There’s a lot that goes into running a successful business, and oftentimes marketing gets put on a back burner. When there’s product development, service fulfillment, and business development at hand, a website or well-designed brochure can seem like the least of your worries. However, creative services are important and should be treated as an investment. When investing in creative services, you may consider hiring a creative freelancer or agency services to help with a project or campaign. Before you make a decision, it’s crucial to understand the differences between a freelancer and an agency, and how much creative services cost in relation to the project.

The Hidden Costs of Creativity: Unforeseen Expenses to Consider When Launching a Creative Project

First, let's consider the costs of creative services. These can vary widely depending on the scope of the project, the level of experience of the creative professional, and the market in which you operate. In general, however, you can expect to pay more for creative services than for more routine tasks such as data entry or administrative work.

One factor that can drive up the cost of creative services is the level of experience and expertise of the creative professional. A seasoned designer or writer may charge more for their services than a newer professional, simply because they have more experience and a proven track record of delivering high-quality work. More experienced designers may also move faster than  newbies, so their per hour rate should be higher.

Another factor that can impact the cost of creative services is the complexity of the project. “How much does branding cost?” is not an easily answered question. The creation of a social media graphic or flier may be relatively inexpensive, while a comprehensive branding project that includes website design, marketing materials, and social media strategy will likely be more expensive.

Creative Agency Services vs Freelance Creative Services

So, why choose an agency over a freelancer for your creative needs? There are a few key reasons to consider.

First, an agency typically has a team of creative professionals with a range of skills and expertise. This can be especially helpful if your project requires a mix of different creative disciplines, such as design, writing, and creative art direction. By working with an agency, you can access a wide range of talent and expertise under one roof, which can save you time and money compared to hiring multiple freelancers.

Another advantage of working with an agency is that they often have established processes and systems in place to manage projects and ensure that they are delivered on time and on budget. This can be especially helpful if you have a complex project with tight deadlines, as the agency can help to coordinate the work of multiple team members and keep the project moving forward.

Related: Why You Should Ask Your Printer about their Creative Team

In addition to the practical benefits of working with an agency, there are also financial considerations to keep in mind. While freelancers may offer lower rates than agencies, they may not have the same level of resources or support. This can lead to delays and unexpected costs if the freelancer runs into issues or needs additional help. An agency, on the other hand, has the resources and support in place to help ensure that your project stays on track and is delivered as expected.

The Value of Investing in Creativity

Overall, the decision to work with an agency or a freelancer for your creative needs will depend on your specific project and budget. If you have a complex project with tight deadlines, or if you need access to a range of creative disciplines, an agency may be the better choice. On the other hand, if you have a simple project with a limited budget, a freelancer may be a more cost-effective option.

Related: Good Design vs Fast Design vs Cheap Design - Pick Two

It's important to carefully consider the costs of creative services and weigh the benefits of working with an agency versus a freelancer. 

Typically, freelancers charge a flat hourly rate. While the rates fluctuate between individuals, the average range is between $75 - $125 per hour for graphic designers and video editors. As mentioned before, the cost of creative agency services may differ depending on project complexity, but the range is typically from $135 - $175 per hour.

While agencies may offer higher rates, they also provide a range of resources, expertise, and support that can help ensure the success of your project. Ironmark’s full service marketing agency has a deep bench of creative team members who are able to provide a multitude of creative agency services, including graphic design, videography, copywriting, and brand strategy. Contact Ironmark today to see how we can help you get creative!

Let's get creative!

Written by Steve Norwood