Fair Exchange in a Free Market

Fair Exchange in a Free Market

I’m used to people telling me “I don’t have money to do marketing”, “I don’t have spare budget to advertise”. And my reply is almost always the same, “You got to do some form of marketing no matter whether you have money or not”. Anyway, whoever said that marketing needs money all of the time? I’m sure the humblest of business people will have a personal computer and email facilities. With these tools, he can blast out an effective marketing campaign.

In primitive times, people transacted without money. Goods changed hands through bartering. He wants your cow and if he can convince you that 3 of his sheep are a worthy exchange for your cow, the deal will be sealed. You walk home with his sheep and he’d be drinking fresh milk the next morning. Marketing and Sales were done with bartering, not money. We can still do it today. In fact, I practice it whenever I can.

For many years, I provide Christmas greeting card concept and creatives, Mickey churns out the colour separations films and Paul will be responsible for the printing, die-cut and all the post production work. No money ever changed hands but we each got our beautiful cards with our respective company names proudly adorning the inside pages, with credits of who did what listed clearly. Everyone is happy and our clients got to see a most exquisite creative production.

If we can do it at corporate level, it is not a surprising that ordinary people are already swapping things like DVDs, CDs, Games, Books. These stuffs are mostly not new, they are usually used or even a little ragged. If you are like me, preferring to reduce, reuse and recycle, you will be sure to have no problems buying from garage sales, junkyards or exchanging goods at exchange sites like SwitchPlanet. SwitchPlanet is an interesting place to trade the stuff you have, and to get the stuff you want. Just list the stuff you want, and a list of things you are willing to give in exchange for that. Someone, somewhere, may just knock on your door. And the best part is it is 100% free to use!

Why? SwitchPlanet is free to use, however, members are given the opportunity to donate any amount they choose every time they receive something for free on the site. The contributions are put into a SwitchFund, which will be distributed to selected charities and non-profit organizations. “I want this thing to be huge so that the positive impact it has on society is also huge.” said it’s founder, Chris Samarin. If we can get millions of people using the site and donating on average $1 per month, wow, we can sure help a lot of people if that happens.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle is what children are taught in school today. I’m hoping the educationists will escalate the teaching so that the kids are taught how to

  • barter and exchange stuff they don’t need for things they want, and
  • share expertise and pool resources to acquire stuff they would otherwise not have.
  • The opportunity of meeting new friends and keeping planet Earth clean and green through such sharing and exchanging is a great cause to embrace. Be creative, before you say you have no money to do marketing and advertising or to have that something you want so badly. Think if you got something of value to other people and start swapping, exchanging and bartering.

    [tags]barter trade, swap, exchange, trade items[/tags]

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