Your Mama always told you, if it’s too good to be true it probably isn’t! But sometimes free really is free! From marketing and advertising to proselytizing missionaries, free things are free of cost to you, but of course there is something expected in return. The catch!
Is There Always a Catch?
When things are offered for free they often really are free, well, free to you that is! There is a cost, but the companies and organizations who offer free things have decided that their expense covering giving you something for free is worth it to them.
Maybe their investment will pay off in you telling someone about the experience and further saturating the market with their brand. Or maybe a free sample is all you needed to make a purchasing decision and now they have you as a paying customer.
Offers for free things have exploded with the development of the Internet. Many companies are taking advantage of the easy communication and interaction with customers and potential customers online. Learn why and see what you can get for free!
Why Offer Something Free?
Personal Information: The great majority of free offers come with the intent to gather personal information, such as mailing addresses and phone numbers, to further make contact in the future. It is a rare freebie that will not ask for this sort of information, and the data collected is quite often then rented or sold forward to other marketers.
Opinions: Often a company or business is in the process of developing a new product or service and needs to know how to proceed. They need honest opinions about how attractive, useful, effective, interesting, and desirable their product or service is, and how to change it if results are less than positive.
Introduce New Product: It can be a very difficult task to convince people to try something new. By giving out free samples or copies of a new product or service, this risk-free taste of a brand new thing just might be all the convincing a person needs to become a paying customer.
Sell Accompanying Product: A common practice of businesses is to give a free item or service away, but then to charge for an accompanying product. Something that is either required for the free item to function, or something that enhances the free product. Or maybe that ever present shipping and handling fee, hmmm?
Rewarding Customers: Sometimes a company just wants to say thank you for being a great customer. A free gift of appreciation to an established customer goes a long way toward making sure they remain a customer, and tell their friends and family about the treat!
Don’t Get Taken Advantage Of
Remember to be savvy about avoiding scams. Never pay for prizes. This sounds obvious, but people fall for it all the time unfortunately. Ignore all spam offers. No Nigerian nobility. Most scams are clearly that, but be careful nonetheless. If it’s too good to be true, it isn’t true!
Written by: Becky Longworth likes Sainsbury’s Ebooks because they have really great prices and a lot of different types of electronic books. She once saw a really interesting infographic designed for people who read only paper books vs ebooks.