How we promote our project without any experience

    Admittedly, no one in our small team has any significant marketing experience. Everything we try brings new knowledge to us. This article describes ways to talk about your project that worked for Cupcamp. Under the cut you will find a description of the pros and cons of several resources and many links.

    Grandstand on Zuckerman Will Call

    We started by filing an application for the Tribune , where the CP editorial every day publishes one story from the creators about their products. We were surprisingly quickly added, the next day we saw traffic from The Kubkamp post came out on Friday, which in my opinion was a plus - until Monday we hung on the main page and were the first on the Tribune page.

    The positive effect was about 400+ visits, useful feedback, and, most importantly, a number of active authors .

    Of the minuses of the publication, it can be noted that this is still a one-time effect, there will be no second post on the Tribune.

    Profile on Spark

    We created the profile for the Cupcamp a long time ago, before we changed the concept from a single digest to a platform where anyone can become an author. Spark is a pretty specific place. In fact, nobody reads the news and questions especially, however, the articles collect enough views. If you manage to write a good article, you can get to the weekly newsletter or get a tweet from spark .

    Until recently, Spark was almost the only platform for free communication for startups. Despite the discussionsabout its benefits, active projects, writing quality articles, receive an influx of visitors and feedback from users. For us, this platform has become a kind of “take-off” - we released our first articles here, got the first subscribers and learned about projects similar to the Cupcamp.

    The disadvantages for the creators of the products include not so high attendance and a certain “homogeneity” of the audience - they are basically the same as you are new entrepreneurs who are not particularly interested in your project.

    Blog on Megamind

    The other day, we argued with a friend that often the Giktayms and Megamind tapes contain more interesting materials than Habrahabr. And although this is a purely subjective opinion, it already suggests that there is still some sense in the separation of projects. Personally, I get a lot of benefit from articles on Megamind, and with the advent of a free opportunity to create a project blog, MM has become an absolutely indispensable resource.

    The audience of Megamind is very large. Moreover, the best articles appear on Habrahabr and Giktaymz that gives even more views. By writing a good article, you can count on a significant stream of visits. Unlike Spark, project news or discussions are easier to convey to readers, because all articles appear at least in thematic hubs.

    However, since Megamind is still quite young, it is quite difficult to get feedback from users. As an example, to our last article , with more than four thousand views, there was only one comment on the topic.

    I can not attribute the next paragraph to either pluses or minuses. Megamind's audience is very versatile. You can get hundreds of views and almost no registration, or maybe vice versa. Karma is not a constant thing.


    For those who want to attract an English-speaking audience, the easiest way is to write posts on Reddit. Subreddits / r / Startup and / r / Entrepreneur have a total of two hundred thousand subscribers and are willing to respond to requests to help with the evaluation of the service.

    Both beginners and already more or less experienced startupers are sitting on both subreddits, so having an idea of ​​specific goals, you can get a good conversion. The shortened version of the article on combining the main work and the side project attracted a comparable number of visits with Megamind and excellent comments from users.

    An obvious minus is the sanguine-speaking audience. Someone just does not need it, someone may have difficulties with the language.

    Various websites publishing links to startups

    We ourselves started with something similar - we found interesting projects and published a daily digest with their list. Now there is an insane amount of sites where you can add your project. In addition, there are paid services that submit the project to most of these resources for you. As a rule, all these projects are aimed at the Western market; there are not so many of them in RuNet. Offhand I will name, perhaps, .

    Most of these projects are useless. In the best case, you will get several visitors. On the other hand, adding a project takes a little time, and an extra link to your site will never hurt. Plus, practice your project description.

    Personal relationship with the authors

    Those who have not read Paul Graham’s notorious Do Things That Don't Scale essay recommend it. The basic idea is simple, but many neglect it - in the initial stages, nothing works better than an individual approach to the user. It is difficult, time consuming, but it is the best way to make a product better. We write letters to strangers, turn to friends for help and use every opportunity to find out the opinion of a particular person about the service.

    Yes, you cannot keep the same care for the user when there are too many of them. However, by that time you will already be fine.


    If I gave out the nominations to the resources described above for utility for the Cup, I think they would be distributed as follows:

    • Best Audience - Zuckerman Will Call
    • Ease of Use - Spark
    • Greatest Coverage and Potential - Megamind
    • English Audience Accessibility - Reddit

    I will probably repeat myself, but everything described is a description of our experience. Depending on your capabilities, goals and product specifics, the results may vary significantly. However, we can say with confidence - we must use every opportunity to let us know about ourselves and our project.

    In the second part of the article I plan to describe the unsuccessful experience of promotion, as well as plans for the future - what else do we want to try.

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