What are the benefits and costs of giving your work away for free? Sometimes it makes excellent business sense to do so (as well as being a community service). But would this be appropriate for RPT or our new technique?
These are the issues we consider today in response to this excellent comment from our reader Rob:
I watch with interest at the latest developments in RPT.
One of your goals is to be available to anyone to use. I think that this is fundamental to any technique/technology/innovation spreading and developing. Any attempt to limit or control/own innovation can only stifle growth.
In the case of EFT, the basic technique was easy to learn and it was offered to the public for free. People could thus take it or leave it, but because of this availability new applications and uses developed quickly. It was to all intents and purposes “open source.” I really believe that this new way is the future, it speeds things up and I believe the more open source a thing is then the better. The only limitation on this is whereby potential harm can be caused by misuse of the technique.
But I note that the current RPT technique is not available for free and is only available via a practitioner. Whilst I do see some benefits of this this does significantly restrict the access for many people. If the technique is simple and can be learned by anyone then why is a practitioner needed. I appreciate that there might be subtleties to any technique but one could give the person the option to work with a professional at a later date.
Will the new technique be available to all or will people have to go through a practitioner?
Thanks Rob for bringing up this issue. I have discussed this in detail before on this blog, but I want to go over it again here as it is quite relevant to the question of how we launch our new technique. I do recommend that you, and anyone else interested in this subject, have a read of this article here. In particular see my comments right at the bottom of the page (final paragraphs of the final comment).
Freemium model – genius!
Let me say first that the EFT model you refer to is marketing genius! The founders of EFT pioneered the “freemium” model, which basically means you give your basic material away for free to establish credibility and then charge a premium for those who want more. It might only be 1% that are willing to pay for the premium, but that’s 1% of a much bigger market than you would have had if you didn’t give the free material away. So despite people thinking that you would lose money by giving stuff away for free, the opposite is the truth.
As a blogger and long-time follower of e-Commerce, I am a huge fan of the freemium model. As a result I did the same thing when I launched the first version of RPT back in February 2009. I put uncut demos online together with step-by-step instructions. I think it was a brilliant move as it enabled a huge launch for RPT, basically from nothing to having courses and teachers in 20 countries by the end of 2009. I don’t think we could have achieved that any other way.
Contrary to your comment “I note that the current RPT technique is not available for free;” I would point out that the 2009 and early 2010 step-by-step instructions and detailed demonstration videos are still online. It has always been possible to learn at least a taste of RPT for free. But yes (as you have seen) we have pulled back from this since 2010, and we don’t currently intend to teach the new technique for free.
I still believe in the freemium model. I still give plenty away (I would regard almost every page of this blog as giving material away). But I no longer give away the step-by-step instructions which I did in 2009.
There are a number of reasons why. These are just concerns, they are not fixed in stone. The marketing for the new technique is not fixed (frankly we don’t even have a good name yet), so anything is possible. I’m sharing my thoughts as I’d really value everyone’s feedback.
1) Protecting the public, and our reputation
When the RPT instructions were online in 2009, we started getting people emailing us telling us about side effects from “RPT sessions” with a non-practitioner who learned the technique on the internet. Even though this was not our legal responsibility, we still ended up helping these people (for free) to protect the good name of RPT.
We have never had this problem with people who have learned RPT from a qualified teacher, only people who watched a video, read instructions and tried to figure it out.
Of course I had plenty of disclaimers, but the inevitable will happen, and we feel responsible for it.
Put simply, RPT is not as simple as tapping techniques. There are more steps, and more need to feel into your “stuff.” It is a fact that when you start feeling into your stuff you can “activate” or “trigger” old trauma. That’s OK provided you finish what you started. A trained practitioner knows how to do this. But you can’t teach that in a short web video and instruction sheet. People need a course to do it properly.
2) Protecting the other RPT teachers
If I knew for sure it was safe, I’d have no personal problem with giving it away. As my regular readers know, I don’t do RPT for the money. Actually I invest money into it rather than make money from it. RPT is my service to the community. (I’m a lawyer, investor and strategic consultant. RPT is what I do to keep sane.) So if it were just me, and if it were safe, I’d see no problems with giving it away.
However it’s not just me. Lots of our good students went on to become teachers. It feels like it wouldn’t be fair to these people if I started giving all the info away. Put simply, it’s no longer my choice, because it’s not me that gets affected by it.
Of course the RPT teachers might decide to support the freemium model to help grow their own businesses. I’m just saying it’s not just up to me as I don’t own RPT any more.
3) The relative lack of simplicity
When I look at why the freemium model worked for EFT but not for RPT, I think the key difference is simplicity. I have said our new technique is much simpler than RPT, but it’s still relative. Relative to EFT it is not simple. It takes many hours to learn and understand it – about 1 day of theory and 1 day of practice to get the basics.
EFT is wonderfully simple. Though studies have shown it’s a placebo, it still works for lots of people and it’s easy.
RPT is not as simple as “tap, tap, tap.” This simplicity of EFT makes it better than RPT for simple self-healing. I fully admit that; there is no competition here, we are different horses for different courses.
If you have a simple quick problem like a fear or anxiety about a particular situation that you are currently confronted with (like walking into a room with intimidating people), EFT is a great quick-fix. I highly doubt that it would clear the underlying issues, meaning you need to do the EFT again next time you are in the same situation. But in the short term, it will really help. So EFT has a huge advantage over RPT in speed and simplicity. It’s safe and gentle. As a result, it really is appropriate to share it freely using the freemium model.
4) The need to see your own deepest blocks (self-healing limitation)
RPT is not as simple as EFT because it is not intended as a quick intervention technique. It’s intended to totally change your personality, health and ultimately identity. It’s meant to get right to the core in a “bottom up” approach to healing. Not a quick-fix.
I’ve done my very best to make it simple, but it’s not tap-tap.
One of the things I love about EFT is that it works on an issue (e.g. “fear of X”) without really needing to dig too much into the origins of the issue. That means you can safely use it as a quick self-healing intervention.
RPT just doesn’t work like that. The new RPT method is based around getting to the core of extremely deep interwoven issues like secondary gain and sense of identity. These factors are usually hidden under many layers of ego.
What that means is that even with proper training on an RPT course, there are times when it’s hard to do the technique on yourself (but easy to do on others). Now I can, after the Level 2 training, give people confidence working on themselves. But no way can a step-by-step instruction sheet published on the internet teach someone how to do this.
Consider that you might have a problem that defines your identity, it’s interwoven with who you are. You try simple techniques like EFT but after a year you realize that there has been no permanent change in your sense of self, although the EFT does provide short-term relief of symptoms. At this point you decide that you are willing to re-examine and change your sense of self. OK great. Now let’s say that you found all the RPT materials for free, and you have step-by-step instructions. OK great. Now what?
Could you, even with step-by-step instructions, confront your egoistic attachments to your identity?
I could not, and I believe that you would be a man in a million if you could.
So, even if we gave RPT step-by-step instructions away, for free, you would have to seriously ask the question about whether it’s going to help or hinder people who have not done the proper training.
Conclusion: the freemium model
I’ve been bitterly honest about the weaknesses of RPT (new and old) in this article. I hope you can appreciate where I am coming from. I believe we have developed something revolutionary that will save many thousands of lives. But it isn’t a quick-fix panacea for all. It isn’t meant to replace every other technique out there (just some of them). It’s fine for there to be faster and simpler methods for the little stuff, as RPT is for those who are ready for big changes.
So with all of that said, I ask the question: “is it safe and appropriate to give step-by-step instructions away on the website?”
It doesn’t have to be for free (I think the free bit confuses the issue as people think this is about money, which it is not.) What if you could buy the manual for $50 without doing the course? Would that be a good idea? I could do that when I publish my book later this year. But should I? Is it safe?
I’d really value you thoughts on all these issues. Please do comment below.