February 03, 2008

Giving Away Information For Free

After writing about how catalogs drive sales for retail events, I was asked by a loyal reader, "Why don't you charge people for this, don't you think people would pay for this information?".

Honestly, our industry is struggling right now. We need to improve the performance of the brands we manage. We're not getting the kind of honest, actionable information from industry leaders, vendors, research organizations, and trusted advisers that we truly need. There are certain multichannel facts that should be understood by all in our industry, not hidden in a secluded monetization chamber. And then there are other facts that are proprietary.

In my opinion, here's a pretty good example of sharing important information, without going too far --- from Terry Jukes, published on the Catalog Success website.

Maybe the question should be asked of you, the loyal MineThatData reader.
  1. Where should a vendor, research organization, industry leader, trusted adviser, consultant, or blogger draw the line between giving away information for free, vs. charging for information?
  2. Who in our industry does a good job of sharing useful information without hurting monetization efforts?