Eric Karjaluoto

You’re Not Invited

You made something great, but nobody cares. What’s next? That’s obvious! You tell them. Problem is, most don’t actually respond to this approach. Nope. In fact, the opposite is the case. The more you ask people to try something, the less likely they are to.

People have a strange way of looking at things. I suspect this is a protective mechanism of sorts. Most believe that if something is free, there must be a catch. Perhaps it’s faulty. Maybe it comes with hidden fees. Or, could be that the giver has an ulterior motive. This makes the giver’s job rather difficult.

Alternately, something that can’t be had is often seen to be of much greater value. I call this the Velvet Rope Rule. It doesn’t matter what’s on the other side of that rope. All that matters is that you’re not welcome to cross it. And being told you can’t have something makes it seem all the more desirable.

So, I ask you this: Might you benefit by building scarcity into your product? Can you do something to limit access, restrict usage, or force people to earn access?

At first, doing so will feel wrong—like you’re tricking people. In actuality, though, you’re just changing how you present what you do. And if this change is enough to make them pay your work the attention it deserves, everybody wins.