Wired magazine’s editor-in-chief Chris Anderson tackles the changing landscape of pricing in his book
Free: The Future of a Radical Price.
Having read Anderson’s original article in Wired magazine, I was skeptical that a full-length book would be able to elaborate on his claims.
I was pleasantly surprised that the book kept my attention and was actually entertaining and informative.
What is in Free?
Anderson covers the history of “free” and how it has evolved in commerce to what it is today. As I enjoy history, this was an interesting component of the book.
The main premise of the book is that the cost of digital goods is decreasing so rapidly that the incremental cost of one more customer is essentially zero. Thus you see that companies are able to offer their products and services online for free to millions of users.
Anderson explains how many web-based services survive while appearing to charge their customers nothing.
Free pulls back the curtain of the business models of many companies that leverage the zero dollar price point to their profit. You’ll learn how companies defy common paradigms and essentially turn pricing models upside down.
Free is Free
I was intrigued by how this book was marketed. Since it is called Free and talks about making lots of things “free” the book should be, well, free. Right?
Well, the book is free. Really.
At its initial launch, the book was offered in many formats for free. I listened to a free audio book version of Free read by the author.
While many of the free versions have disappeared after the initial hype, you can still listen to the free audio version on audible.com.
Recommendation: Read it
If you are selling any product or service, this book will help you think through your options on what to charge customers. Don’t be scared by giving something away for free, just be sure you know how you will monetize that transaction with the customer. This book will show you how.
Prefer a tangible, physical copy of the book? Order a copy of Free: The Future of a Radical Price on Amazon.com.