The Death of the Free Mentality

I remember the good old days…

There was a time when guys like Robert Puddy, Soren Jordansen, Tim Linden, Paul Kinder, Tony Tezak and myself used to hang out in a Hot Conference room and discuss business all day, everyday! It was a fantastic time for traffic exchanges and something I miss about it was the MESSAGE that every owner shared with their members and people that came and hung out with us in the conference room…

It takes money to make money!

It was encouraged and at times beat into people’s head that they needed to spend money on their business to eventually make money down the road. Somewhere along the line, we lost our way…

With the re-launch of Trck.me yesterday we’ve seen a few rumblings around the net with ‘outrage’ and disgust that (heaven forbid) a for=profit company starts to charge for their service. We made a decision to get rid of free accounts but still allowed members to use our system for 30 days for free to try it out. Hey I know sometimes people think it’s evil for companies to actually turn a profit but it is what it is…

Why the entitlement mind set? Why should everything be free? Does this make sense?

Freemium is a popular business model and it’s something we will always have in our traffic exchanges and programs like ClickTrackProfit but for essential tools like Trck.me, hosting, autoresponders and even AdKreator, that doesn’t always make sense…

And why is this such a bad idea? Most offline businesses require 100’s of thousands in capital and initial investments not to mention the minimum 3-5 years to turn a profit but online it’s looked down on for asking people to budget 75 bucks a month? It’s insane…

And for everyone that starts the argument like this ‘It’s hard to spend money when you have none’…Guess what I did and every other successful business person online? They found the money, they worked offline to make money to fund their online business…They struggled, they clawed and they fought to make their dreams a reality. But they never used the entitlement mind set…It’s a very dangerous card to play!

Invest in your business. Invest in the tools and don’t ever cut corners when it comes to this. Down the road, you will see how important it is to break out of the freebie mentality and build your business by INVESTING in yourself and your business!

The Warm & Fuzzy Post

I always seem to be complaining about something or another in the traffic exchange industry. I’m the first one to whine about the lack of creativity and cry foul when someone doesn’t agree with me right away (I’m working on that…Really I am). Yes folks, I’m a bit of a head case…But hey, I wear my emotions on my sleeve…

Something I LOVE to do is give high fives to people that make a difference in this business and today I want to focus on 3 people (groups of people) who have in the past few days, made my world a little better in this business.

Jeff Parker at Traffic Fugitive who on Monday decided to keep the momentum going with our little charity (check the last blog post below for more information on that…) So what Jeff did, which was great he said for every 100 page views that the membership does at Fugitive, he would donate a buck. I love it! It created awareness for his program, the charity and for an owner doing good in this business.

Tony Tezak came up with one of the coolest ideas I have seen in recent memory this week as well. His ‘Letter Ads’ at Tezak Traffic Power are a very smart idea simply because he is using a ‘game’ in his surf bar for an advertising opportunity. Everyone, program owner, advertiser and surfer, all benefit from this and I love seeing these kind of new additions to the business. Great stuff man!

And finally…The people at Traffic Exchange Live who dealt with a grumpy Jon on Monday afternoon but then got to talking yesterday and I think the first ever ‘T.E. Summit’ is now in the works. These people are the cream of the crop in this business and I love seeing their ideas come together. We’ll see where the ‘Summit’ goes but I’m excited…And it all happened from people ‘networking’ and discussing things. Funny how that works huh?

Even though I’ve been kind of glum this week (offline stuff, trying to close on my house sale, etc…) it’s been a GREAT 3 days in the traffic exchange industry. Let’s keep it going and see what other cool things we can come up with!