All things considered, software is just like any other product. It may have some advantages when it comes to distribution whereby it can be delivered instantly, online, but ultimately it is just another product. Consequently, it can be marketed like any other product.
Bulk email campaigns are a tried and true marketing method. Given the amount of knowledge that has been accumulated about most people who surf the Net, a bulk email marketing campaign targeting potential buyers of your software is a relatively cheap and viable marketing strategy. Even if the success rate in percentage terms is very low, the massive number of people contacted ensures that integrating email marketing with software marketing may still be a profitable strategy.
Before launching an e-mail campaign, you need to define your target audience, and send the e-mails to this group. Collect leads from relevant sites. For example, if you distribute a media player software, collect leads from video and music related web sites.
Email marketing dovetails nicely with software marketing in that it augments the software marketing experience. For example, offering a free trial of your software is wholly consistent with emailing this offer. Due to the amount of spam received many emails will be deleted before they are even read but you only need a minimal success rate for the email marketing to have been worthwhile.
To ensure good delivery, you need to follow up on spam tips here as well. It is worth sometime to have a less strong selling subject line, and increase delievery to inbox and not to spam box. As Many softwares are distributed for free, be careful of the word “FREE” on the subject line – most chances it will go to spam, and once you go spam, it is hard to be back.
Call for Action
Think of your emails as a site trying to get better conversion rate. Obviously your email has to be effective to gain the recipients’ attention. You must explain what your software can do for them, how it makes their lives easier, what solutions it brings. Listing the features of the software is not as important as explaining why people must buy it. You should minimize the use of images, and slogans, and write about the software. Also, make sure to write who is “the daddy”. There are many users that don’t like to install unknown softwares or applications on their computers, but if the name of the company is known, or visible on the mail (with contact details), them it will gain more trust by the users – and a call to action.
Pricing is possibly the determining factor though. Always make sure that the price quoted is a discounted price so as to give the potential buyer a good feeling that they are getting a bargain. Also, this is where different versions of your software can come in handy. A basic version can even be given away free with more feature laden versions for sale. Similarly, you can give a free trial of a premium version and hope that the downloader will find it indispensible when the trial expires and pay to keep it.
An email marketing campaign with user recommendations always adds credibility to your product. Credibility is a huge factor when selling new software. If you can use the name of a partner with market credibility in your email, it allows you to leverage off their already established market acceptance and this will hopefully reflect on your software offering.
Links, links, links
In order to minimize the number of clicks, have the option of a direct download link of the software from the e-mail. The more clicks, the less conversion, works here as well. And for software products, a direct download links is a boost to conversion. However, still have links to the web site, so users can get more information if they need to.
Email marketing and software marketing may differ, yet when an email marketing campaign is integrated with software marketing it can be complementary and an effective way to market software.
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