This has been a week of free.

Free IHOP short stack. Free sub from Quiznos @ (register quick)
Also heard that Jack in the Box had 2 free tacos, but I didn’t want to chance what that would do to me.
Last week I ordered my free sample of the Starbucks Viva, instant coffee, that you had to order quick because they ran out so fast. The @starbucks partner on twitter said they estimated they gave away 4 free samples every second.
Free movie rental on Monday from Redbox, also got an e-mail for a free coupon rental from DVDxpress.

Free is a huge draw, especially if it’s already something established that people want.

I spent $4.30 for my wife and I total. We bought 4 pieces of bacon to split and I had a cup of coffee. Also add the tip in there. Brilliant marketing from IHOP. I would never have gone to IHOP other than to get a free short stack, and I think that’s about the only time I do, but when I do, I always buy something else.

Is there something you can do to draw some traffic or attention to what you do by offering it for free, for a limited time? I am sure lot’s of folks will continue to check out quiznos after they have their free sub because it’s good. I have heard folks say they have never been there. If the Starbucks Viva is any good I can guarantee I will have a few packs lying around for when I’m in a rush and want some coffee.

I have some things I will be giving away for free. Things people want… Not sure how I will do it. Don’t really care about the traffic, but it’s fun to give stuff away.

More things I think that should be free. Once or twice a year that I would never try otherwise.

Dry Cleaning- I have “Dry Clean Only” but I don’t do that. Give me a free shot at it and I’ll probably buy into it.
Oil Change- I would probably become a loyal customer to a company that gave a free oil change.
Bike Tuning- I have a mountain bike in desperate need. If someone would give a free one I would continue to do it.
Goodwill item- I imagine if goodwill offered something for free to show people what they have, they would get a lot of interest
(They get it all for free anyway, use it to bring in more business)

That’s all I can think of now… Anything for free that would be interest of you and might convince you to try out something you never have before?