Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Stop Giving Away Freebies

Philip Kotler, the author of the book "Ten Deadly Marketing Sins - Signs and Solutions," believes that many businesses give away too many products or services.

In the software development industry, there is far too much of this behavior going on. Offering free technical support is usually a good idea. Offering free lifetime upgrades is usually a terrible idea. Offering free low-end versions of commercial software can fall into either category, but I'm not too fond of this approach to attracting new prospects and customers.

It's common for sales people in every industry to offer free products and services to entice people to buy, Kotler explains. Typically, companies offer free shipping, free support, or free installation.

Most customers devalue products and services that are free. And many of these items could make a solid contribution to our cash flow.

Kotler tells us to rethink the freebies that we offer. Depending upon our positioning and our target audience, we need to make this decision market segment by market segment.

Maybe there are prospects who need extra incentives to buy. But we shouldn't be giving away products and services that could otherwise be sold. That's good software marketing advice.

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