Tell us what the offer is.
How you popularize it depends on what it is.
We are offering ISV's a particular offer. It worths $20,000 service. This is a limited period offer. This offer is available until June 15, 2007, or until funding lasts. We are getting leads for this offer. But We want to maximize it. I would like to give some leads from my end. Is there any other ways in online to publish the offers to ISV's. I tried Google Adwords Targeting, Press Releases etc., But I didn't get any leads from those. Can anyone help me in this to popularize the offer?
Tell us what the offer is.
You will need to create demand for the ISVs. The ISVs customers have to be asking for such services before it will become a priority for ISVs. You need to target the site developers who now use MySQL. Do you have marketing research that shows that these people will actually switch to MS SQL? Knowing the anti-MS sentiment that drove the adoption of MySQL, I wonder.
Are there things that MS SQL does better than MySQL? You might build an app that leverages those things. If that app can be viral, then it should popularize itself.
Software tools look like a market, but geeks play. They don't pay.
MS SQL is certainly a great piece of software. But MySQL is too, and it's open source.
I see a lot of developers using both. But I've never run into anyone who needed to convert from one to the other.
I would imagine it would go more towards open source than away from it.
Who do you see using this? And why?
You can rent a list of ISVs and send them a mailing, no problem. You could also advertise here on SoftwareCEO. I highly recommend that, in fact.
But it is better to market only to those ISVs who have the problem your software solves.
To find those ISVs, you have to think about the problem from their perspective... What problem do they think they have? Where would they look for information to try to solve it? What language would they use to describe the problem and the solution they are looking for? What else are they buying to try to solve it? Who are they asking for help?
All of those are points to start your marketing.
Judy is totally right about targeting your marketing as much as possible.
I'm curious how you determined that there was a need for this service. Did you perform some market research? Or did some current customers of yours express an interest? What did your research indicate the need was? And how did they express the need? Or did you construct the software based on your own idea that there was a need? What market intelligence do you have about the need and the people/companies expressing that need?
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Hope that helps.
If you target a market that doesn't exist, all the money in the world will not create a market. Spend a little money to find that market, before you spend a lot of money for nothing.
I'm inside your potential market. I don't know any db developer that uses MySQL that would convert to MS SQL. It's like a religion. Whether it is "better" or not would be part of a debate, rather than an education with a white paper. People that are using MySQL have already done their comparison between the two products and have decided that MySQL is better for their needs.
And $20,000? I think you need to get to know some MySQL programmers before you put a lot of time and money into your marketing. They are your potential market. I paid $395 one time for a conversion tool for another database conversion. That was last year and it was a one time project. I'm just saying that if a company is using MySQL for development, they aren't wanting to move to MS SQL and they aren't going to spend $20,000 to do it, if they do decide to do it.
You have people lining up to make this switch? I think that the point is that you need to investigate the market. Just because you and Microsoft are paying part of the fee doesn't mean that it is a viable product. Do the people who use MySQL want to make this switch? You may have an occasional sale, but you are asking how to popularize your offering. You can't popularize something that people don't want, so you have to determine if people want this.
In fairness, I think that there may be some demand for this type of service. When I sold software products based on databases in the past, we always chose a "lower cost" alternative the expensive, marketing-leading products like MS SQL and Oracle. We didn't want to put that huge cost burden on our customers, and wanted to be able to keep our prices low.
But we invariably ran into potential customers that had a corporate database standard based upon one of these brand name products, and didn't want another database engine in their company. They would only buy if the product used their preferred database engine. Invariably these were very large companies--and therefore strategic customers. So it made sense for us to port our product to that engine, based on the single large deal alone.
So it may find it's demand not so much in "switching" completely from MySQL, but providing a secondary alternative for customers who absolutely require it.
OK, given what you have said, it seems to me like the place to start would be online portals where people who use MySQL hang out. Right?
Your migrations are probably being driven by economic buyers, rather than geeks, so try CIO publications. It may be that MySQL is ok as a departmental solution, which would not be supported by IT, and that a conversion to an IT platform is required to move the application to the enterprise.
The points where you say that the thread is shifting are points that you have to define the market. You say that you are having trouble "popularizing" your product. You said that you tried online advertising and press releases. We offered ideas about why you may not have found success in your marketing techniques and they might be deeper issues with the viability of your product offering. You requested that your specific question be answered and the answers were to do online advertising and press work with CIO magazines.
You've come full circle.
Online portals do work, but you can't just post advertisements. You have to respond to messages in a genuine fashion. Or spend money on advertisements. Or upload a press release about your offer.
I would start with researching these already available options in your marketplace, they really dominate the search results when I do Internet searches and they range from US$39 to US$75. First, you will need to differentiate your offering. Then you will have to start educating the DB programmers about your offering, so you have to become a resource where they hang out. As a side note, I didn't find anything in my search that was $10,000 - $20,000, so your solution is not coming up high in the search results. You need to work on getting your search engine ranking much higher.
You need to figure out who you are aiming at as a target market first. Just saying "users that want to switch from MySQL to MS SQL" isn't enough to define the customer.
What type of users? ISVs? Corporate Developers?
Your reach these two targets in different places, through different methods. In the scenario I laid out earlier in this thread, the people that I was talking about would be ISVs--doing the port to please specific, large corporate customers to make a big deal happen.
Is there also a scenario whereby in-house corporate developers would also want to make this switch? It's possible, I don't know enough--hopefully you do. I think Lisa's comments are compelling here, for why they wouldn't want to switch -- why didn't they chose MS SQL in the first place?
But all you've defined about your market so far has been from a technical perspective. You need to understand better who your potential customer really is, before you can decide where and how to market to them.
How many existing customers in the ISV >$5M US market do you already have? How did you get those customers?
It can be a rhetorical question and I don't expect you to put the answers here. It's marketing basics. You have existing customers, you know your defined market, so you look at those existing customers and you determine where they were found, why they were found, where they do business, who they know, how they decided to use your solution. In your existing customers and the process to convert them you will find keys to which marketing was successful.
I don't need to know any of the above answers, you do. Get on the phone and talk to them. Ask them how to find others like them, what they would respond to, what they did respond to, if they have any referrals, any ideas for you. Find out what pain they had that you solved, how much money you have saved them, will they let you write a case study about how your solution saved them.
Figure out the monetary gain from using your solution, put that in dollars, prepare information that will tell your potential clients how much money you are going to save them with your option and what specific pains you will solve.
Instead of telling us that you'll give us a white paper that tells us how much better MS SQL is than My SQL and why, tell me, as an ISV, what spending $10,000 is going to do to make my software development life better. What will I get for switching my database? Think of me as your potential market, I've given you a ton of valuable, free information to help you.