The best marketing practices don’t need a lot of money. They require careful planning and a keen understanding of your audience.
So you’ve invested weeks, maybe months of hard work and developed a stunning app. Now’s the time to take it to the market, and get as many people as possible to notice. This part of the process just cannot be overlooked, because even the most spectacular app cannot generate revenue unless people discover it.
That is why marketing and promoting your app must be done with meticulous attention. And if you don’t have a ton of money to spend on app marketing, just don’t let that bother you. App marketing isn’t about the money. It’s about doing your research, planning your strategy and following these intuitive best practices:
1. Optimize For the App Store
App store optimization is your first and arguably the most crucial step of your app marketing. A staggering 63% of apps discovered through app store searches. This means that users are proactively stepping into app stores and searching for apps. But they have over 2 million apps to sift through. By App store optimization, you can make sure that your app catches their attention.
Choose an attractive app title, and try to include a strong, highly searched keyword in your title. Apps with a keyword in their title tend to rank 10.3% higher than others. Include strategic keywords in the app description too. Take beautiful screenshots of the app highlighting its best features and encourage ratings and reviews.
2. Do a Splendid Job of Branding
Branding is an essential part of marketing. Users should be able to distinctly identify your app’s name and icon in a crowd. Create a distinctive icon that looks great and sets the tone for your branding. Establish the brand persona and tone of voice you want to use in your communication – like an upbeat friend or a calm and soothing companion – and design your descriptions and other messaging based on that.
Take screenshots that reflect the branding. Choose an attractive color scheme and keep it consistent from the app store listing to the other channels you wish to promote the app.
3. Create a Microsite
There are many ways to build hype around your app even before release. Creating a unique microsite doesn’t cost too much or take excessive time, and can do a great job of drawing the initial attention of your target audience and setting the stage for a grand launch.
You can build excitement about the app, start a blog to talk about your app, run contests, put out teasers and do a whole lot to generate enough publicity so that people are looking forward to your app, hopefully thronging to download it on the first day.
The microsite will give you all the space you need to say things you want to say, and even get the users to chime in with their opinions. This could be a great way to not only get your audience involved but also gather some great early feedback.
4. Create Fresh Content
To stay in the limelight after launch and not let all the excitement run out, keep a steady stream of fresh content coming. Write great posts about your app and try to get them covered by authority blogs in your niche.
Run teasers and campaigns before making significant updates and continuously interact with your users on social media to keep up the excitement. In short, just keep the conversation because if you stop promoting the app, people will stop talking about it and the downloads could begin to die down quickly. You have to keep the buzz alive.
5. Run a Teaser Video
A well-made video can create anticipation about your app. Use the video to capture the best features or the most useful and beautiful aspects of your app. You can link it to your microsite to add to the campaign and encourage a conversation.
Run the video on social media. Based on the initial response, you can create more marketing videos. Social media can be your greatest weapon in promoting these videos and creating anticipation about the app and post-launch, about future updates.
6. Gather Good Press
Getting featured in high authority press publications can go a long way in establishing trust in your app. If you can network well enough to get someone from print or online publications like Forbes, Entrepreneur, Wall Street Journal or others, you can expect users to show tremendous faith in your app.
To begin with, make a list of the press channels that have a readership of your target audience. If you are a women’s fashion app, you want to feature in women’s magazines. Having done that, it’s time to look for reporters and writers who do features on new app releases and similar niches.
Then, you can reach out to these writers and reporters and tell them why your app is worth featuring in their magazine. It will take some skills before you can impress a writer worth their salt, but once you can do it, the returns will be worth it.
7. Gather Great Reviews from Your Beta Community and Early Users
If your app is already past the launch phase, the chances are that it has already been used by your beta community and some early users. Send them a personal message thanking them for using your app and encourage them to leave positive reviews and ratings on the app store listing.
You could even try to incentivize them with free premium subscriptions or discount coupons in exchange for favorable reviews. Good ratings and reviews will provide the social proof that will entice other users into trying out your app.
So as you see, none of the above app marketing ideas needs a ton of money. For a very modest budget, you can create ample buzz around your app and get your audience eager to download and try it out. Just be sure to research your audience and get a perfect idea of what they like and what gets them interested. And then, all of the above moves are at your disposal so put them to good use.
Ravin Lad is a Growth Marketing Strategist at MoveoApps, an iPhone app development company. He loves to write about technology, marketing, and business trends. He is a tech enthusiast and likes to explore new mobile apps. He can be found on Twitter.