Conceptualizing and developing a good mobile application is the basis for successfully marketing it to the target market. However, since the app will compete against millions of competitors in the Google Play Store or Apple App Store, marketing it properly is just as important as any other aspect of the app. Even the best quality app will not be attractive to customers if marketing fails. In this article, we will show you what factors are necessary for successful mobile app marketing – from supposedly simple aspects like the name to the different marketing channels and go-to-market strategies.
Preparations before the launch
A mobile app developed without a simple and easy to remember name will soon be forgotten by your customers:
- The name should be concise and simple. If you are targeting global markets, it has to be easy to pronounce abroad as well. Be very careful with the various letter combinations that are difficult to say or understand in other languages. Also, try to put some important keyword in the name if it is more than a short word.
- Choose a category that best suits your app. Some apps cover multiple areas, so you should think about which categories to look out for. Try estimating the number of downloads you’ll need in a particular category for a Top 10 entry. The goal seems unrealistic? Then maybe you should choose a different category.
- Regardless of what your app is about, the icon is one of the key determinants of whether the user will choose your app over that of a competitor. It practically serves as an eye-catcher for drawing the attention of your potential customers in the results pages. Work with contrasts and convey the purpose of your app with the icon. This is not easy, so you should consult a professional design agency if necessary.
Also important, but forgotten by many online marketing managers, are screenshots on your app profile in the marketplace. Make some screenshots that show the highlights of the app in as good a light as possible. Explain at the same time how the app works and what benefits the user gets from the installation. It is true that short, convincing arguments are always better than longer text descriptions.
Use of marketing channels before the launch
Your app will be most successful if you generate a large number of downloads right after the launch, taking one of the top positions in a category. The quality of the app alone will not be enough to reach this goal. Therefore, be sure to get as much attention as possible for your app in advance. Contact web pages that specialize in app reviews or your particular industry. Write down the responsible persons in these websites well in advance of the actual release and present your app in a few sentences. Not all websites will accept your proposal. Therefore, you should make a longer list of possible candidates to be sure to win some partners.
The sooner you take care of the outreach process, the better. A mobile app must develop its own momentum right from the start and generate more and more downloads to be successful. Reviews, which arrive the first weeks after the publication of an app, therefore help only to a limited extent. These reviews of your app do not necessarily appear in industry-related publications, where your audience could potentially be found. Rather, try to secure a “big hit” for your app that is interesting for a multitude of users across platforms. Examples include promoting it in a website like TechCrunch, multiple daily newspapers, or via a high profile influencer that is relevant to the niche.
Marketing of the finished app
There are more than three million different apps published across application platforms. It is therefore extremely important to use all channels for promoting your mobile app, as the competitive pressure is strong even in supposedly “niche apps”. Otherwise, you will not be able to get enough downloads for your app. Keep these tips in mind:
- Smartphones are the social media generation devices. Accordingly, you should integrate Facebook, Twitter, and similar channels into your marketing campaign. Manage multiple social media accounts and analyze which ones have higher ROI.
- Discover highly-visited blogs that explore the theme of your app. Contact the editors of the blogs and ask if they could publish a review of your app. Usually, they will require some form of payment for such services or will ask for you to write the content on your own. This form of paid content reaches a great number of users who could potentially download your app. There is hardly a better way to reach your own target audience.
- If you operate a well-known website yourself, you should fully utilize it in your promotional efforts. Remember, it’s not enough to advertise on a single channel. A truly comprehensive audience can only be achieved through the consistent integration of all the channels available to you.
A mixture of traditional forms of marketing (such as print advertising) should also be considered. Place QR codes that lead directly into the app store to your app in print media. Stick to magazines that match your niche. Try to present your app in various relevant TV or Radio shows as well.
App stores as a marketing channel
No matter what channels you use to promote your app, users always end up in the app store.
This makes it just another available channel with high promotional power since over 90% of all app downloads come through the integrated search option in the various stores. Avoiding this promotional tool means that you will lose a majority of potential new customers.
Here, the best promotion is to rank your app higher for relevant categories of products. Just as with classic search engine optimization, you will use a meaningful title, relevant keywords in the description of your mobile app, and pay attention to the points described in the first paragraph.
Another key aspect is excellent reviews of your app. Although these can primarily be influenced by the quality of your app, you can also contribute to it. Continuous communication with users and related complaints in the app store and fast reparation of bugs within the app are a top priority to ensure good reviews. These are all off-app ways of influencing the perceived customer benefit from your app, and will certainly impact your rankings and download count.
Make a “soft launch”
A soft launch means to launch an application in a limited market before deploying it on a larger market. This allows for a “life-size” test, in line with the beta, and to ensure that everything works well while limiting the risks.
All of these tips will help you to successfully launch your mobile app.