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Our Software Review Methodology

Our Software Review Methodology

Indie Media Club (IMC) is a forward-thinking collective of media experts, creatives, brand managers, content marketers, publishers, producers, and distributors. We share our knowledge through our articles, podcasts, newsletters, and digital community.

When it comes to software, IMC aims to provide useful, up-to-date reviews and insights that help decision-makers compare and contrast their options. Choosing a new software tool that best matches your media publishing needs is not an easy task—not to mention narrowing down the thousands of options out there into a shortlist.

Our software reviews are designed to make this process easier by eliminating the endless research process and providing a single source of truth on all the software that media professionals might use day-to-day.

What Makes Us Qualified?

IMC’s parent company, Black & White Zebra, has been running digital publications for more than a decade. In that time, we’ve worked with 170+ professionals, researched over 2,000 software tools for different use cases, and written more than 1,000 comprehensive software reviews.

How We Test Software and What Criteria We Look For

We know that each company’s software needs are unique and depend on a variety of factors, all of which are taken into account in our stringent set of review criteria outlined below.

When considering which tools to include in our lists, our process might include any of the following:

  • Speaking with the software company directly to better understand features and functionality.
  • Reviewing demos and free trials.
  • Testing key features (which differ by software type; key features for each software type can be found directly on that page).
  • Noting key features that might be missing or not up to snuff.
  • Weighing what other users have to say (not including testimonials directly from the software company).

Here are the main criteria we use to compare and contrast each software tool:
Usability: How intuitive the software is and what resources are available to learn the tool.

  • Standout features: The quality and quantity of available features for a given plan and their usefulness for the average market use case.
  • Reporting & analytics: The ability to store and analyze data through dashboards, reports, and visualizations.
  • Integrations: Whether the tool integrates with the rest of your existing tech stack, such as calendars, CMS, databases, and communication tools.
  • Support: The level of support and resources offered for onboarding, training, engagement, and continued post-implementation success.
  • Price: Whether the price of the tool aligns with the value it offers.