Google+ The Marketing Survivalist: My Second Favorite Online Resource for Technology Marketing

My Second Favorite Online Resource for Technology Marketing

I talk a lot about MarketingProfs and what a great site it is for inspiring fresh ideas and honing your marketing skills. Today, I want to share my second favorite resource for technology marketers. This may surprise you, but it’s Wikipedia.

In technology marketing you run across many acronyms and unfamiliar terms a.k.a. jargon. No matter how brilliant or technologically savvy you may be, it’s impossible to be familiar with everything. Let’s say you’ve taken on a new marketing assignment for a software application that’s going to be delivered as a service. You see the term SaaS used in several internal discussions about the product. But, what does the term mean and, more importantly, why is it important to the customer?
Like any marketer that cares about their reputation, you want to do a little research yourself before talking to the engineers. If you can at least familiarize yourself with the terminology you’ll know what questions to ask and avoid looking like a complete fool.

Googling the term will give you lots of hits, but these fall into four categories:

1. Fluff written by companies looking to sell their own SaaS product. Anything useful will be protected behind a prospect response form.

2. Overly technical content written by engineers in love with the technology. This kind of content is seldom useful in understanding what the technology truly means to a prospect or customer.

3. Irrelevant content that has nothing to do with SaaS.

4. If you are lucky you might uncover some material that helps you understand SaaS and the benefits to a customer, but you probably had to waste time wading through the first three categories before finding it.

To save time, I go straight to Wikipedia to learn about new technologies. A quick search on SaaS brings me to a site that contains an excellent overview of Software as a Service. Best of all, in addition to a discussion on the architecture, it contains many of the angles that I care about as a marketer including adoption, pricing strategies, and how to make money delivering software online.

I know Wikipedia isn’t foolproof. These entries are submitted by real people, some with their own agendas and their own point of view. However, Wikipedia does a great job of “keeping it real” and making sure that the information is vetted by others. At the very least, it’s a lot more useful than company sponsored information from a Google search.
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