There is disagreement in my organization about what we should give away. Some folks argue that everything we make should be for sale. The gist is “if we spent time on it, it’s of value and we should be selling it.” On the other hand I believe that we must give away our knowledge and ideas in the hopes of slowly gaining attention from prospective customers.
I understand this is a universal argument. Record companies, cable companies and publishing houses have models where “give it away” is not at all lucrative for them. But look at bloggers and small business owners of all kinds. They consult, write articles and offer samples. There’s a proliferation of free e-books from new authors and free songs from independent musicians giving “samples” away on the web. These folks are slowly building a loyal following by giving away free things – things that cost them time to create, sure, but, don’t cost them anything to give away. Potential customers in turn get a taste of what purchasing from them may be like.
Are you wondering what you might give away? Can you answer common customer questions or provide information on a blog or in an article or during a webinar, class or consultation? Can you produce how-to videos or a podcast? What value can you provide before someone actually has to pull out their wallet?
Has “giving something away” made a difference in growing your business?