It’s never too early to think about how you’re going to market your app. You don’t want to spend months on conceptualization, design, and development just to see it gather cobwebs on the app store.
As a company that has been developing apps for more than 10 years, Core Mobile Apps can attest to the power of timely and strategic marketing in the success of an app.
We compiled 6 ways you can promote your app to your audience and build anticipation for its launch.
Feature the App on Your Website
When you feature your app prominently on your website, you let your customers know that you’ve invested in it.
Consider creating a 30-second promo video, too; 51.9% of marketing professionals agree that videos offer the best return on investment. The video can walk customers through the app’s features and show your visitors the value of the app, so they will be eagerly awaiting its release.
Choose the Right App Store
After you’ve developed your app, you need to think about where you’ll publish it. The two biggest app stores are the iOS App Store and Google Play; both have their fair share of pros and cons.
Many companies and organizations, such as the Stroke Awareness Foundation, make their apps available on both platforms.
The iOS App Store offers a huge opportunity for visibility because it can promote your app in multiple channels, such as the Popular App or App of the Week categories.
The downside with iOS App Store is that you have to secure the store’s approval before you can publish your app — and the iOS store can be tough. Sometimes, it rejects an app because of small errors. Additionally, publishing can cost you up to $99 a year.
Google Play, on the other hand, charges a one-time fee of $25. It’s also more lenient, so you can develop the app just the way you planned it to be. The disadvantage, however, is that you won’t get the same guidance that iOS provides.
There are other app stores you could try as well, like SlideME, Amazon AppStore, GetJar, and the Opera Mobile Store.
When choosing a home for your app, think carefully about your budget and target market.
Focus on App Store Optimization
Your website isn’t the only aspect of your digital marketing campaign that you need to optimize — you should optimize your app, too.
App store optimization (ASO) is a set of strategies that put your app at the top of the app store’s search results. It follows the same principle as SEO: the higher your app ranks, the more visible you are to customers.
Why is it important? About 47% of iOS and 53% of Android users found an app through the Apple App Store and Google Play, respectively. If you boost your ASO, you won’t miss this huge opportunity.
There are several simple ways to improve your ASO.
- Keywords. Consider placing a keyword in your title. Research shows that it can improve your app’s ranking by about 10.3%. It’s up to you to decide whether it’s worth it, though. Most businesses aim for a unique and catchy app name.
- Profile. Apps with more downloads rank higher on app store search results. To encourage more downloads, include a well-crafted app description. Highlight its capabilities and make sure the summary conveys your app’s value to entice users.
- Reviews. Apps with higher ratings rank higher. Encourage your users to leave reviews by providing them with an incentive. For example, you can tell your users that if they add a review, they will unlock exclusive content. Make your app so awesome that they’ll give you four or five stars.
By paying attention to keywords, your profile, and reviews, you can optimize for whichever app store you choose to host your app.
These factors can help you optimize your app, boosting your app’s visibility and increasing downloads.
Consider Digital Advertising
One of the best ways to promote your app is through social media.
In 2017 alone, about 77% of the US population had a social media account. Facebook leads the platforms, accounting for 42% of social media site visits.
There are two main ways you can advertise on social media: organically or through paid ads.
- Organic – In this approach, you post useful content that promotes your app (if you don’t have social media accounts, now’s a great time to create pages for your business).
Don’t publish posts that are too promotional. Instead, publish photos, videos, or messages that your audience cares about and join their conversation. Then, encourage them to download your app.
- Paid Ads – If you’re willing to invest a little more of your resources into digital marketing, social media ads are the way to go.
Social media platforms boast high targeting capabilities, allowing them to show ads to very specific groups of people. Facebook and Instagram are prime examples of platforms with an advanced ability to segment their audiences. Because Facebook owns Instagram, it’s a relatively similar process to place ads on both.
Search Ads are another form of paid ads. iOS 10 introduced Search Ads, which are paid advertisements in the App Store that cost about $1 each. Apple reported that 50% of consumers who click on app ads in the App Store download the app.
Social media marketing and paid ads are both great ways to promote your app online.
Select the Right Influencer
Collaborating with an influencer offers a huge opportunity for visibility.
About 30% of consumers are more likely to buy a product recommended by a non-celebrity blogger and social media and blog reviews influence about 60% of consumers while they’re shopping.
There are two considerations in reaching out to an influencer:
- Your app should have a social presence. Before you reach out to the influencer, you have to establish your social media accounts. When an influencer posts about your brand, users will flock to your social pages, where you can engage them further.
- Your influencer should cover your target niche. Don’t just look at the number of followers because reach isn’t the sole indicator of success. Look at how much of his or her content resonates with your brand and how much his or her followers engage with him or her.
Keep in mind, too, that not all influencers are bloggers; they can be renowned speakers, journalists, writers, or any person with considerable audience reach.
Always keep your target market in mind when choosing an influencer.
Develop an App Your Audience Needs
The most important thing to do to rake in downloads is to develop an awesome app. No matter how rigorous your marketing efforts are, you’ll still fall short if you promote something your customers don’t want to use.
Create an app that genuinely offers value to your target market. While you’re developing it, start planting the seeds online.
Drop hints, build anticipation and formulate a marketing strategy that will sweep your audience off their feet.
About the Author
Will Manuel is a content creator specializing in the mobile app and web design arena. He is the founder of CoreMobileApps.com and CoreMediaConcepts.com Creative Agencies. He lives part-time in Florida and travels the world for 4-6 months out of the year. Connect with him on Instagram @wgman