Dick Morris Method of Free to Paid Transition
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For the last several months I’ve been getting regular emails from Dick Morris, the political consultant. I think I first saw him on The Oreilly Report and I have always liked his insightful political prognostications.
In the last few weeks he has attempted to migrate his free customers to a paid service that he provides.
This is an effective way of getting people to pay for regular information or insights that you provide to your niche market.
The key to success when using this technique is to build a large list and contact them regularly with very good, very specific information.
When you have proven that you have great stuff to ‘give’ your list you can certainly migrate them from free to paid. It’s always a good idea to maintain your free information and tease people with what they will get with the BETTER paid plan that you offer.
I would suggest that you set up a separate site to SELL them on the idea of signing up for the paid service. There you will have a chance to fully describe what you will give them for the higher priced service.
That being understood, it’s now a question of timing. WHEN should attempt to move people from free to paid? When you have built a relationship strong enough to make that stab.
How long? How long is a piece of sting? It depends on your topic and the quality and quantity of information that you provide. If you send people free emails every day for a month and give them great stuff it might be reasonable at that time to try and move them to a paid plan.
At what price point? Again, a subjective question with a number of possible answers BUT, the criteria for determining the answer are clear.
How valuable is the information that you provide, how often do you provide it and what, if any options do your people have for receiving similar information.
If you have been providing people information DAILY and the information is VERY valuable to them and FEW others have access to this info, then you would be able to charge prices that are pretty steep. If not, then prices would be lower based on these factors.
Starting out free and then offering a paid version of what you offer makes sense. The key is to build a list large enough that a certain percentage of people will take advantage of the PAID program. If not, you’ll be slaving away to produce the information for a small group. Your time will not be well spent.
Dick Morris did the following:
* Emailed me for about 2 months
* Gave me good solid political insights
* Provided me with information I couldn’t get elsewhere
* Is thoughtful and insightful in his commentary
I’m NOT signing up for the paid service! Why? Because the information that he’s giving me is not crucial to my making more money or surviving in my field. It’s like being given a ‘special’ version of People Magazine.
I like reading about celebs, but I’m certainly not going to pay for MORE inside info about them. I care enough to buy the publication once in a while.
In the case of Dick Morris, I’m very interested in the upcoming elections, but his free stuff is sufficient to keep me interested. For me to sign up with him he’s going to have to offer me MORE and show me WHY I need to pay for it. For me, this is not something that will affect my job or my way of life. It’s just fun.
So, if you launch an ezine and try and migrate people from free to paid, keep these things in mind!
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