The Blog

A culmination of words that usually make a lot of sense.

Should You Charge For That?

by sam on March 30, 2011

Yes.

But it better be good.

Rebecca Thorman’s new blog isn’t free. Penelope Trunk self-published her new book and made bank. Jason Fried is arguably the master of setting prices and getting people to pay for it.

The common denominator? Value. Creating something people will reach into their wallets for.

It’s not about price. It’s about value.

Photo Credit


7 Responses

  1. Doug Shaw says:

    Splendidly brief – love it!

  2. I’m glad you linked to Jason Fried’s Inc article – I love this quote from it – “If you pour your heart into something and make it great, sell it. For real money. Even if there are free options, even if the market is flooded with free. People will pay for things they love.”

    Suffice to say, I agree. When you value something, other people will value it too. Jason Fried, along with Ramit Sethi and Ev Bogue have really influenced me lately in terms of why I decided to charge for my blog and feel confident in doing it. I encourage any others interested in this route (for any product) to read those three as well.

    • I think you hit the nail on the head, Rebecca. People WILL pay for things they love. And as you explain on your site, you’re educating your readers, and there is value in that.

      The line so many folks have a difficult time walking down is in deciding what to charge for and what to offer for free. How much should you give away before you start to give away too much? What should be offered at a premium?

      The other? Especially for writers, is they under-value themselves and convince themselves that what they’re saying isn’t something anyone would pay for. I love the move you’ve made to a “premium” model and as long as your content backs up the membership fee, you’re golden.

    • Sam Davidson says:

      Rebecca: You have no idea how you’ve inspired me.

  3. Seth Waite says:

    I am a firm believer in paying for premium work. You very often get what you pay for.

    Although there are lots of great “free” ebooks and blogs most have a limited amount of mojo. By this I mean most do a good job and some do a great job but over time free never offers you a jaw-dropping experience. Paid content does and it is quite often.

    I think someone who knows they are going to try and sell this content puts extra energy and thought into every single aspect of their project. Even the smallest details get extra attention to make sure they are just right. Adding a price tag does this for the creators.

    Adding a price tag also makes the buyer invest their time and energy into using the content and actually trying it out. Then they have a great experience because of it and suddenly this ebook they paid for has done wonders for them. They tell their friends and buy all of that creators products in the future. Purchasing really empowers people.

    • Sam Davidson says:

      Seth: You’re right on. This has been my experience with Kontrary and other paid models I fork over cash for. I feel like I should read them since I’m paying. And I do. The stakes are upped for everyone.

      This is a new era of online content. Quality is increasing across the board. A little bit of money goes a long way for everyone.

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