Published on November 29th, 2017 | by Guest0
7 Tips to a Flawless Software Launch
According to a recent study by Gartner, the world IT spending is expected to reach $3.5 trillion in 2017 due to growth in the software and IT services revenue. Software spending, in particular, is projected to reach $357 billion. Even though the market size is increasing, most of the market is dominated by a handful of companies; the top ten dominant companies generate 45% of the revenue globally.
Owing to the growth of the industry, every year a number of software are launched in the market. However, not every software gains traction; most of them, in fact, fail and are forgotten in no time. Even the giants sometimes fail to get it right.
In 2007, Microsoft launched Windows Vista. There was a lot of hype surrounding it. The company allocated $500 million to market the product and it was expected that 50% of users would opt for the premium edition within two years.
However, there were a lot of compatibility issues in the software due to which even the most loyal customers discontinued its use. Consequently, Vista turned out to be a big flop.
The key to a successful software is a smooth and efficient launch process. Contrary to popular belief, the launch process does not only entail advertising. In fact, it starts when the software is just an idea in your head. Hence, it can safely be said that the success of a software depends on its coding as well as on its marketing efforts.
Here are seven tips to a flawless software launch.
Research is the most crucial step in the entire process. Often, an idea may sound good in the head, but may turn out to be a big flop when executed. Generally, if you decide to develop a product that is not loved by consumers or doesn’t solve a problem, it is highly unlikely that your product will click with the users and be an instant success.
Hence, it is imperative that you conduct in-depth research to gauge the demand and acceptability of your product/ service idea and the ongoing trends. Also, research helps you understand who your target audience is so you can market your software accordingly.
Hire the right developers
Once you have judged the feasibility of your software, the next step is to hire the right talent to transform your idea into reality.
You may have a successful launch, but if your software has bugs, it has no future in the IT realm. The example of OpenDoc by Apple is quite relevant here. The idea initially seemed fantastic, however, the company aborted it in less than a year.
OpenDoc was a platform that allowed developers to collaborate and build apps. However, there was a major bug as the docs created in the platform were not compatible with major software, which made work involving sharing and editing painfully difficult.
There is a misconception that you should start marketing your product only once it is ready. The truth is you should start creating awareness about it as soon as your software goes into the development phase.
To begin, the first and the foremost thing that you should do is set up a website through which you can start interacting with your target audience. Make sure that the website is SEO friendly, is regularly updated and has good content. Moreover, it’s also suggested to start blogging to generate traffic on your site. If your software is a new concept, then your site can act as a perfect platform to educate your customers about it.
Launching a software without first testing it could taint a company’s reputation forever. Beta testing allows you to test the software for reliability, quality and usability. Through beta testing, you can look at your app from the users’ point of view. It allows you to identify any bugs and malfunctions before the formal launch. You can also easily perform test automation before you acquire a bigger client.
It is essential that you spend time in this phase to remove all possible bugs, errors and glitches because it will take a lot of effort and time to get your app approved on the App Store and Google Play. The last thing you want to find is that your app was rejected after so much hard work.
According to a study by Localytics, 25% users use an app only once. This figure could be even higher if your app has bugs or doesn’t intrigue customers, which is why beta testing is necessary.
Pricing is an important factor that determines the amount of time your product will take to be fully adopted by your target market. For example, if you have designed your software for small businesses but its priced too high, then it is likely that the companies won’t adopt it. On the flipside, with very low prices, you are at the risk of hurting your brand perception. Survey results of a Forrester research show that 43% of the respondents regard pricing as one of the most important factors while deciding on a CRM.
Hence, you need to take into account all such factors plus competition before finalizing the price of your brainchild.
Once you have done your homework and created the necessary groundwork, it is time to intensify your marketing efforts. Social media can prove to be quite useful in this regard.
You can create a Facebook page and a Twitter account. Apart from that, you can use the special platforms such as Quora or Reddit to connect with your potential customers. In case you are launching a game, you can create a gaming community to build an audience around your product.
You cannot just sit back and relax once you have launched your software. In fact, your real test starts at this stage. Once your software is out in the market, you need to keep close tabs on its performance and get constant feedback from users. You can do that by closely following the groups you had made earlier on different social media accounts.
With a large number of options available to choose from, switching costs are quite low, which means if your software doesn’t perform at par, it is likely to fail and be forgotten. Thus, your job is not only to remove bugs, but also upgrade the product and incorporate new features on a regular basis.
Creating successful software is not just about coming up with a great idea and developing it; it is also about how you manage the entire software development cycle. With a plethora of software out there, it is easy to get lost in the crowd. Hence, if you want your software to stand out, you should not only make it unique, but also launch it in an effective way. You need to take care of the demand, timing and acceptability and then only can you come up with a product that will resonate with the audience.
About the author:
Alycia Gordan is a freelance writer who loves to read and write articles on healthcare technology, fitness and lifestyle. She is a tech junkie and divides her time between travel and writing. You can find her on Twitter: @meetalycia