(This is part 2 in a series of posts on ways to get your app noticed.)
In part 1 of this series, I talked about mobile ad networks, incentive-based download programs, and app review sites. If you missed it, you should check it out.
In this post, you will learn 3 more promotional strategies on how to attract customers‘ attention.
4. Build a Website
If you want to start a mobile apps business, you need a website, period. (Want to know the products/services I use to build AppsBlogger.com? Check out: Tools I Use.)
A website is a home for your apps. It is a place where you promote current and upcoming apps. It is a place where you can interact with customers.
And it is a platform you can use to create multiple streams of income.
What do you mean multiple streams of income? I thought you just make money from selling paid apps or from in-app advertising of your free apps?
Yes, that’s true, but you shouldn’t put all your eggs in one basket. Think of it like this: how many ways can you re-purpose that leftover Thanksgiving turkey? You can make turkey soup, put it on a salad, make turkey sandwiches/wraps, use it as a pizza topping, bake a turkey casserole, etc., etc.
With a website, not only can you use it to promote your apps, you can also use it to cultivate a relationship with your customers so you can market other apps to them. Taking it even further, you can use your website to promote other related products and/or services. Use your imagination. What other products/services would your customers be interested in your niche?
Remember, it’s easier to sell to someone who’s bought from you before than to a first-time customer. So if you’ve developed a successful app, you’d be crazy not to leverage the goodwill from that app onto other apps/products.
You will see me use the word “leverage” a lot. Why? Because being a solo entrepreneur means you have to utilize leverage whenever you can, however you can, and as much as you can. In other words, you need to get as many uses out of your website as you can.
Halfbrick Studios is a good example. These are the guys who developed the very popular Fruit Ninja app. How popular are they? Well, I was at Dave & Buster’s recently, and they had the Fruit Ninja game on a 46” multi-touch arcade machine! And if you go on their website, you can buy Fruit Ninja merchandise from their online store.
Another example? Well, AppsBlogger was created with multiple streams of income in mind. In addition to developing mobile apps, I use my blog to teach others like you how I do it. Some of products and services I use and recommend have an affiliate program. And if you purchase these products or services through my affiliate link, I get a commission.
So, the idea is to use as many monetization methods as possible. App sales and affiliate marketing are two that I’m starting off with. But I’ve got a lot more money-making ideas in store for AppsBlooger that I will share with you, so stay tuned.
And don’t wait until your app is finished before you start building that website. Start now! While your developer is programming your app, you should be busy setting up the website with an eye towards promoting your new app and capturing visitor emails.
5. Email Marketing
The money is in the list, your email list that is. And the goal is to capture as many qualified leads/visitors as possible.
Many of the promotional methods I mentioned are one-off methods. Visitors may read something or see an ad about your app, but they quickly forget. However, if you carefully build your email list from the beginning, cultivate a long-term relationship with your readers, you will create future repeat customers.
So, put email sign-up forms everywhere on your website, especially at these 7 high-converting places. Use an autoresponder service (I use Aweber) to collect these emails and start implementing an email marketing campaign (more on this in a future post).
6. Social Media (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google+)
Do you prefer Twitter or Facebook? Maybe even Google+?
You do have a preference, don’t you? Well, so do your potential customers. And that’s why you can’t limit yourself to using just one type of social media platform. You need to be able to connect with your customers on all the major social media platforms.
At a minimum, you should set up a Twitter and Facebook account. There won’t be much activity in the beginning (and that’s a good thing, because with all the things you have to do, you really don’t have that much time to engage with potential customers). But do set it up early.
Start posting updates to your accounts. These updates can be about your app or other news and information relevant to your niche market. As an example, for my @AppsBlogger Twitter account, I tweet about mobile app marketing and development news. News that I know my followers will be interested in. And when I write a new post on my blog, I also post it to my Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ accounts.
I don’t tweet about what I had for breakfast or information that is not relevant to the business. Remember, this is a business. Don’t treat it like it’s your personal Twitter account and start tweeting random thoughts and useless information. Don’t post something just to fill up the space. Provide valuable information and you will slowly build a loyal following. And before you know it, word-of-mouth will help you spread the buzz about you, your app, and your website.
This is part 2 of the series of posts I am writing on ways to get your app noticed. Here is Part 3 of the series.