A company approached me about doing a consulting job in social media. I was one of several they were talking to, they told me. We talked by phone. They told me how they needed help to get started, and that they wanted a full day of on-site consulting. A jump start, of sorts. Sounded good to me.
I provided some ideas via email. We talked some more. They asked for more details. I gave a more specific outline of the strategies I proposed.
They asked for a more detail: a report on how much time we would spend discussing each tool (Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, blogging, and other resources I’d recommend), and the tactics they should use with each one. This was needed for submission to the CEO, to consider whether to hire me, they said.
That is where I drew the line. I declined to develop that kind of customized plan for them, without compensation.
What’s your opinion: did I stop too soon, or at the right place? What’s your basic rule for drawing the line between free and paid?
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Becky started Small Biz Survival in 2006 to share rural business and community building stories and ideas with other small town business people. She and her husband have a small cattle ranch and are lifelong entrepreneurs. Becky is an international speaker on small business and rural topics.