Sometimes, people don’t believe that we offer blog editing and SEO services for free. For a whole month. Without any credit card details, commitment, or anything else.
I’ve received a thoughtful and polite email from someone telling me that I’m hurting the industry by giving away work for free (with which I don’t agree, because so many services offer free trials). I’ve had wise counselors recommend I either end the free trials, or reign in their terms (and the number of posts included will be reduced from next year).
But free blog editing and SEO trials have really been the magic sauce in building our business, and these are the reasons why:
1. We build trust
Think about it. You get an email from someone you don’t know, offering you a service that you need, for a reasonable price. All good so far. But how likely are you to give someone who you don’t know any money?
By offering our would-be clients a whole month of our services for free, they can see we’re not here to take advantage of them. We’re not here to rip them off. We can prove that we’re real (and relatively normal) people, and we can prove that our value far exceeds what you’ll pay (and if it doesn’t, then how much better is it that you find out before you start paying?).
2. We trust others
It would be easy to take advantage of our blog editing & SEO trial for a month, and then say, “Cheers! I’m outta here”. But, you know? No one has. This is partly because why would you set up a work process only to use it for a month? It’s also because almost everyone who writes a blog or owns an online business has themselves felt the give and take of trust, and stick to a pretty awesome moral code.
Sure, we’ve had people who haven’t turned into regular paying clients like we thought they may. Some needed time to focus on why they wanted to hire us. Some couldn’t afford us from month to month but wanted to use our services for special projects like ebooks or courses. But everyone has gone away happy, taught us something, and stayed a friend.
3. We iron out any kinks in the workflow before charging
You know what it’s like when you first start a process – you need to find a workflow, style of communication, and process that works for you, and blog editing is no different. We like to tailor our services to the need of each and every single client (duh, otherwise why would they hire us?) so this involves working out a slightly different process with each person.
Offering a free trial allows for a time of communication and process in which we can get to know the client and what they want before charging them for the work we do – win-win.
4. We offer it to everyone
We’ve had times when we haven’t needed to offer a free trial – when we’ve been approached by a client, say, or when we pick up the name from a referral. But we do. Even though a free month costs us financially, we know that offering a month’s free trial is a good investment.
We get to form a relationship. We get to spread love. We get to build trust.
5. We give (and get) a “get out of jail free” card
This is going to sound brutal, and it is indeed brutally honest: Do we want to work with you? We’re gunning for quality, not quantity in our blog editing clients, and we prefer to work with certain kinds of people (people who add to our business, who share our values, who offer us a mutually-beneficial relationship).
Despite what we’re tempted to believe in business, a client doesn’t necessarily equal a client. We’ve been lucky – we love all our clients and many of them have become friends. We’d like to clone some of our clients (and they’re not the ones with the shortest posts, or who pay the most quickly, or anything obvious like that). We’d like to clone the clients to whom we give the most value, and to whom we are most fulfilled working with. But we only want to work with you if we can provide value to your business.
So you see? The financial outlay, emotional investment, and time it takes is a small price to pay for the advantages of offering a month’s free trial. We may have to evolve the process as we grow up, but we’re thankful to it for getting us to where we are now.
Like what you see? Want in? For your month’s free trial, please message us here.