Why Subscribe to Softletter Today?
A Letter from the Editor
More than a thousand senior PC software executives—your friends and competitors—read a monthly insider's newsletter called Softletter. Like you, these are busy people whose desks are buried in trade publications, web-based research reports, and urgent E-mail correspondence.
Yet when notification of the latest issue of Softletter arrives in their E-mail in-box, a curious thing happens: These busy managers push the rest of their activities aside. They access the newsletter and immediately check to see what Softletter says about the business of running a software company.
In a way, this sense of urgency is a bit mysterious. Softletter doesn't publish juicy gossip. Its front page isn't filled with scoops about the latest lawsuits and technology hula-hoops.
In fact, much of what Softletter covers (let's be honest about this) is pretty esoteric stuff: technical articles about financial ratios, new marketing tactics, customer support, price tests, productivity metrics, behind-the-scenes looks at mergers and acquisitions, and the like.
But of course this stuff isn't boring if you happen to run a software company. To a serious software entrepreneur, Softletter's statistics and nitty-gritty details are vital.
Which brings me to the point of this letter.
If you're not currently a Softletter subscriber, we'd like a few moments of your time to tell you what you're missing. And in return, we're going to make you one of those notorious offers you can't refuse:
Sign up for Softletter today and you'll get 12 issues loaded with information you can use to boost revenues, profits, and productivity…for just $399.
Plus...you'll receive a free copy of the The Product Marketing Handbook for Software, 5th Edition (due in November), at over 700 pages the most comprehensive guide to successfully launching and sustaining a software company. A $70 value!
Plus…we'll give you subscriber-only password access to the Softletter Archives, where you'll find more than a 1500 reports, interviews, charts, checklists, and other valuable resources on virtually every aspect of running a software company.
Plus...you'll have subscriber-only password access to new material, checklists, templates, and other resources on our newly redesigned website.
And, to make this offer even harder to turn down-we'll give you an unconditional, 100% satisfaction guarantee.
Now let's talk about what you can expect from the newsletter itself:
Performance Benchmarks You Can Trust
As a subscriber, you'll get dozens of benchmarking studies every year on financial ratios, executive compensation, online marketing trends, tech support costs, growth rates, employee productivity, and other key business metrics—the data you need to measure and fine-tune virtually every aspect of your operations.
And this is data you can trust. For 25 years the industry's best-managed companies have relied on Softletter to help them track virtually every aspect of their operations, from the board room to the shipping department. And because of our reputation for reliability, Softletter statistics regularly show up in business plans, in executive presentations, even in courtroom testimony.
In addition to these major surveys, your Softletter subscription will bring you dozens of shorter statistical reports. How do your Web sales compare to the latest trends? Are you charging enough for shipping & handling? Are you collecting receivables as fast as the competition? We have the answers to questions like these—answers that can help you stay profitable when everyone else's margins are collapsing.
An Executive's Toolkit of Invaluable Advice and Insight
Of course, you can't run a company by the numbers alone. So we also bring you expert tips and insights from our network of industry consultants, veteran managers, and strategists. You'll hear about how to improve your lead generation programs. How to market services more effectively. How to forecast new product sales, create powerful communities of customers, tech support hold times, optimize your social marketing campaigns, and measure public relations results.
In fact, you might think of these interviews and tips as part of a "manager's toolkit"—a collection of practical ideas you can use to get better results or even shake up your organization.
And because a manager's toolkit should be crammed with lots of resources, we've created an online knowledgebase for the exclusive use of our subscribers. As soon as you place your subscription order, we'll send you a personal password that unlocks more than a 1500 Softletter interviews, charts, and reports on the Softletter Web site, carefully summarized and retrievable by direct access and via our new archive search engine.
A Sneak Preview of the Future
Softletter is widely respected for its insightful trend analysis. We keep an eye on emerging business models. We explore innovative marketing concepts, technology trends, and pricing movements. We look for unexpected market competition.
For example, Softletter has led the industry on analyzing the rise of the Software as a Service (SaaS) model after the ASP collapse of the 1999-2001 time frame. Softletter now provides SaaS performance benchmarks and best practices data you can't obtain from any other industry source (and we include organizations such as Forrester and Gartner). We've paid close attention to the impact of Cloud computing on software companies (and have at times been unimpressed by all the hype). We're keeping a close eye on how recent accounting changes are impacting revenue recognition practices and legal liability. We've collected definitive data on software marketing programs, effective uses of Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media systems. We track and report on OEM trends and best practices, aligning marketing and sales, and the use of "Agile" programming methodologies in your R&D. And we're constantly analyzing the the latest trends in venture finance and company valuations.
Softletter doesn't just write about hypothetical "big picture" trends, either. We go behind the scenes to interview key innovators about real costs, tangible results, and pitfalls. So you can make an informed judgment about how new trends will impact your future.
Help with problems you can't always share
Often, running a company can be a remarkably lonely job. You probably don't have many people around who can advise you about such sensitive issues as personal leadership style, turnaround tactics, or negotiations with your outside investors.
But Softletter does discuss these issues—often, through the eyes of the entrepreneurs themselves. We talk about success and burnout. About making tough decisions. About handling the tough tradeoffs and politics that prevail in every organization. And our new Softletter online forums allow you to communicate your experiences and ask questions of your peers in a secure and "quiet" environment.
And we don't allow our experts to say "it depends" when we ask about important legal or human resources questions. We identify action points, risks, and costs in a concise, hard-nosed way you'll find refreshing (if not amazing).
That's just a quick overview of what your Softletter subscription will bring you twice a month, 24 issues a year. Research, expert advice, market intelligence, management insights—whatever you're looking for, chances are you'll find it somewhere in the pages of Softletter.
If Softletter sounds like the kind of newsletter you should be reading regularly, why miss out? Simply click here and subscribe today. You'll gain immediate access to all issues and we'll send you your free copy of The Product Marketing Handbook for Software. If you're not satisfied, we'll refund the subscription cost of Softletter and you can keep your copy of the Handbook.
Join more than a thousand software entrepreneurs who rely on Softletter for the information they need to succeed in one of the world's most challenging and dynamic businesses.
Merrill R. (Rick) Chapman
Managing editor and publisher