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Q&A – Why Free Isn’t Always Free | The Winn Group

Q&A – Why Free Isn’t Always Free

A few days ago we received an email from a client with a question we get so frequently, we thought we’d answer it for everyone. The email went something like this:

We met a lady who is really excited about our vision and offered to design our website free of charge. She is not a professional in the design business, but she really wants to help us. How do we explain so people understand and without hurting anyone’s feelings that even though we are a non-profit, these things are worth paying for to ensure that we don’t risk our brand image?

This is an excellent question, and as we said, one we hear a lot. We know that when it comes to funding, you want every dime possible to go toward your cause, and it’s tempting to take any offers of free service that come your way.

But think about this. If you accept someone’s offer to do something “for free,” but it’s not done well you’ll be spending lots more time and energy fixing it. They may mean well, but if they aren’t qualified to give you what you need, or they don’t understand how you want to be represented, these “free” services may actually be doing you a disservice. And when you’re not paying someone for their work, sometimes the projects they are getting paid for take precedence, and your project never gets finished. Then you end up spending your time trying to figure out how to rescue a half-finished project. You see, just because something doesn’t cost you money doesn’t mean it doesn’t cost you anything. They don’t say “Time is money” for no reason.

So what’s our advice to you when you run into these kind people who really do want to be a help to your organization? Introduce them to a professional group like The Winn Group! We understand the value of your funding dollars, and we’re happy to check out your volunteer designer/programmer and possibly work with them to create products that perfectly represent your values and communicate your vision with excellence.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: The Winn Group has not received any compensation for writing this post. We have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that we have mentioned. We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”