Eben Pagen's moving the free line (too far!) - Observations on a recent test

by richard-pc 11 replies
Hi there

Eben Pagen talks about moving the free line, and giving good quality content away free upfront before to build a relationship. This is sound advice which I subscribe to.

I did a little unscientific test last week, just to get a feel for how far I can move the free line and still get results. This is what I did (btw, it didn't work too well for me. I should also say I'm not really driving a lot of traffic to this site at the moment, but I have a feel for the number of people signing up to download my free book).

Normally, when visitors arrive at Download the Best Sellling Book Millionaire Upgrade for FREE (Inspired by a flight with Sir Richard Branson) they have to enter their contact details to download this book for free.

The bounce rate seemed high to me on this site, so I though asking visitors to give their name and email may be off putting, so for all of last week I changed it so that visitors could download 2 chapters of the book without giving their details, and then if they wanted the rest of the book, they could subscribe and get it all for free.

During that week, I noticed a dramatic drop off in signups.

On Sunday evening, I switched back to my old signup page and required visitors to give their details to download the book, and the signup rate stepped up again.

Perhaps I moved the 'free line' too far, perhaps I was getting better quality signups last week (even though there were fewer), or perhaps visitors just didn't like the first 2 chapters!

Marketing is a funny old science and I'm still very much working it out! But I don't think I'll move the free line that far forward again!

Regards, Richard
#main internet marketing discussion forum #eben #free #line #moving #observations #pagen #recent
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  • Profile picture of the author VinceNouvel
    Its hard to expect ppl to come back and download the rest of the book.. Its just like what happen to double opt in.. Ppl were just lazy.. Its our nature..
    If It was eben, hw will give away his entire book and expect them to back for more after they finish the book. Then he will put advertisement in it.. Something like.. "Subscribe to my Newsletter to get more bla bla bla... in the end of every chapter or??.. I dont know..

    Any thought? Would love to hear more
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    • Profile picture of the author Rob Lee
      I think you're misunderstanding what Eben was talking about. He did not specifically tell you to change from using an opt in to not using one. He was just talking about giving away valueable information to gain trust with the visitor and build a relationship. I know that Eben does use a single opt in for his Dating site. So I have not seen any evidence to support what you thought.

      Eben does give away free articles for his affilates to promote his ebook. This is part of his moving the freeline. If you go to his site www.doubleyourdating.com you can see some of the articles he uses. I was one of his affiliates for a long time.

      Another thing Eben does is offer his intro ebook at a loss. He gives 200 percent commision on that ebook. It is a lossleader. Here is the definition http://www.lossleader.com/1st_timer.htm . He also offer a starter pack to his monthly cd membership club. At the price he sales this at he is giving a ton a value. The start pack includes many cds. Thus he is moving the free line.

      But on a side note what you were trying has been recommend by Willie Crawford but with a twist that you are not using. He uses free ebooks as a viral tool. He makes them rebrandable for other marketers to spread. One of the things he does is allow people to download them with out opt in. But he has a built in opt in inside the pdf. Its is a pop up that opens when you open and close the pdf. It then asks you to join his list. I believe this method would work well. Matter of fact I plan on using it.
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      • Profile picture of the author theredcell
        Richard,
        The most important thing you should have gotten out of that was that you tested in a minor way. Yes, it does appear that a lot of marketers are moving the free line. What they are doing right is that they are offering something that the prospect sees as great value.

        I don't know what your opt-in page looks like but if you don't have bullet points on there already, I would include those. Also, try and give a valuable tip in one/some of the bullets and imply that they need to get ebook to get a complete breakdown or how to use it effectively. Maybe even something along the lines of... "what's the one thing almost every expert in this field (whatever it is) does that is costing them money and driving away customers. If you're doing this then your losing customers/money/prospects....you get the idea.

        Make it benefits driven, change your headline, have two different landing pages and test some more.... Let us know how you make out.

        Jose
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  • Profile picture of the author TianYan
    Dear Richard,

    Here's my take on it. I heard a lot of debate about this technique and ultimately, the purpose is to prove your credibility to as many people as possible with actual demonstration of the value you provide. The second step thereafter is to build the relationship, again with actual demonstration of the value you provide.

    Hence, the first step of moving the freeline involves syndicating your value to as many people as possible. Hence, this could be giving excerpts of your book for free (or the whole book, depending on your preference) on as many online channels possible.

    My observation is that Eben achieves this through content sharing sites (like YouTube) and then instructs them to opt in. Hence, the opt-in process doesn't change. There is still a capture system. The goal also remains unchanged, to get opt-ins.

    Secondly, the content used to push the freeline is designed for consumption. In the case of Rich Schefren, he made sure his reports has enough copy to keep it exciting for the reader to devour the whole thing, all 133 pages of it. I would prefer to do this using video or audio to make it easy to consume.

    Be Well,
    - Tian Yan
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  • Profile picture of the author jamawebinc
    I think this is the latest craze that is overrated.

    everyone talks about Eben Pagan and moving the free line. Well he made his rep from doubleyourdating.com.

    Where is all the free stuff "How To" stuff that is given away ?

    Can you find it? I can't. Maybe I'm missing something.

    After you get "The kiss test" which is a great tip I suppose and gets people to opt-in, where is the rest of all the free stuff?

    Keep giving free and people will buy. Where is it? The email followups are stories and testimonials. Not free "How To" information.

    Giving free "how to" information only conditions people to expect things for free. If you then send followup emails with nothing free, these people bolt off your list.

    Another guru, Mike Filsaime is another example. Where is the free stuff?? His followup emails NEVER give anything for free. Just recommendations for his or affiliate products.

    Giving away something for free in exchange for contact information is nothing new. That's how we were all taught to get leads online from day 1.

    The only time I have seen gurus give away free "how to" info is when it supports the sale of a product that guru is selling.

    Frank Kern gave away a video on his blog about how to make an opt-in page and start building a list, but he wasn't selling a "How to build a list product". He got questions from people stating this is why they may not buy his mass control, for fear it would not work for them because they had no list. So he solved that problem for them because it would support sales of what he was selling.

    The other free material was case studies, and entertaining things...never any "how to" info.
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    • Profile picture of the author Martin Luxton
      Personally speaking, I dislike 'bitty' things.

      I don't want to download the trial chapter and then come back for the rest of the book.

      Free or paid, either I will get the whole thing or nothing.

      Martin
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    • Profile picture of the author Don Schenk
      Originally Posted by jamawebinc View Post

      Keep giving free and people will buy. Where is it? The email followups are stories and testimonials. Not free "How To" information.

      Giving free "how to" information only conditions people to expect things for free. If you then send followup emails with nothing free, these people bolt off your list.

      Another guru, Mike Filsaime is another example. Where is the free stuff?? His followup emails NEVER give anything for free. Just recommendations for his or affiliate products.

      The only time I have seen gurus give away free "how to" info is when it supports the sale of a product that guru is selling.

      I've stopped reading the daily and almost daily email that sell, sell, sell, but don't give useful info. Thus I don't buy from them.

      The helpful newsletters/emails keep me reading, and when the author sells something I think I can use, I buy.

      So, I always read Paul Myers, Kevin Riley, Michel Fortin, Eben Pagan.

      :-Don
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  • Profile picture of the author Kyle Tully
    Here's the thing: most people don't read books.

    Even if they sign up and request one... hell, even if they pay good money for one... they're still not all that likely to read it.

    So giving away a few chapters of a books rarely works as a marketing tool.

    The times I've seen it work are when the marketing campaign & book were designed as one and the book is in fact a marketing piece in it's own right.

    E.g. it gives useful but incomplete information and actually sells you on buying the rest of the book, or it's a "sample" of the book and teases you with the real content.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kevin Riley
      What I'm doing right now is this: People are going to view my video and then given a no opt-in link to download a follow-up report. Under that link is an optional sign up box, for those who want to be notified of the next video in the series. Right now, it's running at 24% opt in.

      Visitors are getting something for free. They're seeing value right away in an informative video. They are getting a helpful report for free. No obligation to opt in, but they're opting in so they won't miss out on more good info.

      Think about how to work that into your system.
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      Kevin Riley, Kevin Riley Publishing, Osaka, Japan


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  • Profile picture of the author IMalliance
    Well said Kevin.Give them value first.They will soon follow.Also TELL them to optin if they want to receive more valuable information.
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  • Profile picture of the author lexilexi
    I think I know why your test giveaway had the reverse effect. It was not the size of the giveaway, it was the psychology behind the offer.

    Look at it another way; your first offer addresses the subconscious with "get the whole thing right now", whereas the other one said, "you can only have a little bit now, and then if you give me something, you can have the rest."

    It's the way the mind works. "Get it now" and "free!" is an impulse drive, not a logically thought out drive. You get people to join a list with impulse; if you make them stick around long enough to *think* about it, you've lost them.

    Whereas purchase is more often the result of consideration.

    This is why the best squeeze pages are so often minimal, the best sales pages huge, and why the two processes are separated. Once they are on the list, you then change gear and get them to "consider" things.

    Alex.
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    "If there is no door, it becomes necessary to break out through the wall."

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