Tuesday, October 31, 2017

5 tools you need in your kit before software launch




New software is launched on a regular basis; however, not all of them manage to gain traction. Only few are a smashing success, while the rest are soon forgotten. According to Booz & Company, 66% of new products fail within two years and 96% of innovations do not give any return on investment, Doblin Group says. When it comes to software, it is not only about how great the idea is, it is also about how you communicate your idea to your potential customers. Hence, it is imperative that you work on your launch strategy. The good news is that there are a lot of tools out there that can take the burden off your shoulders and make the launch process seamless.

Here are five useful tools that you can leverage before launching your software:

1. Submit.co

If you want your brand to stand out and come under the limelight, you need media coverage for your new product. People will only take interest in your software if they know about it. Submit.co is just the right tool for the purpose. The site has an entire list of all tech-related sites that can help you tell your story to the world. The best part is that it has categorized all the sites according to the number of Twitter followers. Sites with the highest number of followers include Huffingtonpost, and techcrunch. Apart from that, it also shows you Alexa rank of each site and categories for which each site is popular for. For example, Zdnet.com is popular for gaming and kids’ category. Sites are also categorized according to the regions.

Submit.co, however, is just a stepping stone for your coverage. It gives you a direction; you need to contact individual site yourself to get your story out there. 

2. Betalist

Imagine going through the entire process of launch only to find out that your software has glitches and bugs, which are hindering its adoption. Betalist saves you from all that hassle. The platform allows you to test your software before launching it for a wider audience. The platform has early adopters who test your product and give you early feedback.

To get featured on Beta list, your software should not have substantial coverage and should be submitted pre-launch. Plus, your website should have custom-designed landing page, which describes the software and the way people can sign up for it. If you qualify, it will take around two months to get featured. Depending upon the number of tweets your software receives and the engagement you are able to generate, you can get featured in the Trending Startups section on the homepage.

Betalist can give you an immediate boost in awareness as it gets more than 70,000 views per week and the newsletter has more than 10,000 subscribers. On an average, products get 300 clicks per week, but this number will depend upon your product.

3. Accelq

Accelq is acloud-based testing software which allows you to deliver high-quality software. The tool ensures that quality is maintained throughout the development process. It conducts test at every stage of development. Its best feature is change bots, which keep your tests updated and keeps you away from the hassle of maintaining your software manually. The tool provides you with actionable reports that allow you to make informed decisions. The company claims that you can cut down your maintenance cost by 70% and accelerate the process by three times. Since the efficiency of the quality assurance team multiplies with accelq, you can reduce time-to-market of your software without compromising on quality.

Accelq comes with various pricing plans. The basic version costs $100 per month and is mostly suitable for business managers. The all-inclusive plan costs $250 per month and is ideal for automation testers, quality assurance team and developers. On the cloud, however, the software costs a bit more; the basic version is around $150 per month while the all-inclusive plan costs $300/month.

4. Active Campaign

Active Campaign takes entire responsibility of marketing your software by automating the whole process. Through this tool, you can add subscription form on your website and once you have collected data, you can segment it based on users’ interests and activity and send them targeted campaigns. You can also create interesting newsletters and email campaigns directly from the platform using the free templates.

Moreover, the tool also allows you to manage the entire customer lifecycle. You can automate follow-ups for leads to convert them into users and ultimately advocates for your software. Active Campaign comes with a number of pricing plans. Its basic plan ‘lite’ costs around $23 per month and can be used by maximum 3 users. The basic version, however, comes with limited features. The Enterprise version is the most expensive one at $229 per month. However, it supports unlimited users and comes with some extra features such as free design services, free social data and custom mail server domain. 

5. Maitre

This easy-to-use tool allows you to generate curiosity before the launch. All you need to do is build a custom widget and put it up on your website’s homepage. The widget is basically a waiting list plus a referral system. Customers are rewarded if they get their friends to sign up as well. Some incentives can include coupons. You can choose when your subscribers can receive the coupons. For example, someone can get a 20% discount on inviting 5 friends. It will also show you how many coupons have been sent and when. The best part is that the entire process is automated; Maitre sends automatic emails to subscribers based on their activity. The company claims that campaigns with automated emails generate 40% more referrals and engagement. According to Jake Bronstein, the founder of Whistler Wash, it took them only 10 minutes to customize the widget and they were able to generate 15,000 sign ups with 800 kickstarter backers.

The tools mentioned above can make your life easier by streamlining the entire launch process. The choice of tools, however, largely depends upon the type of software being launched. Hence, before making any payments, clearly define the objectives you want to achieve.


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ABOUT AlyciaGordan
AlyciaGordan 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

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