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Tag Archives: marketing

Still going here 🙂

So pretty much most of the coding is done and now the problem is attracting visitors:

  • I’m thinking of using Adwords but don’t know how effective it will be or how much I can spend.
  • I’ll try to place posters around my local Universities (there’s around 4 or 5 at least)
  • On the front page of the website I’ll put the most recently joined user profiles.
  • I’ll need to re-engineer the elevator pitch a bit.
  • As for the color theme, I WILL change it if I get many complaints about it, otherwise I’ll probably waste too much time changing the color theme. Yeah, CSS and logo-redesign is a pain 🙂 especially when there’s so much else to do.

I think the 3rd point is incredibly important but so are the others.


Here is a quick summary of the progress towards launch day (scheduled for the 28th Australian Eastern). The local time is currently 5:05AM on the 26th July 2008.

The concept is simple. The website is a language exchange profiles site. In other words, a penpal site.

The name and domain name of the website will be released on launch day.

I just signed up to Media Temple Dedicated Virtual hosting (dv), and I’m paying by the month because I can’t afford to pay upfront for a whole year. I did say I was going to sign up to the Grid (gs) plan, but giving it A LOT OF thought, I decided I’d just go straight to Media Temple’s Dedicated-Virtual (dv) plan for $50USD a month. The web application is custom built in PHP using the CakePHP framework, and it’s a user profile website – that combination seemed very unsuitable for the Grid plan due to guesstimated resource usage (it’s very difficult to actually estimate). What’s more, bugs are to be expected in the coding and it’s not unlikely that the web application will be a resource eater until the bugs are addressed. If I were on the Grid and started eating up resources it could qualify as resource abuse. However if I ran a blog or a personal website, I’d host it on the Grid, definately. More information on hosting later. I am currently familizaring myself with the (dv) control panel. It looks clean and beautiful.

I’m a newbie in marketing so I’ve been rather unprepared the whole way long. I have been researching Google Adwords as well as guerilla marketing methods. The idea is to clearly project to others what the website is about and inject passion into it. That should be no problem because I’m already passionate about language learning (currently learning German). Deutsch zu schreiben und sprechen gefaellt mir schwer aber ich lerne gerne 😉

Obviously there are many other penpal sites out there. One thing that I did not research when deciding to develop the penpal site was how many there are already on the market! Unfortunately, I only figured this out just a month or two ago. It’s going to be near impossible to compete (I believe), but having put hundreds of hours (maybe over 1000), it would be a huge waste not to try anyway.

Also, I’ve had to change the focus of the website several times in the past month, in order to differentiate against other penpal sites. Will it be enough? Only time will tell.

I know I’m being rather vague, but that’s deliberate 🙂 You’ll see the website on launch day.

Graphic design was done (and is still being done) in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop and Fireworks. I previously finished the logo but now I need to change it again because of a last minute change website name!

The site is pretty simple looking (and also simple in general).

Due to limited resources (there’s only 1 person on the project, me) the website is very simple and is not feature packed. I think I’ve covered all the basic features, though.

There are many bugs I still have to fix, and a few features to put in! So I better get to it!

As always, more info coming…

Wow – there’s still so many things to do until the website becomes ready. Can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel yet. But hopefully it’ll come soon.

FYI, the site I’m developing is actually a user profiles website … kind of like a dating website but it has nothing to do with dating. And like I said before, it’s quite simple.

The depressing thing is, the closer I get to the launch date, the more I feel that I haven’t actually carved a niche to gain a foothold in. But still, I’m hell bent on finishing this project 🙂

Anyway, you might be interested in taking a look at my SVN (subversion) commits –

svn commits

svn commits

As you can see the most commits I did was 19 on the 28th of June. And I only began using the SVN repository on the 16th of June although I had been working on an off in the previous months before that. SVN is an indespensible tool in a team environment, and even if you’re working alone (like me), it helps that you can access the latest version of the project on any computer, and it’s also a good source of backup and you get to compare pieces of code across different versions of your software.

Although I’ve still got a lot of coding still to do, I have been thinking of some form of offline “guerilla marketing” like making little stickers and sticking them in random places in my University. The stickers themselves would not reveal much about the site, in an attempt to appeal to the audience’s curiosity. That may or may not work, I don’t know. Finally, I’m not unaware of the legal implications of this sort of advertising so I had better tread carefully.