By Oscar Waterworth April 25, 2016

How Budding Programmers Can Get Their Work Noticed

Parallel with the rising number of online tech solutions, the need for programmers is constantly growing. Today, in order to boost the information flow and workplace efficacy, almost every company needs a user-friendly website, an app or a highly optimized piece of software. In other words, never before was it easier and more lucrative to be a freelance developer.

However, what you need to know is that programming skills are not always enough to nudge your career in the right direction. After all, even the greatest skill or talent is for nothing if no one knows about it. With that in mind, we could safely assume that, in this line of work, reputation is crucial.

Just take an example of your potential customers. You don’t have to be an experienced marketer to understand that the great majority of them are laymen not interested in anything but the final result of your coding.

Precisely because of this, in order to attract and retain more customers, you need to present your business in an effective way. Here is a comprehensive guide on how to do that successfully.

Building a Solid Marketing Strategy is the Backbone of Your Business

Some studies show that only 63% of developers have a business plan. Even though you might consider this completely irrelevant for your business right now, you need to know that being talented at what you do is almost never enough for you to succeed.

On the contrary, you need to have an entire strategy worked out that would follow each and every aspect of your business development. After all, you don’t want to end up with a perfect app or piece of software that lasted only a month on the market or worse, an app that didn’t make it to market at all.

Budding Programmers

Market Research: Know Who Your Clients Are

Have you ever heard of the “Voice of the customer” phrase? Even if you did, you’re probably still uncertain of what this actually means. Well, it could be defined as the first step towards getting to know your target demographic. This simply means that, before you even start building your digital strategy, you need to always ask yourself who you’re planning to address and in what way.

The success of your market research revolves around the plethora of factors, such as psychological profiling, audience research, brand analysis, customer satisfaction research, competitor analysis, product research and database research. Additionally, if you are planning to expand your business to a new market, you should also include your new target demographics in the research, as well.

Market research is not simply about asking your customers to tell you what and what not to do.

On the contrary, it’s based on discovering who your customers are, what their occupations and interests are, why they are interested in your services, what devices they use to access your site and so on. The main idea behind all this is actually to determine how your potential clients perceive your product and how those perceptions actually influence their response to it.

Alternatively, it could be said that there are two basic types of your potential clients. Your job here is to adapt your services to their needs and expectations. First, there are individuals or companies that work in IT. Obviously, they know a lot about coding and are actively looking for expert programmers that could realize all their ideas.

Of course, the second ones are those who don’t know anything in particular about programming. As it has been already mentioned above, in either case, the only thing they expect to see is the final product of your coding services. So, never waste time on endless step-by-step explanations of how the mere process of programming works. Just show them how they could possibly benefit from such practices.

Build a Content Creation Strategy

Since its astounding growth several years ago, content marketing has become Mecca for both small businesses and large corporations. After all, there is a huge possibility that, as a developer, you’ve had an opportunity to work with a group of content marketers.

However, what you didn’t know is that content marketing could be of an immense importance in the world of coding, as well. For you, this is a great chance to expand your business, enhance sales and drive traffic to your site.

What you also have to know is that promoting programming services is always two-fold. A valid digital strategy is based upon giving your online presence a significant boost and this can be done in several ways.

The most notable method for achieving this is using multiple channels to access your client base. People react differently to messages conveyed through different mediums and it is your goal to harness the enormous potential behind this truth.

Here are the steps to building an effective content strategy:

  • Provide industry-relevant content
  • Always choose quality over quantity
  • Post your content on a regular basis
  • Share your blog posts via online channels
  • Create content based on popular keywords in your industry, such as “website developer” or “mobile app programming”
  • Make an editorial calendar that will help you remain consistent with your content creation efforts
  • Measure your content marketing campaign in order to see its progress

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A User-Friendly Website Equals Better Serp

Online presence is an invaluable part of any successful marketing campaign and it heavily rests on one’s website. The first thing you would need is a killer website since it is your both first and last line of defense. Still, this is a topic for another time and the one that you have probably worked your way through.

What you actually need to pay attention to is the mere optimization of pages. While doing so, always remember that simplicity, user-friendliness, speed and clarity play a crucial role when it comes to customer conversion.

In order to help you survive in the world of SEO, we created a brief guide of things you need to always keep in mind. What’s so great about them is that, apart from helping your work to get noticed, those skills will also help you contribute to every website you develop in the future.

Page Loading

Numerous reports say that 40% of people will abandon a web page if it takes more than three seconds to load. Therefore, this is something you need to test and prevent on time. The simplest way to avoid this problem is to pay special attention to your page’s image optimization. You should always avoid files, photos or animations that are larger than 400Kb.

Also, if a smaller version of a big photo needs to be displayed, you need to create thumb images. However, you need to be warned never to shorten the image by changing its width and height attributes since this can disfigure it and thus significantly hurt its quality.

Resort to Cache Files

Namely, if your site needs to load massive data from your database, it is likely that the pages will load rather slowly due to the excess server requests. Cache is a method according to which the content from database is taken and written to a file in dependence on how frequent it gets updated. All users need to do is make a request to see it.

Keep URLs short

It is generally known that search engine-friendly URLs improve clickability and help search engines crawl web pages much faster. Given the fact that search engines index pages based on the URL, it is highly likely that you’ll get friendly indexed faster. Also, remember that shorter URLs are simpler to link, meaning that search engines will have an easier time crawling and ranking the site.

Build for Analytics

What you should do is find out what analytics package your clients are using. Simply include the adequate code from the very beginning. For example, if you’re building an online store website, you should put an e-commerce tracking code. Your clients will appreciate this a lot.

Build for Maintenance

This is actually pretty important. Like it or not, your client will once wish to add a press release, modify a title tag or even have some other editorial ideas. So, make sure they can make any changes in the life of the site.

Why Your Work is The Best

The next thing that deserves your full and undivided attention is the idea of product placement and promotion. Now, this is something quite individual, meaning that different types of developers need to focus on different things.

Still, there are some general rules that most people in this industry find to be of assistance.

App Store Optimization Equals Organic Traffic

App developers undoubtedly know how important App Store Optimization is. It’s practically the holy grail of organic traffic. Also, it is undeniable that the majority of downloads come from the basic App store search, ensuring that your app is among the first choices presented to users. In addition to this, the recent research by Forester says that 63% of apps are discovered through app store searches.

There are some fundamental factors that may impact your App store optimization:

  • Title. The keyword placed in the title plays an immensely important role in the search traffic. Once your app starts ranking higher and getting more reviews, the news about it will start spreading. Precisely because of this, once you come up with a killer title, you shouldn’t change it.
  • Keywords. To improve your search rankings, you need to know which keywords are relevant and used most often by your target audience. The most effective way to do that is, of course, conducting competitor analysis.
  • The total number of downloads. Even though you don’t have a full control over them, the number of app downloads is extremely important for your ASO.
  • Ratings and reviews are difficult to control. But, there is a way to encourage happy users to rate and review your product.

Budding Programmers

Mobile App Developers

With the rising number of mobile apps in app stores, user selection is at an all-time high. At the same time, app development is becoming more challenging and developers find it extremely difficult to attract and retain users effectively. This is the reason why more than 70% of developers are distressed by today’s state of app marketing.

What Can Your App REALLY Do?

When it comes to marketing your work, the key thing is that, once you start distributing your software, you become an advertiser. During your product promotion, you should tell a potential user what your product can do. However, it’s always important to tell the truth. Misleading statements or even the omission of certain details could repel your users and set you in legal hot water.

If you decide to make some objective statements about your app, you need solid proof to back them up before you start distributing. According to the law, this is called “competent and reliable evidence.” So, if you say your app might benefit your users’ health or safety, you need to prove this. For example, the FTC fined two app developers who falsely claimed that their smartphone app could treat acne successfully.

“Smartphones make our lives easier in countless ways, but unfortunately, when it comes to curing acne, there's no app for that,” stated FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz.

Streamline Users’ Options

Giving your clients more options is always a positive thing. With this in mind, any possibility of customization like privacy settings or opt-outs is highly appreciated. Additionally, this gives your users more control over privacy of their personal information online, which will only further enhance trust between them and your app.

Even though some of these things are seemingly not that important (in fact, most of these options are solely aesthetical), you would be surprised at just how much of a difference this illusion of choice can make.

Additionally, by honoring the choices of users you will just further improve the standings of your app in their eyes and get an edge on your competitors.

Keep User Data Secure

Just to be clear, any privacy promises that your company makes should be Alpha and Omega, the cornerstone of your doing business. We already mentioned just how crucial the reputation is in your line of work, and nothing can run your company’s reputation into ground faster than compromised data security.

First thing first, don’t be greedy with information.

Sure, understanding your clients is important but never ask them more than you absolutely need to know. They say that curiosity has killed the cat and it can do pretty much the same thing with your career. Once you no longer need given data, the safest way to deal with it is to delete it for good.

Game DevelopersBudding Programmer

In the early 21st century, video gaming development is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. Now, our world is going more and more mobile by the hour.

According to Statista, by 2017, there will be approximately is 4,77 billion mobile users in the world, which is almost two thirds of mankind. Given these two facts, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out how game apps are going to be the next big thing in the world of programming.

Similarly to any other app, these game apps need to be marketed in an adequate way. This means that apart from all the details mentioned above, such as user-friendliness and the ease of use, you should also focus on the sole promotion of your game. Namely, the game itself builds the basis on which all the other marketing practices are built upon.

First, emphasize the quality of the game itself. For example, take into consideration if the game is interesting enough for the people who play it. Also, ask yourself whether people who are into this particular genre interested in the game.

When it comes to the sole promotion, it can be conducted in the myriad of ways. For example, you could promote it on your website or blog. Another solution is video marketing, such as gif creation, trailer creation or video editing software. Finally, you need to keep the distribution of the game in mind. Here are some aspects you need to meet:

  • Is the game accessible through social networks, special events, and projects?
  • Is it easy to buy?
  • Is it available in the stores your target customers prefer?

Conclusions

Finally, doing fine work is just a half of a job done. Letting others know about it is the other half. In an ideal world, your expertise would be enough on its own, but unfortunately, more often than not your reputation will need a little push in the right direction.

Luckily, with the right marketing strategy endorsed by a sound website, this should pose no problem whatsoever. There are some industry specific tricks of the trade in every line of work, however keeping things clean, simple and trying to keep to your word as much as you can always helps.

Most importantly, as the industry around you evolves, you must be willing to adapt to it. Remember that you are there to make profit, as well as to make name for yourself so don’t cling to outdated trends out of nostalgia and always look for ways to improve!

About the author

    Oscar Waterworth

    Oscar is a writer from Sydney. He enjoys discovering new technologies, testing hardware and reading about the latest developments in the fields of software, IoT, big data, etc. He is also a regular author at bizzmarkblog.com.