what we did for you and also, here’s the results – it’s much more high level, it’s again, it’s strategy level rather than just a list of tasks and actions and stuff.

Brennan: That’s exactly it. It helps you, I mean, businesses don’t really care about paying you monthly, right? It really does force you to really focus in on what is the value you’re providing your clients, which is a good strategy, whether or not you’re doing retainers at all. You know, it’s still a good strategy regardless. It does help, and what I really like about it is, it’s a very good – you’re effectively selling a productised service. I mean you’re basically saying, here’s what you’re paying, here’s what you’re getting each month.

I mean, there are people like, Nick Disvado, who – what he does is, he does monthly ongoing AB testing. Usually, it’s not – the kind of retainers that I help people with are often times a, kind of like, a follow up up-sell. So, if somebody hires you to build out a website from scratch, maybe you’re working full time for them for a few weeks but then you transition them into something like this. It’s not as easy but you can get to the point where you’re selling something like this independently directly, instead of it being an up-sell. So, people like Nick Disvado, he has, you know, 14, 15 people paying him, you know, a few thousand a month each. He’s effectively doing optimisation work for them and, you know, his own spin on it, his own take on it. I mean, it’s really nice for him because all his income comes from that, and the likelihood that 15 people are going to cancel one month is unimaginable. It just, it gives him a nice – he’s not always thinking about where that next sale is going to come from and so on.

So I think it’s a good idea regardless to get into this. I mean, it’s really, at the end of the day, how can I provide ongoing value to my client and just pay me for some deliverable. Now, some things might not really apply. Like if you do a logo for a client I don’t really see how – unless you do a full big branding project or branding strategy for them – if you’re just doing a logo deliverable, how do you optimise a logo over time? You really can’t, right? But if it’s more about you’re selling a branding package and you can work on increasing their brand value and reputation and such over time, that’s a different story.

So, it just depends on you really looking at kind of what you do, and thinking how can I make the deliverables more valuable over time? Because, if you think about it in terms of you’re giving somebody a product, you know which is like, let’s say a website, a new website, it’s important to think ‘what can I do to make that asset more valuable each and every month?’ That’s how you derive your retainer agreements.

Barry: Seeing the project as a completely isolated thing, not just in terms of your own business, missing an opportunity, but as a professional, to help that product be more successful, you can’t view it as an isolated thing. It has to fit into the wider picture and the only – and like ongoing optimisation, as you say, is fundamental to the success.

I really like the idea of insure as in sort of, basically, risk management, combined with this idea of optimisation and incrementally improving things and the advisory of sort of more strategic training stuff. Putting them all together because individually it can be quite hard, for example, to sell an insurer thing, but that can be a tough thing to explain the value of on an ongoing basis and yet it’s fundamental to the other parts being successful.

Brennan: It’s a good thing to tack on too. I mean, one thing I like doing too is offering different packages. The low end can just be insurance. The middle can be insurance and optimisation and the high end can be all three.

What that allows you to do is, you know, a lot of clients, let’s say you’re offering for $200 a month they can get insurance. Then for $800 a month they’ll get that plus some testing and optimisation. Because what you’re really saying with that low end is the product is not going to get more valuable, we’re just going to make sure it doesn’t lose value. Meaning, it doesn’t go down.

What’s the effect if they lose a day in sales if they’re an online store? It’s probably quite a bit, both for immediate sales and maybe even reputation. But then the middle and the higher end tiers are more focused on let’s actually look at increasing the value of the asset instead of just keeping it where it is.

Barry: Yeah, absolutely. And the packages make sense as well to allow people to step up and down rather than saying yes or no to the services that you’re offering.

Brennan: Well, that’s a big thing too. I mean, psychologically, giving people options is always a better thing than giving them a yes or no, either buy it or don’t buy it.

Barry: Another thing that you picked out or mentioned that I think is really powerful about this approach to the whole concept is the idea of not just – if you’re selling time, there’s a limit to that, okay. Whether it’s you or your team, there’s a limit to how much time you can sell, especially, if you’ve got other projects as well. But if you’re thinking more about the productising thing, so you can look at automating the tools or spreading the load around, you know suppliers or other services and so on, so that it raises the ceiling in terms of what you can deliver with the same resources.

Brennan: Well that’s the big thing is, when you’re selling the benefit for a price, how that benefit gets created as long as it’s the same equally valued benefit, is immaterial. Let’s go back to Nick Divados’ example. Right now, he does all the testing himself. He does the analysis himself. Then he does the reporting himself. But, you know, it could get to the point where he has other people who are really good at, let’s say, analysing metrics and then reporting the next thing, okay, here’s a summary of how this client has done in the last month. Then Nick says, ‘all right, now that I know this I’m going to run these two examples.’ And then he tells these people what to do and then they do it for him. They do the technical, of actually going in to Optimizely and getting it set up and everything else. And then maybe these people do the writing but then Nick does the final vetting of it.

It’s kind of like, you know, when you go to the dentist’s office the dentist isn’t working with you the whole time. You have that dental assistant who does a lot of cleaning and everything for you and then the dentist comes in at the end, does his or her thing and, you know, and so on. Lawyers – same thing. They have the paralegals who do a lot of the grunt work, the research and everything else. At the end of the day you’re still getting, your clients are still getting the same thing but it allows you to scale in a way that you can’t if you’re just saying ‘I will give you hours.’

Barry: To take it back to the idea of if you have a team, or you’re running a team, or you’re part of a team, one of the issues often is, you might have key people or a more experienced, more senior, more expensive people, basically, being able to split the deliverables are amongst the team allows you to do that in a more efficient way and to scale it up in a way that doesn’t involve one person being a bottleneck for everything, for example. Or an expensive person’s time being spent on things where somebody else could help them out.

Brennan: That’s the thing, you’re able to put the best people, you know, on the project where it makes sense. By virtue of the client paying the flat service fee you’re able to get, in a way, potentially a lot of different experts. You know, one person is a great back end person, one person is a great optimisation person. Maybe you who’s really skilled at training and coaching and everything else, you’re able to kind of get all of that. But again, they’re not looking at an invoice and saying ‘okay, I paid Barry eight hours and Jane did three hours.’ You know that’s not in the equation at all.

Barry: Let’s say that we’re convinced that we need to do this, or change our existing retainers to more along this sort of model, something else you touched on towards the end of the blog post is about including this concept in both the sales process and the off-boarding process, assuming that it’s a project or something that you’re engaging. Can we talk a little bit about that?

Brennan: You know, again, if you’re going to be building something from scratch, which is what a lot of us do. We build something new or we redesign or something like that. You know, there should be a formal on-boarding and a formal off-boarding process for your clients. A lot of us don’t always do that but I think part of being a really good skilled professional is having processes in place in your business. One of them is a, you know, what’s next sort of thing. Which, I mean, for some of my clients often they have an onsite team and they’re not going to need me or my team long term but there should still be a knowledge transfer that happens instead of just handing them over, you know, a bunch of code or a bunch of designs.

So, in that off-boarding is where I recommend you really, kind of, give people the options in terms of, you know, ‘we’re going to be delivering the new website to you in about a week’, or you know, however long, two weeks, something like that, ‘here are your options for, kind of, long term success of it’. You’ll want to say we talked about this earlier on, but, which again is in the sales process which we’re going to talk in a second, but, you want to then give people, based off of really kind of what you feel like. What’s the scope of the project? What did you do?

Over time you can probably have more turnkey offerings or maybe that you offer all of your clients. But I think when you’re starting I would do it more personal, more ‘let’s look at the client, what their needs are and let’s talk about ways that we can be of assistance long term.’ That part of your process, part of your delivery of the actual asset should include discussing this.

Another fall back is if they don’t go for it then, have in place in your follow up schedule where, you know a few weeks out, you ask them to see how things are going. You know, a month or two out, you ask them for hard data. Maybe in terms of concrete, you know, this is the effect the new asset has had on our business versus the old one. That becomes a really good lead in for bringing up that discussion again about ‘well, what can we do, okay, you’ve seen, you know, we’ve helped you, it looks like you’re on track for an increase of 10% in terms of your daily sales, let’s talk about ways that we can actually get that higher. We can actually make your revenue generated daily even greater than what it is now.’ You know, that’s another way to reintroduce it.

So, it’s not about thinking, like, ‘how can I milk my clients for more cash,’ it’s more about ‘how can I make what it is – from the beginning if your sales process is built on you actually thinking, ‘where are they now,’ and, ‘where do they want to be,’ – ideally in the project development you get them to where they want to be. But then long term you can get them beyond where they even thought they could be. Or you can get them even further than where they initially anticipated. When you’re really benefit focused from the beginning, from the start, it just becomes natural, I think.

Barry: In that initial process – so, when a client comes to you and says I need to redesign XYZ and you say, ‘okay, well, working with you we’ve come up with – here’s where we want to take you, this is how we’re going to do it. What you’re saying is important is to sort of introduce the idea, whether it’s a hard and more definite sales process or just hinting at the process, that you have ongoing services above and beyond that.

Brennan: Yeah, you don’t want to blindside them. You’re going to give them some options when you get to the point where it makes sense to do that. But, earlier on I would say, you know, the way that we work is, we usually work in a kind of a two phased approach where the first phase is what we call the active phase of development which is where we’re building the site from scratch, which is where we’re coding your application and then we, often times the next stage is having an ongoing element where we’re able to work with our clients and invest in a long term way to increase the value of the product, make sure that it’s always up to date, that it’s always online, always available and so on.

And you just basically say, you know, once we’re getting to the end of the active phase of development and we’re going to be ready to hand off we can talk then about different options and whether it makes sense for you to keep us around, to retain us.

Barry: Yeah, and as you said, I think the off-boarding process – a lot of us, I think, will simply go ‘here’s your project, ta da…’

Brennan: Yeah, we don’t do that. You don’t really have any off-boarding. It’s like, here you go, have fun, good luck. (Laughter)

I mean, it does a disservice to our clients, if you really think about it. Because a lot of them don’t know what to do. They’re begging, in a way, probably, for some advice. Even if you’re not saying, giving them an up-sell for, like a retainer, just giving them a transition, helping them with stuff. Whatever makes sense for you, right? I find that to be really, really valuable.

That’s often where I’ll tell people about that follow up. Where I’ll say, we’re aiming to deliver it next Friday, I’m going to be contacting you for the next few weeks just to make sure everything’s going smoothly, that there’s no – I want to find out as you get your customers onboard this new platform, on this new website, I want to hear from you what you’re learning from them. Here’re some tips on how you can get feedback from your customers. You know, you’re basically just finding ways to help them, but you’re also setting up touch points where you can follow up and get more data.

And usually, I mean, the benefit is this – retainers or not, these often serve as a great way to not only get testimonials. Let’s say you follow up and you’re asking for data about what kind of lift in sales have you gotten, how many new leads have you gotten in the last month compared to usual. It’s a great way to kind of get the data that a great case study, great testimonial should have.

It’s a part of the process. It’s really – it should be a part of the product that they’re buying. I mean, when you sell them, you should tell them you’re getting, you know, this is how we kick things off, like this roadmapping engagement and then we get into the active phase, this is how we’re going to meet during the active phase, this is how we’re going to review this and then we’re going to have an off-boarding so that you’re armed with everything that you need. You know exactly what to do with this new website, how to keep it modern, up to date, optimised, everything else and I’m also going to – and this is where I’m also going to, as a business owner, I’m also going to follow up with you routinely over the next few months after we deliver just so we can make sure everything’s going according to plan.

Barry: That also enables you to manage expectations so you’re not, for example, getting that email a little while later saying, ‘oh but I thought you were going to do this for me,’ or ‘can you just do this for me at no cost,’ or whatever.

Brennan: It’s a product. You’re giving them a very replicable product. That has a process. You know, the thing clients hate is when they talk to somebody, they talk to a freelancer and it’s just like, yeah, let’s talk, and they want you to take charge. If you went to a doctor or a dentist and they were like, ‘yeah, Barry, I guess we should maybe look at your teeth,’ or ‘maybe we shouldn’t do a drill,’ you know, people want confidence. When I go to a service provider I want to be walked through by somebody who obviously knows what they’re doing.

Barry: We have this ongoing relationship, the retainer, with clients. We’re doing our monthly CEO reports and things are going well. Two questions: does that provide us an opportunity to identify either other retainer services that we can add into the mix or other opportunities for new projects? And where are the risks that, some of the risks that we’ve discussed, that they’re going to say ‘okay, I’ve had enough. I’m going to pull the plug?’

Brennan: I like to tell people that there’s no commitment, right. I mean, if you want you can mandate a 12 month contract with your clients or something but I like – I mean, one of the objections I like to overcome is, well , what if I’m paying this and I’m not seeing value? That’s what I try to tell people that my goal in that report every month is to show you how you’re getting more than what you’re paying. And if you don’t feel like you are getting value anymore there’s no commitment to you long term.

What you can even do, and this is risky, but it can work, is you can always say, ‘if you ever feel like you’re just not getting the value, I will gladly refund your last month’s payment.’ Which you wouldn’t do that ever with active engagement but considering that the goal of a really good retainer is not a lot of actual work but accessibility and this process where, you know, let’s say it takes you five hours of actual effort to deliver, you know, $2000, $3000 of value, where that’s what you’re charging them. If I were doing that I would be probably okay with saying I will gladly refund your last month’s payment if you decide that you’re not getting value from it because I know firsthand that having that guarantee will substantially increase sales and the likelihood that that guarantee is cashed in and used is low enough that from a risk/reward perspective, it makes sense to offer.

Barry: Yeah, I think you’re right. I think there’s a lot of – paranoid is maybe a bit strong – but, we feel like that is too risky to offer a guarantee, like, everybody will sort of take us for a ride, kind of thing.

Brennan: Until it’s a problem, it’s not a problem. I think a lot of us, and I see that across the board where people are very, very afraid of offering guarantees like that. And I usually – if you’re building, like a website from scratch and you’re putting in 40 hours a week, do not do that. But for something like this where you can basically give them that objection killer, the amount of increased conversions you’ll get versus the amount of refunds you might need to offer, should, if you’re doing things right, should be pretty, pretty well.

I recommend doing that too, early on, especially if you’re doing, like, a road mapping engagement. You know, just kind of like a paid up front, concise productised engagement, I would do the same thing there because, again, that is enough to often decrease the likelihood that they’re going to get cold feet and not do it. Now, if you’ve worked with somebody, let’s say for a month or two, the likelihood that, you know, if they’re still working with you they probably have a good feeling of your professionality and how you do things so, I just don’t think at that point – you should still probably offer the guarantee – but I wouldn’t worry too much about it being abused.

Barry: And if you’re working with somebody who you’re worried that it might be abused then maybe that’s a signal that…

Brennan: That they’re not a great client. Yeah. You don’t need to offer these to people but I think it’s a good thing to do. It should be a part of your process, as we’ve said. And you can potentially even go back to your past clients and, you know, you can mention that you’re offering a new service, that you’re trying to help them create, you know, even more valuable, even more profitable websites. If they’d like to hear more, reach back out… And you might get a few bites and then you can try to, maybe, up-selling to past clients of yours on kicking this off.

Barry: I’ve personally found that to be incredibly powerful and also, because we have clearly defined what the retainer is, when other requests come in, either from past clients or clients on the retainer, and you’re saying you might get an indication that there’s additional service, like another package as you describe, we can offer that includes something that we aren’t already offering, there’s a kind of chance to grow that service offering.

Brennan: Exactly.

Barry: Outstanding. Thanks Brennan. I found that discussion really useful and really interesting.

Brennan: Yeah. Thank you for having me Barry.

Barry: And just last question: if people want to reach out to you or find out about your stuff, where do they go?

Brennan: Sure, best place is DoubleYourFreelancing.com. If you’re looking for actually, kind of like a niche crash course on a lot of what we talked about – not specifically on retainers, but about pricing on value and everything else, I have a free email course at FreePricingCourse.com. Quite a few thousand people have gone through it and kind of like it so, that’s another option too.

Barry: I’ll put all those links into the show notes on HappyPorch.com. Thanks again, Brennan.

Brennan: Yep. Thank you, Barry.