After several mobile application launches on our own, reviewing some more, talking with different mobile app developers and also testing awesome services, we now have a pretty nice idea of what could be done in order to make a mobile application a real success. We have been sharing our experiences in four articles and want to answer the questions which we have got from our readers, such as:
- How could I go about presenting a new iOS mobile app?
- What could I do in order to ensure that people will be downloading my new mobile app?
This article is actually meant to teach you kind of everything we know about presenting and advertising an iPhone or iPad mobile apps. It should not be too exhaustive (at least, we are trying to do our best in order to make the articles interesting). Every mobile app is different, and so is the advertising strategy. But it is a great starting point which gives you the options which you could experiment with. So here is the first part of our terrific app advertising strategy guide. (More on mobile app marketing and professional services at reasonable prices you can find here: Applead).
Make your online presence
It is very important to set up your own online presence, which does not depend on your product. Just face it, the most part of your mobile app advertising is going to be done online, so you have to engage your potential audience on those mediums. In the given section, we are going to show you why a strong online (or mobile) presence is vital and how you can start making it right away.
Creating your own online presence is also significant as it helps you set up a following independent from your product employment or even the companies which you start. For instance, let’s say that you create a healthy following on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Perhaps you have around 30 000 followers in total.
When you present your new product, you have these 30 000 followers whom you could demonstrate your new mobile app. It might or might not lead to lots of downloads, but this is totally better than starting from nothing. Now…let’s assume your mobile application does not perform very well. Perhaps you would like to go out and find a new job, create another mobile app or even start your own company in absolutely different industry. You could make use of your own following in any future attempt.
Such people as Gary Vaynerchuk have created a huge personal brand which they could make use of in any of their new projects. Find out how you could do the same thing.
Places where you can start making a following
First, you should consider establishing your personal website. It should not be fancy, just a brief paragraph about your product, your company and a contact form will be enough. It can help your credibility as you took your time and created the whole website…and hopefully, you have your .com name domain, do you? Next, you should look for the places where you can interact with needed people.
On Facebook you may join special groups where you will meet other app developers and companies and also share experience. New groups pop up all the time, so you should take some time and find what you need. Also pay attention to setting your personal Facebook page. Yeah, it might seem a bit narcissistic, but you could always reserve this page and make it private. Use the page as a pubic place where you can share your ideas, especially in case you keep private your own Facebook account.
Then, Twitter is perhaps the next greatest place to use. Those people who will not respond to emails are going to respond to your tweets. So put your thoughts about Twitter to the side and give it a try. After that, look at such online communities as Reddit, Instagram, YouTube and Quora where you may start talking to people and making a reputation. Provide others with true value and they will follow you.
Maintain your idea
You probably think that your iPhone or iPad mobile app idea is awesome. But it would not hurt to ensure, right? You will be putting lots of your time, sums of money and efforts into creating your app. So you should be totally sure that people are actually looking for such app as yours. So the first thing to do is to determine the demand. You have to know what type of download volumes and income you may expect from this app. Try to find all the mobile apps similar to yours on the App Store. Contrary to the general opinion, having prosperous competitors can be a nice thing.
You just should not have TOO many of them. Such apps available out there show that there is a market for your product. Only you can decide whether you could make a better app, let it be slightly different or advertise it better. If there are no similar apps (or the current ones are not performing quite well), then you have to reconsider your idea.
Now when you have a list of your competitors, it is time to find out how many downloads they are having and how much income they are actually making. You may use a special platform to get estimates. Keep in mind that any download or income numbers which you receive from these platforms will be numbers basing oyn their algorithms. So it will be useful to compare a few platforms.
It does not actually matter if you are creating a seasonal mobile application, targeting a niche market or surfing a trend. You need to analyze what your competitors are doing and read users reviews about their products on the App Store. Thus you can find out what you may improve, how other mobile apps do and what is missing on the marketplace.
The easiest way to get started is read one and five star app reviews. The first can show you what people want to change – these things you should certainly do well, as your competitors do not. Then you need to examine the five-star user reviews in order to see what this product does really well. These are the things which you should do great as well, in case you want to be able to compete.
Sometimes, two and four-star app reviews can be even better as they are providing nice feedback instead of expressing their anger or love for this mobile app. Your product should differ, have an original approach. Review mining can help you find this out.
Pick up your income model
Understand how you could make money. We see two cases when you do not actually need an income model:
- You are creating an iPad or iPhone mobile app as your hobby;
- You just want to get users to cross advertise with other mobile apps.
If it is not your goal, then you have to find out where you could get income from: subscriptions, paid application, ads, in-application purchases, selling a product or service or a mix of those.
Pick up the price for your app
It relates to the previous point. You may decide that your product is free and receive income from in-application purchases. But you still need to decide how much to charge for them. In case you have a paid mobile application, then you may experiment with the price, but be careful of the image which you give to the potential audience. It is simpler to start with a high price and gradually do price drops, than suddenly increasing the price twice. The cost you may charge usually depends on your users and your product. Some people will happily buy it for $9.99, others can be reluctant to pay you over $0.99.
Pick up the right app name
Selecting the right name for any product is not that easy and mobile applications are no exception. We would recommend you to find a name which not only sounds great, but also is quite descriptive and has the main keyword. In case you have a camera application, you should find a name which suggests cameras or photography. When calling up your iOS mobile app, you will also require an “extended app name”: your mobile application name and several keywords to make it absolutely clear what the app is all about. This is significant so that the users could find it when checking out your app page.
Start advertising inside your app
App advertising does not have to be an afterthought. It will be useless to advertise a weak mobile application, and there are particular aspects which need to be considered from the very start.
The user experience of your new mobile app is vital for its future success. Your product has to be simple to use right from the very beginning (you will not get more than a few seconds of attention). Some people think that in case your mobile application requires a walk-through, then you blew it. It is probably not true, but understood. People may not use your product as you were forecasting, but you still need to do your best in order to make it simple for them to use the basic app features.
You require a stunning design of your app. If you are not a professional designer, you should hire a nice one. It, in our opinion, is probably one of the best of your investments. Your design should be coherent. It means that the various parts of your mobile application must have the same feel. Also any visual asset which you are creating (including the icon of your app) has to be consistent with the design of your application. Remember that details do matter. Such small things as sounds and the way things move are giving a general great feeling to your users and could make some difference.
3. User retention
It is the most difficult part to get right. If your iPhone or iPad mobile application is great and you advertise it right, you must get some attention. You have to be able to make your app reviewed, receive some downloads and place it in the people’s hands. Mobile app reviews and high download rates are well. Congratulations, now you have people who are interested enough to buy and download your product. And now what?
Will they use it just for 30 seconds and then leave? Will they come back to your app twice and after that never open it one more time? Or even worse, will they just uninstall your app? You cannot rely just on push notifications. The user experience and concept of your mobile app have to be such so that people continue coming back to it.
4. Share mechanisms (aspect of virality)
That is another difficult part (yeah, there are a few of them). Getting in the top charts is really difficult, but possible. But it is much more difficult to stay there. In all cases, you will need to keep on advertising your mobile application and giving it that attention which it truly deserves. You also need your users to become your advertisers. You require your users to talk about your new mobile app with their friends. You requite your users to share the content on their own.
It means that you need to find out what could be “viral” about your new mobile application which will let people share content and make great use of social media by means of Facebook. These “shareable” aspects are going to fully depend on your mobile application, and are your key to success.
5. Customer engagement and feedback
Making your users happy is essential for your mobile application’s success. Receiving good app ratings (4.5+) and positive user reviews helps to enhance the conversion on the page of your mobile application. The more your potential users see that other people like your product and are completely satisfied with it, the more chances that these users will try it out.
So you require two main things:
- An awesome mobile application;
- A useful way to deal with any issue which your users could have with your product so that you could make it much better.
In order to identify any problems which people might face with using your mobile application, you have to be easy to contact. You should not wait until some negative reviews of your app appear in order to learn about a mistake, a required feature or application crashes. Let your users reach you. Allow them to contact you from inside of the application and from the App Store page (provide them with the support URL). Allow your users contact you easily from your personal website or by means of different social media. When they reach you, you have to listen to their opinion carefully, answer and act on what they are suggesting you (or at least consider it).
Try to do your best in order to turn unhappy or unsatisfied with your app users into people who understand that there is a person behind this mobile app who may be easily contacted and who really cares about their opinion. After you have successfully dealt with a problem or request, these users are going to be happy to leave you a nice feedback. So that people could reach you directly from the mobile application, you may let them send you a tweet or an email.
Such strategy lets you do more than only getting feedback. You may invite some happy users to rate your product and you can send in-application messages for cross advertising. It is a great way to make people know about your most important mobile app news and updates (features, content) and get them come back to using your mobile application. Do not abuse it though, make your notifications really relevant.