Mobile app promotion

 In iOS app development, Marketing, Mobile app consulting, Mobile app development, Mobile app promotion

We have in our previous blogs talked about how the go to market strategy forms a major chunk of ensuring that your mobile app turns out to be a success. A major part of the Go to market (GTM) strategy is the promotional aspect of it. Now, mobile app promotion doesn’t have to be necessarily about spending money. There are multiple organic ways of promoting mobile apps too. In this blog, we will discuss the various monetary as well as organic promotional methods.

At Vibeosys Software, we have worked with a lot of small and medium businesses and startups. Hence, we know the kind of budgetary constraints that a lot of such firms have. We have thus, tried to make this blog as relevant to all budget types as possible with special focus on stingy budgets.

So, here we go!

Spread word of mouth

The very first and probably one of the most important organic ways to improve the app’s promotion is to get in touch with the target audience. You do not really have to plan for this but for all the people that you meet, the events you attend or even casual discussions you have in your peer group, drop the topic for your mobile app. You can have your family members or friends talking about it too! Write about the mobile app on your social media pages, tell your college friends about the challenges you faced during its making, have workshops in college, or simply volunteer at such organisations to spread the word of mouth. While this might not yield results directly but once these people see your ad, the probability of them downloading your mobile app would increase manifolds.

cheap and mail them about the mobile app. If you have an audience base from earlier, mail them, Share newsletters! Might be a bit of hard work but creating newsletters with hand and then sharing them around will not just make the receiver feel special about it but it will also build your app’s personality for the probable users. Basically, this step is all about talking to people to let them know. Spreading the word of mouth is what we can call it.


In addition to this, you may also purchase databases which come in very cheap and mail them about the mobile app. If you have an audience base from earlier, mail them, Share newsletters! Might be a bit of hard work but creating newsletters with hand and then sharing them around will not just make the receiver feel special about it but it will also build your app’s personality for the probable users. Basically, this step is all about talking to people to let them know. Spreading the word of mouth is what we can call it.

And guess what, for those who help you out in this pursuit, reward them! For that matter, handing out free coupons before your mobile app gets launched is a common practice across Europe and the Americas. Not very sure how relevant that would be for the Indian market given its penchant for free mobile apps, yet if you are looking at in-app purchases or app level purchases then it would be a good thing to do!

Contact the Influencers

Remember how once upon a time, a magazine called digit used to be the word for all the new games that have been launched and a lot of technical advancements in the world of the computer. Well, Digit was the influencer of the not so internet savvy era. Now, we have influencers. There are just so many technical influencers who make videos about mobile apps. Not just them, there are a lot of people who make prank calls or do any such similar entertainment stuff but have a huge following. Well, their following could be your prospective audience base. So, get in touch with them and have them promote your mobile app. Some of these influencers would work on a barter, others would ask you to pay. Whatever you do, remember that you will have to negotiate hard there and since you are going to make a big business there, we are sure you will negotiate well. A small case here would be of Meme-chat, an app which was promoted by most of the actors from TVF, they literally meme-d their way into the promotion by having meme-lords share their mobile app and talk about it!

Leverage the Power of Your Website

Now, this is where we would refer to another one of our older blogs. If you have subscribed to our blogs then you must be remembering the one where we talked about the importance of websites vs mobile apps. Well, one point mentioned there was that one simply cannot do away with the website given how people first check Google and then if they find the content there to be convincing enough, come back and download. Now again, this will not hold so much true for photo editing mobile apps or beauty mobile apps but they will be sort of an outlier to this discussion. Most mobile apps require the backing of a good functional website to ensure that they get the customer trust. Plus, a website is a gateway to SEO and you wouldn’t want to miss out on that!

Also, you can put up a download link on your website for the users to download your mobile application immediately should they find the content convincing; again something you will not be able to do if you don’t have a website!

Get Featured in App Reviews/Blogs

We will be honest here but this will require some running around the mill. The best and easiest shortcut to this would be to start answering questions on Quora. Now, DuckDuckGo isn’t really an app but it did leverage the power of Quora to boost installs. A number of beauty-related mobile apps or even offline clinics partake on such question and answer platforms to ensure footfalls and not very surprising but almost everyone who uses Quora has had some of their most relevant traffic from there.

In addition to this, there is this thing about article submission where you can submit domain-specific articles on websites backlinking to your mobile app or website. Plus, there are so many websites or people who write reviews on mobile apps. You can have your mobile application included in them too. This is one of the important ways to promote mobile apps.

Mention it in Your Signature!

Yes, while some of you may think that this is too much but believe us when we say, self-publicity is the best publicity. Branding is one of the ways of promoting mobile apps. So, be it your social media handles, your email signature of even if you have a business card- just please include the name of your mobile application. Of course, you will have to make it quirky or the logo to be bright but it would be worth it. Every mail that you send or for every person who visits your social media handle would be reminded of it. Somehow a lot of people miss out on this. But those who do not, make the most out of it. Take the example of Ankur Warikoo, the founder of Nearbuy. Nearbuy was doing just fine till Ankur started his Warikoo Wednesdays and started telling stories about Nearbuy on LinkedIn. The installs picked up after that because people were following Ankur Warikoo and then getting impressed and hence downloading the mobile app.

Try out Alternative App Stores

The world isn’t all about Android and iOS wars. There are other people too and a lot of them refer to GetJar, SlideMe, Opera Mobile Store, AppsLib, Amazon Appstore and AppBrain too! So, promote mobile apps on these app stores as well. Promoting mobile apps includes making availability on every possible store.

Apply for Paid Awards

Paid awards have multi-fold benefits in promoting mobile apps. First, those who go through your mobile application will get to know you. Second, if you win, you will have a medallion to show against your mobile app’s name and will get a lot of coverage too. In addition to this, a lot of these awards provide incubation for the winners which again will be a great benefit to get out of this entire thing.  Some of the best awards with you can apply to are Appy Awards, Best App Ever Awards, AppCircus Competition, Apple Design Awards, Ericsson Application Awards, The Webby Awards, Best Mobile App Awards, and OZApp awards. The two Indian firms specifically which offer long term incubation of over 5 years in India are Marico and Aditya Birla. So, you could look at them too!

Search Engine Optimisation

Well, it will be a sin to not mention this. You know how it is done and since we have mentioned about having a website for your mobile app already, we are sure you will be able to take it up from there! Just please do this without fail!

Join Relevant Groups

Be it social media groups for developers, relevant business groups on LinkedIn, your domain-specific groups or just the offline groups where developers meet, make sure that you are a party to them. Not only will this promote mobile apps but the kind of technical discussions there will help you understand what the audience wants and what all is under development. Such insights can be of specific use when you would write the ad copies for your campaigns. A to the point copy and you will be able to improve your CTR just like that! Try joining public groups which are free, it will also help in promoting mobile apps on public URL. This will help in SEO backlinking.

About Advertisements and Your App Icon

Well, there are a few guidelines for you when you go about choosing your app icon. Make sure that it stands out uniquely. At least cover the basic hygiene that it shouldn’t resemble any other mobile app. Try and use not more than 2 colours to create contrast and finally- be creative! Also, yes, trying out its visibility against multiple wallpapers will only help in ensuring good visibility for the app on the users’ phones.

Now, coming to the advertisements. First of all, the platform on which you should bet your budgets will depend a lot on the kind of purpose your mobile app aims at solving. If it is a mobile app about beauty, go for Instagram. If it is a B2B mobile app, LinkedIn will work for you. For any other type of mobile app, Facebook will be your best bet. However, make sure that about 20-30% of your overall budget is dedicated to Google too! While the leads or installs you will get there will not always be the best but the quantum of installs you will get will definitely boost your overall campaign results.

And yes, your ad copy will have an important role to play in promoting mobile apps. So, depending upon the platform again and also the purpose that your app will solve, go for either display or text ads!

Another trend that has recently caught up is the promotional videos where the founders post a creative video; sometimes using placards to mention things and then eventually ask people to download their mobile app. This could work for you too but make sure that it goes well with your brand’s persona.

App Store Optimisation (ASO) – Crucial for mobile app marketing

We finally had to touch this topic! So, in addition to the usual App SEO, there are a lot of things which can boost your app store optimisation. One would be getting the right photos/screenshots of your iOS mobile app and ensuring a good video about how it functions. 

Of course, you should detail out it’s functioning in writing too but, the visual bit cannot be and should not be neglected at any cost. Screenshots on app store, sell around 40% of your mobile app and hence its the best way to promote mobile apps.

Also, in your description, you may also include pre-book options. So, you can think of giving out some free vouchers or any gifts for all those who pre-book your mobile app. This will create a buzz for your iOS mobile app, much like a-la-Beera beer mode! 

For more information about app store optimization techniques, read here.

Be ready for PR

For promoting mobile apps, be ready for PR, because you never know when your mobile app will go viral and also, it is always better to be in touch with the media guys. While some of you might think of hiring a PR agency on board, let us advise you against it. A decent PR agency will charge a decent amount for decent coverage. In that too, the first three months wouldn’t have any significant coverage. So, steer clear of that money waste. If you really want to spend that money, spend it on your campaigns instead, get installs, create a buzz and then approach PR. Meanwhile, keep writing guest posts for online high domain authority blogs of relevance and even posts for the local sections of your regional newspapers or even the national dailies. If you are lucky, the national ones will publish it. But the local ones, they are always short on good content so that would be your low hanging fruit.

All that, but make sure you have a company profile and founder profile ready all the time. You never know when a journalist might contact you!

We have said a lot and yet there is so much we can still say. You see, creating a buzz isn’t always about putting in money. If we look at it from a larger perspective, it is a lot about getting people talking, about making the conversations happen. While all that we mentioned above would be the absolute essentials, yet there are few things like interacting or commenting on other people’s posts, making a brand out of yourself, updating your mobile app regularly, responding to reviews whenever they come etc too which can help you promote mobile app well.

Marketing is all about understanding the user’s psyche and every good marketing campaign has nailed just that! If you are looking at such a discussion for your app, feel free to call Vibeosys Software anytime! We will be happy to help.

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