Archive for the 'Marketing' Category
- Posted by Tengku Zahasman on March 7th, 2008 filed in Viral Marketing, Web2.0
- 9 Comments »
- (4,643 Views)
Well, I’m no fan of local politics, but a post in Profy today caught my eye.
Seems like this 89-years-old gradma turned to the Internet to reach voters in her political campaign as a free candidate for the coming election day (oh wait… it’s tommorrow ). Not only does she has her own campaign blog, she also makes use of Youtube channels, Picasa photo album, and even created a Facebook group to reach out for supporters.
Telling by her age (and the way she gives that “blank stare” into the LCD ), I’m sure someone else is maintaining those online campaign stuffs for her. But I don’t care if she’s gonna nail the election or not (considering her age and background, and what was the name of her party again?), she’s definitely one step ahead than most other candidates out there who still relies solely on traditional street-side posters and a few talks to attract voters. This grandma records herself and posts her videos into Youtube. She pose for pictures and uploaded them to Picasa. She fully utilizes Web 2.0 to do her viral marketing campaign.
You rock grandma!Tags: web 2.0 marketing
- Posted by Tengku Zahasman on September 30th, 2007 filed in Marketing, Advertising
- 1 Comment »
- (2,713 Views)
One of the most costly part of a web app deployment will usually be on the marketing stage. Web startups spend tenth of thousands of dollars in advertising to get a bunch of audience to use their app. They send hundreds of emails to the many Web 2.0 medias out there such as TechCrunch and Read/Write Web to get some coverage and generate the buzz. They hire expensive PR firms to do the harsh marketing works on their behalf, and they also spent numerous amount of time/money doing offline marketings by participating/sponsoring in seminars, opening up booths and so on.
Nothing’s wrong with any of them. Afterall, a marketing is a marketing. But if you can code your application to do 90% of the effective marketing for you, you can save a huge amount of time and money and focus more on delivering high quality service to your users. Here are some of the ways to do that:
5 ways to let your web app market itself
1. Emphasize on SEO
Search engine is one of the best marketing tool out there on the net. If you can tackle search engine, there’s a high chance that you’ll receive a consistent flow of new users stumbling onto your app each day. Simply focus on the content of your app (allow UGC), use friendly URLs all the way, craft relevant page titles, use tagging folksonomy… and you’re on your way to the top of the search results for a lot of keywords. And remember, meta keywords and meta descriptions DO have its place in SEO, so don’t forget to utilize them as well.
2. Create useful/interesting widgets
People love widgets… especially bloggers. Widgets are small embeddable programs which can be included into any webpages by just pasting in some small chunk of codes into the site. This widget can make use of the information you have in your app to do interesting things. Take an example of Kiva.org, the microloan application which provides a widget that shows the loan status of a person you’d like to help (see example here). Or simply take a look at Flickr which allows users to create a widget of their own photo album and publish it in their websites. Meebo becomes more successful after launching their Meebo Me and Meebo Room widgets. YouTube, SlideShare and many other famous web apps out there also becomes famous because of the availability of embeddable widgets. If your widget is creative enough, everybody will start to use it and it will spread like virus. That’s massive ‘free’ marketing for your app without you having to lift a finger.
3. Allow members to send invites to their friends
Provide a simple page in your app which contains some hassle-free HTML forms to allow your users to invite their friends through e-mail. Call it a “Tell Others” or “Invite Others” page. They can simply key in a few of their friends’ email addresses into the form with a template invite message automatically inserted for them, and hit submit. This method of marketing makes use of the proven “word of mouth” marketing. Believe it, a simple function like this can do wonders. So make sure you have a function like this before launching your app.
4. Provide buttons/badges for members to help spread the word
Happy users will happily volunteer to promote your app — as long as you provide them the tools. Design some nice and cute buttons or badges and place it in a page called “Help us promote” (be sincere) along with the HTML codes of the imagelinks so that your die hard fans can easily help you promote your app without costing you a dime. The cuter your buttons are, the more likely that people will voluntarily place it into their sites. Not only will this help you reach more audience, it will also create the brand for you. Meebo used this method with their GoMeebo and they worked perfectly. You’ll be surprised to see how many people will voluntarily place your buttons into their sites.
5. Leverage RSS
If your web app allows user-generated content, there’s a high chance that you can convert their contents into RSS. As long as the content has a title and a timestamp (and possibly a category), you can definitely ‘RSS’ them. A huge amount of Internet users today rely on RSS on a daily basis. If you don’t provide RSS subscriptions for your app, you’ll lose that amount of potential users. The good thing about RSS is apart from allowing your users to stay updated, they can also be submitted into many relevant websites that accepts RSS feeds. What happens next is when your RSS is updated, it will also be updated to the thousands of readers on those sites, thus reaching more potential users.
Of course there are more ways that you can do to make your web app do the marketing by itself. But I think the list up there are some of the most basic and yet most effective method for passive marketing. It’s a good idea to have all these functions ready before launching your Web 2.0 app.Tags: marketing SEO strategy web 2.0 web app development
- Posted by Tengku Zahasman on May 10th, 2007 filed in Web App Development, Advertising, Thoughts
- 12 Comments »
- (2,382 Views)
Local web applications
Local web apps means the applications are focused and meant to be used by only some people in certain countries or communities, not meant to be used by the general Internet users everywhere. For example, if I am to build a localized web application, it may be something that only Malaysian users would be interested in using. Such app could be a Malay-based search engine that searches for only websites in the Malay language. Or it could be something like a video sharing portal - like YouTube - but only focused on Malaysian-made videos.
The good thing about localized web application is that it can get famous pretty quickly. People like something if it is close to themselves. You don’t need to put massive advertising to promote your web apps because word-of-mouth advertising will efficiently do the trick for you. Malaysian-specific web apps like Tumpang, Advertlets and Nuffnang proved this is true.
International web applications
International web apps on the other hand, can be used by anyone regardless of who they are or where they live. MySpace is a good example. Everyone can use it and it doesn’t specifically mention if it should only be used by, say, the American people. In fact, many big Web2.0 companies targets the wider audience - everyone. But unless you have a pretty damn brilliant idea, promoting an international web app can be quite tough as you need to reach for more people.
So which one is better?
Localized app give you fame very easily. But the fame you get is focused only to some geographically centralized users. If your international web app becomes successful, your credits will be recognized internationally. Localized app can pocket you money a lot faster, but international app is where the big bucks are made. If localized web apps can give you 10k a month, international apps could possibly give you a 100 times more, but that may take patience and longer bootstrapping. Making your international app a success takes more effort, and usually means needing more capital to do the marketing. Localized web app is way cheaper.
My point is, both local and international web apps have their own strengths and weaknesses. If you’re still new, maybe it is wise to start with a localized web app. Apart from giving you the good portfolio you need, it’ll also give you the experience of running a web2.0 application in a smaller scale. This can prepare yourself for your next international web app idea. Not only that, because localized web app needs less money and gives you cash faster, it will be the one to support your international web app developement that needs more money, more dedication, and more time to give you the wealth that you and your team are waiting for.Tags: marketing strategy web 2.0 web application