As of January 2017, there were over 2.2 million apps in the App Store and over 2.5 million in Google Play Store, and these numbers are only increasing every day. Needless to say, this means that if your business is coming out with an app, you need a pretty killer user acquisition strategy in place before you even launch.
If you don't have a promotional strategy in place already, fear not - I've put together a guide to some of the most effective approaches to can take to marketing your app:
1. Social Media
At this point, the importance of using social media for your business should be a no-brainer. There are two main ways to connect to customers through social media: organic and paid. Lets break down each of these strategies:
- Organic: Organic promotion on social media is done by simply having a presence and connecting with your target audience. Try to build a community around your brand by following potential customers and posting relevant things, without spamming your followers' feeds with overly promotional posts. A good example of a very effective Instagram is REI. Their Instagram posts feature their own customers on outdoor adventures, and create the feeling of a community of like-minded people around the brand.
- Paid: Putting a bit of money behind some social media ads can make all the difference. Because of their ability to easily target ads at a specific audience, Facebook and Instagram are very effective advertisement platforms for mobile apps.
2. Public Relations
Getting talked about by the media and influencers can go a long way in putting your name on people's radar and building credibility. There are a few different ways you can go about this:
- Host a launch party and invite people within your industry and the local media
- Interview with local newspapers
- Interview with or guest blog with local bloggers
- Network and see if you have any connections or industry-specific influencers you can connect with to endorse and promote your app through their social channels.
In order for this to work, however, your app needs to be something worth talking about. It goes without saying that influencers are not going to want to promote an app that isn't really good. To learn more about common pitfalls in mobile apps, check out our latest blog here!
3. Website and In-Store
If you already have an established business, use this base to promote your app. If you have a website, feature your app prominently throughout the site to remind your customers that it exists, and of its legitimacy. A good example of this is SweetGreen, which features their app prominently on the website, but without distracting from the site itself.
If you have a brick and mortar store, advertise your app and social media throughout the store, and consider creating a promotion to get people to download the app. Recently, Shake Shack offered customers a free burger for downloading their app and it was wildly successful, garnering national attention:
4. Search Ads
With the launch of iOS 10, Apple also introduced Search Ads, which is basically paid advertisement within the App Store. With this, when a user searches your chosen keyword, your app appears first. Although Search Ads are relatively new, early findings from AdWeek have shown that they are very effective, generating conversion rates higher than 50%. While this is a handy new tool, having a good app store optimization strategy is still very important.
While there are many ways to promote your app and improve its chances for success, these are some of the most effective strategies.