Recently, Seth Godin’s new book, Tribes: We Need You To Lead Us, was released for free to Audible.com subscribers (and for $.95 on iTunes).
I’m sure it was downloaded hundreds of thousands of times, if not more. And for every Audible download he made nothing. So why give away that much money? He’s practicing what he preaches. He’s growing his tribe of people that follow him and look to him for advice and wisdom.
After listening to the book, I’m hooked. Sure he gave me a free audiobook. But now I’ll probably go back and buy some of his past books and future releases as well. That’s something I wasn’t going to do before. And I’ve subscribed to his blog for years now. I’ve found in the past I’ve skimmed over his posts probably only reading about half of them. Since listening to Tribes, I’ve read every post he’s put out there.
His true genius is in long-term brand building. Sure he didn’t earn as much as he could have off Tribes because he gave away so many copies for free. But he’s already increased his profits on future books.