Some people make software convinced that they are giving away and losing money if they let anyone try out their software. But the retail price only matters if people see it and think it is worth spending money on. The shadier your software is the more of a viral buzz you need to make the marketing work.
A guy contacted me wanting me to promote his blog spam software for free. When I suggested advertising on Threadwatch and giving the software out to members for a day or a week he trumped up the value of his software, which makes me wonder why he had to ask me for free viral marketing if his software was actually worth $197 and already selling well.
If your software / information product / etc. has little to no incremental cost per user and is brand new you are not losing money giving it away in exchange for market exposure. Two years ago I gave away the first version of SEO Book. The first version really was not all that good, but I realized that feedback had value and I should spread it far and wide to get whatever feedback I could get.
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