In addition to my press release writing and delivery services, I also have a "Rent Al's Brain" service in which I spend four hours analyzing a website, prioritizing concrete suggestions and actionable ideas for optimizing the website to sell more software. When I email a customer a "paid in full" message for their credit card payment for a press release emailing, I always include a suggestion that they rent my brain. And when I'm emailing a receipt for the "Rent Al's Brain" service, I always remind my customer that I offer press release writing and distribution services.
Every microISV should do something similar with the invoices, receipts, newsletters, and other routine correspondence that they send to their customers.
Invite customers to buy another of the programs that you offer. Suggest that they upgrade from the Lite version to the Standard or Professional version. Mention the availability of multi-user and site licenses. Nudge them to buy copies of your software as gifts for friends, family members, and business colleagues. Tell them about other microISVs' software that you offer on an affiliate basis.
You don't have to write a long sales message. Here are the two most common messages that I paste into invoices for my two most popular services:
- There are hundreds of editors who could print a press release about your software. We've recently added hundreds of new music, video, photography, and other multimedia editors. We have women's, parenting, and lifestyles editors. And, of course, we have computer, business, education, game, and programming editors.
- Rent Al's Brain. For $299(US), I'll spend four hours analyzing your website. I'll give it a sales makeover that will turn it into a sales machine. Visit www.dpdirectory.com for more information.
Even if you don't think that it's appropriate to send a sales message to your customers with your routine correspondence, find a way to invite them to do something that strengthens your business. Ask them to follow you or like you on your favorite social media site, to subscribe to your blog's RSS feed, or to request your monthly newsletter.
Be sure to take advantage of every contact point that you have with your customers to promote and market your software.