It is said that there are millions of apps out there vying for attention. Everyone wants to have the next big seller but it isn’t enough to just put it out there and hope for the best. Even the best products need to be backed by good marketing and distribution strategies. Apple, who know a thing or two about successful marketing, have introduced their Best New Updates section to make it easy for users to find the latest apps as well as ones they may have missed previously which certainly helps.
Companies like Apple understand the need to plan ahead when it comes to marketing and they, like anyone else, probably follow the same simple rules. Here we show you just some of the ideas you may need to draw on to successfully market your app, but your app development company may come up with a few extras themselves!
Golden rules for app marketing
- The first and most simple rule is – don’t spend your entire budget on development. You may have the best product in the world but if you’ve blown your budget no-one’s ever going to find your app. Plan your launch carefully and if necessary, pay a media and PR company to identify promotional arenas and provide information on how to improve your position in the app store. If you plan to launch in multiple countries make sure to target the applicable app stores for accurate distribution.
- Find your niche and aim your app at a specific user base. Do your research by releasing key features of the app early in development. Use the relevant app user communities to sound out initial interest. Use those who you already do business with. Utilize your existing communications like email and invoicing. Add a reference on your website to alert customers to your exciting new app.
- Use the power of mobile phone technology by adding QR or SMS codes to magazines or other media. Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp are all incredibly useful for advertising your app to as large an audience as possible. Adding a blog or chat facility can engage a potential user and draw in others by spreading interest in your app, perhaps by the use of some kind of light-hearted game or opinion canvassing.
- TV advertising, though expensive, is the fastest way to reach your target audience.
- Target carefully. For example, if you have a hotel app or a car rental app it makes sense to aim it at airports and other travel sites rather than taking a random scatter approach. Build a ‘tell a friend’ feature into your app; cross-promotion works well between business partners in the same sector. If your app uses popular payment gateways, then it’s worth hitting the providers up for a mention, or a link on their website somewhere.
- If you have your own mobile site, use it. Add an image advertising your app along with a button to download it.
- Encourage your users to rate your app. The higher rating an app achieves the more downloads it will get. Use a mobile app analytics and marketing tool like Flurry or Localytics (just two of many) to identify your user base and their preferences and create a buzz around your app.
- Finally, celebrity endorsements can’t hurt; if you think your app may interest a particular celebrity send it to them. If they like it they’ll forward it to their followers on social media, but if in doubt – don’t take the risk!
- In short, there are many different ways to go about marketing your app, but they will usually only work if you believe in the app you’re plugging. If you’re not sure your app is good enough to be endorsed, then spend time improving it before you take it to market.