Real World Marketing Lessons for ISVs

Marketing is about motivating people to buy your product or service. It is deeply routed in human psychology, and to do a proper job requires a lot of knowledge and skill. I have never had any respect for sales people who attempt to misrepresent their product’s merits. Stressing your product’s positive aspects of course is natural and desirable. Failing to provide full disclosure until after a purchase of any limitations walks the line of fraud in IMHO. In the dating world, it’s just known as bait and switch ☺

For these reasons I am attending ISVCon 2013, so I can not only learn how to create a marketable product, but market it as well (in an ethical fashion).  I hope to see lots of Delphi developers while I’m there, because I think Delphi has always been a good tool for ISVs.

I was always hesitant to try to market a product because I never knew where to start, and felt I knew too little to even determine the initial price of an offering. Recently it dawned on me that you don’t have to know! Let the market decide for you. Another revelation was that if I paid more attention, there are real world marketing lessons available on a regular basis, that I could learn from.

Let’s say you have an enhancement to an existing product, in this case yours. Tell potential customers it will be a low price upgrade and watch how much interest you can cultivate with pre-release marketing (webinars, presss releases etc). After you build the hype and a community of potential customers (if there isn’t one already), offer it initially for as much as the product for which it is an AddOn (let’s double our money). After all “low cost” is a subjective phrase. After you see how many takers, if it’s not as many as you wish to make sales targets, then make an “introductory” offer (sale). Construct special discount entry points into your on-line store and experiment with different discount percentages. Like every store, mark up your items and then offer them at 70% off.  If you have a competitor with a good product that is possibly better than yours, avoid direct comparisons, just lower your initial price to ensure it’s better than theirs (if possible).  After all it’s caveat emptor, and why spend the time/money improving the product, just market it more aggressively…

Marketing is kind of like fishing….you get up early and drive to the water (do something to make the potential customer feel special/deserving)….dangle something enticing in front of them (25% LIMITED TIME OFFER)…and hopefully the combination of the two things will result in an impulse buy (not a great deal of analytical thought before action is taken). After all, everyone wants the latest and greatest toys!

Hope to see you at ISVCon…and in the mean time remember that only suckers pay retail, and try to avoid getting filleted!

One Response to “Real World Marketing Lessons for ISVs”

  1. SilverWarior Says:

    QUOTE: After you see how many takers, if it’s not as many as you wish to make sales targets, then make an “introductory” offer (sale). Construct special discount entry points into your on-line store and experiment with different discount percentages.

    I would rather suggest offering your product at discound right from the start and then gradually lovering the discount percentage. This way you will get better idea of hwat the actuall puchasing capability of your potential user group is so you can form the final price better.
    Many pepole don’t like waiting for prodict discounts becouse the initial price might have been set too high at the start.

    QUOTE: If you have a competitor with a good product that is possibly better than yours, avoid direct comparisons, just lower your initial price to ensure it’s better than theirs (if possible). After all it’s caveat emptor, and why spend the time/money improving the product, just market it more aggressively…

    When you are talking about agressive marketing what exactly do you mean?
    Do you meand lovering your prices as much as posible?
    Or do you mean spanding more money for advertizing and such?

    Becouse if it is the lateral I must say that I saw many companies in computing world making the “rookie” mistake of throwing out the money for advertizin their poor products and thus lowering their profits even further and what is worst heavily damaging their reputation.

    There is an old sayin: Good product advertizes himself.
    So my opinion is that it is always better to spend money on improving your product rather than advertizing it.

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