Interview with Tess Whitty of Marketing for Translators: How to quadruple your translation rates

I remember the first time I raised my rates.

I contemplated for weeks and agonized over every single dollar I increased my hourly rate by.

Absolutely terrified and worried, I remember thinking to myself there is no way anyone would pay me this much when they could get some to do their translation cheaper and faster. 

Although the little voice in the back of my head was telling me I’d drive clients away, I decidedly ignored it and went with my gut.

And over time I noticed I wasn’t getting as many proposals (from translation agencies). This initially made me nervous but I saw something interesting happening in my inbox.

Something I didn’t anticipate from the beginning but opened me up to a whole new world.

No more did I receive “URGENT” emails from fishy agencies asking me to translate documents in a matter of hours for 0.03 cents a word.

Instead I was getting a  higher caliber of clients.

People who knew what my rate was and wanted to work with me although they could find someone a lot cheaper.

So I took a closer look at the type of clients I was attracting.

As a result of raising my rates I learned….

1. Scammy agencies and low-ballers were deterred by my new rates. For that reason, they weren’t spamming my inbox and wasting my time anymore. And I was getting serious prospects only (which is why I’m a huge fan of publishing rates).  Bye bottom-feeders!

2. I was getting clients that had a lot at stake in their businesses and were willing to pay the big bucks to get the results they desired. What do I mean by that? Well, they were looking for quality, and higher rates convey quality. There was no need for me to talk about it.

Flash forward to now…

On average I work with 3-6 clients a month (most of them are repeat clients) and these clients still choose to work with me although I charge 3X, even 5X what the average freelance translator in my language pairs/combination charges. 

So you’re probably wondering how can I raise my rates without driving clients away? Especially when you’re in no place to lose business?

For me to do this, I studied my clients and learned their businesses in and out.

I found out a lot of them were charging their clients hundreds of dollars an hour, some up to $1000/hr. 

I go more in depth on this with my interview with Tess Whitty on the Marketing Tips for Translators Podcast.


Tess Whitty of Marketing for Translators















Get access to the podcast episode here:

I’m sure a lot of you are already familiar with Tess and the great work she does. She is a marketing expert, author, translation business owner, and translation coach to new freelancers. Tess and I have a lot of similarities…

We both write blogs sharing insider secrets of the world of freelance translation, we both have spoken at ATA conferences, and both of us live unconventional lifestyles making a full-time living working as freelance translators in niche languages.

But beyond our similarities, we have completely different backgrounds and journeys on how we got started freelancing.

I point this out to show you that no matter what language you speak, your job experience, education, etc. you, too can make a great living as a freelance translator and get the freedom and flexibility you crave.

That’s why I was so excited when she invited me to share my story in detail, especially how I was able to crush my psychological barriers preventing me from charging more and eventually how I was able to quadruple my rate.

Get access to the podcast episode here:

 In this interview you’ll learn:

  • The mindset and psychology of raising your rates 
  • How to find high-end clients that will pay you what you’re worth
  • How to raise your rates without driving clients away
  • The #1 thing you need to let go of, so you can exponentially earn more. 

Here is what others had to say about the interview…

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P.S.: Do you know someone that would enjoy this interview? Feel free to share this link of the podcast

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