How to Respond When People Ask For Free Services

In this blog, you will discover how to respond when people ask for services. I’ll go over a response to family and friends, what the free marketing opportunity is truly about, and how to handle those who ask for freebies.

All growth depends upon activity. There is no development physically or intellectually without effort, and effort means work.

Calvin Coolidge

There’s a false idea that since psychics and healers gifts are from God, they shouldn’t charge money. Yet hasn’t God also gifted Taylor Swift with a beautiful voice, Matthew McConaughey with acting skills, and LeBron James with athletic abilities? And believe me, they are paid mega amounts of money for their gifts!

Somebody trying to get something for nothing happens to people in every profession: authors, freelance writers, editors, coaches, artist, musicians, doctors, lawyers, and so forth. This is so frustrating to those who have business and living expenses to cover! Also, it can take decades of training, expensive schooling or training, thousands upon thousands of hours of hard work to become an expert, plus being self-employed forces you to work on your personal growth to conquer insecurities and other issues that crop up while running a business. These are valid reasons why professionals must charge for their services.

How to Respond When People Ask For Free Services

Here’s one personal example of mine:

At least every two weeks someone will go to my email reading webpage, bypass my payment buttons, and type their personal question(s) for me to answer in the contact form. Obviously, these people know this is a paid service. It came to the point where I was sick of typing my response and typed up a generic response to copy and paste, which I’ll share in case a similar situation happens to you.

Thank you for your interest in my email reading service; however, I didn’t receive your payment for the questions. Please check your Pay Pal or credit card account to see if the problem is at your end. Or submit a payment on the email reading web page. Once I receive your payment, I will answer your question ASAP.

Did you notice how polite and professional this response was? Perhaps two percent of the time, there was an actual problem with their Pay Pal or credit card account. However, it’s always important and good karma to respond with kindness.

3 Methods on How to Respond When People Ask For Free Services

Let’s talk about three methods people will try to receive freebies:

Family and Friends

This can be a toughie because these are your loved ones, yet you still need to be compensated for your skill and time. Never allow your family and friends to guilt you into free services; instead, choose who you won’t charge or give a discount to.

If someone complains when you ask for a payment tell them, “I’m fitting you in my busy schedule, obviously paying clients must receive top priority, and it will take me ___ days or weeks to finally have time to help you.”

Personally, I’m lucky. My family and close friends always offered to pay me something as they value my work. Even my father insists on buying books I’ve written and he’s one of my editors. Usually the people who ask for free services are acquaintances.

Marketing Opportunity

How many times have you heard, “We can’t pay you, but you’ll get free exposure?” Think carefully before you say yes, even if your business is brand new. This intention of potential clients rarely brings in paying clients; usually the universe hears it as send me more nonpaying gigs for possible money opportunities.

Before you give away your time, research whose free exposure would work best for you. Then choose niches that work well for your business. And how to take advantage of these opportunities, whether that’s through services, speaking engagements, guest blogging, podcast interviews, or raffling off a gift certificate. Do this with the attitude of fun, enjoyment of establishing connections, and without any expectations of receiving anything in return.

Strangers on the Internet

Remember my email reading example? Sadly, this isn’t the only way the internet users ask for freebies, nor am I the only business owner who goes through this. Request for free services happen through social media personal messaging, Facebook groups, website contact forms, emails, blog posts, live radio shows, or anywhere else strangers can connect with you.

These requests can sneakily be asked as feedback or input to avoid paying for your services. Anyone who is requesting your time or expertise needs to be aware it’s a paid service. Don’t be surprised when you point this out to a person, they will become defensive or angry. Please do your best not to take it personally, as this is their issue, not yours.

The following are three ways to handle these requests:

  1. Point them towards the information through yours or another expert’s blog, podcast, or website.
  2. Answer in a brief, generic, yet informative sentence or two.
  3. Provide them with your website link where they can purchase your services.

In Conclusion

Lastly, to go back to the beginning of the line of how your talents are a gift from God; you were bestowed with these gifts as a method to not only survive on this planet, but to THRIVE in a comfortable lifestyle!

If you’re interested, I have books, a self-improvement card deck, and/or services. Please visit my shop and services pages.

Originally published on July 24, 2018

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