Five key aspects to consider when you offer your service/product for FREE
Every business owner has been through this. When you just started it out, you didn’t feel right to charge or ask for your “standard rate”. Some entrepreneurs could even be desperate to pay a fee in exchange to work in certain roles. Sounds crazy? Or silly? How can we be smart with free offer?
We all know there is no free lunch. It is all give and take, same for us and the people we offer to.
But the question is what we can take from working for free or pro-bono basis?
Now I am sharing five key aspects to consider when you offer your service/product for FREE. So you can play smart and create a win-win for you and the people you offer to.
- Is it going to help you gain insights/knowledge/expert status?
This usually applies when you are invited for a talk, panel discussion, or interview. The host or organization may need more guest speakers to contribute to their core focus. If this is the place where your ideal clients turn up, it is a great opportunity to participate.
- Will you acquire testimonials or references?
Before your official launch, you could have a soft launch or a beta version – which will be a “lite” version of your official offer, but it gives your pilot users a taste of what your offer is like. In exchange, you gather their feedback and case study, which will help you to convince future clients. Clients’ words are always more powerful. Besides, who doesn’t know “word of mouth”?
- Will it attract the wrong audience?
It could sound cruel but there are people only taking your offer because it is free, and sometimes they don’t even say “Thank you!” – That of course happened to me too. I once helped someone who wanted to “pick my brain” and ended up staying for three hours, because I wanted to be kind and supportive. Upon reflection, I realized I should have stopped in the first hour and signposted an alternative. So please learn from my mistakes and remember “Law of attraction”.
- What is the cost?
You may want to get more publicity or visibility, or you really just want to help, but how much does it cost you to offer without any charge? Cost includes your time, energy, effort, and not just money. Be aware how much you put into this free activity and if there is a better use of your investment.
- Can you tap into a new resource or build relationships to grow your business?
If this free offer will lead you to the next level – whether that is new business partners, strategic alliances, affiliates, it gets your foot in the door. However, this may not be an immediate result. Be patient, and be mindful too.
Remember, it is all about your intention. Make sure you are clear about that, and your stakeholders are on the same page too. Let your “FREE” thing enrich you and your tribe.