How To Market Your App In 12 Simple Steps
You have a great app that is ready to be released but how do you get people to actually download it? Marketing your app is just as important as building an efficient and easy to use app. With over one million apps available for purchase, consumers have a wide variety of options.
How do you plan to make your app stand out amongst the rest? Simply creating a great app isn’t enough. Everpix is the perfect example of how a great app can go bust without the right marketing. Perhaps you’ve never heard of Everpix; that’s because they forgot the importance of marketing.
Everpix was a photo storage app that offered users a way to easily store and manage their photos. Experts believed Everpix could easily surpass Dropbox and Flickr in popularity. There was only one issue, Everpix spent nearly every last dime on product innovation and largely forgot about marketing. Everpix has since closed its doors, surprising many that greatly enjoyed the app.
Finding the best ways to market your app takes some time, as well as trial and error. With enough effort your company’s app doesn’t have to go out like Everpix. These 12 tips and tricks for promoting your app will help make your life easier and your app more popular.
12 Tips For Successful App Marketing
1. Make Sure Your App Is Optimized For The App Store
When you create content for your website you optimize it so that it ranks on search engines. This same tactic must be applied to your app. Your app needs to include the appropriate keywords so that it comes up when people search for relevant buzzwords. Everything from the title of your app to the app description will help you rank on the app store search engine. If nothing comes up when users search for your app, or something relevant, you are in big trouble as far as collecting downloads goes. This is why app store optimization is a very important component of the overall app development process.
2. Hone In On Your Niche
What niche does you app serve, or rather what group of people is most likely to benefit from your service? There are two ways you can stand out against the competition, you can create something that no one else offers, or you can create a different version of something and target it to a specific group of people. For instance, the popular bulk-messaging app QUAD has a lot of competition with WhatsApp and other messaging platforms. In order to get ahead, QUAD focused on marketing to a very specific group of people, college students who spend a lot of time sending bulk group messages. This gives QUAD the leg up on the competition within this sector of the market. If they had simply come out as a message app for everyone the results might not have been so favorable.
3. Incorporate Social Sharing Buttons
One of the best ways to grow the popularity of your app is through word of mouth, but first you have to give people something worth sharing. Offer tempting share buttons that allow users to show off their progress, purchases, or whatever else. No matter what type of app you have (gaming, shopping, traveling, etc.) there is always something worth sharing if you design your app just right. Remember, people aren’t going to share just anything. Users are picky about what gets posted to their Facebook or Twitter, so make sure the share buttons are appropriately placed. Users are far more likely to share something that directly relates to themselves and their own success as opposed to something that only relates to your company.
4. Create A Website For Your App
Create a brief website with one or two pages highlighting the core components of your app. This gives you a chance to be discovered on web searches. There are plenty of people out there searching for things like ‘great food delivery apps,’ and you can show up by using the right keywords. Creating a site for your app also gives you the chance to fully describe your app and all that it has to offer without the limitations imposed by the app download page.
Your microsite should offer instant download buttons so that users can easily download the app from any device. You can also employ your site as a tease by publishing a couple months prior to the app release date. This gives you a chance to estimate overall interest and collect emails of interested users.
5. Make Frequent Updates To Your App
Once you release your initial app there is still a lot of work to be done. Even apps with huge budgets encounter glitches post-release date, the important thing is that you are actively making changes to reduce glitches and improve overall user experience. When your app is originally released take note of feedback and use this to add new elements and features your target audience is asking for.
6. Use Social Media To Promote Your App
Find creative ways to promote your app a couple times a week via social media. Offer promotional codes, contests and other interactive deals in order to spark interest and promote action.
7. Create Your Own Press
Reach out to local news stations, bloggers and other journalists that address your target audience. The more media you can get interested in your app the more public attention it will receive. In order to do so it’s important to come up with an appealing angle that prompts people to take action. App review sites are another form of publicity that can earn your app a lot of extra attention. Reach out to these sites, a few of which include AppAdvice, 148Apps and AppStoreApps.
8. Apply For App Awards
There are a number of awards given out to the best apps in different categories. No one is going to call you out for nominating yourself. If you win you will be rewarded with plenty of free publicity, and bragging rights!
9. Recruit Users
Actively seek out users for your app through local colleges, art groups or other institutions where your target audience hangs out. Many may decline your offer, but there are plenty others happy to try out something new, especially when personally asked to do so. This offers you a great source of honest feedback while also promoting word of mouth.
10. Find Relevant, Popular Social Media Pages
Look for Facebook, Instagram or Twitter accounts with 100k+ followers that are directly related to your app. Reach out to these accounts in order to strike a deal and spread the word about your app. Popular social media accounts focused on fashion, technology, food or anything else are constantly seeking new things to share with their audiences to keep them engaged. If your app truly offers something special more than a few popular social media accounts will be willing to share.
11. Catchy Slogans Are A Must
Your app needs a catchy title and phrase that you can use to promote it. The slogan needs to address what the app does in only a few words. It will take time and collaboration to come up with an impactful phrase, but it is well worth the effort. (Read more)
12. Buy Banners On Relevant Sites
Find relevant sites that get a substantial amount of traffic and see if you can buy a banner to advertise to their traffic. Just make sure your banner is catchy enough to attract high click through and conversion rates.
What Makes A Great App?
Good marketing will make the difference between a popular app and a largely forgotten app, but all the marketing in the world can’t help an app that no one needs or appreciates. Here are a few features all great apps include:
Unique Features: People need a reason to download your app, by offering the same exact thing as everyone else you are going to quickly lose attention. Your app can offer something similar to other platforms but it needs at least one stand-alone component users can’t find elsewhere.
Compelling Background Story: What’s the story behind your app? Depending on the purpose of your app this story will greatly differ. Everything from a health food app to a game app needs a story in order to pull people in. It’s proven that a background story helps people develop a deeper connection with your app, building brand loyalty.
Superior User Experience: Is it easy for people to figure out how to use your app? User experience is how people interact with your app, and the overall experience they encounter as they try to use it for its intended purpose. If users struggle to figure out how to use the app or don’t get what they are seeking, chances are they will simply delete it from their device. On the other hand, you can create an app that is similar to other apps, such as a messaging app, but if you offer a better user experience you have a chance to surpass the already established competition.
Conduct research to find out how people interact with your app so that you may make the necessary changes. You should also rely on reviews to make changes that improve user experience.
Great App + Great Marketing = Success
There are over 2,000 apps released every single day, all of which are competing with you for the top ranked positions on the App store. Everyone thinks their app is the next big thing, but very few apps actually make it into the big leagues.
One of the grandest misconceptions is that simply building a cool app is the key to success, but it takes more than that to become the next Snap Chat. Getting the word out about your product is the only way to gain popularity. Marketing your app is an ongoing adventure, but with proper planning and implementation it’s well worth every step along the way.