October 21: REALLY Give Stuff Away

Take your giving to the next level and give your whole product away. I recently recommended to a client that they offer free downloads of some of their book titles and the room was aghast. Why would anyone buy the book when they could get it free? This was the craziest idea they ever heard.

It is crazy in the old world of marketing and distribution where companies guarded their possessions and trade secrets carefully. We don't live in that world any longer. The world we live in has:

  • Marketing Guru Seth Godin offering his book on his website with three buttons- download free, download for a fee, buy the book. Sales of his book shot through the roof- and thousands paid for the download.

  • Major label band Radiohead sells their latest record (if we still call it that) on their site for download and you punch in the amount you wish to pay- I put in $0 and that's what I paid.

  • My buddy Scott Ginsberg offered a free download of his last book on his website and saw sales of the printed version 300% higher than his previous title.
This is easier to swallow when you are talking about digital content where there are few cost associated with additional downloads, but there are ways to kick up what you are giving away to your customers. Your customers are starting to expect it, and if you don't do it, your competition will.

What can you REALLY give away, no strings attached? How could this enhance your bottom line in the long run?