Why People Aren’t Taking Your FREE Stuff


What price is FREE?

It’s strange, isn’t it? You can give away something for FREE… and even then, not everyone will take you up on it.

Actually, it’s not so strange when you recognize there is something we ALL have that is even more valuable than money – and that’s time.

There are no rich and poor time owners. All of us have exactly the same quantity of time to play with each day – 1,440 minutes.

When you offer something to somebody for free, there’s still a cost attached. It’s the cost of time. You might offer the most wonderful 38 page ebook as an enticement for capturing their email address, but they have to determine whether spending a few hours of their life reading your ebook is worth their time.

Whenever I give away free information, I tend to follow two rules of thumb:

  1. Give them exactly what they want.
  2. Give it to them in bite-size chunks.

For example, I’m in the process right now of creating presell material for a product I’m launching soon called Presell Mastery. The presell material includes several short (8-12 page) reports, that focus on specific topics a reader might want to know about.

For example, a person might ask, “How do I presell as an affiliate marketer?” Well, I’m writing a report to answer that specific question.

I settled on 8-12 pages because it means the report can be read in one sitting, giving THEM exactly what they want quickly, while giving ME the opportunity to presell them gently on a product or two.

Of course, there is a skill to effective preselling, which is precisely why I’m creating a product called Presell Mastery in the first place – but the important thing here is to remember that even FREE comes at a price – the price of time.

That’s why you must still demonstrate VALUE for the things that you offer for free. And I don’t just mean slapping a “$27 value” label on it. Tell us WHY it has a $27 value. What’s in it for them, to spend their valuable time reading or watching your free content?

Give them strong reasons they should spend part of their precious 1,440 minutes listening to YOU. (Oh, and I hope you got some value here! If so, let your Twitter buddies know about this place.)

Are These The Greatest Sales Letters Of All Time?

I recently came across a great little resource edited by John Jantsch of Duct Tape Marketing, and since he gave permission to distribute it freely, I thought I’d share it with you good folks here at the CopySnips.com blog.

It’s a 25 page PDF document called The Greatest Sales Letters Of All Time… and it contains 5 actual sales letters, written to sell products such as a subscription to Newsweek magazine, The Wall Street Journal, and a 20 volume Popular Mechanics Do-It-Yourself Encyclopedia.

These are “sales letters” in the traditional sense of the world – in other words, actual letters posted out to a mailing list. Still, regardless of whether you write to sell for the Web or in print, or even if you’re just here to learn about how to write copy, this is a great resource – you get to see the persuasive devices used by these well-known companies to sell their products through the written word.

We can learn a lot from these sales letters. You’ll notice, for example, the lack of hype. Yes, they’re enthusiastic for their products. (I’d particularly like to buy those Do-It-Yourself Encylopedias!) But they all carefully stay within the bounds of credibility. (Perhaps they can do so easily because these companies are, for the most part, pretty well known.)

Keep this resource handy on your computer, because I’ll be referring to it over the coming days and weeks, as I point out some of the specific persuasive devices being used, so make sure you’re subscribed to this blog as well.

You can download The Greatest Sales Letters Of All Time here.

In return, I’d be grateful if you could refer your friends and colleagues to this post, so we can expand the conversation about it here at CopySnips.com.