8 Steps to Mobile App Marketing Success

We have highlighted eight key areas we feel all app developers and marketers should put their energy into. These should will help engage users enough to stick around longer and increase users, and potentially conversion rates, to achieve marketing success for your mobile app.

Do you have an idea for a mobile app or have already launched a mobile app? What happens when it’s time to take your good work to the global markets?

On the surface, releasing an app in international markets seems straightforward. Just make sure the text is translated correctly for international audiences and you’re done, right?

One of the most challenging things facing developers and markets in today’s overcrowded marketplace is actually driving the app downloads. But not only that, you need to consider how you will retain the users.

App Store Stats

Currently, there are over 2 million apps in the Apple App Store alone, with another 2 million in the Google Play store as of 18th January 2019.

To ensure your numbers stay up in terms of downloads, how your app engages and / or entertains the user is key to the success.

However, you should note that up to 90% of new users are lost within just the first 4 weeks, of which almost all are unlikely to return to the app again.

Furthermore, only about 1% of the new users remain active by the end of the first 6 months.

It’s good to note that different markets have different preferences for the apps. Your users will value experiences that feel personal, this means that an app that works for one target market, doesn’t necessarily mean that it will also convert for another market.

This is where localising your app for each new market comes in to play. If you get this right, it can increase the understanding of your app’s value for the user and recommendations will follow.

1. Choose the right international markets

The option of being able to launch your app in any given market doesn’t mean that you should. Your market research should allow you to decide which markets are potentially open to tap in to.

Google’s Market Finder tool can help identify suitable markets to enter help you create an international marketing strategy based on important data such as mobile usage, app revenue, successful payment methods, and options for localising your app.

However, along side this tool you should also consider refining your list of markets. Do your research and determine whether people are actually installing the app and using it.

It also helps to check to see if they are engaging with it by leaving feedback and sharing experience on social media.

2. Understand your users’ intent with marketing

Make sure you always have your target audience in mind. Developers and markets often forget who they are targeting which can be a critical oversight.

“Marketers too frequently forget who their audience is”

This can be especially true when executing tactics to drive further engagement. Be precise with your segmentation, the more likely you are to induce engagement and the conversions.

For example: send smarter notifications to the user based on their actions during that session, not after. You will have more success with this than sending the same notification to all your users.

3. Consider the marketing culture

After you shortlist the markets you wish to target, learn about the people and how they use their devices where they live.

Different cultures interact differently with their devices, whether it’s social media, shopping, banking, gaming etc. You should tailor your app to integrate seamlessly within their local culture and behaviour.

For example: if your app is a local search tool to find restaurants nearby, some markets might already be used to ordering food via their devices.

In that scenario, you should consider adding a delivery service to your app. In the opposite scenario where food delivery is not predominantly a key aspect for that market, you should consider removing it from your app.

4. Serve an untapped market

A good example of a successful app is Snapchat. It dominates the app stores year after year and remains the most popular app on the app stores.

Based on an unorthodox approach to messaging, Snapchat remains in the top charts because the developers don’t stop improving the functionalities of the app.

“Grow the application’s functionality to fill new gaps and reach new audiences”

They identified a gap in the market and exploited it to develop an app that they knew would be an instant hit with their intended audience.

They did not stop there, they kept improving the app and filled it with new functionality to reach an even wider audience, so there is a little something for all their users.

It was merely created as just a novelty messaging app, but one that grew to become a globally dominating media platform.

5. Nurture your relationships through marketing

The easiest part is to get users to download your app, retaining the user is a whole different ball game. By ignoring engagement statistics that would otherwise mean the user returns to use it once again, marketers and developers often fail by ignoring these practices.

“Always think how you can enhance or personalise experiences”

In order to maintain on going engagement with the user, always think of ways that you can enhance their experience by personalising it, which would then form a relationship and give them new reasons to return.

In short, make your app indispensable to the user, something that they cannot live without.

6. Feedback leads to progress

If you want your app to keep growing, follow the suggestions and feedback left by those who use. They are the ones who interact with the app the most, so any improvements they suggest should not be taken lightly.

“Keep a close eye on your ratings”

Always try to better your app by considering how you can incorporate the users suggestions by tracking your app’s ratings and reviews.

For example: By changing Instagram’s algorithm last year, they focused on displaying more relevant content in the users feeds and thus improving their experience, based on the feedback that they received.

7. Leave room for growth

You must understand how to motivate users to continue using your app beyond the initial launch, to ensure that your retention does not decline.

For example: After becoming a global phenomenon following its launch last year, Pokemon Go reached over 500 million downloads within the first five months. The obsession soon died with a rapid decline in millions of users every day.

The cause can be argued both ways, but more likely due to insufficient developments geared towards maintaining user engagement over a longer period.

8. Test before and after launch

Once you have translated your app, you should always use the local market to test it on commonly used devices and check how users are interacting with it. Translations may not always go to plan, so check for any formatting errors and mistranslations.

Once you have your results, make the required changes to your app and conduct further tests by releasing the new version for a small selection of users. After gathering further data and behavioural statistics and feedback, you are ready to launch publicly.

After the app is launched publicly, check the ratings and reviews regularly and address any issues immediately, always stay on top of any problems that may affect the user’s experience.

As your app gains popularity on the app stores, track the app’s listings for market growths by experimenting with which text and graphic combinations work best together to attract more downloads.

Maintain relevancy at all costs, this will be a continual process throughout the life span of your app. If you have done your research thoroughly and tapped into the right markets, your app will have a strong launch.

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