Mistakes in Launching a Software Product

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					                                                                            Software Business
                                                                   Published date: November 29, 2007




Mistakes in Launching a Software Product

Software Launching Errors
Adriana Iordan, Web Marketing Manager, Avangate B.V.
Software Business, Published date: November 29, 2007



Ideally the launching of a software product should be the coronation of the enormous amount
of effort (and expenses) dedicated by a company to the development of a new product that is
meant to help it gain some terrain over its competition.


Unfortunately, things do not always go as smooth as it would be expected. There are cases
though when a product's launch goes exactly as scheduled, when the software functions
perfectly, or when unexpected situations do not occur. Nevertheless, undesirable situations can
be avoided, if not altogether, at least to a quite great extent.


Common Mistakes When Launching a Software Product


Rumor has it that "to err is human". Yet, errors made when launching or preparing to launch a
software product can cost dearly. Any aspect that was neglected or treated superficially can
have significant negative consequences. Following are some of the most common mistakes
that are made during or before launching a product.


       Failure to perform an accurate, thorough market research. It is imperative that you find
       out as accurately as possible what segment of the market your software will be
       dedicated to, what needs there are on that particular segment and how you can meet
       them, what prospective customers expect to get, how the media sees the product you're
       envisaging, etc.


I also found an article you might find useful, "11 Questions Every Marketer Needs to Ask" ,
dealing with aspects like pricing, segmentation, product positioning etc.




© 2008 Avangate B.V.                           page 1
 www.avangate.com
                                                                             Software Business
                                                                     Published date: November 29, 2007




        Not being realistic about the expenses implied by such an event. The budget must be
        well thought. Be realistic when assessing the costs of your product launch. If you don't
        plan everything well enough, you could end up spending much more than originally
        predicted. Even better, you could propose a bigger budget for the unforeseen situations;
        preventing is better that facing.

        Not dedicating enough time for planning a marketing strategy. It is important to give
        yourself enough time to plan ahead. You must be able to see into the future up to the
        moment when the product will be launched and establish a series of steps that you must
        go through prior to the launch itself. Such steps would include:


1.    thoroughly investigating the market and attempting to find out where you stand
2.    analyzing your past experience in conjunction with what you are planning to do and how
3.    preparing information that will go to the media (e.g. press releases), as well as advertising
campaigns.


     Ignoring the fact that it is the market that dictates your product. Always remember that you
     have to be objective. It's not about what you want, but what the people need. It is
     according to this need that you have to develop your software.

     Not providing all the necessary data to the company that takes care of your software's
     launch. Of course, the best approach would be, if the budget allows it, to hire professionals
     that will handle all the process before and during the launch of your software. But be
     prepared to provide them with all the data that they need, both on your company and on
     the software you are working on.


Failure to do so can have catastrophic results, as insufficient data can lead to an unsatisfied
audience, poor coverage in the media, negative comments, and, ultimately, in your failure to
reach your goal.


     Failure to pre-launch or to announce your software's launching. Don't just organize the
     launching event, and, when that day comes, expect it to be all peachy. It won't. Create



© 2008 Avangate B.V.                           page 2
 www.avangate.com
                                                                             Software Business
                                                                      Published date: November 29, 2007




     awareness about your new software some time in advance. Let your prospective customers
     know that you're going to have a software product launch by means of newsletters.


Tell them a few things about the new product, not too much so as to spoil the surprise, but
enough to capture their interest. Make sure you have a demo available so that they can
actually see what it will be about. I also recommend this article about online software marketing
methods giving hints on pre-launching software methods.


     Not analyzing the feedback you get on your beta version. If you release a beta version of
     your software so that you can see what potential users/customers think about it, make sure
     you are open minded and prepared to receive a lot of criticism. Look at it constructively,
     and don't take it personally. Even if some comments will be rude, keep in mind that most of
     them will help you notice the flaws of your software and thus allow you to correct them
     before the actual launch.


Some ways to get feedback are:


4.    feedback survey
5.    contact form
6.    when uninstalling software (the user is asked for the reasons for uninstalling the program)
7.    support forum
8.    testimonials, etc.


     Not testing the product yourself. You have to put yourself in the customer's shoes. See how
     you feel when you use the software. Does it respond well to commands? Does it answer your
     needs? Here is an article, "The Other Side of the Interface" , which I personally enjoyed a lot.
     It provides helpful information about the psychological impact that computer software have
     on the overall perception of humans.

     Choosing the bad time for the launch. Most experts say that it is preferable to choose a day
     when most of the people you target are free, such as weekends. Also, it's best not to choose
     a day that also corresponds to a significant national or religious holiday. Don't neglect the



© 2008 Avangate B.V.                            page 3
 www.avangate.com
                                                                          Software Business
                                                                   Published date: November 29, 2007




   time of day when the launch is scheduled. Make sure it's not too early or too late into the
   day. Otherwise, you will not be able to capture your audience's attention, as you should.

   Failure to get all the necessary resources for a successful launching event. Make sure you
   have everything covered, from featured speakers to catering (if applicable), from
   technology (computers, video projectors, etc.) to sound systems.

   Not giving enough time to your prospective customers to prepare. Bear in mind that you
   have to let people know about this event at least 2-3 weeks before its scheduled date. Give
   them time to make arrangements and to check their agendas for that date. Failure to do so
   can result in less people attending your software launch than you initially predicted, and thus
   diminishing your chances to make yourself known to a larger public.



Conclusion


Launching a software product implies a lot of effort, focus and dedication. Details are as
important as ever, and overlooking any of them can have disastrous results. Make sure you
dedicate a significant amount of time to planning the launch of your new product. The key is to
be patient, as it may actually take more time that initially estimated to have the software ready
for launch.


Really consider if you have the resources (human and financial) and the time to take care of
everything yourself. It is far better to make an effort and spend some money of a specialized
company that will take care of everything for you. Think of it as an investment, not as expenses.
What you give now can and will return to you eventually. Take into account the fact that such
companies have the experience and the know-how for such events, and after all, the possibility
of something going wrong decreasing significantly.




                                               ***




© 2008 Avangate B.V.                         page 4
 www.avangate.com
                                                                                            Software Business
                                                                                    Published date: November 29, 2007




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Copyright © 2007 www.avangate.com all rights reserved.
This article was written by Adriana Iordan, Web Marketing Manager at Avangate B.V. The author has in depth
knowledge of internet marketing services and website analysis applied to the software industry and e-commerce
development.
This article may be reproduced in a website, e-zine, CD-ROM, book, magazine, etc. so long as the above information
is included in full, including the link back to this website. Please e-mail at articles@avangate.com, before using the
article.


                                                           ***
About Avangate B.V.
Avangate B.V. provides solutions for electronic software distribution and reseller management, assisting software
companies worldwide in successfully selling their products online and at the same time efficiently managing a
distribution network.
The company’s offer includes an eCommerce platform incorporating an easy to use and secure online payment
system plus software marketing services and additional marketing and sales tools such as an affiliate network,
automated cross selling options, software promotion management, real time reporting, 24/7 shopper support, and
the myAvangate reseller management program specifically designed for software sales.
More information can be found on the corporate website, at www.avangate.com




Avangate B.V.
Van Heuven Goedhartlaan 937, 1181 LD Amstelveen, The Netherlands
Tel: +31 208908080      Fax: +31 202031309
Email: info@avangate.com       Web: www.avangate.com


.member of GECAD Group, delivering innovative IT solutions Worldwide since 1992




© 2008 Avangate B.V.                                     page 5
 www.avangate.com

				
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Description: Launching a software product is important due to awareness creation. Companies make their presence known on the market or strengthen their position by building up credibility. Read an article about the way a software launch shouldn't be.
Adriana  Iordan Adriana Iordan Web Marketing Manager http://www.avangate.com
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