May 23, 2020 Published by Allaine Myradel Pelejo

The Value of Free: Why offering free trials is a great marketing strategy

The Value of Free. Gaining exposure for your business is important so more people get to see what you have to offer. More exposure means more sales...

The Value of Free. Gaining exposure for your business is important so more people get to see what you have to offer. More exposure means more potential clients—more sales. Some of the strategies used by businesses to increase exposure include:

  • Creating relevant content that your target market would find useful
  • Building a strong social media presence
  • Guest writing / Guest blogging
  • Reaching out to influencers that can get your target market to try you out
  • Optimizing your website / SEO
  • Featuring your customer testimonials
  • Word of mouth marketing

Word of mouth allows people to influence and encourage others to discuss your brand or your business. When it comes to word of mouth marketing, your most substantial asset would be your existing customer database. The marketing potential of your existing customers can be very powerful, but how do you generate word of mouth if you're a fairly new business with established competitors?

New businesses generate word of mouth by investing in building relationships with prospective clients, giving them words to share, and allowing them to easily refer you to people they know would find value in you. One effective way of encouring word of mouth for your business is offering free trials allowing your prospective clients to experience your product or service firsthand, and providing free resources that your target market and sub-market will find valuable.

Value of Free: Word of Mouth Marketing

The Value of Free: Offering Free Trials and Resources

Many online marketing channels provide businesses access to cost-effective, trackable marketing tools allowing them to reach more prospective clients. When reaching prospective customers through these channels your objective is for them to check you out.

  • Provide them with information regarding your business
  • Share content relevant to them
  • Give them access to free resources that they will find valuable
  • Invite them to experience your service firsthand through free trials

Everyone loves free stuff, and if people like the free stuff they received, then they are likely to share their experience with others. By offering your target market something free (and valuable), you capitalize on the leads you get and convert them into paying customers.

Offering Free Trials

Trial conversion varies for different industries and businesses. Consumer services and SaaS are two industries that were above the overall median rate for trial conversions, with median conversion rates of 66.8% and 62.4%, respectively.

For these two industries, offering free trials is your first step to acquire new customers, but your chance at converting free trial customers to paying customers will still depend on your initial targeting and the quality of service you provide. With so many options and competition, ensuring that your trial customers enjoy their experience and see the value of what you are offering would be your two main goals.

Why offering free trials and resources should be a part of your marketing strategy

The Value of Free: Offering Free Trials

Offering a free trial gives your prospects something to use and test. The goal of offering a free trial is to gain more exposure and increase sales. Offering free trials also encourages word of mouth marketing about your product or service.

Free Trials

Free trials can be time-limited or feature-limited. The full product or service is offered to a prospective customer for a period of time in a time-limited trial. On the other hand, a feature-limited trial means not all features will be enabled for the customer. For feature-limited trials, those who'd later require or get interested in getting full functionality are given the ability to "upgrade".

Time-limited Trial

Time-limited trial

Delesign's 15-day money back guarantee allows clients to test out the service for 15 days, and for any reason, if the client is not convinced and decides to discontinue with the service, Delesign provides a full refund of their initial monthly payment, given that they request a cancellation by the 15th day.

Feature-limited Trial

Feature-limited trial

PhonicMind allows users to remove vocals from any music using artificial intelligence. Trial users, however, are only able to preview a portion of the song they removed vocals from, and if they wish to perform a full conversion of the song, they will need to select a paid plan.

About Risk-free Trials

For consumer services and SaaS, offering risk-free trials is a great way for prospective customers to try what you have to offer without having to make any commitment. How risk-free trials work is that the customer will be charged for the first payment, but they will have a trial period to test out the product or service and decide whether they'd like to keep it or cancel it to receive their money back. It provides an opportunity for prospects to compare your service with others. During this period, you must show them the value you can provide and deliver an impactful and positive experience to convert them into loyal paying customers.

Before offering free trials, consider the length of the trial and the cost of offering the free trial. Make sure that this does not challenge your profit and that you are able to justify the cost of what you are giving away.

Offering Free Resources

To develop a strong brand identity, you must be an authority in your industry. Becoming an authority takes effort and consistency. Showcasing your capabilities by creating free resources, offering free assets, holding free webinars, etc. helps promote your business and harness your authority-building journey. It gives an impression that you, as a business, can be trusted.

Creating free resources, offering free assets, holding free webinars, etc., add value to your business and positions you as an expert in your area. Offering these things also helps grow your network and your mailing list.

Why offering free trials and resources should be a part of your marketing strategy

The Value of Free: Offering Free Resources

Examples of Free Resources

There are thousands of free resources for various categories found on the web. Some of the most common free resources include design resources, stock photography, image optimizers, and social media management tools.

The Value of Free: Delesign's royalty-free designs

Delesign's royalty-free designs

Delesign has created hundreds of royalty-free designs including illustrations, icons, social media designs, email templates, and many more.

Free Social Media Tool

The Value of Free: Social media scheduler

Social media scheduler

For scheduling posts on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, a free tool that you can use is Later. With their free plan, you can schedule 30 posts per social platform.

There are many other types of free internet resources out there, either for personal or for business use. Businesses invest on creating these resources to help those within their target audience, which in turn allows them to get more exposure for their business.

The Value of Free: Why offering free trials and resources should be a part of your marketing strategy

Getting exposure for your business can be tough especially when there are a lot of competition in the market. Giving your prospects the chance to experience what you are offering for free provides an opportunity for them to compare your product or service with others. It also encourages word of mouth marketing inviting others to check and try you out.

Offering free trials and free resources that prospective customers may see of value can be your biggest marketing tactic to gain exposure and attract more prospects. Who doesn’t like something for free? Through free trials, you attract loyal customers. Through free resources, you "nurture" prospects.


Offering free stuff can help you gain more. When you showcase your abilities, you let your prospects know how you can help them. When you let them experience what you can offer for free, you remove their hesitations. A good product or service sells itself so you must invest on quality. Add value to your business by creating free resources, providing free assets, and offering other free relevant content. This gives your audience a reason to see you as an expert and recognize you as an authority in your industry.

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Allaine Myradel PelejoAllaine is an ambassador at Delesign. She is an adventurer and a dreamer who believes in turning ideas into reality. She loves sharing links on human emotions, relationships, and all things digital.