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Software Marketing Newsletter

Software Marketing Newsletter
SMR - SIC Issue August 2004 Newsletter

Hi,
Welcome to the the special Shareware Industry Conference issue of Software Marketing News. An HTML version can be viewed at http://www.softwaremarketingresource.com/author-resource-newsletter43.html .

SIC OVERVIEW - WEDNESDAY
********************

Again we opted to drive to Rochester, this time Paris Karahalios from Trius, Inc. http://www.triusinc.com joined us. Paris managed to regal us with tales to and from Rochester. For those of you who have not had the good fortune of meeting Paris he is truly a very interesting person. A nuclear physicist turned software developer with an abundance of knowledge and a quirky sense of humor, it made for very interesting conversation.

Wednesday evening eSellerate sponsored a welcome reception with food and an open bar. Steve Kiene, founder of eSellerate, also made the announcement that he would be stepping down as CEO/CTO of eSellerate. He named Steve West as CEO and Doug Durham as the new CTO. In his speech, Steve Kiene took the time to assure customers (and potential customers) that eSellerate's mission would not change, nor would the ownership of eSellerate change. Steve simply felt it was time for him to return to his true passion, writing code.

Due to inclement weather across the US, a number of attendees were delayed. The running joke wednesday night was that Steve Kiene hacked into airline computer systems stranding the flight's of Digital River's staff.

The welcome reception was held in a small banquet room that really encouraged networking and talking. I had the opportunity to meet Justin and Andrew of Kiwi Enterprises http://www.kiwisyslog.com . They are NotePage integration partners and though we have exchanged emails I had never officially met Justin. Andrew and Justin are from New Zealand, and just to be clear that is *not* the same as being from Australia. New Zealand is comprised of three islands North, South and West. The western island is actually Australia, or so they tried to tell me, when they realized I was geographically challenged.

I also managed to connect with another partner, Simon Carter from Cyrstal Software http://www.crystalsoftware.com.au . Being that Simon is from Australia, his view of it being part of New Zealand was a little different than Justin and Andrew'si All in all it was good conversation and a great way to start the conference.

I also met Brant Palazza from Digital River, who was probably a little startled that I did not have horns and a tail. He seems to have forgiven me for some of the colorful, albeit catchy titles that I used in describing the Digital River acquisitions of in a series of articles a number of months ago.

SIC OVERVIEW - THURSDAY
Thursday morning started off perfectly with functioning wireless in the Internet cafe and a breakfast consisting of made to order omelettes. Attendees began showing up for a day chock full of educational sessions.

I had the good fortune of meeting Kostya Tanurkov from RITLabs Canada http://www.ritlabs.ca . I also ran into Jim Mayall from MicroVision Development. Jim has just launched a very slick photo management application, that allows users to create photo albums on the fly. Jim's upsell marketing is abolutely brilliant and something shareware developers can learn from (more on this in upcoming issues).

Digital River sponsored Thursday evening's reception. Theresa Miller from Digital River had prepared amazing sets representing the four corners of the world. The photos will probably not show the impressive size of the structures built, which included an eiffel tower, pagoda bridge, the golden gate.

The Digital River theme for the night was "Size Does Matter" the main event was a center ring attraction with sumo wrestling. Representatives from each of the four corners adorned excessively padded sumo outfits. The goal of the participants was to use their size to push their competition over or off of the sumo mats. Seeing various attendees encased in the sumo outfits made for a humorous evening. With the exception of the final match I would consider it a grand success, showing size does matter!

After the reception and excitement I took the opportunity to chat with Brant Pallazza regarding te new affiliate wrapper system that was announced on RegNow. I've not yet had the opportunity to try the wrapper but the channel potential is significant and looks to be well worth the effort. (more on this in future issues)

SIC OVERVIEW - FRIDAY
Friday morning gave way to bleery eyed attendees eager for more. Delicious waffles with a variety of toppings greeted attendees. Educational sessions continued throughout the day touching on a wide variety of subjects.

Throughout the conference hospitality suites were open allowing attendees to interact on a personal level with vendors.

The hosted hospitality suites included:

TUCOWS - http://www.tucows.com - Tucows presented a very different and refreshing image than in years past. I spent some time talking with Greg Weir and Bob Gibson, they have some really great stuff planned for developers. Some of the items curently in development are really exciting including their new pay per click management model that they announced at SIC. (more on this in future issues).

CNET- http://www.download.com still traffic kings I spoke to Chris Phenner, who presented a panel regarding metrics and measuring results. Download.com's pay-per-download model along with a variety other ad models are still quite popular on Download.com.

eSellerate - http://www.esellerate.net Never one to disappoint eSellerate again had flavored coffees made to order in their hospitality suite. eSellerate has carved out quite a niche with their affiliate technology but like anything there is always room for improvement. This year eSellerate brought member of their development team (sorry I forgot his name) to hear what kinds of improvements would be most beneficial to developers. Overall eSellerate seemed receptive and I'm eager to see future enhancements to their affiliate system.

ShareIt - http://www.shareit.com ShareIt had extremely cool magnetized dart boards in their suite and I regret not having had time to talk to Elisa and Sandra more. Being that ShareIt is a new DR acquisition the line between the properties and the service distinctions was somewhat blurred this year, for understandable reasons.

Digital River - Digital River's suite was very cozy with comfortable couches and chairs. All of the DR properties were consolidated in the suite and the couches were a definite draw as the afternoons wore on I found myself talking at length with David Halls http://www.emetrix.com and Michael Halls http://www.filekicker.com . We discussed different ways to implement better statistical tracking and general ideas related to measuring sales, traffic and spending. I've always enjoyed the Hall's family and SIC was no exception (LOTS more on tracking in future issues).

Friday night was exhibit night where vendors show off their stuff to attendees. Massive food displays and a colorfully adorned, internationally decorated room greeted attendees. Beer was provided free of charge by HC Topp Systems http://www.topsystems.com .

Attendees collected stamps in their "shareware passports" from each of the exhibit booths. A completed passport meant your "'visa" would be entered into a drawing for an iPod. The ASP http://www.asp-shareware.org gave away volumes of software. Microsoft provided a beta version of Visual Studio .NET to each attendee. CD Ship http://www.cd-ship.com provided very humorous gag giveaways. Plimus http://www.plimus.com made an appearance along with Avanquest USA http://www.avanquestusa.com presenting new names and services to attendees.

All in all the exhibits were well received by all attendees. Having not completed the rounds to all of the booths because I was too busy socializing Jason Foodman from SwiftCD http://www.swiftcd.com was kind enough to send me a very cool binder after the conference!

Exhibit night was followed by a hosted desert reception. The quiet atmosphere allowed developers to network and talk in a quiet atmosphere.

SIC OVERVIEW - SATURDAY
The late nights and early mornings were beginning to show on the faces of some attendees by Saturday morning. Saturday's sessiosn continued by now it was clear that Phil Schnyder from askSam http://www.asksam.com was hands down the most entertaining speaker, full of funny anecdotes and helpful hints.

I escaped the hotel for a short lunch with Suda Pethe http://www.centered.com and Sue Pichotta http://www.icons-icons.com . Suda is an old friend and while I've chatted online with Sue I had not had the opportunity to meet her in person until the conference.

The afternoon gave way to the gala event, the Shareware Industry Awards Banquet. All I can say is ....what a night.

The awards recognize the well deserving best of the best. The list is long and included a number of well known industry names including one of my favorites Kathy Salisbury http://www.pharosgames.com ! What a great end to a terrific conference.

Next year's Shareware Industry Conference will be held in Denver, Colorado I hope to see everyone their!


TOP 10 THINGS I LEARNED AT SIC

***********************
1.) Tracking, tracking and tracking. In order to maximize return on investments and knowing what is working is key.

2.) Business vs consumer products. The sales cycle for a consumer product is very different than that of a business product. When evaluating marketing determine if your purchases occur as a result of a need or an impulse. The answer should influence your marketing decisions.

3.) Major changes are underway for affiliate program tracking.

4.) Out of the box upselling is a great source of additional revenue. Take advantage of the fact that the customer has their wallet out ;-)

5.) Relationship networking is key to growing into a variety of marketing segments. The best relationships are mutually beneficial. Partnering and networking is hot, more and more sites and developers are joining together to provide a Value Ad. Determine what value you have and reach out to network with others.

6.) Fresh content is king!

7.) Just like developers want feedback on their software, vendors want feedback on their services. Talk to your service providers, you might be surprised that they will listen!

8.) Still very few developers target specific audiences (or verticals) with their software. This is still an untapped market.

9.) Search engine optimization is critical to Internet success. If you don't have time to babysit your listings at some point you will need to consider hiring someone to do it for you, or you won't be found.

10.) RSS should not be underestimated.

SIC PHOTO COLLECTIONS
***********************
Shareware Industry Conference Photos these will be expanded as time allows so check back in a few weeks -
http://www.sic.org/04Photos/sic2004.htm

 

SIC WINNERS
***********************

SIAF 2004 Winners - http://www.sic.org/2004nominees.asp
SIAF People's Choice Winners - http://www.sic.org/peopleschoice.asp


SIAF LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
***********************

The Shareware Industry Award for Lifetime Achievement is given to those individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to shareware and the shareware community during their lifetime. Many factors are considered including the individuals impact on the shareware industry as a whole. Because of the nature of the award, it is not bestowed every year, and it may be given posthumously. Recipients of the award are selected by the Shareware Industry Awards Foundation Board of Directors.

Paris Karahalios - created TRIUS, Inc. along with his two partners, Dave Schultz and David Leonard, in 1986. He created his first product, As-Easy-As, in response to the Soviet "Chernobyl" nuclear disaster. As part of the team of nuclear experts called in to help, Paris soon realized there was no spreadsheet that could handle the data from the disaster. Even the then popular spreadsheet Lotus was inadequate, so Paris and his partners created As-Easy-As to do the job.

Paris helped to break down barriers and had one of the very first shareware products sold around the world. Paris was an active member in the early days of the ASP and often found himself in charge of planning and executing the ASP events at Fall Comdex. Paris is also one of the co-founders of the Shareware Industry Awards Foundation.

As a member of the shareware community for the past 18 years he has always been willing to share his knowledge and experience with others. And over those years Paris has helped countless authors with his intuitive insights, helpful nature, sound advice, and always with a touch of humor. He takes pleasure in helping others and he has helped many! As one of the true pioneers of the shareware industry, the SIAF board of directors is proud to award the Shareware Industry Award for Lifetime Achievement to Paris Karahalios.

SIAF HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES
***********************
The Shareware Hall of Fame has been instituted to honor those persons, companies, and products that have had a profound effect on the shareware industry. In order to be eligible, one must meet the minimum requirement of having been in the industry for at least five (5) years. Everyone who participates in shareware marketing owes these pioneers a debt of gratitude.

Shareware Hall of Fame 2004 Inductees:

Jean-Guy Ducreux - created WSKA in 1991, a company that sought out good shareware titles to publish or republish. With its headquarters in Metz, France, the company also had offices in Paris and Offenburg, Germany. Jean-Guy focused his energies on the needs of the French and German speaking markets, Ireland, the United Kingdom, and Spain. He was an active member of ASP board of directors and hosted the first EuroSchmooze in Metz, France. Over the years he has helped many software authors in their efforts to penetrate foreign markets while always being willing to give sage advice to anyone who asked. In 2003 he created Dewqs' Tribes, a new company that is focusing on producing a range of software to fight SPAM. In view of his many contributions to shareware and the shareware community, the SIAF board of directors is proud to induct Jean-Guy Ducreux into the Shareware Hall of Fame!

CNET Networks began creating Download.Com in early 1996. Over time it gradually became one of most comprehensive download sites on the Internet. The site now has millions of visitors each day and provides a range of useful information to the public. The site is a trusted source of information for buyers and sellers of "shareware" and presents the products of thousands of software developers. With operations in 12 countries, CNET also provides in-depth reviews and ratings of a wide range of hardware products from PDA's to notebooks. CNET has endeavored to help educate the public on a variety of topics, including shareware. In view of their contributions to shareware and the shareware community, the SIAF board of directors is proud to induct CNET Networks into the Shareware Hall of Fame!

Chris Thornton - created Thornton Software Solutions in 1991 and later changed the company name to Thornsoft Development Inc. Chris has been dealing in shareware ever since, selling his award-winning product, ClipMate. Chris has been an active member of the Association of Shareware Professionals and was the Chairman of the Board for several years. During this time he worked hard to improve all areas within the ASP. From a programming perspective he is the originator of the "partial key verification" technique, which adds lifespan to cracked registration keys. Over the years he has helped many authors with his time and sound advice. In view of his contributions to shareware and the shareware community, the SIAF board of directors is proud to induct Chris Thornton into the Shareware Hall of Fame!


SESSION TALKS
***********************

For those unable to attend the following speakers have made their handouts and presentations available:

Affiliate Program Strategies - by Chris Phenner (PPT)
Affiliate Program Strategies - by Sharon Housley (PPT)

Beta Testing Programs - by Anatoly Ivasyuk
Beta Testing Programs by Becky Lash (PDF)

Bidding on Pay-Per-Click Search Terms by Ben Weintraub (PPT)
Bidding on Pay-Per Click Search Terms by Chris Williamson (DOC)
Bidding on Pay-Per-Click Search Terms by Phil Schnyder (PPT)

Building a Sales Team for a B2B Product by Phil Schnyder (PPT)

Designing Websites to Sell by Ben Weintraub (PPT)
Designing Websties to Sell by Patrick Lambrecht (PPT)

Developing for Wireless/Handheld by Chris Williamson (PPT)

Effective Contract Negotiations by Michael Green (PDF)

File Hosting & Tracking Downloads by Greg Weir (PPT)
File Hosting & Tracking Downloads by Michael Burford (PPT)

Increasing Business Through Relationsip Networking by Brant Palazza (PPT)
Increasing Business Through Relationship Networking by Phil Schnyder (PPT)

Making Money through Tech Support by Phil Schnyder (PPT)
Making Money through Tech Support by Simon Carter (HTML)

Marketing Boot Camp by Paul Mayer (PPT)
Marketing Boot Camp by Tom Warfield (HTML)

OutSourcing Tech Support by Paul Mayer

Outsourcing Your Ecommerce by Chris Phenner

Pay Per Clicke Strategies by Ben Weintraub

Pricing Your Product by Jim Mayall (PPT)

Product Development Cycles - by Chris Thornton (PPT)

Registration Incentives by David Halls (PPT)
Registration Incentives by Phil Schnyder (PPT)

Press Releases that Work by Wayne Cunningham (PPT)

Search Engine Strategies by Ben Weintraub (PPT)
Search Engine Strategies by Chris Williamson (DOC)

Selling & Licensing Source Code by Michael Green (PDF)

Smart Marketing Techniques by Phil Schnyder (PPT)

Software Protection Methods by Chris Thornton (PPT)
Software Protection Methods by Doug Durham (PPT)

Why do Some Software Companies Fail? by Marshall Magee (PPT)

Viruses, Worms, Spam and Other Distractions by Doug Papenthien (PPT)

SIC 2005
***********************

If you are interested in promoting the Shareware Industry Conference for 2005 banners have been posted at http://www.sic.org/advert.asp

The conference will be held July 15-17, 2005 at the Hyatt Regency Tech Center in Denver, Colorado. http://www.sic.org

ANNOUNCEMENTS AT SIC
***********************

Tucows -
Tucows introduced a brand new tool and new ways to promote software in the Tucows software library. The new tool, includes the ability to relate CPC and other promotions directly to downloads to help give a clear picture of ROI. Additionally, Tucows announced fully managed accounts. The Your Promotionstool allows software publishers and promoters to display information on current and past Tucows promotions. Publishers can now see, at-a-glance, how successful promotions have been over time.

Along with the above, Tucows expanded the number of cost-per-click promotions. Those in the software industry can now bid on a wide variety of placements in Tucows. Bid for placement on Tucows' home pages, keywords, category placement and other promotional opportunities. When bidding, software publishers and promoters can select the number of clicks that they would like to receive on a given promotion. This greatly improves budget management. Tucows understands that managing cost-per-click promotions can take time and a watchful eye to ensure the best results. With this in mind, Tucows offers full account management. Tucows will work with each publisher or promoter one-on-one to determine what their needs are, Tucows will then optimize the promotions to ensure the best possible result. To sign up for an account and to learn more about what Tucows has to offer, please visit http://author.tucows.com.

Software Marketing Forums - Software Marketing Resource is just launched a new software marketing forum for software developers and publishers. There are a number of different sections available for software developers to post in: Marketing Software, Affiliate Marketing, Search Engines, Developer Discussions, Software Conferences & Newsletters, Download Sites, New Software Blogs, Forums & Relationships and Articles Available for Publication.
http://www.softwaremarketingresource.com/forum

SureThing Photo - MicroVision Development announced SureThing Photo. SureThing Photo is the new way to find, fix, share and preserve all of your digital photos and images. It's fast, fun and FREE! I actually had the opportunity to play with this and it is a very cool piece of software ! http://www.surething.com

NewStream Solutions - Announced automated, integrated and dedication solutions for software assembly, packaging, fulfillment and call center. More info - http://www.newstreamsolutions.com

Emetrix - Emetrix no longer charge a setup fee for developers to obtain a ATM card. .The payment card has become very popular as an inexpensive and simple means of receiving payment. You can have a personal account with access to your funds via cash ATM machines worldwide! Have your commission funds deposited every month in an easily accessible cash account. You can find more information on the Emetrix ATM Payment card at: http://www.emetrix.com/card

Alpha ZIP - Announced Alpha ZIP is a new zip file utility, offereing a range of new features and unique level of integration with Windows. The product was developed as a joint venture between Whirling Dervises Software & Neobyte Solutions. http://www.alphazip.com

A1 Downloads - A new affiliate file hosting service. This service is a division of Rose City Software http://www.a1downloads.com

RegNow - RegNow announced a new affiliate program affiliates an now simply link to the RegNow system for on-the-fly downloads and custom builds. Each download request dynamically inserts the affiliate ID into the buy URL. This solution easily scales, because RegNow hosts the file and all affiliates use the same file. All you have to do is update one file. This eliminates the need for affiliates to re-download your file in the event of an upgrade or patch. Login or create a RegNow account to learn more. http://www.regnow.com


THANK YOUs
**********************

And of course a huge round of thank you's is in order for all of those who coordinated this event, but a very special thanks should go out to:

Dan & Karen Veaner who were the conference hosts http://www.vvids.com

Mike Callahan who is the board chair and deals with all of the headaches http://www.drff.com . Thank you Mike.

And finally a big thank you to all of the sponsors at http://www.sic.org who made the event possible.

Sharon Housley
Software Marketing Resource - http://www.softwaremarketingresource.com
NotePage, Inc. - http://www.notepage.net
Monitoring Software - http://www.monitoring-software.net
Small Business Software - http://www.small-business-software.net


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