If you work with a company that sells software, odds are that your approach to marketing and public relations is the same as it’s been for years: press releases, calls to magazine editors and reviewers, and perhaps a customer newsletter that announces updates and improvements.
But we’re in the 21st century now, and savvy companies with sharp marketing teams are realizing that the industry has changed and that visibility is more about identifying and engaging the opinion leaders, not the Media Establishment. Ask yourself this question: would it mean more to you if a half-dozen of your peers said “hey, this is very cool” or if some unknown flack or journalist for a major publication said “this is very cool”? I know your answer, and that’s why I spend more time reading blogs and news sites than reading traditional print publications.
Public relations and marketing has always been about influencing public opinion, and it’s the same as it ever was, with apologies to David Byrne: influence the opinion leaders and you’ll influence the market.
Where’s this discussion going? I received the following email message this morning and am just so impressed with the marketing team at Softland for recognizing the value of what I call the Influence the Opinion Leaders strategy:
I visited askdavetaylor.com and I’ve seen you have an enormous amount of good articles and also that you have 2 sections called “Computer & Internet Basics” and “Windows Basics”. The reason I mentioned these 2 particular section is because I didn’t see an article in there about backing up, and I thought that since is an important thing you could write an article about this and also include Backup4all in it if you test and like it. So what I’m asking is if you would like to do a review for Backup4all, for possible mentioning in a future article about backing up.
If you would like to find out more about Backup4all before deciding to do the review or not, you can visit www.backup4all.com or send me an email.
In case you want to do the review please contact me and I will send you a registration key for the program.
Thank you for taking the time to read this email. Looking forward to your answer.
Whether or not I accept the invitation is irrelevant. This is just darn smart marketing.
In fact, here’s a tip for other people marketing products or services and trying to break through the endless clutter of our marketplace: go and Google a few key phrases that describe the problem you’re solving, then contact each of the top fifty Website authors and invite them to receive a free copy of your product. No strings attached, no requirement that it be written about, no prohibitions on resale. And just watch how your company will suddenly be part of the zeitgeist, not part of the lost world of traditionally marketed products.
Yes I too occasionally get e-mails like this.
Funny though, I have approached many companies for the sole purpose of product review through the Blog postings and they are not interested. I DO see this turning but it is a bit slow for most to catch on.