Just a brief update on the recent free trial post I made; long story short, I've returned to freemium. Perhaps it's too little time to make a snap judgement but free opt-ins went to practically zero; a consequence I think of changing the CTA button text to 'free trial' from 'free download'.
What's more, those that did opt in didn't use the free license number that was shared on the download page after verifying email. I did a little soul searching (slight exaggeration) and stumbled on one of Patrick McKenzie's articles that he's produced for Stripe. I've followed him for some time now after reading posts of his of HN, so I respect his judgement.
He said this: "For your first few customers, free trials are likely to give people an easy way out of actually successfully adopting your software: they simply won’t get around to adopting it and cancel before the end of the trial. Instead of offering free trials, strongly consider offering ludicrously good help with onboarding or integrating the customer."
After reading a lot of fors and againsts articles through Google, this struck me as the most practical advice I'd read. Also, speaking of onboarding, this has been one of my priorities over the last 2 weeks - which I've now implemented for some of the libraries. I will produce even more onboarding tours now.
Since returning to freemium - email > download > use - not only have opt-ins returned to the previous levels, but we've even converted a couple of free users into customers. Yeah! I'm sure free trials work better for some markets but Patrick's advice seems to be on-point for me in the motion design arena.
Here's Patrick's article in question: