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In 3Q 2022, IBM’s software segment alone took home $5.8 billion in revenue. Did their focus on marketing contribute to its success? It surely did. Discover 19 breakthrough marketing ideas for software companies that’ll help you propel your business’s growth

Despite the constant growth of the global software market, predicted to reach a revenue of $91.6 billion in 2028, the latest quarterly reports of some Silicon Valley tech giants are showing a worrying slowdown in earnings. Alphabet’s Q3 2022 net profits plunged 27% compared to the same period in 2021, and Meta (formerly Facebook) saw an astonishing decrease of 52% in its net income.

If even big names in the software industry feel the impact of inflation and see their sales numbers decline, how can smaller organizations keep afloat in these challenging times?

This is why we’re going to dive into 19 creative and innovative software marketing ideas that you can use to stay afloat in a churning global economy. From content and social media tips to, perhaps, less known (but highly effective) methods, there’s something for everyone.

Check them out to keep the dark clouds away and ensure a brighter future for your organization! Get ready to take your company from rags to riches with the right marketing improvements. Groove HQ did it. They changed their marketing content strategy and went from being a failure to a $5-million-in-revenue-per-year business in just three years. Do you want to be next?

19 Inspiring Ideas to Boost Your Digital Marketing For a Software Development Company

In the digital world, it can be difficult to get noticed among the software giants dominating the market. They have virtually everything: infinite budgets, a legion of experts in all fields, and decades of experience. But as we saw at the beginning of this article, giants don’t always win.

How can your organization be part of the game, become the new “Jack the giant killer” and get its products and brand to stand out in this crowded market without breaking the bank? Jack was just a boy and he was poor. But with a clever idea, he managed to beat the giant. You can, too. This article will cover 19 creative software marketing tips, which are divided into four areas:

  1. Social and community,
  2. Website improvements,
  3. Communication,
  4. Services/products, and brand showcasing.

They’ll help you capture the attention of your audience and win the battle against the giants. Let’s dive in!

Software Marketing AreasSoftware Marketing Ideas
1. Software Marketing Ideas to Power Up Your Social and Community Engagement
  1. Answer questions on Quora and Reddit and link to your site’s relevant resources.
  2. Start a LinkedIn group (or be part of one) where you can post and share relevant articles.
  3. Use SlideShare to create and upload presentations.
  4. Use social media trivia.
2. Software Marketing Tips to Pimp Up Your Website
  1. Publish solutions to your customers’ problems.
  2. Use interactive calculators.
  3. Add interactive and entertaining infographics.
  4. Protect your customers’ data as if they were yours.
  5. Add a “share this” button to your content.
  6. Use company ID software to find new prospects or leads.
3. Software Marketing Ideas to Improve Your Communication
  1. Build fun tutorials and videos.
  2. Don’t spam — give value.
  3. Automate your campaigns.
  4. Communicate, don’t complicate.
4. Software Marketing Tips to Showcase Your Services/Products and Brand
  1. Showcase your product or service in action.
  2. Add your signed product to third-party software download websites.
  3. Build a free tool, plug-in, or app. 
  4. Donate a prize to charities.
  5. Use badges.

1. Software Marketing Ideas to Power Up Your Social and Community Engagement

According to the 2022 State of Community Management report, 40% of organizations’ revenue growth in 2021 was due to the positive impact of customers’ communities. Want to leverage their power, too? Then you may want to consider implementing one of the following practices:

  1. Answer questions on Quora and Reddit and link back to relevant resources on your site. Online forums and communities are great places to get a pulse on the types of information prospective customers want to know. You can use these tools as “on the fly” alternative support channels like Microsoft does.
microsoft subreddit channel
Microsoft’s subreddit channel. Need something? Just ask! This is a great way to connect with customers and potential leads while showcasing how easy it is to reach you.
  1. Start a LinkedIn group (or be part of one) where you can post and share relevant articles. Why? Because in 2021, LinkedIn was the most used (96%) free social media platform utilized by B2B organizations. What are you waiting for? Start engaging with your audience by sharing interesting articles, new trends, and stories.
global cyber security group linkedIn page
Ciso2Ciso. Global Cyber Security Group LinkedIn page. Joining industry-related groups and posting links to your blog articles is another way to attract viewers and potential new customers.

palo alto networks kinkedIn account
Palo Alto Networks LinkedIn account. You don’t have the time or resources to manage a LinkedIn group? Post links to your articles and videos directly on your LinkedIn page. It’ll take only a few minutes but could result in a nice return for your organization in terms of reaching new eyes.

  1. Use SlideShare to create and upload presentations. Did you spend weeks preparing a wonderful presentation for your last sale pitch? Ensure all that work doesn’t go to waste by uploading it on SlideShare. It’s easy and it’ll help you reach a wider audience. You don’t even have to worry about the format as it accepts all the most common file types, including Microsoft Office files and PDFs.
advantage of the power of slideshare
Slideshare. Accenture is one of the companies taking advantage of the power of Slideshare.

  1. Use social media trivia. C’mon, let’s add some fun to your marketing campaign as Netflix did with its latest Triviaverse experience. Next on our list of software marketing tips: Add polls and trivia games to inspire your online community to talk about your products or services. Hubspot put together a list of online quiz-maker tools you can choose from. Questions like “Which feature of our software would you use to solve this problem?” or “Which problem did you solve with the support of our software?” are great incentives to start a discussion and fuel participants’ curiosity about new features. You’ll have fun building it and your audience will have fun playing it. Isn’t it a cool way to advertise your product?
some fun and capture quizzes
Atlassian. Let your potential customers have some fun and capture their attention with quizzes.

Want to know more about the best ways to engage and leverage online communities? The Community Roundtable blog is full of interesting tips.

2. Software Marketing Tips to Pimp Up Your Website

Does your website look a bit bland? Time to add some spices to it:

  1. Publish solutions to your customers’ problems. Did you know that 89% of customers are more inclined to spend money on companies that enable them to find answers online without having the hassle of contacting support? Why don’t you take your FAQs to the next level and transform your most clicked questions into blog articles? It’ll boost your SEO and enable you to give your customers more detailed answers.
helpscout blog
HelpScout blog. How can I capture customer feedback with your tool? HelpScout answered the question with a dedicated blog article.
  1. Use interactive calculators. Calculators are great tools that provide value to prospective users by giving them opportunities to select or enter data that provides more personalized results. For example, Insivia’s marketing budget calculator will captivate users by providing them with genuine value in a fun, personalized way.
insivia an example of calculator
Insivia. An example of calculator helping organizations estimate their marketing budget.

Are you a cybersecurity company? There’s something for you, too. Why don’t you add a calculator to educate and engage users about your product or services like Symantec did?

symantec roi calculator
Symantec. Another example of calculator for cybersecurity organizations.
  1. Add interactive and entertaining infographics. Who wouldn’t prefer a good laugh and a bit of amusement instead of the usual boring sales pitch? According to Oracle’s happiness report, 76% of customers would choose a fun brand against the competition even if they’d have to pay more. Want a great example? Play around with IBM’s industry city interactive infographic. Warning! It’s such fun that you might get addicted to it! An added bonus is that people love to share interesting things, so if users find your infographics useful or entertaining, they’re more likely to share them.
ibm industry city
IBM Industry City. Customers can virtually explore buildings and view the solutions used by industry leaders through slick images and animation.
  1. Protect your customers’ data as if they were yours. In 2021, organizations faced 50% more cyber attacks per week, year over year, compared to 2021. That’s probably one of the reasons why 90% of the companies interviewed by CISCO asserted that customers wouldn’t buy from them if they wouldn’t guarantee adequate data protection. And 52% of B2B customers surveyed by McKinsey confirm these concerns. Want to win your customers’ trust?
how digital certificates and encryption protect customer data
The graphic shows how digital certificates and encryption can help you protect your organization’s and customers’ data.
  1. Add a “share this” button to your content. Did you just publish a great article on your blog, a cool infographic, or an engaging video? Let your customers share it on their favorite social media platforms with just a click. Follow HubSpot’s guide to build your “share this” buttons or use a free tool like ShareThis or AddThis. Want the complete package? Some tools also offer powerful analytics, personalization features, and other options.
left share button example
Symantec blog. Can you spot the share buttons on the left?
  1. Use company ID software to find new prospects or leads. Find out which businesses’ employees are visiting your website and turn them into sales leads. Next on our list of software marketing tips is the idea of using a company ID software tool like W3RocksLeadLander or Leadfeeder, or others that can help provide your virtual visitors’ details (including possible contacts) based on their IP addresses. You can’t afford to splash out a lot of money? No worries, many offer free plans.

3. Software Marketing Ideas to Improve Your Communication

Did you know that 45% of organizations that regularly update their content notice an increase in engagement and traffic? You may improve the quality of your communications by doing the following:

  1. Build fun tutorials and videos. Who said that technical tutorials, blog articles, and how-tos have to be boring? Put your audience in a good mood by adding funny anecdotes, cartoons, or GIFs. Create your own comic strips with tools like Canva or StoryboardThat. It’ll humanize your brand and catch your customers’ attention. Tech company New Relic “got it” and, guess what? The four most popular videos on its YouTube channel are all funny like the one below.
  1. Don’t spam — give value. Recent research shows that 71% of IT professionals consider most of the emails they receive from tech vendors irrelevant. Frankly, I don’t blame them. Let’s be honest: if you think about all the messages you sent to your customers, were they really all pertinent? Probably not. Be more selective by sending fewer but more valuable emails. Make them interactive, include security tips, industry statistics, product updates, and ask for your customers’ opinions. Soon, they won’t hit the delete or spam button so fast anymore.
  1. Automate your campaigns. Automate, but do it wisely. As we said before, bombarding your customers with emails is a no-no. Even if 75% of B2B marketers say that email marketing is the most important part of their Q4 2022 strategy, it doesn’t mean you have to send your customers an email daily. Optimize your email campaign using the email dripping technique. Never heard about email dripping? It’s a sequence of targeted emails sent during a defined time. A new customer just came onboard? Entice them further by sending a list of captivating articles, followed by a free webinar invitation, a demo and, last but not least, a unique welcome coupon. Sounds complicated? A sales automation tool will simplify the job.
  1. Communicate, don’t complicate. Build content for humans, not just for search engine optimization (SEO). Writing about software products and services isn’t like talking about groceries: translating their complexity into compelling and easy-to-read pieces can be challenging. Don’t use too much technical jargon or show off your knowledge like a peacock; instead, use practical, real world examples and tell stories. See how Seth Rogen transformed a boring, complex sales pitch into a winning one in this entertaining three-minute extract from the movie The Guilt Trip.

4. Software Marketing Tips to Showcase Your Services/Products and Brand

  1. Showcase your product or service in action. Want to get your audience excited about your product and convince them that they can’t do without it? Now it’s time to show off! Show them how it works in a video or content package and demonstrate how your customers use it. Use customers’ success stories like Amazon did. Is it really worth the effort? 78% of survey respondents decided to buy software or an app because of a video they watched.
  1. Add your signed product to third-party software download websites. Don’t be shy — upload your signed code to online stores like Google Play and Microsoft Store or to free software download websites like FileHippo. It’ll help you maximize sales and bring new potential customers in. Don’t forget to keep your code malware free, though! Sign your app with a code signing certificate before uploading it to any site. Are you a SaaS company? No problem. Get reviewed on software review directories like Capterra and TrustRadius.
how does code signing certificates work
The graphic shows how code-signing certificates protect your customers and software from malware.
  1. Build a free tool, plug-in, or app. Want to get more leads in a crowded market? Create a free plug-in, browser extension, or small app that provides a solution to your customer’s needs and that aligns with your products or services. For example, Snyk added a free online website vulnerability scanner to its website to attract more traffic and lure potential customers.
ionos website checker tool
IONOS. Customers can check the security and success of their website using a free online tool.
  1. Donate a prize to charities. Helping make the world a better place can pay off in terms of customer loyalty and interest. 69% of organizations surveyed by Ivalua confirmed that their sales increased thanks to corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives. You can donate a free website or a 12-month free license to one of your software, for example. The choice is yours, how you want to approach charitable initiatives. BigCommerce organized a series of charity events that contributed to its 44.3% revenue growth in 2021.
  1. Use badges. No trust, no business, we all know it. In today’s digital world, where the number of phishing websites identified by Bolster in 2021 reached a whopping total of 10.5 million, security and trust are paramount to every online business. While your customers might not know or notice the difference between HTTPS and HTTP-only connections, 35% of the customers surveyed by Baymard said they’d feel safer if they’d see the familiar Norton’s secure socket layer (SSL) badge logo on a website. Want to increase your customers’ confidence?
  • Show that you’re a vetted and ethical business by adding a Better Business Bureau (BBB) seal.
  • Confirm that your organization and site meet industry trust seal standards and add a badge.
  • Show that your software is safe and authentic (because you sign your code with a code signing certificate) by adding an “install with confidence” badge to your website.
badges on xperteks
Xperteks. The image shows the badges included on their website to add credibility and boost customers’ confidence.

That’s all folks! Now you’ve all the weapons you need to fight the battle against the competition. Maybe you won’t kill the software giants, but with the right ideas, you will get noticed!

Final Thoughts on 19 Software Marketing Tips and Ideas You Can Take to the Bank

We live in an increasingly challenging economic environment. Even well-established software organizations offering eye-catching products and services can fail to catch customers’ attention. And when it happens, you’re just one step away from going six feet under, joining other dead software companies in their virtual graveyard.

Face the challenge head-on and use the right mix of winning marketing software ideas to put the spotlight on your business. Create your software marketing plan and pick some tips and ideas from our suggestions in this article. Is your organization an SaaS company? Get inspired by our marketing strategy tips for 2023 and adopt some new, winning lead-generation strategies. And if you’re a software startup, we’ve something for you, too.