Marketing and Advertising: Why Do People Pay for Services That They Can Get for Free?

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I have had many people say to me that they do not understand why people pay for services that they can do themselves.  I thought that I would discuss this issue.

Let me give you an example:

I am an author, and an expert on writing online, however, sometimes I pay someone else to write articles for me.  Why do I do this?  It all comes down to taking a look at the bottom line, and what activities bring in the most money in income.  Since I am one person, and there are only so many hours each day that I can effectively work, I need to decide which activities I need to do myself, which others can do, and if it is cost effective for me to pay someone else.  The cost analysis is not always how much I can earn today, but how much I can earn in 6 to 12 months time from that work.

This is how I look at the tasks that I do each day, and figure out if I can delegate them to another person.  I often delegate filing paperwork to an assistant because they can do a good job, and I can do a good job at a income generating task while they are filing.

Just because something is free, does not mean that it is truly free to you.  If an artist can create an ad in an hour that would take me 10 hours to create for free, that is 9 wasted hours that I could have been doing something else.  Unless the fee is extremely high, it is much more efficient for me to pay someone else to do that job.

The bigger your business gets, the more you have to delegate.  Sometimes the person you delegate to, does not do the job the same way you do.  That doesn’t necessarily mean that they do not do as good of a job.  Even if they do not do the job as well as you do, did they do it well enough to allow you the freedom to do what you do best?


  1. Profile photo of AJ says

    I agree completely Paula. Another way to look at it is how much you yourself could expect to earn from an activity. For example, if I have an activity where I know I can earn say $25, then any activities where I can only earn $15 could be “outsourced” allowing me more time to focus on the $25 activities.

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