Archive for the ‘Freemium’ Category

Father James DiLuzio

I have to write a post about this incredible performance I witnessed recently.  Luke Live! is a one man show performed by Paulist Father James DiLuzio in which he reads and acts out, from memory, the Gospel according to Luke.  In the segment of the show I saw, he read chapters 7 and 8.  It was amazing.  I read the Bible like I do most things, in fits and spurts.  When I do read however, it tends to be the Gospels.  In an hour and a half tonight I had these two chapters opened up to me in ways I hadn’t previously experienced.  I had a chance to talk about it with Father afterwards.  I shared some of the insight I gained, and he further explained his mission.  I love talking about religion and politics, but that side of this post is best saved for another place.

I first heard Luke Live! was coming to our parish though standard communications.  An ad was placed in the church bulletin, an announcement was made before mass.  I knew it was going on, but none of these things stirred me to want to go.  It turned out that the religious formation class I teach was going to be attending, so I eventually found out I had to go, but again, that in no way excited me.  Then came the hook:

Freemium.

Just like a movie trailer or that free demo version of your now favorite paid app, I got a free sample of the performance.  Father DiLuzio delivered the homily and sang a song at mass the Sunday before Luke Live was to start.  I was hooked.  He delivered such a high paced, well thought out, rehearsed and organized set of ideas that I knew I had to hear what he had to say over an hour and a half! I know that Father showed up at mass that day because it is what he does, he evangelizes.  I am sure he just saw that homily as a logical extension of his ministry.  But it was well executed marketing at its finest.

In many businesses that are not tech based, the idea of giving it away for free can be scary.  There are other good examples of this in the food industry:

Rita’s Water Ice: I don’t know about where you live, but here in SO-JO if it is the first day of spring, it is free water ice at Rita’s!  We drove through two obnoxiously crowed parking lots this year just for a free cup of flavored frozen sugar water.  Why?  To ensure you get in the habit early of finding your local Rita’s of course, and the press coverage doesn’t hurt either.

Dunkin Donuts: I am a D and D junkie.  Every once in a while I get frustrated that coffee there costs more than other place (with one notable pretentious exception of course) and try a local deli or something.  It almost seems that Dunkin’ knows this, and just when I start thinking I will stray something ‘Free Coffee Mondays’ come around or an online deal like this one.

Chick-Fil-A:  Seriously, if you are still going to other fast food places, stop, find a Chick-Fil-A, and thank me later.  Not sure about chicken for breakfast?  Keep an eye on your local circular because they will invariably send you a coupon for a free breakfast sandwich at some point, and you will forget all about your McMuffin…

I struggled with this in my landscape design business.  Looking back I would have tried a product giveaway to compliment my services, rather than ‘free service’.  Any tangible product has an implied value that promised service does not.  That is of course one of the biggest challenges with marketing a service based business.

Important to note: while I said earlier that the print marketing didn’t stir me to action, it was important.  Without it, I may have been overwhelmed and unaware and the ‘freemium’ content would have gone passed me.  Marketing needs to be integrated to be effective.