Is There Anything Really FREE Out There?

FreebiesWe all love freebies, don’t we? Who wouldn’t like to get free stuff, no matter how lame, cheap or even undesirable?

But is it really free after all? TANSTAAFL which translates as “There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch” should be a golden rule of any smart shopper.

The thing is not about paying no money for it right now – the problem is that you are turning into the customer and most probably will pay off sooner or later.

OK, I know, I know, that is not a secret or anything new about that but let’s just try to find out what can be hidden behind the freebie you were lucky enough to get.

You are “paying” for a freebie by giving out your contact information:

Give contact information

Do you ever need to register to receive a freebie or fill in the application form? Ok, if you are an experienced freebie-hunter, you should know that now you will be receiving the company news and special offers right to your (e)mail box.

It means that sooner or later you will become their customer.

A freebie makes you feel guilty:


It is like you owe something. Will you want to return the favor? Do you like to owe anything to anyone?

In any case the answer is the same: no matter what, if you have accepted the freebie, you have become their customer.

You get a freebie and become the seller’s voice:

Viral marketing

Got something for free? Do you want to share it with friends? Of course you do! And that’s how you become the seller’s free promoter (not completely free as they did pay you with the freebie).

Sometimes you just go ahead and tell your friends about the seller because you just want to, sometimes they ask (or require) you to. Here is the example of the latter:

Free-PC company provided a free sub-$1,000 computer and Internet access in exchange for permission to target advertising messages directly to customers’ desktops – even when they are not online. They didn’t charge for the machines but they got the possibility of charging users hanging over their heads…

With a freebie they will win your heart:


You might be unaware of that but the moment you are given something for free – you are sold.

This point may be argued because people don’t like to think their hearts are so easy to win but I see nothing unnatural in that. When receiving a gift we quite naturally feel gratitude and with gratitude comes appeal.

And if you like a seller, you’ll become their customer sooner or later.

A freebie makes you remember them


Do you remember companies that gave you a freebie? Would you choose them over their competitors next time you are shopping for the related product?

A freebie usually has a seller’s logo all over it. You see it every time you use the freebie – and that’s keeps you thinking about the seller.

It means you will become their buyer sooner or later or bring them more customers by showing the freebie to people.

A great example of that is Starbucks campaign that encourages customers to visit their site, design their own t-shirt by choosing the favorite drinks and then get the individualized t-shirt for free (even with free shipping!). Imagine how many people wore those t-shirts further spreading the word.

Post images by Esparta, Evil Erin, FranUlloa, Manel, kevindooley, mandj98.

Join the discussion

  • unless you’re awesome enough to receive a cool gift and feel no more of a link with the giver than before

  • There are quality FREEbies and those that come with baggage. That’s what makes doubters of us. I remember being in Office Max several years back and seeing a table of packages of CD’s that came with a FREE clause providing you filled out the rebate form. Aside from the time/effort it took to fill out the form there were no catches other than a postage stamp. I later learned that although these deals exist that many/most buyers fail to fill out rebate forms either on time or accurately. I guess this type of deal is a calculated gamble.

    There are also the empty deals. You attend a meeting or whatever and someone gives you a coupon to redeem at the local coffee shop. The deal exists but if you don’t drink coffee or don’t live in the area then it becomes an empty deal. Perhaps a good thought but poor implementation. Sorry no way no way now way am I going to wear a Starbucks t-shirt and become a walking Starbucks billboard.

    It’s common with automobile sales to see these offers of $3000 rebate or free $5000 if you buy xyz vehicle by the end of the month. Does anyone really believe that a dealer or manufacturer is going to stay in business long if they GIVE things away?

    Internet deals are by far the most capricious. Register for this $150 seminar for FREE today if you sign up within the next 20 minutes. In many cases once the FREEbie ends you are brought into a room and grilled until you cave in and buy the commercial package. The art of persuasion can be truly amazing.

    There are good FREEbies out there, but you need to sort through the rubble to cut to the chase.

  • It made we wonder if there is a difference between a freebie and a goodie? On some IT events we used to make it a sport to hunt for the coolest goodies, such as a msn compass of microsoft or a blow up backpack from HP, zillions of t-shirts and cd’s and so on. It was a real sport to measure the amount of time you had to speak to a salesman before he opened the closed cupboard to take out the stash of only-for-those-who-talk quality t-shirts, coffee cups and so on. Each event we go home LOADED with t-shirts, bags, and hi-quality items, the one who scored the coolest most rarest goodies was the goodie master 🙂 Ofcourse only the coolest goodies remain the rest goes in the trashcan.

  • I dont care what anybody says nothin is free in this world. You know how they say that seeing is believeing well its true.

  • For by grace are ye saved through faith; and not of yourselves: it is the GIFT of God. Ephesians 2:8 KJV Bible