Marketing for tech comm'ers

Subject: Marketing for tech comm'ers
From: "Tim Altom" <taltom -at- simplywritten -dot- com>
To: "TechDoc List" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 23 Jan 2000 17:32:55 -0500

This is for those hardy souls who own contracting firms or who market
themselves as solos.

We're working on a project to design a website to appeal to those who hire
us for contract work. To do that, we need to define the demographic. All
help kindly received; I can use anecdotal data about your marketing means
and memories, impressions, anything you care to share about your own
experience getting projects. You can email me directly if you don't want to
clog the Techwhirl pipe.

Our research to this point indicates a high number of serendipity/word of
mouth referrals, followed by such things as direct mail, phone calls, and so
on. The most frequent scenario is:

A person, sometimes within the prospect's organization but often from
outside it (print broker, programming contractor) passes the word between
prospect and contractor, establishing the link. This contact is usually
spontaneous and unpredictable. The "connector" is most often not financially
compensated for the referral. The prospect's contact person is often an
"influencer", someone who has a great deal to say in the process, but who
can't sign the check. This influencer can be almost anyone: tech doc
manager, project manager, engineering manager.

Of course, there are endless variations on this theme. The initial contact
may be through a church group, night class, or anywhere that person to
person contact takes place.

The next most frequent method seems to be deliberate marketing, using direct
mail, websites, phone calls, or other means of selling directly to an
identifiable group.

Do these scenarios seem familiar? Are we on track? If there's interest from
the group, I'd be happy to post a report on the replies.

Thanks a lot.

Tim Altom
Simply Written, Inc.
Featuring FrameMaker and the Clustar Method(TM)
"Better communication is a service to mankind."

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