The cool kids hire us on retainer.

Working on retainer helps clients get more from their marketing dollars. Think of it like hiring us part-time at a fixed rate. You decide how many hours a week you’d like us to block off for you, and we agree to remain available. As long as it’s more than five hours per week, and for longer than one month, we’ll discount our regular prices!

Retainers are the most efficient payment structure for clients with a lot of work planned, or with ongoing needs.

You'll like it because:

  • You know we’re available when you need us
  • You can easily budget your costs in advance
  • You can change priorities and projects at any time
  • You get discounted rates

And we like it because:

  • We know exactly how much work we have on the books
  • We can bill for fixed amounts on a regular basis
  • We know our specific income in the foreseeable future
  • We get to focus in-depth on your projects over time


  • We’re realistic always. We won’t let you book us on retainer if you don’t seem like you have enough work to justify the setup.
  • We understand things change. If you go two consecutive billing cycles in the work order period without filling your time, we’ll give you the option of modifying or even canceling the retainer. We don’t want to lose the fixed income we planned on, but we are never interested in getting paid for nothing.
  • We try to be flexible. If you know you’ll have some downtime one month, followed by a crazy busy month, let’s move some hours around and still get all your work done. All we ask for is advance notice.
  • We want to be useful. You can fill our time with literally any kind of work that we provide. If your case study program hits a snag and you have a slow week, maybe we can edit web copy. Or refresh some datasheets. Maybe add a few pages to your website. Ask us if we have ideas on how to help! (We usually do!)
Let's answer your questions:
  • How do we get started?

    The first step is crafting our retainer contract. Please note that our contract is in addition to any independent contractor agreement your business may require, and it includes these specifics:

    • When the retainer begins & ends (the work order period)
    • How many hours we will reserve for you during that time
    • The total fixed amount to be paid for the work order
    • Invoicing specifics (including when each invoice will be sent, terms of the invoices, and how much each invoice will be for)
    • A statement of work indicating any particular deliverables to complete (i.e., 10 case studies, launch a website, etc.)
  • How do I decide how much time I need, or how long the work order should be?

    Don’t worry if you’re not entirely sure how long it takes to rewrite a website or design a few brochures. We’ll help you pinpoint the right number of hours based on all your anticipated projects, and the right duration in which to complete everything while still meeting your deadlines. We have had some clients on retainer for 6 hours a week, and others for 14 hours. Alternatively, you can ask us to plan on hours per month or hours per quarter. However, we prefer to break that down weekly whenever possible to avoid a backlog or last-minute crunch.

  • Is it important that we get the time estimate accurate?

    Down to the minute? No. But in the ballpark? Absolutely. In fact, timing is probably the most critical part of our retainer agreement, for several reasons:

    • We need an accurate plan to set our own schedules. We don’t want to overbook (bad for you), and we don’t want to underbook (bad for us).
    • You need accuracy, too—because we bill you for all the time we reserve, even if you don’t use it all.
  • Wait—you bill me for time I don’t use? Please explain.

    Our goal is always to give you the most efficient payment structure possible. But if we block time for your work, we potentially turn down opportunities from other clients…so yes, we will bill the fixed amount we agree on in the contract. That’s why we work so hard to get the estimated hours right.