Free effects and Price Decision

Discussion in 'The Marketplace' started by Dmezhkov, Dec 9, 2016.

  1. What is the point to post a free effect? I have seen some really good free effects, and just by watching some trailers for paid effects, I wonder why this one is paid, and this one is free? If you have an effect, how do you know what price to put on it... free or otherwise?
  2. Interesting question. People will often post free effects to gain notoriety if they are new to the magic seen. It will get people to trust their style and design so that way they will be more willing to purchase an effect from them in the future.

    As far as pricing goes, this follows the same rules of economics as any other industry. You have to try not to oversell your product but you also shouldn't undersell it either. If you lean too far in either direction, people will avoid your product because it's either too expensive to justify a purchase or too cheap so it must be trash. You want to find equilibrium by doing market research to see what the demand for your product is most likely going to be. Send out demo trailers to people and see what they would be willing to pay for the product.

    These are all lessons I have had to learn the hard way at. :(
    ProAma likes this.
  3. Why do people release free magic? Well, I think it's a few reasons. 1) Because what they've 'created' isn't worth paying for. There's a lot of people who reinvent the wheel and give it out for free. They think that just because they came up with the idea, they can release it - even if it's been in print for years or decades (or in some cases, centuries). I am consistently sent videos of tricks people have 'invented' that are in RRTCM or Erdnase or any number of existing sources.

    2) I think this one is more common - In today's magic world, new comers are taught that to be a 'magician' you have to have products on the market. Nevermind the fact that most of the 'top' magicians today don't sell their magic, we're inundated every day with our role models releasing new products. Factor that in with the fact that anyone can make an eBook or video and put it up for sale and ta-da - a market saturated with junk.

    3) To establish a reputation as Tyler Scott said. If you post up free stuff you can start to gain a following and they will, hopefully, also pay for things that have a price to them. I personally think this is a poor way to go - if you start out giving stuff away for free, it's really hard to increase your price. Just like booking paid shows after you do a ton of free gigs. You generally end up ditching your existing clientele base and finding a new one that's willing to pay for what you offer.

    Now some of what's put out is good - sure. I still use tricks that I learned for free years later. But really, the magic world has become exceedingly incestuous. Because of that, people put stuff out before they have verified if it's really worth making a product of it - and usually they can only give it away.

    As for as pricing - that's a complicated question. Scott's post covers some great points. Personally I have produced two products - one I sold for not much ($15 USD) as I was intending to use this as an introduction to the market and I was more interested in spreading my name than making bank. The link for that is in my signature. The other was significantly more expensive and not released to the general market - It's something I created that I genuinely feel is potentially too powerful to sell to just anyone. I only sell it in hard copy, and I only sell it to people I know will use it responsibly.

    So it comes down to you - You need to factor in what your final goal is, and also your target market. You also have to factor in what it's worth to you and what people may pay for it.
  4. Only speaking for myself here but I feel if I were to create an effect/trick I probably wouldn't charge anything or charge enough to break even (materials, manufacturing costs). At most I'd charge a fair price and donate it to charity.

    I'm not in it (magic) to make money. It's one of two hobbies I have and if started treating magic as a job I'd lose the passion. Besides, if a product I created inspired someone else, gave them some joy or helped them be a better magician that's good enough for me.
  5. Posting stuff for free is a good way to let people try you out before spending money on you (especially if you are a new artist.) I put up a couple things for free at the marketplace so people can get a taste of my teaching style. From a marketing standpoint, it is good advertising too because then you link them back to your website and social media to get some more exposure. :)

    As for pricing, I try to price things fairly so that they get their moneys worth. When it comes to the market I price things as follows (this is a loose structure as there are variables as well.)

    -Free: Stuff that I want to give away for the above reasons i mentioned in the post.
    -0.99: I have never released anything this cheap, however if i do it will be a single move or effect with little or no additional applications. ( a single sleight for example)
    -1.99-3.99: Any full length effect with a single application or idea taught with it. (I teach a control that includes a fun routine to go with it.)
    -4.99-9.99: A single effect with several applications or bonus ideas included. (A full length effect like "Chicago Closer" that also teaches a deck switch application and is several phases long.)
    -over 10.00: Usually if I post anything over 10 it is because there are several ideas or effects in question. (My "Tour de Force; Complete Edition" download is priced above 10 because i teach 6 full length routines there.)

    Hope this helps. Again, these ideas are not a ridged structure so i sometimes change things in between. If an effect is super popular and worth it, I may put a single effect for over 10. just depends. I have noticed that the marketplace is very hard to sell for over 10 though... lol
  6. I think its better to have free effects on a magician site than a public domain like youtube. I think there are a few people that like to release effects for the soul purpose of contributing to the community.
    obrienmagic likes this.
  7. I like this pricing system. Mind if I steal it? Haha
    obrienmagic likes this.
  8. haha its all yours! ;)
    TylerScottIllusionist likes this.

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