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Shade Tree Sites |Building Better Websites

Who Says Nothing Good is Free?

People have been questioning both the importance of social networking to business and the use of WordPress as a serious CMS for business. 

This week one business, Mint.com, answered both questions clearly. 

Mint.com (two year old startup personal finance website) was purchased for $170 million by Intuit (makers of Quicken software).   A more detailed article by Newsweek can be found here.

Just to summarize:

  • Mint.com uses WordPress (free) to run it’s website and blog.
  • Mint.com uses Facebook (free), MySpace (free), it’s blog (free) and an iphone app  (?)  as it’s primary advertising
  • Mint.com purchased keywords from Google to show up in search results (reported as a 5 digit investment in keywords)
  • Mint.com usesGoogle Analytics (free) to analyze the effectiveness of it’s marketing

Clearly this company has taken advantage of the great free (open source) software and internet tools available, used them to their benefit and realized a huge profit as a result – not bad for business!

I am a huge fan of using WordPress to run business websites and this only re-enforces my commitmentto that opinion.  My suggestion to business is get to know social networking (Facebook, MySpace, and  Twitter)  –  save money on your website design by researching the available open source software options ( OpenSourceCMS  is a great site to look and try out open source software) and develop a business marketing plan that includes both.

Who say nothing good is free?