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It may seem to a novice that the marketing of a mobile application consists of buying traffic and a couple of reviews in specialized editions. Then the app gets into the top, the traffic flows like water, and the owner counts the revenue. But in reality, it is much more complicated. In this article, I will briefly describe all the main stages of mobile promotion – I will conduct a course of a young fighter, 43 checked up marketing tips on mobile development.
Use cross-promotion in related categories
Mobile applications will benefit from multi-brand promotions with a similar target audience. During the promotion, projects become equal partners, which are united by common advertising budgets or goals.
Replace “Run Soon” with “Add to Waiting List”
Often developers first launch an application only for one operating system and then develop it for another. When you see the “Soon Launch” button, you may forget about your application by the time of the presentation. Try to add the entry form to the waiting list for iOS to the landing page when launching the application, for example, on Android. By the time the app is launched on iOS, you will have a lead database.
Make a preliminary PR using competitor analysis
PR is one of the tools of the preliminary stage of promotion. Do research on who and what articles have published about your competitors. Then send a comparative analysis of your product and competitors to these publications and/or journalists and show them your chips. You may be interested in the editorial team and get involved at an early stage of the application launch.
Run a domino effect
Make sure that at least one known edition reviews your application. Then use the publication to get more free reviews.
Get at least five reviews
Collect at least five ratings to rate the updated version of the application. The cost of engaging the user is reduced when the application has high ratings. How to get these grades? To run each version with a five-star rating, call your family. Seriously – ask friends and family to try the app and leave a review.
Get a featuring in the app stores
Featuring is getting into the collection of the best apps from AppStore or Google Play. Networking is a reliable way to promote the product in the list of recommended applications from the store. Participate in industry-specific events and network with industry experts. LinkedIn and cold emails can work too.
Implement the latest app store requirements to get into the recommendations
Maintain a good working relationship with your category manager on the AppStore and Google Play. And be sure to be interested in the plans and technologies of platform development. This way, you will know which features and chips of the application should be paid attention to in the first place. So, you will be able to get a better chance to get into the recommended ones.
Use mutual advertising to promote the application
If you’re starting from scratch and with a minimal budget, do it creatively and talk to everyone you know. Find out whether it is possible to work on barter – you advertise the partners’ application, and they respectively promote yours. If you have compiled a database of first users, find out what they like in your application and maximize this feature.
Use communities like Product Hunt and Hacker News
If there is a problem, then there are users who discuss it. You may find that these issues have been addressed by users on StackOverflow and Hacker-News, for example. In addition, if one of the opinion leaders gets involved in the discussion of your product on Product Hunt, it will attract the attention of others, and you will be able to count on a certain number of views and new users. Find your customers’ communities, communicate with them more and feel free to attract users from forums and blogs.
Before launching the product, test the application in one region
If your application is not geo-referenced, try testing it on a smaller market. For example, U.S. startups often present products first for Australia or New Zealand. Soft launch – bringing a product to a limited segment with no advertising costs, so you can learn how users react. In addition to the information received from the soft lunch, you will still be able to get the featuring on the market. So, the launch will be smooth and will help to improve the product.
Run video ads
The video works very well. And bids for static ads are significantly different from bids on video ads for Facebook or Instagram.
Implement SEO for applications
Search engines are a powerful market research tool. Along with ASO, still consider SEO. Even if you don’t have a website, optimize your landing page. ASO (App Store Optimization) – optimization of mobile applications to increase the position of the application in the ranking of stores on key requests, as well as the growth of organic installations after viewing the application page.
Find Mobile Moments
Mobile Moments – actions or events that are more successful in a mobile application than in a desktop version of the product.
Give users more useful information before downloading
One of the main tricks is to increase the amount of useful information. For example, the user wants to find a good restaurant and chooses which restaurant guide to download. An advantage will be given to an application that convenient on a smartphone. Will provide more content (photos, reviews, and so on).
Do not wind up the application settings
Many developers spend millions on paid installations, but they are useless users – they will go away. You just throw away the money. Many developers lose users precisely on registrations.
Train users to work with the application from the moment of registration
Most apps try to make the registration process as painless as possible. This is a bad idea. You will spend more attention than you will get from the user. It is better to consider registration as a learning process. Don’t stop at just explaining how your product works: tell your customers how to use the application right away.
Work on application performance
The moment of attention is the most important part when working with a mobile app. If it takes a few seconds to download, people will go to another application.
- Recommended metrics for tracking
- App crash rate – hold it below 2% and reduce it as the application is improved
- API latency – focus on about 1 second when loading
- End to end application latency – focus on about 1 second at boot time
Fill in the user data beforehand
The conversion grows when you fill in the user name or address on Twitter in advance.
Think of convenient navigation for the user in the application
Imagine that as long as the user is in your application, he or she travels extensively. Make this time as pleasant as possible from start to finish. Do not pursue the user immediately, trying to return him back to the application, and do not bomb with alerts. Instead, wait for a few hours and remind them of their latest activities in the app, so you can increase your chances of getting back.
Personalize the app for the user
It’s incredibly important to create the right model of user behaviour in the application. If you don’t make the right first impression and give the user what he or she is looking for, he or she will close the application immediately and is unlikely to reopen it. With the help of deep-links, you can personalize your first experience of using your application and automatically apply the necessary advertising offers. For example, welcome new users by name and unobtrusively lead them to the content they came for.
Correct user behaviour in the application
The first steps in the appendix are really crucial. Don’t think that all your users behave the same way. Instead, study their actions in the application. Some will be quite familiar with the application, while others will not know what to expect after the application is loaded. Do not ask users to provide all data at once. First, allow time to get used to the product, to test it in different situations.
Use the soft launch to promote
65% of users forget about the application on the second day after downloading and 95% – during the first week. Users who have become acquainted with the product through the demo version are three times more likely to buy a paid version. Take advantage of the fact: let the user try out all the premium features of the app before purchasing it. To do this, generate a short term promotional code or time limit the demo version.
Communicate with users in the app
App developers often miss the dialogue between users and developers – especially when the first 100 or 1000 peoples downloaded the application. And this is the most appropriate time to build a community. Users aren’t likely to post to you on Twitter and Facebook: switching between channels is a great distraction. As long as the users are in the app, it’s easier to start a conversation with them. In the beginning, their community is you. So take the initiative and change communication strategies over time. Talk to your users before they come to the choir with bad reviews.
Decline the demo mode during registration
Users give their data without any problems and make little effort to register. But for this, they want to use a fully functional application at a real cost. Therefore, offering them a demo version at the time of registration is not worth it.
The key to success is to retain users for the first three days
The importance of the early days after the download cannot be overestimated. Applications win or lose the battle for the user at this stage. Then, both top-end applications and not so, follow along the same path. But if you were able to keep a high percentage of user retention in the first three days after downloading, then the application’s popularity growth is 131 times higher.
Immediately after downloading the app, send educational pop-up notifications
Push notifications are an effective learning tool. Within the first week after downloading the app, send notifications to the user with quick tips on how to use the product.
Focus on user retention, not on attracting new users
Don’t be aggressive until you’ve figured out how to keep your customers interested. Otherwise, you run the risk of discouraging loyal users of the product: it is unlikely that a person will come back if once they are already disappointed in the application.
Don’t forget to send inflammatory emails
E-mail is an active communication channel (especially for applications). Just remind customers of promotions, events, changes or new content. And if you personalize your emails, it’s great.
Use email newsletters as an MVP tool
If you are not an eCommerce company that makes a profit on every conversion, it is difficult to justify the cost of expensive tools. One of the easiest ways to do A/B testing is to use MVP email.
Get quality users
The most important thing for games at an early stage is the quality of users and community building. Once you have a critical mass of clients, start focusing on virality and targeting your target audience.
Personalize pop-up notifications
Make each individual notification personal – it concerns either the user’s published content or recommended content based on previously posted material. Be careful with the general notices you send to thousands of users. Make sure that each notification is based on user data. View each notification as an experiment and measure whether it helps to retain users or simply wastes their time.
Don’t be afraid to use push-notifications
Email and pop-up notifications are the best channels for interaction. You shouldn’t be too keen on push notifications, but you don’t have to say no. Most users love notifications, and those who can’t stand it will turn it off. Experiment and track the results.
Use geographic alerts
If you need to bring a user from the application offline (restaurant, shop, office, etc.), geo notifications will be a great help. Notifications will remind the customer of the product if they are nearby. Of course, the marketer needs to learn how to set up GPS and performance properly, but it’s worth it.
Involve users with features
The application is effective if people cannot imagine their day without it. Implement features so that users want to return to the app again and again. For example, set obstacles or goals (something like a game). But don’t overdo it – tons of features are usually harmful.
Run a simple A/B test
First of all, learn how to test ideas quickly. To simply manage A/B testing, find a balance of resource or time constraints. Real-time tests are just one way to check.
- You can also test efficiency
- Types of content
- Types of personalization
- Email or push-notifications
- Communicate with the user
Use different virality
Viral content – content that makes the user want to repost it and share it with other users. Most companies face so-called harmful virality when asking users to bring friends and get a discount.
But there are other types:
Users on their own initiative advise their friends on the application; demonstration virality – loyal users, share content from your application or the application itself.
Find out how users share your application
For example, when users share application screenshots, the conversion is much higher than the “Share” button. Learn how people can best discuss your application and use these ways to move forward.
Give users the content they want to share
It’s not so much about your application’s sharing as it is about the content that users have seen/heard/read/created inside the app. Remember, for example, Snapchat. Think about the motivations of the customers and tie them to the uniqueness of the product. source: buffer.com
Focus on text messages, not sharings
Text messages have the highest conversion rate. Even though the number of sharings on Facebook is above, the actual conversion of text invitations to install the application is much higher.
Give users what they love to share
Growth through invitations (e.g. custom promo code) shows who exactly attracted new users. To maximize conversion from invitations to registered users, personalize landing pages and application behaviour.
Create content that can be easily shared outside the application
It can be a blog, a YouTube channel with user-generated content or just a video on your website.
Create virality loops
The virality loop is the user’s path from the first visit to the site to the invitation of new users, which increases the involvement of existing users.
- Circular virality is created by
- Registered users who send invitations
- New users who come to the application by invitation
Sharp bursts of virality in channels happen when the opinion leader shares content – this leads to interesting effects of attracting and retaining users.
Best recommendations on virality
Unfortunately, there is no universal recipe for promotion, but there are a number of tools that really work. Use all possible ways of advertising, analyze and optimize the results obtained.
Sometimes minor changes to a marketing campaign can lead the application to success:
- Users like gifts more than discounts
- Reward new users first
- Set up a one-click screening – make it easy to share your product
remember selfishness: people are willing to share when it shows them in a better light. Experiment, because most successful cases were preceded by trials and mistakes! If you are still in doubt about which app to develop, at freeappsforme.com you will find a selection of the best popular applications.
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