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Amazon Web Services wants to keep its partners — like software makers — happy. That way, everyone will keep making their wares available on Amazon’s cloud infrastructure.

So yesterday Amazon made a move that could appease those software vendors. It will now provide tools, free of charge, that will help those vendors contact people who use software available on the Amazon cloud’s AWS Marketplace.

Once software vendors sign up, they can create customized emails to send to users when they first start, when a new version of the software hits, and when usage drops off, according to a blog post from AWS chief evangelist Jeff Barr.

Marketers and salespeople at software companies love engaging with people who could turn into big paying customers. And that’s why the new features could be quite welcome to software makers.

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What’s more, the move shows where cloud providers with application marketplaces could be heading. IBM introduced a cloud marketplace last month, following similar moves from Hewlett-Packard and Rackspace, among others. If the new features pay off and keep software companies sticking around on Amazon, cloud providers maintaining marketplaces would be wise to follow Amazon’s lead — or devise their own incentives.

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