Hi everyone, this is Felix, I am an entrepreneur and a digital marketer. Like many of us, curiosity in creation of mobile applications leads us to AppCoda, yet particular for me, I was looking for urgent fix. Four years ago I signed a mobile app development contract with a big client in Hong Kong, and all of a sudden my one and only in-house developer quitted in the middle of development progress, what remained were some fractional source codes and a goodbye letter, at that moment I was the only one to depend on. The situation was so intense that I could only try all possible ways to self taught coding, and thankfully I found AppCoda, a platform sharing simple and practical coding skills. I have finally built the app by myself (use the skills I learned from AppCoda’s tutorials) while outsourced the backend development, and gracefully built the app that my client happily accepted.
Since then I developed a coding hobby and created some apps, both native iOS apps and mobile games, but was discouraged by many zeroes on Mixpanel: zero downloads, zero Ad Revenue and zero In-App Purchases. I naively thought if I launch an app, customers would come, but the reality wasn’t like that. What I need is to expose my apps to potential users and engage them.
After launching several apps and seeing many zeros in app downloads & revenues, I decided to get a full picture of how digital marketing works, and how to drive my app download. I started with a small budget to advertise my apps on social media platforms and built a small community. I became addicted in learning digital marketing knowledge and even launched a digital marketing agency to help the others succeeding in the internet market. At the moment of writing I and my team have served companies from mobile applications to physical stores, from local SMEs to international businesses, reaching over 70 millions online impressions.
Filling In The Puzzle
Back in four years ago, I shared my experience with Simon and he was amazed what AppCoda has helped me. We became good friends and kept in touch with each others. We shared lots of thoughts on how AppCoda could deepen its mission to help the audiences easier to launch a product and share it to the world. To fulfil this purpose we always came down to one thing that many developers might need to learn apart from coding: the ability to promote their idea/ product to their audiences.
This skill is especially important if you’re an indie developer or an app entrepreneur building your own app business. In today’s world, millions of apps are available on the App Store, launching an app without marketing is very difficult for potential users to discover it, even if it is valuable and well crafted. In a recent catch up with Simon, we had a great discussion on how to help people learn app marketing in a practical way so that they can apply it by themselves, just like learn building your own apps through the tutorials here.
So here I come. I want to share my experience and strategies I learned all these years about app marketing. It is my pleasure to introduce to you — the App Marketing Series.
The App Marketing Series
This brand new App Marketing series is for people (especially app developers) who do not have digital/app marketing background but want to learn how to improve your app marketing knowledge. In simple words, the series of articles will help you plan your app launch, market your app (for free / limited budget) and drive more downloads.
I will teach you from basic to intermediate app marketing skills that can help you easier to deliver your idea/app to the market. I will show you some of the promotion strategies I use to increase app downloads. I will also discuss some real world case studies to show you how to apply what you learned practically. In the long run, I hope that we will form a healthy community that we mutually share with each other the practical experiences in app marketing, and improve our apps together.
Before We Start
Next week, we will dive into the app marketing lesson. But there are a few of things you need to prepare before we start.
1. The Right Mindset
While the product/app itself is important, the way you market it notably affects the sales. It is important to understand that even you develop a great product, you still need marketing to raise the awareness of your product, and expose it to potential customers.
For digital products like apps, being knowledgeable in digital marketing is what separates you from your competitors, achieving lower customer acquisition costs and having a higher chance for customers to purchase your products over and over again.
If you think digital marketing is hard to get started, trust me, you can master it just like you master coding skills. I assume you have no or very little knowledge of digital/app marketing. I will try to keep things simple, and show you the techniques step-by-step. I am confident that with the right mindset, you will become fluent in digital marketing after going through this series, and witness the growth of your community.
2. Get Ready to Assign a Certain Ad Budget
While some of the online marketing channels I am going to introduce to you are free, some are not. So, be prepared to assign some budget for your app marketing campaign.
No worries. You do not need a huge budget. As opposed to heavily-budgeted traditional advertising like tv commercial, we can kick start Online Ads with a low entrance fee. That’s why online ads is what we should always prioritise first, due to its many advantages such as easy to-go, adjustable target audiences and ads relevances, which can be enjoyed even at a low cost.
For anyone who wants to advertise their iOS Apps through App Store Search Ads, there is even no minimum budget requirement. You can set your budget at whatever costs you like, moreover there are US$100 promo code offered for app developers to start their first ad campaign. For other mainstream channels like Facebook, the minimum budget for app installs is at least US$40 per day.
3. Having a Facebook, Google and online platforms account
This is a must. I am quite sure you already have one. Just in case if you haven’t had an account yet, sign it up here at Apple, Facebook, and Google.
If you get prepared the above items, you are ready to learn more. Stay tuned for our upcoming amazing tutorials. Next week, we will dive into the first lesson of our app marketing series.