Author Topic: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?  (Read 3915 times)

Meowkins

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Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« on: August 21, 2015, 07:43:01 AM »
A friend is a self-published author and knows one of my dreams is to do marketing on the side for independent artists, particularly authors, comic artists, and video game creators. He's made a lucrative business for himself at $4k-$10k per month (depending on how badly Amazon dicks with him re: algorithm changes). This side hustle he has is in combination with a six figure income. He's asked for help in paid advertising, which I happen to do in my full time job.

Here's the thing: He and I have both been encouraging each other in the journey to FI and the pursuit of our dream to be creatives. So, I know how hard he's worked to hammer away at an insane amount of student debt for him and his wife and the toll its taken on his health (physical and mental). He's also been the friend that sat down and explained everything I know, in great detail and simple language for a noob like me, about investing, saving, and general financial decisions in life.

He's asked me to name my price for my help. I basically want to scream, "NO YOU DUMMY YOU ARE FRIEND I LOVE YOU YOUR MONEY IS NO GOOD." On the other hand, the idea of not paying people for their work (especially young people) makes him livid and he is insisting that he pays something.

Any strategies for how to go about working with friends (or in this case, *for* friends) that you care about and coming up with a price that appeases both sides?

I know what I want to do is do it for free. But I don't know if that's just dumb and naive. Any perspective would be helpful.


 

Retire-Canada

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2015, 07:52:45 AM »
Figure out what the market rate would be for the services you are providing and then discount it as you feel appropriate because he's a friend. So if $50/hr is market charge him $35/hr with a 30% discount.

Mr FrugalNL

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2015, 07:56:34 AM »
Maybe he could pay you in kind so it'll feel less like a business transaction for you while still making him feel like he's not imposing on you? Is there anything he could give you that you'd like? Wine? Flowers? Firewood? The free use of his holiday home?

MonkeyJenga

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2015, 08:15:43 AM »
Take the money, dummy. You're saving him time and money by being a known entity. I agree that you can give a fair market discount if you want, but presumably he wants your help because you will be making him even more money with your mad advertising skillz.

Think about if you had a friend you could teach everything you know about money and lifestyle choices, who was eager and grateful to learn from you, and who supported you emotionally in your quest to pay off debt. How amazing would that make you feel? And then you got the chance to utilize that person's skills to benefit both of you? This guy is in that situation, and he probably is complaining to people that you won't let him pay you.

On a practical side, he might feel obligated to go easy on you if he doesn't pay you, because you're a friend helping out, versus someone he can expect results from.

In summary: take the money.

MissStache

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2015, 08:43:53 AM »
You 100% deserve to get paid for your skills!  Presumably this will also boost his income, right?  I've been in a situation where I have been able to funnel some business to my artisan friends and it makes me so angry when they try to do it for free.  You want to scream "NO YOU DUMMY YOU ARE FRIEND I LOVE YOU YOUR MONEY IS NO GOOD" but I (and I bet he) wants to scream "YOUR TALENTS ARE WORTH IT AND I CAN AFFORD TO PAY YOU.  FOR GOD'S SAKE TAKE THE MONEY."  Give him a discount or some "extra" services if you feel the need, but allow this to be beneficial for BOTH of you!

music lover

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2015, 08:44:28 AM »
I'm a handy guy and am often helping friends build decks and fences, or hanging drywall, etc. No money ever changes hands...I help them and they help me, we have a beer when we're done and everyone is happy. But, this is at our personal homes.

One of those friends just bought a rental property and will be earning income from it. He has asked me to do a few jobs for him and he insisted that he pay me, and I agree. He's in business to make a profit and does not expect a friend to supply free labour.

Another friend of mine is a roofer. He has helped me shingle my house at no charge, but if it was a rental property generating income, I have no such assumptions, and he would be paid for his labour.

James

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2015, 08:56:16 AM »
Figure out a fair price, and then charge that amount for the basic services you provide. So if it takes an hour to technically do what you need to do for him, charge him an hour at a fair price. But then spend extra time going above and beyond for him, making sure your advertising is really the best it can be. So maybe it takes you 90 minutes, or 2 hours, or whatever it takes, just make sure your services are awesome and go above and beyond whatever average would be. That is how I would repay his kindness.


But whatever you do, make sure you can maintain it. Don't charge him less and then slowly charge him more over time. And don't provide x amount of effort and then slowly provide less over time for the same money. But I would try to consistently provide extra work for the amount he pays, showing both your appreciation and gratitude for the chance to help him out and make a buck at the same time. Try to make it a win win, not a competition of who can help the other more.

cdttmm

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #7 on: August 21, 2015, 08:58:12 AM »
Take the money. This is a friend with an established side business who is making good money and realizes that in order to make even better money, he needs to hire someone to help him. It's either you or somebody else. He asked you. Take the money.

As far as naming your price, what about asking for a percentage? If there's a relatively easy way to track how much more he's making per month by having your help, then I would ask for a cut of that increase. 10%, 20%, 50% -- not sure what would be fair as I'm not sure how much work this side gig will entail and how much of an impact it can potentially have on his monthly income. But when he does well, you do well, so there's a built-in incentive for you to really boost his income.

Kaikou

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #8 on: August 21, 2015, 09:14:23 AM »
Yeah I would take it at full price too. Artists are always scared to charge full price.

KMMK

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #9 on: August 21, 2015, 09:29:30 AM »
I've done it, at a price I'd charge other clients but with a bit of a friend discount. But this was for a newer business with minimal income. With an established lucrative business like that I'd charge a normal fair market amount.

Meowkins

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2015, 07:28:40 PM »
Hello all! I just wanted to circle back on this and say THANK YOU for your advice. It was immensely helpful. I took the gig and first deliverable is on Monday. Labor day weekend is all about knocking it out of the park! :)

The payment is still kinda a strange thing to figure out, since it would have to be under the table, but we're figuring out compensation such as him paying for our yearly creative group retreat. Which would be just fine for me!

KMMK

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2015, 07:35:07 PM »
Hello all! I just wanted to circle back on this and say THANK YOU for your advice. It was immensely helpful. I took the gig and first deliverable is on Monday. Labor day weekend is all about knocking it out of the park! :)

The payment is still kinda a strange thing to figure out, since it would have to be under the table, but we're figuring out compensation such as him paying for our yearly creative group retreat. Which would be just fine for me!

Why would it have to be under the table? If anyone involved is evading taxes I'd steer clear. Especially if it's your friend who is not paying taxes properly. With that level of income it seems risky for an audit. Just my cautious opinion.

Meowkins

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2015, 07:41:31 PM »
Nah it's not to evade taxes. I'd definitely pay taxes on whatever earnings. By under the table I just meant something not general spoken about, since if it's doing paid advertising some people might consider that a conflict of interest. It's not; my friends revenue is NOWHERE near what our clients make. He isn't at all our target demographic. But eh, I wouldn't want to cause a stink.

TomTX

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Re: Your friend offers you a side gig - do you accept?
« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2015, 02:48:04 PM »
Good for you! My wife is helping a friend set up the "back end" for her business, and will be taking a cut of profits (if any).