Frequently-Asked Questions

Common questions--and answers--about Roger Biery's services:

Why did you decide to become a consultant?
There are two dimensions to this question: what and where. The where involved a move (full-time) to a weekend getaway retreat in Mariposa, California—just outside of Yosemite National Park. The what entailed work I could perform successfully from such a remote location: marketing communications that leveraged my technical background and interests. It's important to note that this all took place back in 1995 when the Web was relatively new. So I like to think of myself as a pioneer in the whole work/life balance trend. And I could not be happier!  I enjoy the freedom of being my own boss. The variety of different clients and projects keeps the work interesting. Humility aside: I'm quite good at what I do, which makes the job rewarding. And, quite frankly, I don't miss all that commute traffic!

What types of assignments can you handle?
In my area of specialization (business-to-business marketing communications for high-technology companies) I offer comprehensive services, handling anything from writing a simple press release or editing existing content... to producing a detailed competitive analysis or a full business plan. My real forte, though, is white papers and ghost-written contributed articles. I prefer to establish on-going relationships with clients. And the reason is simple: The more familiar I am with your business and products, the more productive I become on future projects.

Do you have a particular writing style?
You're reading it! At least the conversational tone appropriate for a question & answer sheet. For consistency, I adopt the style (vocabulary, tone and form) of a client's existing collateral materials. In addition to such consistency, my writing is guided by three other C's: clear, concise and convincing. I believe in emphasizing the key benefits that compel the reader to take action. I can be as aggressive or as conservative as you prefer. When asked, I will offer suggested improvements, of course.  But I still maintain absolute deference for my clients' views. After all, the customer is always right!

How long do various assignments generally take to complete?
Because I work exclusively for high-tech companies, I already possess an understanding of the fundamental technologies, overall market conditions and emerging trends in select fields of interest, including computer networking, renewable energy and the Smart Grid. Such basic knowledge dramatically reduces my learning curve, enabling me to complete a project faster than other marketing consultants less familiar with the industry.

How much does a white paper cost?
According the Consultant Registry, the content (without graphics or formatting) for a high-tech white paper typically costs between $1500 and $2000 per page.  But I normally complete projects for a typical white paper (8-12 pages) for under $700/page—50-65% less than the industry norm.  There are two reasons for this.  First is my exclusive focus on high technology, which makes me a productive "quick study" in all projects.  Second is the proven process I follow to get projects started and staying on track.  Of course, if I were still living in Silicon Valley (rather than near Yosemite), my hourly rate and cost per-page would be considerably higher. 

What are your terms and fees?
I work either on a fixed bid or hourly basis—your choice. For most projects, the hourly approach is win/win for both you and me. Of course, as a project's objectives and scope become clear, an hourly investigation can be converted to a fixed-bid project for completion. My rate is $150/hour. To minimize unpleasant surprises, I have a simple Project Agreement, or we can use yours. And I can write a full Project Description for your approval before proceeding. Work progress is generally invoiced monthly, with payment due in 30 days. When necessary, I can attend meetings at your facility, but my rate increases to $200/hour with a minimum of 4 hours. For on-site visits outside of Northern California, I charge for travel and lodging expenses at cost.

Can you really handle assignments well remotely?
Absolutely. With telephone, Internet and facsimile technologies, my response to clients is immediate. The only delay may be up front when some background materials may need to be shipped. Of course, with e-mail or express mail, I can have those materials instantaneously (or worst case: overnight) on rush projects.

How do we get started?!
The best way would be for you to take advantage of the complimentary one hour phone consultation. If you like what you hear, we can proceed from there.

 

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Professional Marketing Communication Services for High-Technology Companies