I scope out freelance job ads every now and then, and this morning I found one that looked pretty cool. For the application, all the guy wanted was a resume and links to published clips - so I tossed mine into an email and sent it off.
I just got this response (which I've edited to protect his identity):
While I'm not insulted that he asked for a free sample, I don't think it's appropriate. (On a rough day, I might be insulted - but not today.)
I'm not suggesting that this dude is trying to pull a fast one, but some people do try to get free content for their blogs.
But I don't provide free samples. Period.
3 Reasons it's Inappropriate for a Potential Client to Ask for a Freebie
1. Keyword: "potential." He's not my client, and may never be - and if I chose to provide him with a sample, specific to his blog on an uncommon topic, that's time and money down the toilet.
2. I gave him links to my portfolio and a resume. He can see how I write from both those things (especially the portfolio!) but perhaps didn't bother to look.
3. He gave me my first deadline and I don't even have a contract with the dude. Four days or less?! (Four days from now is Sunday, and I don't work weekends. Not good on my calendar - and all my existing clients know that there's a serious rush fee for projects that they need in less than a week.)
So here's what I sent him back:
What would you have done? Do you provide free samples? Would you, if the potential gains from the job were great enough?
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© Angie Papple Johnston 2011.
Don't steal from me or I'll come getcha. Really... I've got that kind of time.