Facial recognition works using faceprints which are unique just like fingerprints; it's essentially biometric identification. Privacy is at stake, and both Google and Facebook have faced lawsuits over it. Your phone can track your face and unlock almost...
Remember one of Apple’s first smartphone slogans? “There’s An App For That?” It couldn’t be truer these days. There’s over a million in each major store (Apple and Android), and those numbers grow daily.
Standing out among a million of anything is pretty hard, which begs the question: how do you get a mobile app to stand out?
Step 1: Understanding how people typically find apps
This will vary by industry or the service you provided, but recent research from Think with Google offers some insights. Namely:
25% of app users discover an app through search
Search ads are also one of the more effective formats.
But what if you don’t have a strong PPC budget or the ability to bring in an SEO expert? At that point, social media — typically free and possible to get attention if you think a bit outside the box — becomes an important resource for mobile app marketing. And for social media to work properly, you’ll need content (otherwise, what else are you sharing?).
At this point, the ecosystem for mobile app marketing looks like:
You should be seeing by now that mobile app marketing is essentially a holistic digital experience — which explains why so many companies create apps without a plan for marketing them (because it can seem overwhelming in the midst of other day-to-day tasks) or why half of the companies still didn’t have an app in early 2014 (again, seems like a daunting process).
We can make this process easier for you — yes, it’s complex and holistic, but it starts with one important element, and that’s our Step 2.
Step 2: Understand your value and how that could be conveyed in an app
You might have seen this graphic in other posts or presentations, and we apologize for the brief curse word, but here goes:
Many companies get confused here and think what they sell is their product or service. No. In fact, you sell what your product can do for someone’s life. That applies whether you work in plumber routing apps, health care apps, productivity apps, or gaming apps. You’re not actually selling the product; you’re selling the value of the product/service in the life of the end customer.
All marketing — but especially app marketing, which is a very crowded world — starts from understanding your value, figuring out a story around the value, and then finding ways to tell that story to a consumer. Regarding apps, the root of the story you’re telling is simple: if you download this app, this value will always be with you so long as you have your phone. (Which for most people is all the time.)
You can brainstorm this, white-board this, or take any other collaborative team approach that’s best for your organization — but the most important steps to begin any mobile app marketing process are:
Understanding your value
Figuring out stories around that value
Determining how to tell those stories
Applying that out across different mediums and approaches
Step 3: Embracing the holistic digital package
If you look above, our focal points to get your app out into the world are going to be:
We’re going to start with the value prop. Let’s say you make an app that helps small businesses schedule technicians out to customers (electricians, plumbers, cable repair, etc.)
You start with value points, such as:
Makes people’s lives easier
Customers can track where their tech is/understand how their appointment is being affected
Stores customer info that the tech can access (value for the business)
Potentially has invoicing capabilities
Once you’ve outlined the points of value, you need to determine how to fit them within the holistic digital ecosystem.
For SEO, you need a certain degree of technical functionality around keywords, headers, density, titles, and page data. But you also need to do keyword research and understand terms people are actually searching that might lead them to your app. Those are your target keywords. There’s no point in targeting “scheduling solutions” if everyone and their mother is Googling “scheduling apps,” right?
For search ads/PPC, again you need an idea about keyword search volume and about keyword conversion rates; you can find this information via Google itself (Keyword Planner) or via a host of third-party sites such as WordStream. You also need to figure out how to convey your value in a short search ad. Search ads are huge in the travel app community, for example. Let’s say someone is looking for a hotel room in Cincinnati and gets an add for your app. If they travel a lot, but Cincinnati is just one stop, they’ll probably ignore your ad if it seems like it’s very Cincinnati-focused. But if it seems universally relevant (“easy room finds for business travelers on short notice”), they’ll probably download it. Language is important to PPC as much as functionality is.
For social media, remember the first word: social. It’s not about selling like crazy or pushing product. Again it comes back to value. What’s the value of your app and how can you convey that? And if people are talking about or discussing needs relative to what your app can do … jump in the convos. This is called “social listening,” and it can work. People get very busy and don’t always have time to research every ideal app for the challenges they’re trying to solve. If you appear in a Twitter convo and solve a problem for them, most people will give your app a look.
For content marketing, again: value. It’s not about pushing out reams and reams of content. It’s about figuring out who might want your app and writing/designing content they would likely be interested in. You’ll whiff sometimes, sure — no one bats 1.000 on content marketing anywhere — but the surest path to failure is overproducing just to “have a lot of content.” A lot of content doesn’t help at all unless it’s targeted on who might actually want your app.
We haven’t even touched yet on e-mail marketing, and that’s another large component of getting your app in front of people — especially if your company’s marketing team has a whole has embraced e-mail and developed a mostly-robust list.
By this point, you might be a bit overwhelmed by the different tactics you can employ to stand out in a crowded App Store. And that’s going to lead to our next post! Next time out, we’ll focus more on social media marketing and driving that experience forward. Many small businesses try to experiment with social media, don’t see the returns they want, and abandon it quickly. It doesn’t have to be that way! You can be successful, but it requires a bit of context, a bit of strategy, and a bit of targeting.