129: Free vs. Paid Content: What’s The Difference?

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In this episode of The Dietitian Success Podcast, I discuss some of the key differences between content that you create for free (ie. Instagram posts, blog posts, podcast episodes, etc.) vs. the content that you get paid for (ie. your...

In this episode of The Dietitian Success Podcast, I discuss some of the key differences between content that you create for free (ie. Instagram posts, blog posts, podcast episodes, etc.) vs. the content that you get paid for (ie. your 1:1 coaching, group programs, online courses, etc.)


This episode is sponsored by Practice Better. DSC Members can get 20% off 4 months of any Practice Better paid plan with the code DSC20. Use this link to purchase: https://practicebetter.grsm.io/dscpodcast 

Check out Online Course Blueprint here: https://www.onlinecourseblueprint.info/ 

Join us in the DSC Membership here: https://www.dietitiansuccesscenter.com/

Episode Transcript:

Good morning. Good morning. Good morning. Depending on when you’re listening to this, I’m recording this in the morning. I am so sorry. My voice. I know it sounds terrible. I. Am at the tail end, but also just I think still in the deep end of having a pretty unfortunate head, cold chest cold, all the things. And so I was trying to wait it out to see if my voice would improve before recording this episode, but it has not improved. And I really want to publish this episode for tomorrow.

So here we are. I’m sorry, but luckily. This is actually a shorter format episode. And so I interestingly. I was talking to someone, I was doing a podcast episode or podcast recording with somebody a couple of weeks back. And, she was saying how she really likes the short and sweet podcast episodes. And I’ve heard that before. I’ve gotten that feedback before that a lot of people like just a quick 10, 15 minute episode.

That they feel like they can listen to check off the list, get the information that they need and move on. And so I’m going to start adding more of those. I think throughout, I like to do a mix. I like the longer interview style, but then I think it’s also great to have some of these shorter sweeter, just like little bite-sized pieces of information podcasts.

And, I think that this is one of those limiting beliefs that a lot of us have around podcasting. And I know even, I sometimes have as somebody who’s. Deep in the podcasting life. I’m 129 episodes. And I still have a bit of a limiting belief around if I can’t make this podcast episode,

30 minutes long and really robust and all of this information and sharing everything, but the kitchen sink, then it’s not worth it. And that’s just really not the case. And so actually this month, so depending on when you’re listening to this, I’m recording this in April, 2023. But this month I’m actually going to be publishing a brand new course.

To the dietitian success center business membership. So if you’re a business member, You will already have access to this. If you’re not, then you should join us. But I’m going to be publishing a brand new course, all about podcasting 1 0 1. And I’m going to be including all the entire start to finish process from how do you come up with an idea for the PA for a podcast?

What about all the tech involved? My entire workflow? How do you actually get it to the published state? How do you put it out there into the world? All of that good stuff. How do you structure interviews? How do you come up with an outline for the podcast episode? Do you just read off a script or how does that work?

How do you edit all of that good stuff? I’m pumped for that course. I. No. I have mentioned maybe I haven’t mentioned on this podcast before, but I know I’ve mentioned in just speaking to people. Individually or in groups? I think podcasting is one of the most effective marketing tactics for a business. Any business.

Podcasting is not saturated. In fact, I would say it’s under saturated. And so it and there’s really no other platform, I think, except for YouTube, which allows you to really build that deep connection. With a potential customer client, you can build trust in a way that you just can’t if you’re using only social media. So that’s my plug for podcasting. I’m a huge fan 25% of our customers for DSE come from straight from this podcast.

Which is significant. So I just want to mention that I want to put a little bug in your ear. If you’ve been thinking about a podcast. And by the way, if you’re like I’m overwhelmed. I don’t actually want to create my own podcast. I’ll also be teaching. How do you pitch to be a guest on podcasts too?

Regardless of where you’re at in your podcasting desire slash journey. There will be something in this course for you. With that. I want to jump into the content for this episode. Which is the question around free versus paid content. What in the world is the difference between content that you create and publish for free? So blog posts that you have on your website, Instagram content, Facebook posts

Even podcast episodes. Sorry about the coughing. That may happen occasionally during this episode actually i’m going to press pause and go grab a glass of water one sec

And we’re back. Oh so how, okay, so getting back on topic here. What’s the difference between paid versus free content? What’s the difference between, like I was just saying that the content that you have on your blog, Instagram, et cetera. Something that you publish as a free resource to get people, to join your email list versus the content that you teach when you’re actually working with somebody one-on-one or that you teach in a course, an online course or a group program.

And so that’s really what we’re going to go through today. How do we distinguish between. What we should include in free content versus paid content. And I know that this is a concern for a lot of you. And I think it causes a lot of analysis paralysis for individuals where they’re like, oh, I just, should this be paid? Should this be free? I have no idea. So I’m just not gonna do it. I’m not gonna put anything out there. So I’m hoping to give you a little bit of.

A little bit of a framework today for how do we decide if something should be free versus paid? And I know that there’s a lot of concerns, right? There’s things that come up like if I’m giving away giving this away for free, will somebody even pay for my product or services? What if I feel like I don’t have enough to talk about.

Write in a freak free content, versus when I’m working with clients or customers, one-on-one. How do I actually, what do I actually say? And free versus paid stuff. What even is the purpose of free stuff in my business. So we’ll touch on all of that. Today. So what are some of the key differences between free versus paid content?

So this first piece I think is really important. I did not come up with this the first time I heard this was from. Somebody named Graham Cochrane. I’ve talked about him before on the podcast. He has a podcast called the Graham Cochrane show and he talks about business and marketing and entrepreneurship.

And. There was one point where he was talking about. How we, one of the ways that we can differentiate free versus paid content is that free. Is information paid is implementation. And I think that’s the perfect way to summarize the difference between the two. Because at the end of the day,

We can learn absolutely anything that we ever would want to know or need to know about nutrition for free on the internet. There’s nothing proprietary about anything that we say with regards to nutrition, it’s all out there for free on the internet. And so that’s not the stuff. That’s not what we’re selling. We’re not selling.

Information. We are selling. The implementation piece. This is the piece that is proprietary and unique to you. Is how you show people how to use the information. So for example, Teaching clients, how do they plan meals for the week? So given their unique lifestyle circumstance, family situation, dietary restrictions, et cetera, et cetera, how do they plan meals for the week? Because for that client, the reason why they haven’t had success so far, even though anything they could ever want to know about nutrition is available for free on the internet is because they haven’t had anyone say, Hey look.

Here’s how you can do this. With within the confines and within the boundaries of your own life and your own lifestyle, we, as people. I have a really hard time. I think applying. Just straight information to our own situations. And they don’t. Like these, your clients don’t have dietetics degrees. That’s why we went to school so that we can.

Help people with the implementation piece, that’s really our role. Our role is not the information. Of course we’re giving information. That’s part of the process. But the key piece that is the paid piece is the implementation.

 So some other examples of what people would pay you for is, what are foods that you recommend and how do they incorporate them into a weekly meal routine for. Their kids, because these are tried and true tested things that you’ve done with your own family. That work well. What are some of the ways that you recommend to troubleshoot?

When someone has tried all of the IBS recommendations and nothing is working. What is your as a practitioner five step program to managing blood sugars? What is that step-by-step approach? And so that’s really the key piece here is the implementation. So typically when we’re giving infer, when we’re giving content for free.

We’re really focused more on the information piece. And we may touch a little bit on, Here’s five ways to structure your weekly meal routine, but it really lacks that individualization. And that’s my second key difference between free versus paid content. Is that free is generic. It lacks individualization. It generally applies to most, if not everyone.

So an example of this would be like a meal plan that you would give as a freebie. You’re not inputting as an individual’s calorie and macro targets that intent the intent behind that freebie behind that meal plan is just to give somebody sort of a. High level taste. Of what a meal plan looks like, what a meal plan can do for them.

But it’s not like you for each person that downloads your free lead magnet and joins your email list. You’re creating an individualized. Meal plan with calorie and macro target targets and all of that stuff. And so there’s still going to be a lot of unanswered pieces for them, because what if your client.

Downloads that meal plan and they’re like, okay, cool. This is great. I’ve got a lot of really great meal ideas, but. I work out 60 minutes a day and I feel like my calorie needs are higher. I feel like I ha I need more protein. Or I’m entirely plant-based or I am lactose intolerant or I’m vegan, or I, this.

These meals are just not going to work for my two young kids. So then the difference being is the thing that you create for F four, as a paid piece of content would add that personalized lens. You’d be incorporating the height, somebody’s height, weight, calories, macros goals, food preferences, allergies, and tolerances preferences.

Cause that’s what they’re they are paying for. That individualized personalized meal plan. They’re not just paying for a meal plan because they could get that for free on Pinterest by just searching meal plans. And so that’s an important one, too. Another example of this too, is so one of the freebies that I offer on dietitian success center.

Is a business planning workbook and it’s a great freebie. It’s a workbook. There’s a lot of value in there because it’s essentially a workbook that lays out a blueprint for starting a business. But it doesn’t fill in the gaps. So I’m asking people questions and I’m providing them with prompts for things to think about.

There’s a section on how do we come up with our ideal client and our neesh. But there’s still going to be a lot of questions from that. I’m not actually recording a video to show somebody how to go through the process of developing a really robust, ideal client. Profile and to really come up with their niche, there’s a lot of unanswered questions. So it gets the ball rolling.

But there’s still a lot of gaps, which is why somebody would invest in the DSC nutrition plus business membership. And so that lack lacking individualization piece is key. And you might be wondering, okay, but what if I have an online course and my online course. Is intended to really serve, I’m not necessarily giving individualized information in the online course.

And that’s still totally. Okay. In an online course, we’re still providing more implementation information. Then we are with free content because when we create an online course, We go through the process of really understanding our ideal client so well, and this is a process that I teach an online course blueprint. Online course blueprint is my 12 week online course creation program.

I’ll link to it in the show notes. If you would like to check it out, feel free to do that. But we’re getting to know our ideal clients. Intimately. That we understand what most people are going to need to hear when it comes to the implementation piece. Maybe we’ve worked with this person enough to be like, okay,

This is a five-step framework that works for most of my clients. And here’s questions that you probably have because a lot of my clients have add these questions. And I’m going to answer them in the online course. And then of course, with an online course, sometimes you’re going to have things like a discussion board.

Where you can ask, answer people’s questions or a Facebook group where you can answer people’s questions. Or maybe you do, monthly live Q and a sessions where you can answer people’s questions. And so an online course absolutely still applies here. We’re really focusing on yeah. There’s information, but we’re really focused on the implementation.

Another key difference between the two is that free tends to be promotional in nature, whereas paid is not. So for example, in freak, within free content. So within. I’m just speaking about DSC, for example. Our free resources all have our DSE branding on them. They have calls to action. To say, Hey, here’s the next step? Here’s how you purchase a membership.

Hyperlinks throughout to the website. We’re very intentional about saying, Hey. Here’s the next step to be able to take advantage of the paid content. It is promotional. So same thing applies to our blog. If you go and read our blog posts scattered throughout. We have calls to action. We have.

We link the content back to paid content that we have in the DCE membership. So we’re always trying to get people to take that next step.

Now one thing I do want to say, just to wrap up. Is that free does not mean low quality. So we have to remember that anything we put out there is a perception of our brand. And so if we create a useless freebie, There is an implication. There, there is a, there’s a perception there that, oh, if this was useless,

I don’t really have high hopes for the paid. Piece of content versus if you are making something awesome. If you create, if you spend the time and create a freebie, that’s really good quality. And it makes somebody say to themselves, oh my gosh, I can’t believe I got this for free.

Then that’s when that’s, when you know, That you are on the right track with regards to paid content or sorry, free content. It should still be really good quality. I just want to say that because I have seen before. This desire. And I’ve been there. This desire to rush through a freebie or a blog post. And Hey, I am not saying perfection. We do not need.

To be perfect. Done is always better than perfect. However, we also don’t want to rush. So we don’t want to create some rushed. Freebie that somebody could easily get for free on Pinterest. All they would have to do a search Pinterest. Seven day meal plan. And if it’s just a generic seven day meal plan with no.

No bells and whistles, nothing exciting. It’s okay. Is that really useful or not? Then if they can get it for free, via a Pinterest search, it needs to be improved. So just don’t rush it, make sure you’re going through the process. Of actually coming up with something that people are going to say, wow, this is really awesome. Of course i’m going to want to upgrade to the paid piece because this provided me so much value and it was free

And then the last thing that I want to touch on is just this fear around giving away all of your information for free or this fear around well, if I, write all these blog posts, I’m not going to have anything to. I teach. In my paid offer or when I’m working one-on-one with clients. And this is such a limiting belief, and I think this is a lot more common at the beginning stages of a business.

What I want you to do is I want you to sit down. If you feel like you’re having this challenge. I want you to sit down and I want you to do a brain dub and brainstorm a list of all of the topics that you could teach about with regards to nutrition. You could come up with hundreds of topics. I’m betting you, I could teach about what is protein, what are some examples of protein? What are some plant-based protein sources? What are some snack ideas? What are some vegan snack ideas? What is blood pressure? What are foods to lower blood pressure?

What are, but blood pressure friendly meal ideas, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, you could go on and on. All of these pieces, all of these topics could be. Paid or free content. They could be both. Like you could do a blog post on. Foods to lower blood pressure, and then you could give your clients.

Five to 10 recipes incorporating a InCorp. Incorporating these foods to lower blood pressure, that would be great for them that they can work into their weekly meal routine. So we just have to get a little bit more expansive when it comes to our thinking around content. Our knowledge is really endless. And I think, particularly if you’re new to working with clients, you just have to trust.

That you will gain inspiration as you work with more people, questions are going to come up. Clients are going to ask you things that you’re like, oh, I never even thought about that. And that could be a perfect piece of content. It could be a great module in a course. Things will come up organically. You’ll see things on Instagram. And you’ll say to yourself,

Whoa. That’s that would make such a good content topic. I want to put my own spin on that. And that’s an important reminder too, is just that don’t let that be something that stops you. Your knowledge will continue to grow. It’ll continue to expand as you go deeper on a topic. It’s that whole idea of.

As you the more, the more you realize you don’t know. And I think that’s so true, right? It’s like the more we learn about a topic, the more we realize, oh my gosh, there’s so much opportunity to go. Even deeper here. So don’t let that be a fear for you. Okay, so just to summarize key differences.

Is between free versus paid content. Free really focuses on information, paid focuses on implementation. So that action planning. Free content generally lacks that individualization and that personalization. That’s what people tend to pay for. Free tends to be promotional in nature. So we’re always trying to link back to our paid content, refer back to our paid content, but free does not mean low quality. And so you need to ask yourself if you’re putting a piece of, and this is particularly true for freebies free downloads that you’re using to get people to join your email list.

If somebody could get it for free on Pinterest, we need to revisit it. Because we want to make sure that when somebody downloads that it says it. It portrays a really positive perception of your brand. And then last but not least, don’t be afraid of giving away all of your information. You, your knowledge will continue to expand as you go deeper as you learn more. So don’t be afraid of that.

All right. I hope you have an amazing week. I hope you enjoyed this short and sweet episode. Like I said, I would love to see you in the DSE membership this month for the podcasting 1 0 1 course. It’s going to be so awesome. So fun. And of course everyone who joins DSC moving forward will have access to that course.

All right. So have an awesome week. And there is going to be a bonus episode next week, because it is the DSE two year anniversary on April 8th, which is so exciting. So I’ll be publishing a new episode. An extra episode next week, just talking about my reflections. From two years of business ownership so thanks so much for listening have an awesome week i will see you next thursday

Also real quick. As i’m editing this episode it’s actually and it’s ending up being about 25 minutes which i know at the beginning i said it was going to be shorter and sweeter i wouldn’t say 25 minutes of shorter and sweeter so my apologies i will make shorter episodes in the future i guess i had more to talk about with regards to this topic than i thought so anyways thanks so much for tuning in here’s to shorter sweeter episodes in the future.

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