You’ll spend many hours a week marketing, doing consults, admin work, and bookkeeping. Some clients will want their money back, or ghost halfway through a project. So your hourly rate needs to cover as much as 1/3 of your work time where you won’t be earning. Just another reality of the industry.

Make The Most Of Your Time

Step One: Ideal annual income + 20% Tax = Total Income

Step Two: 52 (weeks in a year) – # of Vacation Weeks = Total Work Weeks

Step Three: Total Income / Total Work Weeks = Weekly Income

Step Four: Weekly Income + # of Work Days (in a month) = Daily Income

Step Five: Daily Income / # of Work Hours (in a day) = Hourly Rate

Of course, there may be other costs that you could build into your hourly rates like software subscriptions and hardware. That said, it’s totally up to you whether these are expenses you want to add to your rate as an independent digital media specialist. You will also want to account for annual taxes and vacation time.