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Marketing first: how to sell a developing product. Aurigma’s experience.

Do you know how the conventional cycle of production and marketing works? Exactly like this: production goes first, then marketing hits the stage. But not necessarily, Aurigma’s marketers say. Although it sounds jaw-dropping, the fact is Aurigma sells features yet to be developed in future releases! Well, these guys know how to sell – that was our first thought, so without hesitation, we invited Fedor Skvortsov, the CEO of Aurigma, and Alex Kozyavkin, the head of marketing, to share their fantastic experience.

Creation of USPs, constant website revision, SEO optimization, expert blog posts and creation of case studies, email marketing, upselling to active customers, tracking of competitors and differentiating from them, social media maintenance, and a whole lot of other tools all aimed at selling a product or a service. This is what marketing does, right? You need to sell your best product or service. How about selling something that’s just a few iterations away from development? “Piece of cake!”, replies Alex Kozyavkin from Aurigma.  “If that’s exactly what a customer is looking for and there’s no such thing on the market”.

Aurigma and Palex Group work in different industries, let alone the fact that we sell services while they sell products. Nevertheless, we have a lot in common. We both work in B2B, and our customers are mostly from Europe and the US. We both have our headquarters in Tomsk and a representative office in Virginia, USA. However, these guys banked on marketing way before we did, and by now they have gathered a bunch of insights. The fact that a production team is basically a part of a marketing team in Aurigma is quite a phenomenon in business, and worth studying.

While miracles and good luck are not uncommon in business, they tend to go to those who work hard and follow the right path. To get 10-15 requests a day, the guys had to go a long way using all the aforementioned strategies. They shared some of the insights gained on the way. 

  1. Aurigma’s product is unique, and over the years they have found more opportunities for monetization and development.
  2. They audit their website once in 1-2 years to fit ever-changing search engine policies.
  3. Since 2014 Aurigma have invested in content marketing, having used up all the hot subjects that attract traffic. Further development of this tool would have demanded far more resources that would not necessarily pay off. So they have put this activity on hold, and now they are reaping the benefits of the previous work.
  4. Email marketing and upselling are less active today than they once were.
  5. SEO is a long game, while AdWords works right here and right now, providing stable traffic.
  6. Aurigma is one of a few IT companies from Tomsk which knows what’s what in international industrial exhibitions. In 2019 the guys took a promotional road trip in the US that ended up in many potential contracts. However, the exhibition itself is just a small and enjoyable part of the work. The largest part of it is long hours of preparation and the processing of contacts afterward.
  7. Printed media, having seemingly fallen into oblivion, is still quite a tool for Aurigma due to the field of business. That’s why there is a PR specialist in Aurigma dealing with editors on a daily basis. “It’s vital to make a name in the industry and stay in touch to get the chance of a free placement in the expert columns and articles”, says Alex.

 Probably the most acute issues both in Palex and Aurigma are marketing budget and the time zone difference that sometimes is more than 12 hours. The main thing about the budget is that there is one. But equally important is whether you are investing this budget correctly. This is the main issue for all our guests. During the previous session, Dmitry Bubnov from ENBISYS told us about such paid channels as LinkedIn, Clutch.co, SEO, and in-house education of employees. Aurigma on the other hand have found their basic source of traffic and leads in AdWords. The problem of time zones was solved with the introduction of night shifts. Luckily the demand for night shifts in Tomsk is high since there are more “night owls” than there are night jobs. Selling and technical support at night is quite a thing in Tomsk, so we were really interested in this solution.

This session of experience exchange has sparked interest not only in the marketing department of Palex but also in account managers, translators, and many others who lack personal communication in the online era. We would like to thank Fedor and Alex for their transparency and willingness to share their knowledge and experience!

While this article was being prepared for publication, Palex was sharing its knowledge and experience with the students participating in the annual international competition organized by Enactus. But that’s another story! Stay tuned!