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Questions for people wanting custom cartography done

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#16
Dennis McClendon

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I have tried on many occasions to get a client to give me some idea of their budget, but have never had any success. They always respond "we don't have any idea what this would cost" or "that's why I'm calling you" or "well, we don't want to spend more than necessary."
Dennis McClendon, Chicago CartoGraphics
chicagocarto.com

#17
CHART

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I agree with Dennis and Chris,

Unless you are really at ease with the client (an old client) asking a potential client for his budget can put you in an awkward situation, like make you look somewhat unprofessional.
Chart

#18
MapMedia

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After all you can't get a Cadillac for $50.


Well this is the truth, and it is always interesting to work with potential clients to convey this, and how 'expanding' a map, for lack of a better term, adds to the cost. I guess you could try to itemize the map process (add major roads/labeled, bathymetry, topography, street index, insets, etc.), but I explain these improvements as time/expertise costs on a case by case basis.

To clarify, the quotes I provide are for inquiries ranging from a small map for a book to posters, but the lions share are less than a day's work. Still building relationships to arrive at more contract level work!

#19
Nick Springer

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I try to explain to clients that at the base level, it is the complexity of a map that is the driver of the cost. A map can be wall sized with just state borders, names and capitals and it will be cheaper than a letter-sized map of a city with all the streets labeled. I help them understand the work involved, i.e. labelling takes a long time.

One thing to be careful of, is if a client says an estimate is too high, don't just discount arbitrarily, then they will wonder why it wasn't cheaper to begin with. Instead offer them options to reduce complexity and costs, e.g. if we don't include hill-shading the costs will be lower. In the end I will sometimes add these features in anyway if time permits and tell them they got a "bonus" ;)

Nick Springer

Director of Design and Web Applications: ALK Technologies Inc.
Owner: Springer Cartographics LLC





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