The main reason that some people take opportunities when they arise, and others do not, is that some people are ready.
They have their business plan ready and all they need to do is take advantage of the opportunities.
Where can you find the right business plan?
If your business is based in the United States - click here
If your business is based in the U.K. - click here
Ideas To Action.
Part 34 - Free.
One of the most powerful techniques available for customer acquisition in any business is to give away a free product or service. You can see the success of this with companies like Google, Facebook, JBoss, MySQL, HubSpot (with their free WebSiteGrader.com), etc.
The trick to doing Free business models right is to ensure that the product / service that you are giving away free is of very high value to the customer, which should result in both high customer satisfaction and a likelihood that they will tell others about your business, leading to viral effects. The usual temptation is to stop short of this, and take out the valuable features that would make the product interesting and valuable.
Another powerful effect of using the free strategy is that it usually results in a far larger customer base using the free products, who become proponents for your business. This expanded footprint or market share can have a huge effect on the price that acquirers or investors are willing to pay for your business, as they recognize that even though these customers have yet to be monetized, they represent a great potential for future monetization. Twitter and Facebook are two perfect examples of this.
Benefits of Free Samples for businesses
- Increase brand awareness by getting in front of buyers who might never have heard of you
- Increase potential for conversion, with a trial hopefully turning ambivalence into loyalty
- Increase traffic with access stages such as like our page, store, call our number, etc
- Build your list especially if you require some engagement with your business as part of the process
- Boost your businesses reputation as a subject matter or industry expert
Effective Ways to Provide Free Samples
- Include your free sample in a goodie bag or hand it out at an event
- Offer your free product as a bonus, given away with a complementary product
- Offer your free product as a reward for a particular action, like subscribing to your businesses newsletter or visiting your store
- Target your efforts by sending your free sample to key influencers in your target market and asking them to try it out
The key to making this work is to make sure:
- Your free product sample matches your audience or the product / process you are complementing. This might seem obvious but it is extremely important to make sure your target market is in the audience.
- You include enough of your product to be useful. You want low cost and to provide something of real use.
- The recipient knows how to use your product. Include instructions if it is not obvious.
- Make the next step easy with a special offer or instructions on where to buy from your business.
By offering something free, people are more likely to give your business a try. And once they have been – assuming the experience was positive – they are more likely to come back. We all know it is harder to gain a new customer than keep a current one, and that buyers are creatures of habit. They go with what they know and feel comfortable with. Part of the challenge of a new business – or even an established business – is driving traffic (foot traffic to a retail location or traffic to your website).
So now that your location is part of their consideration set, you’re much more likely to gain their repeat business in the future.
Selling For Free
Most businesses offer free samples as a way to increase sales and introduce new products. Businesses want to interact and connect with you and offering free samples is there way to have you try there product out.
Free products are by no means a recent phenomenon. Department stores have been offering them for years and companies also distribute samples of products via the post. Likewise, pens, mouse mats and key rings. Their purpose is to enhance brand image, “get the word out”, and to increase sales, but they may also act as bait for a commercial product.
The Internet has revolutionised the way freebies are obtained, and businesses no longer need to bombard thousands of letterboxes in the hope that somebody, somewhere, will purchase their products. Web users can now locate samples and be selective over the ones that interest them. Furthermore, as more people get online, we see companies taking full advantage of the Internet’s popularity. As such, free stuff has become all the more common (a fact highlighted by the growing number of TV advertisements pointing viewers in the direction of free samples).
Every single day thousands of people from around the world are logging on to the Net for the very first time. Every single day tens of thousands of people from around the world are attempting to factualize their dream of running a business from home and every single day, these same people are searching the Net for that ultimate product or service that will be their home business.
Would you love to be the one selling these same people the products and services that they need? You need to get these peoples' attention. You want them to visit your site but so does every other marketer out there. What you need is a lure... a bait! Surveys have shown for years that the one word that gets peoples attention is the word - free!
It does not matter how you say it, it always means the same thing - some item of some description is going to cost you nothing. You know it will not cost you anything and if it is something that you can use in your business, something that will help with some aspect of running your business, then you are more than likely going to take those few seconds to click on that link, fill in your email address, and grab your 'freebie'. You know you are going to do it if it is something that you want, so you know that others will too. A 'freebie' will go a long way towards gaining new customers. Offer them something for free that directly relates to your web site and watch your customer base grow.
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A Great Business did not just happen - It was planned that way.