Promoting your 1st App on iOS 6: The Developer`s Survival Guide
It’s never been easy to push applications to the top of the App Store, especially if it’s the first app for a developer. You’ve created your first iOS title, but no amount of enthusiasm is going to make up for your lack of experience in publicizing it. We had this exact dilemma in mind when we decided to create the first time developer’s survival guide to app promotion.
iOS 6’s App Store makes promotion more challenging (and in our opinion more fun) than ever. Unlike in iOS 5, the iOS 6 employs a “Top Grossing” App list more than its traditional “Release Date” list. Anyone (i.e. you) launching new titles is going to feel this, as you’ll have the least time to gain a following. That means you’ll be relegated to the App Store’s vast no-man’s land of apps (unless discovered somehow). That means you’re unseen to consumers, plain and simple.
Guaranteeing that you have your app’s public profile raised as high as possible when it launches is important – not that we’d need to tell you that twice. There’s no shortage of things you need to get right to ensure that your first mobile app to be known, downloaded, and successful. No need to keel over in a fit anxiety though – ComboApp’s first time developer’s survival guide to app promotion provides you with an overview of each of these important factors. Go ahead, take a look:
Tips for 1st App Promotion on iOS 6
1. Graphic promotional materials tend to be the most expensive marketing solutions – but they’re more effective.
The new App Store incorporates much more graphics, banners, and other visual stuff in its new layout. No matter what app you look at or which ‘feature’ column you venture to, the first apps you notice are the ones jumping out via engaging and appealing visual content.
Some of the most graphics are going to be your product’s App Store icon and its first promotional screenshot. If you work to make both of them ultra enticing your reward is going to be much greater consumer interest.
Your App Store Icon:
The most general lists on the App Store all reveal exactly 3 things about every app on each list. The App’s Title, its Star Review Rating, and its Icon. Advice for effective app naming is simple – keep it short, catchy, and sweet.
The new App Store’s app icons are almost twice as big as they had been, and with consumers browsing through the App Store with increasingly higher resolution devices these icons can now incorporate logos, names, and more without coming off too busy. Use this space thoughtfully and you’ll see its full potential to help you wrangle an audience for your app.
Your 1st Screenshot:
iOS 5’s App Store emphasized the value of accurately informative descriptions as this was the primary thing users were pushed to explore. iOS 6 has abandoned this concept in favor of pushing screenshots as the primary descriptive aide on any given app’s dedicated App Store page.
Since screenshots are presented via sliding menu the first one become of crucial importance as it’s the only one shoppers see. This graphic shot is responsible for selling them on cycling through more screenshots, deciding to reading a more in-depth description of your app.
Simply put your first screenshot has the power to push consumers onto the path towards downloading your app or convincing them to ignore it and move on. Make it visually appealing, include effective texts that entice shoppers to try your app out. Expertly executed this is a powerful advertising tool, and you should develop it long before your planned release day comes and goes.
Here’s a surprise: Focusing on getting positive customer star reviews and using them to your advantage is important. But, it’s also much harder to go out of the gates because shoppers have had no time to try and review your app. Plan out how you’re going to get good reviews. Do it before your app ever hits the App Store, and don’t ask us why – you know the answer already!
Helpful hint: Throwing in a “Please Review” button as an afterthought won’t really get the job done.
3. App Store Optimization (ASO) Done Right
We’ll be the first to admit that the new layout of the App Store doesn’t make searching for apps easy. In fact it’s downright goofy – vertical menus have been replaced with horizontal ones. It’s impossible to see lists of 25+ titles with a single swipe and although users do have the option of reinstating the old menu system it’s a hassle to do so and a safe bet that the vast majority of users won’t bother trying. Don’t even ask about the “See All” tab, it’s not what it once was.
What you should take away from it: unless your application is already at the top of the charts using effective keywords is more important than ever. You want users searching for your app to find you? Work for it! Use that 100 symbol limit wisely, take a look at your marketplace and what your competition is doing too.
4. Social Media Integration
Social Media is huge in iOS 6 and on the new App Store too. Facebook and Twitter are everywhere on there, and you’d better focus on them when promoting your app if you want to be a market winner. Make Facebook Fan pages and Twitter handles for your app before it launches. The long and short of it is if you want recognition for your app you should be looking at Social Media. Reach out through these social networks, get spotted, get “liked”, and get your app shared by the public!
With the rollout of iOS 6 it’s become more difficult than ever to get noticed at the App Store. Don’t hesitate to utilize alternative promotional channels, impress bloggers, web based outlets relevant to your apps, and reach out to thought leaders influential amongst your target consumer demographic. Apps need to get experienced and reviewed as badly as people need air. Without them they are dead in the water.
Promotion is integral to any app’s success and while a quality product will almost always be the deciding factor in which apps will find a wide user base in the long term, getting them primed to do so is up to you. If you’re green to the industry don’t risk getting this crucial step wrong. Contact the professionals and get it right the first time around.