You’re probably wondering how I price my work, what my contracts are like, if a down payment is needed, etc.

How I price my work:

• For most white papers, I charge $1.70 per word, and they’re usually 3-5,000 words. This can be higher if an extraordinary amount of research is required. Might be less if you have already compiled most of the needed research. For that fixed price, I perform an initial interview to figure out your target audience and what sort of report will best suit your needs. Then I arrange and perform the necessary background interviews, do all other research needed, and prepare a detailed outline for your review and approval. Then I write the white paper, and prepare footnotes, graphs, illustrations, and charts as needed. I then present the paper to you for review, and revise as needed. If desired, I can layout and typeset the paper, and present it to you as a PDF file. Or, I can give you the text so that your own designer can do this for you.

• For case studies, I charge $1.25 per word and apply the process described above, with a couple of exceptions: I don’t usually typeset case studies (though I can, if needed) and I do usually coordinate with magazine editors as needed. I’ll also do my best to obtain images when interviewing your clients. Incidentally, I’ve performed hundreds of customer interviews, and I never forget who I’m working for—when speaking with your clients, I am always courteous and professional.

• For other jobs, I will almost always provide a lump sum in advance. The exception is open-ended jobs, where I can’t know in advance how much work will be required. In those cases, I charge $100 per hour, and I invoice weekly, with a time log.

What about contracts, down payments, etc.?

• For first time clients I’ll usually provide a fairly detailed statement of the work assigned, as I understand it, to make sure we’re on the same page. If we are on the same page, returning that statement to me in an email with a go ahead, or as a signed fax, is usually sufficient. If it’s a big project, I may ask for half down before starting work, or progress payments. I’m usually more casual with additional assignments, unless your system requires a formal statement of work.

Anything else I should know?

• Not really. I prefer my invoices to be due on receipt, but understand that it can take a bit longer for bigger firms. I do get antsy after 30 days.

• Oh yeah, referrals. I get a lot of work from referrals, and certainly appreciate them. If you refer me to a new client, I’ll knock a couple of hundred bucks off my first job for them, and my next job for you.

• One more thing. When I’m writing case studies or white papers, I assume that you have an outlet for them. This could be for your website, or a magazine you advertise in, or whatever. I am sometimes able to help with placement, but I’ll charge you for my time when I do so, and I never guarantee placement. That’s your responsibility. But I can share some ideas with you, if you like—that’s usually free, just ask.


Angus W. Stocking

Angus W. Stocking, L.S., is a licensed land surveyor who now prepares information marketing content for the infrastructure industry.


Angus W. Stocking, L.S.
P.O. Box 872
Paonia CO 81428
270.363.0033 office