Freebie Force failed, is That Free Thing different?
Back in 2007, Seth Fraser (photo above) launched the company Freebie Force. The concept of Freebie Force was simple, pay a monthly fee, get access to free stuff and receive a commission for each new person you recruited to the business.
Three years later there wasn’t anyone left to sign up to Freebie Force and the company failed. In a desperate attempt to save what business he had left, Fraser went on to sell the Freebie Force memberlist (with the usual membership fee waivered, Freebie Force members were given no choice), to LiveSmart 360.
Here’s the cheesy exchange between LiveSmart 360 founder Mark McCool and Seth Fraser announcing the deal;
Update 22nd June 2011 – I’ve noticed that either Mark McCool or Seth Fraser have removed the original videos that were available at the time of publication of this article.
As such I’ve removed the Youtube links that were included when I first published this article. Basically all you’re missing are two embrassing exchanges between Seth Fraser and Mark McCool. Considering they were pretty bad, I guess I can understand why they removed them from the internet. /end update.
In the video Fraser mentions that FreebieForce has a memberlist of 117,000 members, but that number is misleading. In this next video he states that the memberlist number includes those that either signed up to Freebie Force, or simply entered their email address to take a free tour.
The ratio of non-actual members to real members is obviously unknown. Regardless, to gauge the success rate of the Freebie Force / LiveSmart 360 merger, at the time of publication the first video has a viewcount of 301 and the second just 241.
Keep in mind that these videos were no doubt circulated to the entire email list of 117,000 Freebie Force ‘members’ as they appear to be videos Fraser would’ve used on a capture page.
Regardless, seven months later the Freebie Force and LiveSmart 360 partnership seems to have ultimately failed (the second MLM failure for Seth Fraser), and he’s attempting to relaunch the freebie MLM business model with his new company, That Free Thing.
From what I can gather, the initial membership structure of Freebie Force was slightly complex, but then over time became quite simplified. The last known compensation plan I was able to see detailed a basic 5 by 7 matrix paying a commission of $1 a month per member you directly recruit.
Given that a 5 by 7 matrix holds 97,655 positions, the idea is that if you recruited 97,655 people to Freebie Force, you’d be making $97,655 a month in membership commissions.
Obviously with a requirement for a constant influx of new members and no product to sell, Freebie Force ultimately failed. Today I’m going to compare it to That Free Thing.
With the same founder, same freebie business concept and a similar compensation plan, are we looking at That Free Thing also collapsing in a few years or will Seth Fraser avoid the mistakes he made with Freebie Force this time round?
At the heart of similarities between Freebie Force and That Free Thing is the concept of giving away freebies. Members sign up and in exchange are bombarded with freebies (often available from similar websites that do not charge a monthly membership fee).
So why pay a membership fee for freebies? That Free Thing and Freebie Force introduced a MLM business plan to the freebie niche.
Unfortunately with Freebie Force however there was no product and ultimately members were simply recruiting others to gain a commission.
Unfortunately this fundamental flaw in Freebie Force’s compensation plan exists in That Free Thing.
That Free Thing undoubtedly has a slightly more complex payout structure (you can read my full analysis and review of the That Free Thing business opportunity here), with its direct percentage payouts and check match bonuses, but at the end of the day it’s hard to escape the fact that the commissions paid out are still solely connected to the amount of people you bring into That Free Thing.
One key difference being heavily sold between That Free Thing and Freebie Force is the inclusion of a video marketing system. When signing up to That Free Thing, members are given access to ‘marketing tools and software’ as well as a ‘TFT branded video email marketing system‘ that can be used to ‘promote any business‘.
Ignoring the elephant in the room of why you’d have to promote other businesses if you were trying to make it in That Free Thing, no matter how good any of these services are, you need to ask yourself what you’re going to be doing with them.
The answer is that you’ll be using them to market That Free Thing.
Is there a product to market? No. So what are you going to be marketing?
Yes, the even with a video marketing system the fundamental business flaw that existed in Freebie Force is still there in That Free Thing. And ultimately, if we use Freebie Force as a case study, this indicates that That Free Thing is also going to fail.
In trying to combine the freebie concept with MLM, Seth Fraser has attempted something different and he definitely deserves some recognition for that.
Unfortunately though until someone manages to create a tangible product (that isn’t just a marketing system to sell memberships) within the freebie niche, at the end of the day all we’re doing is selling memberships. And like any other MLM opportunity that relies solely on memberships to create a business model, due to the nature of a finite number of potential signups out there, sooner or later the matrices powering That Free Thing will come to a standstill.
When that happens money stops coming into the company (starting with the people at the bottom of the matrices leaving and this chain reaction working its way up) and the company collapses internally.
We saw recruitment exhaustion happen with Freebie Force and unless Seth Fraser drastically changes That Free Thing’s business model between now and the official launch date (That Free Thing is currently in pre-launch), it’s going to happen again with That Free Thing.