This article has been published in Techetron initially.
There is a big knowledge gap in the market regarding digital business in Bangladesh. Somehow most of the investors or marketers think, we don’t need to promote .com/app based services. It will grow automatically. And their favorite examples are #Google or #Facebook. They think these companies never do commercials or promotions for their products/services
There are few digital services which do not require traditional promotion strategy. Like the new sensation #prisma. It took off just like that: Vitality helps #Prisma a lot. You cannot make an app successful through promotion. It has to click in the market. Ohh wait!!! in some cases promotion helps as well. #wowbox from Grameenphone could be an example. Well not really !!! how many active users does #wowbox have compare to total download? I am sure ratio wont be promising. Then what activities can make an app popular?? As i said before it has to click. Beside that, proper tagging, good and sustainable SEO in app stores or strong referral system can help. You can use bloggers as well to write reviews and views about your app.
So when you are planning to make an app, remember huge budget might not be the answer. Create something which people can use everyday, easy for everyone to use or meets a true need or something that matters… For example Heroes of 71
So we can say, for app marketing, promotion is not the ultimate answer. There are other ways to make it popular
What about a .com site? The answer is complicated. There are times when many .com websites got the millage through vitality like Facebook or Google. They came up with something which no one never saw and genuinely met the market need. Therefore, they flourished super fast.
But things became interesting when they started to expand in different countries or wanted to launch different services. Then these companies needed to implement different marketing strategies or tools. They showed ads, did huge PR and also prepared blogs and contents. Both Facebook and Google used traditional marketing strategies to promote their products in India.
So you see, after having the ultimate viral effect these companies needed promotional activities to gain the cultural effect, influence user behavior and hence gain market share.
Now think of a new search engine or a social media wants to enter into the scene… What more can they do?
Google and Facebook are dominating search and social media market. So if Bing or Chorki [Bangladeshi search engine]wants to cut their share they must invest in proper marketing to get users beside having a great product that meets users need. For any .com business this is the ugly truth. If you are not the first mover or not coming up with something cool or different, for any existing service you need to invest hell lot of money to generate a new packaging or standard.
You need to show you are big & huge. You have the capability to provide superior services and as good as any foreign company. People need to have faith to use your service. Therefore, you must gain their TRUST and trust me that is costly. As a result, for any new e-commerce, search engine or social media, entry barrier is very high. Your digital service business must have a strong and sustainable business strategy with proper marketing plan. If anyone says, you don’t need to invest in marketing to promote your e-commerce site shut them up and explain them that they are wrong and going to do a huge mistake. They are not aware of the fundamental rules of .com business.
You are already late. People are doing lots of exciting works around the world in digital services. So bringing another e-commerce, search engine or social media will not be easy and cheap. Add innovation and imagination. And prepare an awesome business plan. Yes of course with an attractive promotional plan. If you do not have millions of users, your digital business is nothing but a waste of time. And to have millions of users you need to promote your service first.