magalog - A direct-mail piece that combines a catalog and magazine.
Recipients appreciate the combination of editorial content and a way to buy the products that interest them.
magazine articles - Thought pieces that a software developer writes.
Send articles to bloggers, newspapers, and magazines, and convince the buying public that you're an expert, and that people should be buying your software.
Unlike press releases (which you should send to a wide range of magazine and newspaper editors), you have to send magazine articles to only one editor at a time. Almost all publications demand exclusivity when they're considering buying an article from you.
marcom - Shorthand for "marketing communications".
market - The system that allows software developers, distributors, and buyers to interact commercially.
It is incorrect to believe that there is a market for computer software. In fact there are hundreds and hundreds of individual markets for computer software. It would be much more accurate to say that there is a market for selling, say, Macintosh arithmetic drill software to homeschooling parents of 6 - 8 year olds.
market niche - A small subset of an existing market.
It's possible to be both a tiny company in a large market, and the only product in a small market niche. For example, adding a legal dictionary and spell checker to a PIM might allow you to dominate the niche for attorney PIM software.
market research - Discovering how prospects respond to your software.
Market research can be a formal - or not so formal - approach to finding out how potential buyers might react to your new software idea.
Sometimes people know what they want, and can express their feelings to market researchers. Sometimes, people don't have a clue.
The less innovative your software is, the more accurate your market research is likely to be.
Market research is usually flawed. That's what Jack Trout tells us in his book "The New Positioning."
Trout believes that market research is likely to be false, contradictory, or questionable.
Focus groups have problems. People don't admit how they really feel when they're in front of a group.
Researchers, Trout tells us, don't get paid for simplicity. "They get paid by the pound."
market segmentation - Dividing your target market into subcategories.
By segmenting your prospects, you can develop more effective software marketing strategies for each niche.
For example, instead of thinking about how to sell educational software, you might address the challenge of selling Windows-based mathematics drill programs to kids aged six through eight.
market share - The percentage of your software niche that uses your software application.
marketing - The process of promoting your software.
Philip Kotler in his book "Kotler on Marketing" defines marketing as "the art of finding, developing, and profiting from opportunities."
"Marketing is a learning game," Kotler tells us. "You make a decision. You watch the results. You learn from the results. Then you make better decisions."
To be successful, companies have to work well with all of their stakeholders - employees, suppliers, distributors, dealers, customers, and stockholders.
In the computer industry, the successful software marketer's list would include eCommerce providers, download site owners, marketers, and other vendors that service the industry.
Sergio Zyman, author of "The End of Marketing As We Know It," sounds less like a college professor and more like the guy who sold lots of cases of Coca-Cola.
"You don't make any money until you sell the stuff," Zyman tells us, "and you can't sell the stuff until you've gotten people to want it. And that's what marketing does."
marketing budget - the funds that a software developer allocates to advertising, promotion, and marketing planning.
Sergio Zyman, author of "The End of Marketing As We Know It," tells us that most companies don't know how to set their marketing budgets. They treat marketing as an expense, and think in terms of spending some fixed amount, or some fixed percentage of revenues.
We see this a lot in the software industry, too. Many times I've seen postings by software developers that state that they have a few hundred dollars to spend, and they invite suggestions regarding buying Adwords versus press releases versus search engine optimization (SEO).
Zyman says that we should treat marketing expenses as an investment. Instead of thinking about how many additional promotional campaigns we can buy, we should ask ourselves about how many additional sales we can get.
marketing plan - A step-by-step map of how you're going to achieve your company's marketing objectives.
"If you want to establish a clear image in the minds of consumers, you first need a clear image in your own mind." So says Sergio Zyman, author of "The End of Marketing As We Know It."
I wonder how many software applications are developed with that concept in mind - as opposed to "I was looking for a program that does X, and I didn't find exactly what I wanted, so I built one myself."
Zyman believes that marketing has to be more than a random collection of activities. It has to be a coherent collection of things that work together to maximize sales and profits.
Too often, developers create a product without ever thinking about how they're going to market it. And then they choose the marketing activities that they're most comfortable with, or the ones that are the least expensive, or the least risky. Instead, it makes sense to develop a complete marketing plan, and then prune it back if you can't accomplish everything.
Zyman believes that when people hear the phrase "marketing plan" it's not unusual for eyes to glaze over. A marketing plan need not be one of those worthless, abstract, theoretical plans that nobody ever looks at after they create it. It can be a list of worthwhile marketing activities, with dependencies defined, and dates assigned.
Zyman says that marketing is crucial. It should never be an afterthought.
matchback - Assessing the value and effectiveness of a rented prospect list from a list broker.
After renting a list of software buyers, using it, and getting orders, it's important to find out how effective the list was in generating software sales. If it was possible to segment the list by some significant criterion, then it's even more important to learn which segment(s) worked well and which didn't. Matchback is the process of matching orders with lists and list segments, and determining how well the list worked for your software marketing.
Software Marketing Glossary
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