Thoughts on Business Marketing

Last week I had a great conversation with Thomas Lutz, from TalTech – the creator of Software Wedge. Over a decade ago I talked with him and one specific thing he said to me made a huge impression on me – so much so that I felt I wanted to talk to him more about it. What he said was to the effect “I know what I am good at and what I’m not good at – hiring someone else to market my software was the best business decision I could have ever made.” He didn’t mention at the time that his marketing wizard was his wife, but that didn’t make the point any less poignant.

We specifically talked about how one markets a technology company as this is the stage that Telaeris is entering. He had a number of very useful thoughts on Marketing. His big suggestion should be obvious, but is illuminating none the less:

Tom’s Big Idea = “Work the Web”

Marketing has evolved greatly in the past 10 years – what worked in the past isn’t necessarily what will work today. His company used to use magazine cards to track how well certain advertisements worked – now the internet has made this avenue completely obsolete. Customers will go directly from the magazine to your website, which makes it much harder to track leads.

The internet has changed everything with respect to how to market a technology (Hardware/Software) business. For improving your marketing exposure, Tom’s recommendations were to try some or all of the following:

A. Drive sales to your website with

  1. Articles written for magazines
  2. Press Releases for Products
  3. Case Studies
  4. Useful Blog pages
  5. Entries in Relevant Newsgroups
  6. Educational Material
  7. Online Resources
  8. Banner Advertisements
  9. High Page Rank (use meta tags, page title)
  10. Purchase Google Ad Words on relevant Key Words
  11. Strong Index Page
  12. Give Talks

B. Marketing/Sales help should get a cut from the bottom line.

C. Try to figure out how to make your program/products ubiquitous (can it be used with standard hardware)

D. Search Web for similar competitors and see what tricks they use (metadata, keywords, site stickyness)

E. Figure out your markets and directly market to those customers

  1. Trade shows
  2. Newgroups
  3. RSS Feeds
  4. Magazines
  5. Direct Mailing

F. Blog, blog, blog

  1. Blog Regularly – Weekly or more if possible
  2. Post to YouTube and Flickr
  3. Read other blogs and comment on the posts
  4. Collect links, statistics, and other sources to include on your blog
  5. Set up and RSS feed
  6. The more links you have, the more links will find you
  7. Have someone dedicated to blogging

G. Figure out how to make your product/service play in 2010 (5 years from now)

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