How to start an app launch 

A. Market Research is an essential step in your journey

We don’t want to belabor the point, but you face tremendous competition from every quarter, as intimated above. The sheer volume of apps entering the marketplaces daily is evidence enough. So, right out of the gate, your app must ride on the kind of differentiation that turns the heads of enough customers. Thus, understanding the ins and outs of the competition is the first order of business:

  • Get into the inner workings of the category leaders.

  • Look for every opening that gives you an advantage.

  • Anticipate their reactions to your moves.

  • Budget allowing, interview and abuse-test your app with users (i.e., expensive research under controlled conditions).

  • Study reviews to hear what customers are saying about the competition.

B. Set realistic goals

Metrics are the name of the game, bringing your ambitions into the real world. You’re making a six-digit investment in the development alone and significantly more dollars on top of that for the launch. While it’s not unusual to talk about your app, it’s a business; one you want a return from. Most companies look at EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, and depreciation), ROI (return on investment), and how long it takes to break even. However, some more down-to-earth ratios and numbers will make your venture profitable if you nurture them carefully. They measure:

  • Your active install rate.

  • The retention rate reflects the number of people who continue to use your app after installation:

  • The number of ratings coming your way.

  • The average rating, taking them all into account.

  • Benchmarks are between 3 and 4.

  •  The gross revenue your app generates.

C. Get into all platforms

Cross-platform and Browser Versions of the App are essential considerations. iOS only or Android only won’t cut it. Market share of the app platforms in 2022 boils down to:

  • Google Play – 69.74%

  • Apple – 29.5%

  • Other – 0.77%

Versus four years ago:

  • Google Play – 74.39%

  • Apple – 19.65%

  • Other – 4.8%

Select one store to launch your app and accumulate the highest downloads and ratings possible. Build confidence and learn lessons.

Also, the early stages are stressful, demanding upgrades and debugging initiatives. So, get the one right before expanding out. Call this exercise test marketing, if you will.

D. Strategize Your Social Media Accounts

Maximize social media to solicit early signups, and leverage the opinion leaders to get reviews. They’re great for showcasing the app while developing and building anticipation with future users. However, there’s a divide between creating interest (i.e., inviting site traffic) and convincing an audience to download. So stay aware of crossing that line and up your game when it’s time to do real business:

  • Take all social media channels into account.

  • Even the new ones like Pinterest.

  • All have a serious function in launching your mobile app.

  •  Creating visibility with diverse market segments.

  • Millennials, in particular, are social media-driven in key aspects of their lives.

  • So getting to them without obstruction must take this route.

  • Pre-launch excitement is a massive catalyst.

  • And social media is the best method to make it happen.

E. Develop engaging content

It’s vital to explain what your app does in simple language that matches the minimum readership level of your lowest audience denominator. When developing the content, keyword insertion is vital for ASO (App Store Optimization), which combines with your downloads to uplift your organic search result ranking.  The meta descriptions (Name for iOS and Android) and various other sections provide keyword containment. Use these to the maximum. Be careful not to repeat keywords – it will not improve your position. Indeed, it’s likely to deteriorate your status under algorithmic penalties.

The broad content format must demonstrate your app in every possible situation, including all the following:

  • Blog posts.

  • Press releases.

  • Email marketing copy.

  • Support pages.

  • About us.

  • Services.

Also, copy changes with seasonal promotions, relaunches, and upgrades. As a result, customers are continuously looking for an engaging experience and it frequently comes from how and when you say it rather than what you say.

F. Throw in a video or two

Users, as a rule, love short demonstration videos explaining precisely how your app functions. These animated presentations speak louder than a thousand words. A user-friendly program like Camtasia may be ideal for the job of seamless screen capture and voiceover recording.

Remember, you’re attempting to grab attention from an audience not well-acquainted with your brand. The content and videos are powerful tandem team features in the app store and streamed through social media. Look at the quality of your video versus all the competitors trying to reach the type of customers. Again, there are multiple mobile apps, so differentiating yours will come down to clear communication in all of your marketing materials. A short video demo is one of the easiest ways to display the value of your mobile app convincingly.

G. Launch a dedicated website and store page

Without these, your business lacks credibility. Every user who connects to your app in the store or on social media wants to confirm you have a web presence. No matter how compelling your app technology is, your marketing may grind to a screeching halt without an engaging site. The same goes for your app page in both stores.

You’ll likely find competitors without websites and spotty store pages when doing your market research. Those are your opportunities – the way to play catch up. Capitalize on competitor weaknesses and don’t allow yourself to fall for the same half-baked approach.

Launching a dedicated website for your app is entirely correct because it’s your business — so look like a company that means business. It helps your brand and uplifts your image, giving you a viable springboard for the rest of the journey. It’s where the videos can kick in to add momentum to your proposition. CTAs (calls to action) on the page or site encourages downloads.

H. App Store Optimization – A critical part of the strategy.

ASO and SEO are vital marketing focuses, but they are pretty different. SEO pertains to website optimization for web searchers. ASO aims at getting your app high up in the results when users are searching for apps specifically in app stores. Unfortunately, no expert or professional can tell you definitively how to get your ASO perfect. Why? Because the Google Play and Apple algorithms are trade secrets and keep changing. This much we do know:

  • Keyword identification and strategy are a big part of it but alone cannot guarantee ASO success.

  • The number of downloads versus your competitors is probably most important because that’s a revenue driver – the elephant in the room that the app stores respect the most.

  • Keyword selection depends on balancing term popularity with the caliber of competition you face for those keywords. Essentially you want:

  • Even if your downloads compete with the best, a thin presence of keywords will count against you. And conversely, a stellar keyword strategy without competitive downloads won’t get you far.

  • We advise getting a keyword specialist in your corner to smooth out what can be a confusing process.

  • Another ASO tactic is showcasing your app with screenshots and, as mentioned above, videos. Also, reviews and ratings – see (O) below.

Read more in ShyftUp’s article.

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