My relationship with the freemium concept is one of love and hate. I have loved the freemium concept and thanked the Universe for such ingenuity.
Freemium has allowed me to be a netizen when the Internet was new in Nigeria. As a student in secondary school there was no way in the world I would have been able to pay for a Yahoo email if it was charged in dollars. The freemium concept lowered the barrier of being part of the Internet.
Gmail, WordPress, Evernote, Dropbox are just a handful of the lots of products on the Internet that use the freemium pricing model. As a result I became a serial freeloader, scouting the Internet for useful Freemium products (another use case for ProductHunt). Without digging much you can find lots of guides online about doing XYZ for free or with free tools.
On the other side, I have done things for free. Worked for free, provided services for free, and given advice for free. Despite my heavy inclination away from material gain, I have paused recently to run some analysis. Gain is near zero.
I agree that building networks, relationships, favour deposits matter. What happens if you are over-stretching yourself to build these things? What happens if building these things aren’t bringing in any yield after a long time of building?
You must have heard the freemium advice, or read it online. While I am still in love with it, from the receiving end, I am beginning to hate it from the giving end. I still maintain that you do not follow every advice you receive hook, line and sinker. Poke these ideas. Ask questions. Do not expect the same outcome in the stories told to illustrate that freemium is the best way to go. What worked for Mr A doesn’t always work the same way for Mr B, and you are not any different.
There is no silver bullet.
The latest on the Internet has been to charge from day 1. Paying customers is the greatest validation for your product or business.
Freemium or not, I’d have to be strategic about what I apply. How many customers will you bring to me, if I offer my services for free? How many referrals will you give me, if I work for you for free?
There is so much advice out there. Are they really worth what they promise?
There is so much oil in the world now, a global oil glut but what is the current value of crude oil?