When they write the description of their software for its MacUpdate.com post, why do so many developers refuse to explain HOW it works? How it does what it does is the most important characteristic of any app, and it’s what sets it apart from all other such software. Literally everyone wants to know HOW a product functions before they’ll consider buying it, and this applies equally for people considering whether to download and test drive freeware, too. But some devs seem to purposely craft application descriptions that fancifully illustrate WHAT they do without indicating HOW they do it. In their effort to interest consumers in their products, they happily employ the most stale and off-putting marketing-speak ad nauseam, in some cases while forgetting or ignoring that the opening in the marketplace that inspired them to create their app was caused by the market failure of a competing developer who used the same kind of obfuscating boilerplate marketing — because consumers hate having to go to the developer’s website or download and test an app just to lean how it works and whether it meets their needs. For instance, this one’s been listed all day long, but by midnight it had been downloaded only 86 times despite that it’s free. Why? Because there are dozens of other apps on MacUpdate that show and hide hidden files, mostly for free, and when looking for one that works a certain way (perhaps as a toggle switch, or from a menubar item), it’s a waste of time to download and try all the ones that can’t immediately be determined to meet your needs because they give no description, give a dreamy but meaningless bullsh1t marketing description (like this one), or simply make no sense (like this one).
Believe it or not, I try to take the developers’ perspective about this, but that just deepens the mystery because there’s no shortage of examples of how clear, concise, nonmarketing-speak information about HOW an app works (especially a new one) almost always does more to sell it than any other marketing factor except price. Yet software developers commonly write multi-paragraph app descriptions that do everything except describe how their apps work.
Other major marketing mistakes illustrated here but commonly made by both native and non-native English-speaking developers are the use of unintelligible phrases, back-to-back dichotomous sentences, or counterproductive ideas about the product. Even in the developing world, it’s not hard to find a fluent or native English speaker to copyedit short marketing materials, even for free. But this site is replete with developers who anguish over every line of code but make only minimal effort to write or edit the few paragraphs that will have far more impact on their app’s success than its UI or functionality, opting instead to copy verbatim the halfassed, cheesy or nonsensical dreck from other failed developers’ MacUpdate app descriptions. It’s sad to see.