How can we work with clients in a way that is creative, fun, transparent and financially realistic?
Bump is a creative agency and consultancy that prioritises creativity, quality and personal relationships above all. We are at our absolute happiest when we are thinking about and making great things with great people.
If you’ve met us or worked with us or even if you follow our content on LinkedIn, you already know this.
But we’re also a small business that needs to make money.
This page is meant to serve as a way to help prospective and current clients understand what to expect from the financial side of our relationship.
The Bump Idea Sprint is our tried and tested methodology of bringing people together to co-create. Building ideas, concepts, campaigns, experiences or even full-blown business ventures together with clients is a big part of what we do. Co-creation with clients leads to the best relationships and in turn, to the best end results.
Our workshop fees range widely from €5,000 to €12,000, depending on several factors – such as how many people are involved, the extent of stakeholder coordination and mediation needed, research and preparation needed before the workshop and the specific deliverables needed after the workshop.
It’s important to realise that the hours physically (or virtually) spent in a “workshop setting” itself do not represent the totality of time we spend on the overall exercise. In fact, the pre- and post-workshop phases take up the most time. Most often the workshop is not even a “get together in a room for a day” thing and is more a “work with 10 different people according to their availabilites across six weeks” thing!
With some clients we work with monthly retainers, under which we provide a range of services for a fixed monthly price over a minimum of six months, such as senior counsel, video production, graphic and experiential/event design – just to name a few.
Pricing for these starts with day rates as a basis, but the amount spent per hour or day tends to be significantly less.
This is the case for two reasons:
So, from that you might think that we just want to scoop up enormous retainers right? Wrong.
Because we value providing senior time to clients and this time is finite, we prefer to keep retainers in the €4,000 – €6,000 range to guarantee senior attention and to also ensure that the client feels they are truly getting value for money. Also, we’re not here for a cash grab. We don’t need to “make our quarterly numbers” or stay on the good side of a hovering parent company. We want to have long, healthy relationships with you and that means being respectful of your resources.
Clients come to us for a huge range of projects, from conceptualising and designing experiences and exhibitions to building and running innovative campaigns to producing high-impact video. Each of these fees again starts from our base day rates with the same retainer principle applying – the larger the total project fee, the less you pay for our time.
We try to be as transparent as possible about how project fees are calculated in terms of time and third-party costs but it’s good to remember that clients turn to Bump to make things that have never been made before, so we don’t always know exactly how much a certain third-party cost might be at the start of a project.
That said, we make absolutely every effort to avoid surprising clients with unexpected costs. To be honest, we often just absorb the costs ourselves if we have wildly underestimated something. But in cases with clear unknowns, we communicate that upfront – sometimes that leads to a client needing to pay more than what is budgeted for an unknown, but sometimes also less.
What is a typical fee for a Bump project? Most tend to fall between the €10,000 to €35,000 range but on an annual basis we have critical mass in the €40,000 to €150,000 range.
Day rates are really not our first go-to when pricing work for various reasons, but when a client really only wants a day of our time, usually purely for consultancy, the Bump team operates with day rates (7.5 hours in a day) that range from €1,000 to €1,500, depending on the type of work we’re doing and the seniority of the team member(s) involved.
We currently offer training on three topics – 1) budget-friendly high-quality in-house video production, 2) social media strategy with a focus on thought leadership and 3) how you can deploy our Idea Sprint methodology inside your own organisation. Because training is not our core business, we tend to be priced higher than training agencies with packages ranging from €6,000 – €10,000. This is because from experience we know what it takes to leave participants feeling that the training was excellent (instead of their default “meh”) : multiple senior trainers, hands-on interactivity, a bit of theatre to keep people awake and excited and plenty of small group or even one-on-one follow up after the training.
Our career experience has shown us that spending creative energy without compensation is a losing proposition. It affects our ability to remain a viable business and more importantly, it taxes our mental health.
We are happy to provide ideas, concepts, etc. as part of a paid co-creation workshop (what we call the Bump Idea Sprint). While we do very occasionally agree to compete, this is only when we have an existing relationship with the decision makers, when we can speak to them at length to discuss their needs and when there are no more than two other agencies in competition.
We co-create scores of concepts every year with clients in paid workshops. Unfortunately, only about half of the ideas move to the execution phase. This happens for a variety of reasons including shifting internal priorities, budget constraints or personnel changes.
This stuff can happen and it’s nobody’s fault, but it means we can’t bank on getting paid for the execution phase and still need to cover ourselves by getting paid for the concept phase.
Also, when we develop a concept, we do that in the way that makes the most sense in terms of execution, meaning that Bump may not actually be best placed to execute. We often suggest clients take this on themselves or recommend other parties.
We prefer to define and agree a scope of work and budget at the start of any collaboration – big or small. But if you ask us to do something well outside of that scope, we will generally need to ask you for more money. We won’t, however, ever surprise you with extra hours invoiced that you weren’t expecting or have not agreed to.
In most cases, yes you can. In fact, we may even encourage you to do so if that makes the most sense. Some clients even expressly ask us to come up with things they can execute internally.
But in other cases, you may not. If we have developed a product or other concept together and explicitly agreed at the outset of the collaboration that Bump will remain the owner of the product, then you may not create it, reproduce it, make a cheaper version of it, etc. without our written approval. Cases like these are the exception to the rule, but they do happen. Again, we don’t surprise people with them – this is communicated from the beginning of the collaboration.
There are many ways to get to know us and the type of work we do. We do our best to share ideas and creativity with our community, often through free events and livestreams on LinkedIn.
We are also always open for a coffee or lunch chat and have no problem covering the check for this – even though by now you may feel we are obsessed with money 😉
We also suggest working with us on a small paid collaboration first to build trust.
In summary: We would love to do this stuff entirely for free, but the simple fact is we would not be able to pay the mortgage on the beautiful creative space where we bring clients to make amazing things.
We’re interested to hear about it.
Browse through our work