Now and then, I often come across questions in FB groups (mine and others) where members ask these questions:
- “How do you decide what to offer for free?”
- “How much can I give away for free before I can start charging?”
- “Can I charge for something that was once free?”
This increasingly perceived threat of access to free information hereby putting our business (coaching or consulting) on the brink of extinction is a fear voiced by many.
And it’s my mission to dispel this fear so that you the bold, talented and passionate entrepreneur can be of the greatest service AND never hestitate about selling her services.
So let’s look at each of these questions in entirety:
“How do you decide what to offer for free?”
Let me start by saying that there are two kinds of free content (related to your topic of expertise) that you can offer to your tribe.
#1 is content that establishes you as the expert in your topic. This could be through your blog posts, podcast interviews, FB lives ( these are my favorite) and FB posts to name a few. Unlike #2 (see below), this kind of content does not require someone to get on your list but it’s essential to warm them up and get them to know, like and trust you.
#2 is content that you share through your lead magnet, email newsletters, webinars and training. For this, your tribe will need to opt-in to get on your list. So if you’ve won their hearts in the step above with giving ah-mazing mind blowing content then they are ready to move on to the next step.
“How much can I give away for free before I can start charging?”
“Don’t hold back”
Prospects are better informed and sophisticated nowadays. They can differentiate between fluff and the real good, finger lickin’, actionable, useful stuff.
And that is what you need to give your prospects.
On a practical level if you are writing a blog post you will be limited to a 1000 words and even then you can’t write about every single how-to there is. You’ll end up overwhelming the reader.
So the fine art of balance between free and paid is at the point where you’re not overwhelming them with information but just enough so that they can get started or level up.
So give freely and openly.
You’ll have prospects wondering “if her free stuff is this good what will her paid stuff be like?”
And if this is an ideal client (not a freebie hunter) they will take that next step to work with you. I guarantee it.
Do note that people LOVE and value 1:1 support and accountability more than anything else.
Examples of stuff you can give away for free:
- Introduction module or any one single module from your paid digital course.
- 5 day challenge in a FB group with lots of actionable items and content.
- One month free trial in your paid membership community
What specific content can you give for free?
- How-tos: Worried if you’ll give away too much of the ‘how-to’ content for free? Save the deep dive version for your paid course and give away a taste of the how-to in your free stuff.
- Listicles: 10 (or any number) ways to _____ (desired result) works well too.
- Case studies: Establishes your credentials, expertise and provides proof that you are legit.
“Can I charge for something that was once free?”
YES YOU CAN!
Case in point? FB group challenges.
These are usually converted into a digital product for sale on websites, offered as a tripwire or even as a passive income sales funnel.
Have an e-book that you’ve used as a Lead Magnet? Sell it!
Have a course on a topic? Sell it!
Just because it was appreciated as a free resource once upon a time doesn’t mean you can’t get paid for it.
Okay let’s sum up how you can stop worrying about giving it all away with no returns:
- Decide what free content (non opt-in) can you offer that will build your authority status and warm your prospects.
- Decide what your opt-in content will be (must build up on your free content).
- Don’t hold back on your free stuff but make sure you’re not overwhelming your prospect either. Think of one specific action they can take to move forward.
- Share your how-tos (a sprinkle of this), lists and case studies.
- Want to monetize your free content? Convert FB challenges and e-books into paid courses for passive income revenue.
I’d love to know what piece of content do you have that is free (highly popular) but now you want to charge for it?
Or did you have something that was wildly popular and now you are selling it successfully?