Do You Work Too Cheap? (for musicians & performing artists)

Dec 28, 2018
In-demand Healthcare Professions

The Importance of Pricing Your Talent Appropriately

As a musician or performing artist, it's crucial to understand the value of your talent and ensure that you price your services accordingly. Working too cheap can not only undermine your worth, but it can also lead to burnout and financial strain in the long run.

Why Underpricing Hurts You and the Industry

Working for low rates might seem tempting, especially when starting your career or trying to establish yourself in the industry. However, underpricing can have detrimental effects:

  • Undervaluing Your Talent: When you work for cheap, you send a message that your skills and expertise are not worth much. This perception can be hard to shake off, and it becomes difficult to increase your rates in the future.
  • Attracting Low-Quality Clients: Lower prices often attract clients who are not willing to invest in quality. These clients may not appreciate your talent and can be demanding, making it challenging to deliver your best work.
  • Financial Strain: Continuously working for low rates can put a strain on your finances. It becomes harder to sustain yourself, invest in your craft, or even cover basic living expenses.
  • Devaluing the Industry: When musicians and performing artists consistently underprice their services, it devalues the entire industry. It becomes harder for everyone to secure fair compensation, leading to a cycle of exploitation.

How to Price Your Services More Effectively

It's time to break free from the cycle of working too cheap and start valuing your talent appropriately. Here are some steps to help you price your services more effectively:

Research Market Rates

Start by researching the current market rates for musicians and performing artists in your area. Look at similar professionals with comparable levels of expertise and experience. Take note of their pricing structures and use them as a guideline for determining your own rates.

Evaluate Your Experience and Expertise

Consider your level of experience, expertise, and the unique value you bring to the table. Have you received formal training? Have you performed at notable events or venues? These factors contribute to your overall worth as a musician or performing artist.

It's important to recognize that your rates should reflect not only your talent but also the time and effort you invest in honing your craft. Remember, you are not just selling a product or service; you are providing an experience and emotion through your art.

Factor in Overhead Costs

When determining your rates, don't forget to consider your overhead costs. These expenses include musical instruments, studio rental, marketing, transportation, and other necessary investments to sustain your career.

By factoring in these costs, you ensure that you are not only covering your basic living expenses but also reinvesting in your craft to continuously improve and provide exceptional performances.

Offer Packages and Add-On Services

Instead of solely relying on hourly or per-event rates, consider offering packages and add-on services to increase your value proposition. Bundling multiple services together can provide a more comprehensive experience for your clients.

For example, you can offer a package that includes live performances, studio recording, and personalized songwriting. This allows you to charge a higher rate while delivering an all-inclusive solution to your clients' needs.


Working too cheap as a musician or performing artist not only undermines your worth but it also has negative consequences for the industry as a whole. By valuing your talent appropriately and pricing your services effectively, you position yourself for success and create a more sustainable future as a professional in the music and performing arts industry.

Alan Rosen
It's so important for musicians and artists to value their talent properly. Underpricing not only undermines your worth, but it also hurts the entire industry. It's a great reminder to set fair prices and not work too cheap. 🔥
Nov 11, 2023
Sam Allan
Great reminder!🔥
Nov 8, 2023
Tara O'Keefe
Value your talent 🔥💰
Oct 9, 2023