I make this statement because many businesses put “Free Offers” on their leaflets and brochures that are not really worth the paper they are printed on.
It often amazes me when an offer says call us for a free quotation. I am not sure if any business has ever been in the enviable position to charge for a quotation, but I think those days if they ever existed, are long gone, and no one these days will expect to pay for quotation. Nor will they be influenced by the phrase “no obligation,” people know their rights these days.
Another example of the almost worthless offer is the Free Consultation.
A good example of this was a leaflet that was delivered to me recently advertising a new beauty treatment parlour. They specialise in professional make-up sessions, hair styling, and hair extensions. Although the leaflet described their services reasonably well, the best inducement they were offering was asking their prospects to call in for a “Free consultation”. This gives the impression there is usually a charge for one of their consultations, something I find hard to believe.
When people see the word free, they expect to receive something of value for nothing, or at least with a healthy discount.
A free offer or gift does not have to cost much.
People selling information products on the internet often offer their prospects a free report to induce them to sign up to their programme. This usually something they themselves have downloaded for nothing with permission to use it as they wish. The prospects who receive these free reports feel they have received something for nothing.
And this is the secret of “Free offer,” people like to think there is something in it for them, something that is worth something. But the sensible marketer will realise that a “Free Offer” should have some value in the eyes of their prospects.
Good examples of these savvy entrepreneurs are restaurant owners. They are always offering a free bottle of wine or a two for one offer on a meal. They do this not just to attract new customers but also to boost their trade during flat periods. Their offers are worth something in the eyes of their prospects who believe they are getting something for nothing.
It pays to make sure free offers have some real value. A free no obligations quote or a free consultation may not attract new customers as well as a free makeover or money off coupon. No one has heard of a restaurant offering a free glimpse of the menu now have they.
So when promoting an offer on your leaflet, always make sure it’s of real value to the customer.