Software PR Mistakes to Avoid

Software PR can be a great way to generate buzz about new solutions and establish your company as a thought leader in technology. With the right tech PR agency, a carefully choreographed software product release can be leveraged as a launching point for business growth and improved market share.

But unfortunately, good software PR isn't easy to pull off. In many cases, well-intentioned PR for software products yields disappointing results and negligible ROI. The problem isn't that the agency doesn't understand public relations--it's that the agency may not have the tools and expertise to address the nuances of an effective software PR campaign.

5 Common Software PR Mistakes

At Walker Sands, we understand that your business has a lot riding on the success of your software PR campaigns. You've invested time and resources in the development of a first-rate software product, and now it's time for your offering to shine in the technology marketplace.

To achieve maximum visibility and market impact, there are at least five common software PR mistakes you need to avoid at all costs:

  • Promoting vaporware. Tech reporters are smart, market-savvy individuals who can easily spot software that doesn't yet exist. Although it's tempting to use software PR to promote planned solutions, finish the product before you start promoting it.
  • Focusing on features. Software companies usually want to focus on product features. But what your product does isn't nearly as appealing to journalists as the things others are accomplishing or can accomplish by using your solution. In general, think benefits, not features. For example, research conducted by the University of Jyväskylä, Finland on cloud software marketing suggests that customers' primary concerns are cost of acquisition and lifetime value--not product features.
  • Underutilizing current customers. The best software PR campaigns go the extra mile to line up satisfied customers who are willing to speak with reporters and journalists. Journalists would much rather hear about your product from your customers than from internal company stakeholders.
  • Neglecting newsworthy trends. Software PR campaigns get more mileage when they are connected to current trends in technology or other fields. Although your software product is extremely important to your business, it won't be as important to media outlets unless it connects with other newsworthy topics.
  • Not talking to the right people. We frequently see software PR pitches fall short because they targeted the wrong media contacts. Remember: some contacts are product reviewers, while others focus on big picture software trends. Don't confuse the two.

Successful Software PR Strategies

One of the keys to a successful software PR campaign is to recognize the role PR plays in your larger product promotion strategy. Although public relations can accomplish a lot, it can't do everything. In addition to other marketing initiatives, software PR needs to be accompanied by a strong sales function.

Also, it's important to broadcast your software PR successes across multiple channels. As your PR for software products gains traction, spread the word on social networks, leverage article reprints as sales collateral and promote impactful stories on your company website.

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