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The Power of FREE

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You could argue that free is bad:

That free gives no value.
That free wastes peopleís time.
That free is setting your business up for failure.

Or you could argue that free is good:

That free DOES give value.
That free captures attention.
That free brings customers into your sales funnel.

Iím gonna go with door #1. For 6 reasons:

FREE helps others.
Donít be selfish with your knowledge. Give stuff Ė information, ideas and like Ė away for free to help people.

FREE pays it forward. How many times have you been give priceless pieces of wisdom? Did you pay for it? Doubtful. Return the favor. Except, donít return it; pay it forward. Great example here.

FREE gives value first. Huge rule in business. Free information shows that you have knowledge and expertise. Iíve given dozens of free speeches in my life, and subsequently booked paying gig as a result. So, give it away for free the first time, and the people who received value from it will come back to you the second time. And the third, and the fourth, and the fifthÖ

FREE wins fans. How many times have you heard a song on the radio, LOVED IT, then went out and bought the album? Probably lots. Because you were a fan of the music. Hence, free creates (and ultimately helps retain) fans. Think iTunesí free music Tuesday. Brilliant. It's a simple formula: break the silence, make the mundane memorable, turn strangers into friends, friends into fans and fans into sales.

FREE tests the waters.
Maybe you have new ideas that youíre not sure about yet. I say, post them on a blog and get free feedback before you break the bank. Maybe people will see stuff you never thought of. Maybe people will love your ideas! Maybe people will say, ďThat sucks!Ē Either way, itís good to know.

FREE culture of dishonesty. Thanks to Enron, James Frey and a multitude of other big name liars, customers are skeptical before buying stuff. So, give something to them for free first, disarm their immediate preoccupation, and win them over. If they like you, they'll be back.

The reason I posted about this today is because a woman called me recently and said (jokingly, I think), ďScott, you have way too much free stuff on your website! Iíve been there all afternoon!Ē

First of all, thanks! All afternoon? Wow. Most web users stay on the average sit for 90 seconds. Nice.

Secondly, are you complaining?

Thirdly, maybe youíre right. Maybe 100+ articles, 5 FREE ebooks and several videos are too many things to give away for FREE. Maybe Iím afraid to sell. Maybe Iím afraid that charging people will lose people.

Maybe.

All I know is, in the history of my business, FREE has been the absolute #1 most valuable marketing technique for spreading WOM, attracting fans and increasing visibility, thus increasing sales.

So there.

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
What are you giving away for free?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS...
Email scott@hellomynameisscott.com with your best "free offering," and I'll post the top three on my blog

© 2006 All Rights Reserved.

About the Author

Scott Ginsberg, aka "The Nametag Guy," is the author of three books and a professional speaker who helps people maximize approachability, become unforgettable and make a name for themselves. To book Scott for your next association meeting, conference or corporate event, contact Front Porch Productions at 314/256-1800 or email scott@hellomynameisscott.com.


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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2006-12-08 02:10:37 in Marketing Articles

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