Getting media coverage for your app or startup can be a pain in the neck. It requires a lot of research, plenty of hobnobbing with journalists and bloggers, and too much heartbreak: All that relationship building could be for naught as the publication might on a whim decide that your app is too boring.
Peterpings, a new web app that launched yesterday, promises to make getting press coverage a lot earlier. Developed by Jon Yongfook’s 24-12, the same Singapore company behind online marketplace Tinytrunk and fashion social network #OOTDX, Peterpings lets users craft an email from a template, and at a click of a button, ‘ping’ all 170 websites at one go.
It’s not just email: The website’s contact list contains online forms, Twitter handles, and more. It covers the who’s who of tech publications like Mashable, Business Insider, TechCrunch, LifeHacker, and Wired.
The site’s interface is intuitive and simple to use, but for now only works with Apple’s App Store:
While Peterpings is free to sign up for, you’ll have to pay to send out notifications. The site is offering a one-off New Year promotion of USD39 per blast, with a regular pricing of USD80 for a one-off ping, USD150 for three, and USD450 for ten (pricing details).
The idea is novel, and for what it offers, certainly sounds like a good deal. However, it remains to be seen how effective this by-the-numbers approach will be.
Prominent sites like TechCrunch, for example, probably receive hundreds of pitches on any given day. What’s the chance that a TechCrunch editor will respond to a random email from an obscure app developer? Where Peterpings might have a greater chance of success would be among small tech blogs, where email inboxes are not as full.
So, while Peterpings might not be so great for unknown app developers, it could be useful for the trendsetters of the software world, in other words, apps with actual brand name recognition and traction. Examples would be your Flipboards, Snapchats, and Pinterests.
I can imagine a PR professional from one of these companies using the tool to send out email blasts. More likely than not, media sites will lap up any significant news they find from the bigger players.
But what if you’re an upstart app developer or startup still trying to develop a name for yourself?
Peterpings may still be useful as a complementary tool to get the word out about an app launch, but your best bet is still the painful one: Hobnob with journalists, and really get to know them. And make sure your product doesn’t suck.