There are at least 2.9 million apps in Google Playstore. Similarly, around 1.84 million app developers have made their work available in the App Store.
With around 3.5 billion people around the world using smartphones, this is the best time to become an app developer. Of course, there isn’t anything like a sure success. No matter what your niche, you can expect a lot of competition.
The only way for you to make something out of your work is proper and adequate marketing. It isn’t difficult as long as you know what you are doing.
We present some of the essential guidelines for mobile app marketing.
First, Be Clear about your Customer
Not everyone is going to download your application. At least, as long as you don’t start promoting.
Your marketing should focus on specific demography. It is best to imagine a user in your head and give them a name. Say that it’s Peter.
Now, put yourself in the shoes of Peter, and for all the next steps we talk about in this article, ask yourself if your actions will appeal to him.
The Stages of Mobile App Marketing
These are the stages of mobile app marketing.
Awareness: Here, you let Peter know that your application exists.
Acquisition: The acquisition is when Peter downloads your app on his device and becomes a user.
Retention: You don’t want your friend Peter to delete your app or stop using it. In this stage, we make sure our apps are good enough for people to continue using them.
Stages of Mobile App Marketing: Awareness
Awareness is the first stage of mobile app marketing. At the same time, it is the most confusing, and most app developers struggle on this stage. Here are the things you need to do to make people aware of your product.
First, Craft a Unique Value Proposition
A Unique Value Proposition is close to a slogan. It tells prospects the value that your product offers.
You know about Unique Selling Point (USP), yes? It is what makes your product different from others. The value proposition is the value that your app downloaders get because of the USP.
For example, say the Duck Duck Go search engine. It is different from Google in the sense that it doesn’t record any private information of the user. So, they get complete anonymity on the internet when searching for stuff.
The value that people get from Duck Duck Go is that they can browse privately. They are more secure on the internet.
Now, the value proposition is a phrase that denotes this value in the best way possible. Right now, the Duck Duck Go search engine shows’ Privacy, Simplified.’ Before that, it was ‘The Search Engine that Doesn’t Track You.’
The value proposition should be short and precise. It should create the first perfect impression on the person knowing about your product for the first time. For example, Uber’s value proposition for drivers is ‘Get in the driver’s seat and get paid.’ See? It is simple, yet so elaborate.
Create a Website and Learn SEO
Having a website will help you a lot. Some types of applications might look like they don’t need a site, but having one is always the best option. Even Angry Birds does.
You don’t necessarily need to dedicate your site to the app. You may use your company website to promote your application.
The most important thing is the content and SEO. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to tweaking and working on your website to make it appear on the top of the Google Search results when people search for a related service.
For example, say you have a clothing app. With enough work, you can make its website appear on the top when people search for ‘easiest way to purchase clothes online.’
Remember, you will also need SEO in Google Playstore and Apple App Store. These platforms, too, give rankings for apps based on their features, title relevancy, authority, and reviews.
Content marketing is an integral part of SEO. You need written articles, videos, and infographics. You can also put helpful blogs on your site to generate leads. For example, if you have a real estate application, you can write a blog about home loans, and somewhere in the blog, you can tell the reader to download your mobile app for some great house deals in their area.
Having a website opens your doors to a lot of promotion and awareness. It also increases your authority, as prospects think you are more professional.
Use Social Media the Right Way
With all your uploads and advertisements, you should focus on building your brand.
You should have an active social media account, be it on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Many professional marketers recommend opening accounts on every site but focusing only on one. As you build a legacy there, people will automatically follow you elsewhere.
How do I Promote My Mobile App on Social Media?
Here are some tips that will be helpful:
Be Active: Post useful advice, insights, and information about your app, tutorials, etc. You can make a schedule of content and the move according to the plan. Remember, what you post in your social media should give a specific ‘value’ to the people.
Customize Your Ads in the Right Way: Every social media allows you to flexibly set whom to show your ad, depending on the person’s location, geography, etc. Be careful about that. Now, you won’t get much success by showing real estate ads to teenagers, will you?
Influencer Marketing: At least 40% of Tweeter users report purchasing as a direct result of Tweet from an influencer. If you know any ‘powerful’ people in your niche, you can ask them to talk about your app.
User-Generated Content (UGC): Remember the ‘Share a Coke’ campaign? It started in 2014. Coca-Cola encouraged people to post a photo of them drinking Coke using the hashtag #shareacoke and share the picture to ‘Share Happiness.’ The same year, the company gained 25 million Facebook followers.
What Coca-Cola did is instead of themselves making content, they let their existing customer do so. Other people, mostly friends, and family would see the pictures and then become interested and do the same. The company used excellent wits here, according to a Nielsen report, 92% of people believe in suggestions from their closed ones more than advertisements.
Viral Marketing: Viral Marketing could be a little difficult to execute, but it will spark a light which will later spread like wildfire. The idea here is simple; you create interesting sharable content that can intrigue people, promote it a little, and then wait with patience.
All the Facebook posts and memes that have ‘Tag a friend….’ are examples of viral marketing. You could do the same with your mobile app, make an engaging video ad, and then ask people to tag their friends who might want your app.
Press releases and word-of-mouth advertising are helpful in making your app known to the world. You can also partake in events and introduce your app to the participants. Furthermore, you can visit podcasts, radio shows, etc. Depending on your budget (who knows what you have), you may even be looking at Television ads and billboards.
Stages of Mobile App Marketing: Acquisition and Retention
The truth is, in mobile app marketing, the things that you need to do for acquisition and retention are the same. You should focus on user retention more than acquisition. Putting efforts on your existing users will be more beneficial to you in the long run.
From a marketing standpoint, there is one thing you need to do during the stage of acquisition and retention.
Seek Good Reviews
59% of people always, or most of the time, check online reviews before downloading an app.
Reviews are powerful tools for both sellers and buyers in the internet world of business (your app is a business as well). 90% of customers read online reviews before making a purchase decision, and customers are likely to spend 31% more on companies with favourable ratings.
Google Playstore and Apple App Store, including Facebook and other social networks, reward highly-rated apps with better search ranking positions. So, you should make your application decent, ask for criticism, and update it when needed.
How to Promote an App: A Step by Step Guide
Mobile App promotion is supposed to be a very systematic process. You need to have a plan, one that is feasible, and at the same time, productive. Of course, the strategy differs depending on the promoter, but the tips below will be beneficial for everyone.
Make the App Useful
A unique selling point is a must. Remember, the selling point should be valuable to the user.
Building an app isn’t always about fancy interfaces or hard work with coding. The most important thing is that it should solve a real-life problem. It should fill a void, either something that people know about or something that they don’t.
Okay, here is an example. Say the Trivago App. It helps people to find the best hotels ranging from all kinds of prices in different places. Even before the app was created, people knew they had the problem of not being able to know about hotels before travelling, and trying to book or bargain/compare prices was a hassle after going to their destination.
On the other hand, say a game- Flappy Bird. Dong Nguyen developed the game in two to three days, and at one point, it was making him at least $50,000 a day. The game was released in May 2013, gathered 50 million downloads by January 2014, and eventually, the developer had to delete it because the game was so addictive that he felt guilty.
Flappy Bird has very simple graphics but people loved it.
You see, Flappy Bird took minimal storage, was fun, and psychologically gave humans something to accomplish (but would have been impossible to achieve). It is maybe the best example of why instead of worrying about the platform and fancy UI (well, you need to work on it too), you should put more focus on the user.
“The biggest mistake a business can do is think about the product more than the customer.”
Leverage Internet Marketing
Of course, we will be talking about internet marketing when discussing how to promote an app online. But you need to ‘master’ master it- not only learn internet marketing but do it better than everyone else.
The thing is that these days more applications are making websites and hiring SEO firms. We don’t have official indicators, but there may be hundreds of thousands of marketing firms around the world, even more people who know essential internet marketing. You need to keep yourself and your app on top of it.
Here are some internet marketing tips to promote an app.
Guest blogging means you approach blogs and publications of your niche and contribute content to them. Some can demand money. In return, they help you generate leads.
For example, say you create a real estate app and write an article about the present condition of real estate in your area and publish it on a local online newspaper. There, you can mention your application.
Don’t worry about being seen as needy or promotional from blogs. 60% of blogs write one to five guest blogs per month. Make sure you create great content that websites can’t say no to feature.
Use Other Stores besides the App Store and Play Store
There are a lot of third-party apps stores getting considerable visits, and they may not have a lot of competition like the native App Stores. So, SEO will be more straightforward, and your app will appear in more places where people can discover them.
You can’t underestimate the popularity and the availability of third-party app stores. For example, the Amazon Appstore only had 300,000 applications in the first quarter of 2015, while it has already reached 489022 in the fourth quarter of 2019.
Promote an App with an Affiliate Strategy
Affiliate marketing is when you promote someone’s product and get a commission every time you sell something. As an app owner, the idea here is to make your users your affiliates.
You don’t necessarily need to pay money to make your users your affiliates. You can give them premium features, credits, etc. that matter in your app. For example, a mobile game can provide in game-cash.
Affiliate app promotion can range from referring to people to download or doing as something as simple as sharing a Facebook post. Just make sure you are not asking too much of your user’s time, and compensating them in a meaningful way.
Conclusion: Mobile App marketing isn’t very different from other types of marketing. What you need to do is create an excellent product and listen to your existing customers. Make use of social networking and always keep an eye on reviews. Furthermore, it isn’t only about creating suitable ads but also about optimizing them correctly.