How to market a software during minimum viable product stage?


5

I'm about to launch my product. I'm currently preparing the website, documentation, e-commerce integration and so on.

It lacks features that will be added in the next few months that will allow it to take full advantage of the product potential (mainly generate alternate valuable output in the form of reports, which only some users would require). These new versions will be easily upated and without need to pay again (for major versions).

My question is, how to market this MVP for maximizing sales in this early stage and minimize users "waiting" for an "1.2" post-MVP version?

Marketing Software Launch MVP

asked Jan 10 '12 at 08:28
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Nestor Sanchez A
690 points
Top agency to build award-winning mobile apps: Utility NYC

3 Answers


3

I'm a little confused. From your question it sounds like you want to market an application that currently does not generate valuable output, but may, someday.

If that's the case then it's not really a minimally viable product, launch when the product can actually do something not before.

Otherwise, do what the cool kids do: Just launch now and iterate often and fast. Have a blog with the latest new feature (hopefully you are posting at least weekly).

answered Jan 10 '12 at 08:52
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Chris Lively
443 points
  • I've updated the question about the "valuable output" which is an extension not really required/expected from all users. The output, aside from the editing view, is the printing and export as image of the created diagrams. – Nestor Sanchez A 8 years ago

2

I think you have a range of options:

  • Focus on the strengths of your current feature set
  • Early adopters get it free or cheap.
  • Call them beta testers and 1.2 = first release ... which the beta testers get free.
  • Get the V1.1 subset of features out very fast so that people konw they aren't waiting 6 months between releases (until now your unproven).

If the 1.2 features are the ones people will bite on then your MVP is V1.2 and before that your real value is the feedback and bug fixes to get the product over the initial pain points.

If you can, forego the early income stream in exchange for the feedback and evangilism of the early adopotrs. Show them what it will cost them if they hold out and say "but if you get it now it will remain free to you through to V2".

This will let you

  • Get it out in the marketplace sooner.
  • Get the feedback you need
  • Get a higher core user base who are likely to be your best marketing team and get you closer to the adoption chasm
answered Jan 10 '12 at 10:25
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Robin Vessey
8,394 points

1

A defition of a MVP would be that it's not always a product itself, but an announcement of some of the features of a future product. This can be a video, screen-shots, limited demo of some primary version with limited set of fetures only.

This phase is being used to get feedback from your initial base of customers, i.e. early adopters that might or might not become real paying customers later. So, make some presentation of your product and spread the word through forums, social media and blogs to relevant users and ask for their comments about what they see at the moment and what would like to see in the future versions. Then evaluate the feedback, say NO to most of the feature requests at first, and then list them by priority and implement one by one and notify your user base about the advancement.

How to create the user base? Ask for their email via simple subscribe form, ask them to leave comments on your blog or forum and notify them via email about replies you leave later, if it's possible, if not, go ahead and spread the word again about update this time, as you did at the begining.

answered Jul 27 '12 at 00:21
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Spc
31 points

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