Wed | Aug 16, 2017

Why giveaway stuff for free?

Published:Sunday | April 3, 2016 | 4:00 AMCorine La Font

Someone asked me this question the other day and I remember writing an article on it some time ago, but it's good to always be reminded.

Everyone gives away stuff for free and maybe not even know about it. We do it every day. We give away our knowledge, expertise, skills and competencies. I do it as well through my newsletters, these articles, videos, webinars, when I speak at events and answer questions live, and so on.

Why do we do it?

One of the reasons is to demonstrate that we know what we are talking about and so build credibility.

The other reason is for persons to trust us. Trust that we are an expert or competent in the area.

The third reason is for persons to like us. It offers an opportunity for persons to get to know us better. Whether we withhold information or willing to share as much, of course, up to a certain point, to allow persons to walk away satisfied with the answer but respectful of the fact that invested knowledge should really be compensated.

However, there are ways when giving away stuff for free that will sort of compensate, while not financially at first, for the time, effort and investment. One of the most effective ways is to get something in return. You can seek to obtain a name and email address to build your list of subscribers and hence build relationships over time who can in turn convert into a loyal customer base.

TAKE ACTION

Another effective way is to ask persons to take some form of action. For example, in order to obtain the information they seek for free, they can help promote you via social media, such as tweet this or like that or follow this or share that. It is only when they take action, they will get access. Doing this will allow you exposure to their network.

Of course, when using this method, you would have to already create the text for them to share. No one wants to have any additional work to do just to get some information that they can obviously seek out elsewhere. So the fact that they landed on your page or website makes it easy to just click and send.

There will always be the few who want to take full advantage of your kindness and feel you are obligated to just share everything you know all the time, not realising that you are in business and business needs to make money. It is clear that those who do not respect this are not your target audience or your ideal client base and you should just move on. No love lost. Believe me, they will try crawling the Internet, wasting precious time, get frustrated and soon come right back around to you. And if they don't, it's their pride holding them back. Again, no love lost. Just hold firm to your values and standards and know that those who you really want to do business with will come to you and value you for what you offer.

n Corine La Font is a speaker, author, coach and self -publishing consultant. She is also an award-winning publishing resource in the 2013 Small Business Book Awards. Get a copy of her book at http://amzn.to/TFHQka, subscribe to her magazine at http://bit.ly/1IDj7pQ, tune in to her radio programme at www.blogtalkradio.com/helpdeskja and check out her website at www.helpdeskja.com. She can be reached at corinelaf@gmail.com.