Save a dollar, spend 5 hours

Earlier this week I received an email that went something like this (paraphrased)

My CRM used to have a native integration with another contacts app, but they’ve removed it and recommend Zapier instead.

I’ve been doing this a long time and have never had to pay for another tool, so I won’t.

Instead I’m thinking about hiring an integration firm to create a script to map the data. That way it will be a one time cost, instead of a subscription.

This seems like an extreme case of something that most of us have: subscription aversion.

In this case, we’re talking at least $500 to create a script… and that’s being conservative. Compared to a Zapier account at $29 per month.

If you look at that logically, that’s over 2 years of subscription you’d get for the same price.

Even if we ignore that the script would

  • Likely cost more than that
  • Break down at some point and need maintenance
  • End up needing modifications as the business changes

It’s still a f*cking horrible decision.

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Additionally, the subscription would:

  • Be more flexible
  • Enable you to do even more things
  • Not involve the stress of setting this up yourself

If you’re reading this you’re probably like “yeah that’s silly why would you do that”.

But I reckon you’ve made plenty of similar decisions. Because I do it all the time as well.

I’d easily pay $199 for something I’ll never use but balk at a $19 recurring product.

WTF right!?

There’s something about subscriptions that are a turn off. Maybe because you have too many, or you look at your P&L statement and see how much is being spent on “software.”

But so often this mindset means you miss out on something that could make a huge difference to your business.

How I deal with this to make better decisions

I’ve been dealing with this simply by properly evaluating the REAL costs each time I think about switching to a cheaper tool or signing up for something new.

That includes:

  • The time that would be saved with the new system
  • The team’s time saved
  • Switching cost (measured in my time)
  • Maintenance if self hosted

And usually by the time I’ve done this, the monthly cost doesn’t even register against the $ value of the time saved on the new system + time wasted doing it the other way.

James Rose

James Rose

James is the co-founder of Content Snare - a software platform that helps professionals collect content & files from clients.

Once an automation engineer, his new priority is to help business owners regain their lives, be more productive and get more done in less time.

Learn how to save 25+ hours every week with automation. Get the guide when you sign up for the productivity newsletter. Click here to get it..

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