To be free, or not to be free…

We hear there is a new book coming out by Saul J Berman, the lead partner for Innovation In IBM called “Not for Free”.

If you have read “Free” by Chris Anderson (founder of Wired magazine), you might want to have a look at Berman’s new book.

We’re huge advocates of the ‘Freemium’ model Anderson talks about in his book, but, obviously, business is about collecting money and free stuff is only one step towards that.

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Who wants a copy of the Metro? (It’s free…)

I remember when people paid for newspapers. Now, it seems, they can’t even give them away.

The problem was, when newspapers such as the Manchester Evening News became free (which it was in the city centre up until recently), the perception of the paper took a beating.

Yes, circulation levels went up, but then attention levels went down. This meant that advertising space was valued at even less than it was before the price crash (when the paper had smaller circulation figures).

This is typical of over-used media

If  you devalue your message by giving it away, then, by its very nature, the value has reduced. This is the same with emails.

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Seth Godin’s Rant

We’re not usually in the business of re-posting from other people’s blog, but Seth Godin, the Permission Marketing guru talked about an experience he had with an airline site that is an important lesson to learn for anyone who has anything more than a simple ‘brochure’ site. (This post appeared originally here)

JetBlue is ordinarily smart with their web site, which is why their broken system is particularly useful to take a look at. I’m guessing that at some point, management said, “it’s good enough,” and moved on to more pressing issues. And then, of course, it stays good enough, frozen in time, ignored, and annoying.

The problem with letting your web forms become annoying is that in terms of time spent interacting with your brand, they’re way up on the list. If someone is spending a minute or two or three or four cursing you out from their desk, it’s not going to be easily fixed with some clever advertising.

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