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howtosel.txt

Found at: 0x1bi.net:70/textfiles/file?law/howtosel.txt



                           Making Shareware Pay

       Shareware is an interesting concept. Basically it boils down to an
       interesting paradox. If men were angels, payment is unquestioned,
       unfortunately, angels don't use software. The question then
       becomes, "who actually registeres shareware and why?". I have
       been asking myself that question for a long long time. As a code
       writer, I have heard every postulation. I have even witnessed
       organizations spring into existance with packaged "methods"
       gauranteed to bring results. I have seen frustrated authors
       cripple their code only to stimulate bored hackers into action
       who then engineer "fixes". I have witnessed ego, jealousy and
       outright fighting amoung authors whose very problems should
       dictate close relationships. Some less pragmatic souls are
       crying "Shareware is Dead", yet, "the movement" to convince the
       software using public that Electronic Bulletin Boards (the main
       means of Shareware distribution) are "Virus Ladden Evil's", is
       {the movement} stronger today than ever before. Why such a strong
       barrage of attack if the marketing medium {BBSes} is really
       ineffective? Well, I wont recommend looking under your bed every
       night for an "evil corporate giant" but I will suggest that the
       instinct of self preservation is alive and well in every institution
       just as it is in the individual.

       In conclusion, I am wary of any organizations that promise results
       from membership; and that includes the Association of Shareware
       Professionals. Selling hasent changed since Adam bought the apple.
       Why should you spend money for techniques that are as old as man.
       The rules are basic but often neglected. First, find something that
       fill's a NEED. Second, show that it is AVAILABLE. And, third, ASK for
       the business. It dosent matter how you re-label it, "The Pitch", "The
       Hook" and "The Close" or whatever. The basic elements are always
       there and, it takes ALL three, to be suscessful. If it is not useful,
       even "almost free" wont sell it. If it cant be found, no one will
       ever know about it. And finally, if it dosent have a price tag
       affixed, odds are it will never reach the checkout counter.

       Now, lets elaborate. A big mistake in finding a market nitch is to
       bypass something thats been done before. Original product overkill
       vrs a little creative simplicity can produce a winner. Four years
       ago I wanted to write a terminal program. Everyone advised against
       it. Who could possibly outdo ProCom or Qmodem. The answer was KISS
       and Slick Terminal was born. [(K)eep (I)t (S)hort & (S)imple]. No,
       I don't sell thousands of copies every year; but, my sales versus
       time invested has been five times better than average U.S. wages.

       Get it out into the marketplace. UpLoad, UpLoad, UpLoad. Don't
       depend on other so called "distribution networks" to do your work
       for you. Join TeleNet, get a good timed execution communications
       package with automated script capability and let your computer
       do all the work for you (at night while you sleep). Remember,
       advertising penetration leads to market penetration. Don't just
       hit the biggest BBS in every city. Frequently, smaller is better.

       Finally, INCLUDE an order form file with a request to purchase!
       Its that simple and it works! AVOID using hooks. But, if you
       must, make them reasonable. Like, offering "printed" documentation
       with registration or voice support. No, the odds are you wont get
       rich. But, you can certainly support yourself and meet a lot of new
       and interesting people plus, enjoy life in the process!


                                             Gary Raymond, Author & SysOp
                                             SlickBBS (504) 283-9785
                                             New Orleans, La.

                                     EOF()



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