What if you were selling something other than you thought you were selling? What if your customers didn’t understand what it was you sold? What if you attacked that problem head on?
Then you’d be the MailPoet WordPress
plug-in email marketing software.
The single biggest point MailPoet’s Kim Gjerstad makes in his 360-degree marketing presentation at WordCamp 2013 is that MailPoet isn’t what most people think it is. It’s a remarkably candid statement; most marketers would tell you that if you’re selling something and people don’t understand it you’re going to have a problem. True enough; MailPoet isn’t like most WordPress plug-in software, and there are major obstacles to overcome because of that.
Gjerstad isn’t complaining.
Just as he debunked the “need” for custom design, shortly into his MailPoet 360-degree Marketing presentation Kim Gjerstad opens up about what might be the biggest problem in technology-focused or technology-based businesses today: these businesses are about technology, but what they sell isn’t. All the technology or technological terms in the world serve mostly to obscure what it is your technologically-focused product or service does. To market these or any businesses effectively you need to embrace and talk about what the thing you’re selling does.
And what MailPoet does isn’t “plug into WordPress to provide ancillary function”. MailPoet lets you manage email and email recipients—and it (almost) only happens to do it from inside WordPress. MailPoet may be a WordPress plug-in, but MailPoet isn’t “a plug-in”:
This matters to the pricing of MailPoet. It matters in a huge way. In fact, several huge ways.
The plug-in business, unless you can push an amazing volume of them, follows a one-off sales model; you collect
$5 $19 $29 … and then have to figure out how to make money again next year. And while, as Gjerstad points out, the price of WordPress add-ons like plug-ins and themes is rising, you’re still better off selling something that can be resold every month, year or whatever on a subscription basis … and generally plug-ins don’t work that way.
Plug-ins are geeky, as in, your technology manager may understand them and the need for extending the WordPress core, but you likely don’t get this stuff, or even care; you just want your web site to do … whatever it does … and not think about the pieces of the technology puzzle running it.
And then there’s the benefit of not being a plug-in. MailPoet, by being an e-mail management platform, catapults itself into the ranks of Constant Contact and MailChimp; the perception is different, the price is higher, and that recurring revenue thing comes into play. And Kim Gjerstad’s candor and transparency on all of these issues is a yummy piece of the 360-degree marketing stew he’s cooked up.
MailPoet is starting to look more and more like a textbook case of doing everything right, and Kim Gjerstad’s explanation of MailPoet’s business processes is just getting started. There’s plenty more on the way, but if you can’t wait, reach me here, right now.
This is getting good …