Business – Free Samples in SAP???

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Hello again to all of my faithful readers ( I always keep hoping there are more than 4 or of 5 of you…  but I’ll take what I can get).  Today I’m back in the realm of marketing again…  and today I’m wondering about an idea that hit me a few days ago.  The concept is “Free Samples” of our products.  I’ll explain more in a minute…  but the idea is that we’ll give you the program for a limited time, and then the program will stop working, unless we provide you a support pack to unlock (which presumably, is when you buy it from us).

Now, I’m curious what you think of the idea.  The concept is very simple (yet tedious for me the developer).  I add in some code that exits the program after XX days.  You sign a legal document pretty much saying that you’ll use our application for it’s intended purpose, this is not for production, and you can’t copy it…  blah blah blah.  Then (in my mind) the customer falls in love, see how great our stuff is, and how excellent our service is, and buys it (along with all our other applications).  =)

Now, onto my questions for you.  First of all, would you ever see your company, or anyone you’ve worked with take this model?  would your organization be willing to apply code in their sandbox before they buy it?  If so, how long would they need to play with it?  (remember if it’s more than 3 shakes…  wait…  never mind, that’s something else).  Is 90 days long enough?  and do you go 90 days from today, or 90 days from installation?

Now the ethical question.  Perhaps I’m too trusting, but I have this belief that potential customers won’t copy my code into their own programs, and then say, “no thanks”.  But is a risk.  Do you think it’s likely that our apps will be pirated?  or do you believe that customers will pay for it if they like it?

Are there other risks I’m overlooking?  I’d love to hear you thoughts.  And thanks in advance.  I really do appreciate you being my sounding board.  Thanks for reading.

As always, thanks for reading and don't forget to check out our SAP Service Management Products at my other company JaveLLin Solutions,

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