There are a lot of different ways to market an app, but what will actually make your app a smashing success? It’s important to remember that you will learn something from both wins and losses. You should test and measure your app marketing strategy–forever and ever. The best tactic for your app might be your most outlandish idea.
7 expert-tested app marketing tactics
These rockstar marketing pros and developers weigh in on what has worked for them to try and differentiate their app idea from competitors.
1. Word of mouth is a must
“The best and only way is to build an awesome app first. Without a great User interface (UI) your user experience (UX) will fall short. Then, your app will need to be optimized for app performance as well. If I have to wait 3 seconds for your app to load you have lost me already.
Word of mouth is the best way to promote your app, without a doubt. Not only verbally, but you might want to build in an in-app referral system so users can invite people through various mediums. At the end of the day, your app has to create engagement.”
“If you're going to market an app, it's best to use clear branding. For example, create stickers and produce additional swag to hand out at meetups and networking events. Make sure these items have a straightforward call-to-action so that people actually remember to check your app out later.”
“Even though our product is $12/month, we realized that we might not be accessible for everyone. We saw the need to innovate on our for-profit model and increase awareness. So, we launched our #GiveLastingLove campaign—in the month of February, for every couple that subscribed to Lasting, we donated a subscription to a couple who otherwise couldn’t access marriage counseling. In total, we donated over 3000 subscriptions.
It's critical that for-profit companies deliver on their mission, and invite others to participate in this positive movement, too.”
“I've found one of the most effective ways to market an app is to give app users a bonus code for free credits or money toward future app purchases each time they invite a friend to download and use the app via their custom referral code or link. This is an easy way to get a viral-like spread of any app without spending hundreds on advertising per download.”
“Sometimes you need to market an app beyond your usual crowd. Connections outside your circle are what your app needs. It’s in your best interest to develop authentic and honest relationships with an influencer that are mutually beneficial. Each influencer has their own audience. If you look for influencers that truly value your company, they will be able to honestly spread your message and market your app.”
“By focusing on keywords related to your app business that have high search volume and low competition, you will rank quickly for that specific search. The way Apple ranks keywords is based on downloads. The more downloads your app gets, the more rank authority it will give to your keywords.
If you think you are sitting on the best keyword, run external marketing to increase downloads. If you have more downloads than your competition (another app which also has the keyword in their metadata) you will rank quicker and higher for it.”
“One of the best approaches that have seen many marketers implement is using videos in your app marketing strategy. For instance, a great idea would be to create a 360-degree video using virtual reality (VR) technology, which will help you take your customers through your app in a unique way. Giving people a taste of what they could have makes them want it the more.”
Bridget Poetker is a former senior content marketing specialist at G2, who focused on app development and design. Born and raised in the Chicago area, she graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I-L-L! In her free time, you'll find Bridget in the bleachers at Wrigley Field or posted up at the nearest rooftop patio. During the 8 months of Chicago winter, she hibernates. (she/her/hers)