The conventional view in financial planning is that if something is free, it’s usually worthless. If we want consumers to really value planning, we need to charge for it. Yet the caveat, as expressed by author Chris Anderson in his book Free: The Future of a Radical Price, is that bundling free solutions with a paid product or service is an entirely legitimate business model, and a surprisingly robust one.
In fact, the classic “freemium” model of giving away an initial product or service while being paid for a complementary or supporting solution may actually help grow your business and allow you to gain even greater adoption in the process. This suggests not only that offering free financial planning over the past several decades has been a good business model, but also that it may have even helped to gain adoption and acceptance of planning in the first place.
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