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17 Jan

Freemium Pizza

Freemium Pizza

*I always mean to tell this story, but it slips my mind.  Seth Godin’s Purple Cow finally made me remember while in front of the laptop*

This was one of my experiences as an entrepreneur and in business at a young age.  I was 17 at the time and away for my Freshman orientation at Boston College the summer before college started.  It was a two day event where you got to know some of your peers and get situated with the college.  Everyone stayed in the senior dorms the first night, which essentially was a party spanning four floors.  Like any party, people got really hungry, and wanted pizza.  I figured why not organize it?  I wanted to try an experiment to make friends…  I said: “I’m ordering pizza, it’s free.  If you want to donate/chip in, i’ll try to get the toppings you want + call/text you when it’s here so you have first dibs.”  If I lost some money, it was worth it as I would have met a lot of my classmates + made some new friends for the fall.  Turns out I did more than that.  I made enough to cover the pizza and profit $85.  It was 2003 and Fred Wilson hadn’t even invented the term Freemium, but this was certainly a lesson in it.  Give people something they want for free and charge for convenience + preference.

  • Darren Lehane

    Surprisingly useful and thought-provoking piece.

    Keep up the good posts!

  • Jason L. Baptiste

    Thanks Darren! Just something I really wanted to get out.