Ex-lawyer turned relationship coach

Getting Paid For Free Content

WinRAR is the most popular file archiver for Windows. And it’s used by everyone. Not just regular people like you and me, but also billion dollar businesses and even governments.

The way WinRAR gained its acclaim is brilliant.

It launched as and still remains a try-before-you-buy type of software. Which means you can use the program for free as long as the trial lasts.

And that’s the program’s genius, the trial never seems to end.

Instead of putting up a paywall after you reach the 40 day trial period, WinRAR simply tells you to buy a license or remove it from your computer.

But if you choose to ignore that warning, the program will work as normal.

Which raises the question: how do the app developers make any money if nobody is forced to buy a license?


While homeowners can easily get away with breaking WinRAR’s general terms and conditions, companies cannot. Using software illegally is still a form of lawbreaking and can severely damage a company’s reputation. 

Rather than risk tarnishing its image, businesses will usually buy software licenses for all its employees. Which is how WinRAR makes its money.

And none of it would have been possible without hundreds of thousands of people popularizing the program by keeping the download counters high and leaving ratings.

Because it could be used for free, WinRAR became the norm in every household with an internet connection. Which in turn made the file archiver the standard for businesses and governments too.

How does any of this help you?

Because it shows that putting stuff out there for free can lead to a monetary reward.

With more than 56 million free articles, Wikipedia is the 8th most visited site in the world and has a networth of over $170 million. Sometimes earning as much as $20 million per year in user donations alone.

Unless you’re an incredibly talented software developer, or have an idea for a website that can outperform porn, you probably aren’t very excited right now.

So let’s go over some avenues more available to you. Like YouTube.

Unless your content gets millions of views and lots of engagement, you aren’t looking at much dough from ad revenue. Only the people with millions of subscribers are making top dollar.

But even YouTube’s greatest stars don’t make the bulk of their money through ad placement. They earn most of their money through selling merchandise and sponsorship deals.

And the only reason internet celebrities have these sources of income available to them is because they slowly built up an audience by putting out free content.

The best part?

If your audience likes you enough, your view count doesn’t even need to be that high for your fans to buy your merch. All you need is a group of hardcore enthusiasts who want to buy whatever you put out. 

With just one yearly product priced at ten bucks and 1,000 fans you can already earn $10,000 a year. 

Which isn’t enough to make a living. But it’s a lot of money for creating something that you wanted to make for yourself anyway.

So get wild and create some fun free content so you can get paid.

By Jeroen Elsing
Ex-lawyer turned relationship coach