Would You Work For Free? No.. Me Neither!

would you work for free?

Have you ever been asked to work for free?

You know that kind of “try before you buy scenario when someone asks you to create some kind of idea, proposal, design or some kind of definitive result without any kind of commitment to pay for it!

Annoying right?!

Well it seems Toronto advertising agency Zulu Alpha Kilo who created this video agree with this principle too!

They wanted to demonstrate how absurd it is for people to ask for the advertising industry to do spec work in hopes of getting more business…

Watch this and read on…

In my B2B Telemarketing Agency Marketing Republic, we work with clients with high value products and services t develop their sales pipeline by identifying their Ideal Customer Profile, building a list of those ideal prospects and running email and telephone campaigns using a process called Cold Calling 2.0 to engage and start conversations for our clients to then take forward.

We’ve invested thousands of hours in learning, developing, testing and implementing to continually improve. We’ve run campaigns in 21 countries and have helped clients grow their businesses.

I tell you this not to brag, but to underpin my point.

I am sure you have a fountain of knowledge that throughout your career you’ve invested in yourself to learn and define whatever line of work you are in.

So.. value it!

And if people undervalue you by asking to provide your services for free I urge you to walk away!

We have tried and tested many propositions at Marketing Republic, one of which was to run a free month’s trial for our services, just to see what the outcome was. I wanted to test  our proposition on some new clients and measure the results.

Now I must say, we have a few clients who took us up on our offer and have since gone on to become excellent, first class clients. We did experience a small number of clients who although I made sure the deal we were offering was crystal clear on multiple occasions both verbally and in writing, a couple of people wanted to push their luck!

One particular client were an overseas business, with plans to launch a new proposition into the UK with a small and slightly unclear target market. In just 1 month we developed relationships with a number of prospects who fitted our clients target profile.

The end of month review was then arranged, with my team pleased and excited to work with this client to really help propel their UK launch. However we were quickly disappointed.

At the start of our review session there was hesitance, down playing of the opportunities we’ve created and then a request to “just develop a few more relationships so I can encourage our CEO to sign up with you”.

When this happens, I quickly close down. I can’t help it.

I am more than happy (and it is the brief that my team works to) to over deliver on what we do and show the clients as much love as possible!

But, having personally communicated what we were offering, contracts signed, on boarding process completed, 1 months work completed without commitment or cost to the client, to then be asked if we can keep going for free and in addition, trying to initially get even more free opportunities, the client then tried to change the whole contractual basis on how we would get paid.

Basically, a pure pay on results deal.

I re-iterate, it was made clear from the outset how we operated,  our fee structure and set all expectations and this was detailed in the contract which was signed by the client and returned to us.

Guess what.

I terminated the call fairly quickly, thanked the client for the opportunity and wished them well.

There is no point venting frustration… it’s negative and people will really remember a bad experience like so I don’t advise letting rip!

Move on.

Find clients who value you, your business and the products and services you provide.

There are plenty of them out there so put your heart and soul into delivering for them!

I hope you watch the video and if you are offering your services for free, you consider how you operate. Think about that last conversation in the video when the personal trainer asks the man if he does what he does for free.

The guy responds “no” and then the personal trainer replies, “So, why do you want me to?”


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