The below is a sneak peek at the introduction of this month's Growth Study into freemium models and how to get them to work for your brand.
To get the full version when it's ready at the end of the month, sign up for this month's study here.
The shopkeeper looked at me, waiting for a response. But my attention was drawn to my grandfather stood at the edge of my peripheral vision.
The expectant look in his eye told me what I needed to do.
“Thank you” I said, as the shopkeeper dropped the trinket into my hand.
As I pocketed the pin button, I saw my grandfather smile and nod to himself.
“Well done, lad. Never turn down anything offered for free. Even if you don’t want it. You could sell it or give it to someone who wants it. Now, let’s get some ice cream”.
My grandfather was, by all accounts, a rogue. I have few memories of the man, but those I do have are overwhelmingly positive and make for great stories (DM me for his incredible money-making brick story).
Since that day I’ve rarely said no to a free offer.
And, as you’d expect, I’m constantly intrigued by what has to be one of the most persuasive words in any language. Free.
Free’s come a long way in the last few decades.
From free samples in a supermarket aisle to freemium offerings that are in and of themselves complete offers. I’m always mesmerised by how people leverage them to grow their business.
Because on the surface of it all, free shouldn’t work.
Everywhere I turn the common advice for small businesses, consultants, and startups is to “raise your prices”.
“Gurus” push the idea of charging more as one client at $10k is 10X less hassle than 10 clients at $1k.
And I get it.
But some of the world’s most successful brands are built on a robust freemium model.
We’re talking brands like...
- Spotify (valued at $67B)
- Grammarly (valued at over $1B)
All of the above (and plenty more) build incredibly profitable businesses by giving away a tonne of value for free.
And even when you look at smaller companies like…
- UberSuggest (now owned by Neil Patel)
- Growth Tools (from Bryan Harris)
They’re generating money hand over fist by going against common advice and giving away high-value content, services, and solutions for free.
Not in a “try this for 2 weeks and see if you like it” model. But a “here’s a solution that will do everything you need it to. And it’s free” approach.
Which is crazy.
It brings to mind the famous Jeff Bezos quote of “your margin is my opportunity”.
Here’s the thing though.
We all know we should offer value for free to get the name known and draw people in.
And this is true whether you’re simply producing blog content to grow your email list, offering a few tool features to draw customers in, or simple offering a free consultation to show your experience.
That’s the (comparatively) easy part.
The difficult questions come in when you start asking things like…
- What’s a free offer that will generate interest without bankrupting me?
- Where does my free offer end, and my paid offer begin?
- What format should my free offering take?
These are not easy questions to answer.
I want to help you figure them out. So this Growth Study edition is focusing on exactly the above issues.
I’m going to templatise key elements the above-mentioned companies use to generate huge numbers of qualified signups for their business.
This is a free preview of this coming month's Growth Study into Freemium Models.
If you want to get the full study, sign up through the below link for $29 to get this and two other full Growth Studies.