Me: Well, we are approaching a million downloads!
- 4 Months of work.
- Thousands in development & design work
- 6 months later = Barely $600 revenue!
- 2 weeks of work
- 72 hours into an app launch = $4,189
- In the black very quickly!
Tactics you “should” use that don’t work
When a much easier, faster path to a win is right under our noses.
- “I tried Facebook Ads for one of my apps and ended up getting a few installs at $19.00!
- “I tried to rank for top keywords related to my app by updating and tracking these regularly. My downloads actually went down!”
- “I made an emoji app and by the time it was LIVE there were 5 others just like it!”
- “I’ve heard I need to be doing Apple search ads so I started doing them. The conversions for my app are horrible.”
“All you need to do is…. write a few ads, spend $100, and you’ll be raking in $1000’s every day. Look at me! I did it. You can do the same thing!”
Reality: We spent a tens of thousands of dollars with Facebook app install campaigns to learn in ins and outs and even then…it’s always changing! Sure, we had profitable campaigns, but we’ve also spend like $25 for one install too! We even took extra courses to help us. They are VERY hard to get to work consistently.
Bad Advice #2: Target all the best keywords and try to rank #1
“Just get on a keyword tool to find out what keywords are related to your app and target those…and brace yourself for floods of downloads.”
Reality: If you’re a world-class Marketer and ASO wizard, targeting the hot keywords could be a good idea! Most times, targeting top keywords without actually getting significant downloads won’t get you big magic results. Tweaking keywords week after week quickly turns into the ASO hamster wheel of hell for most people because eventually Apple will probably find something in your app they don’t like and reject your update. Then you have to go through that whole thing…
Reality: If you take a well-built template that hasn’t been mass sold and make it your own, create actual value for your users, then you are ahead of 95% of what most indie developers are trying to do (just make money). Those are the people Apple is trying to stop from spamming the store. When you just chase the money, you’ll compromise and create a lower value app. Apple can sniff these out and they tag you with spam. I’ve never had a problem using a template (even our own) from Apple because we chase value for the user before the money. Our sample size is publishing close to 200 apps over the years on (1) account. If you don’t have any competition there’s a good chance your target market doesn’t exist.
If you’ve found yourself following some of this bad advice, you’ve probably been like (younger) me who busted my ass working on a project for months and spending a ton of cash to…never make it back (even with a million downloads!).
Here’s what I’ve found after spending the last few years growing our apps.
All of our biggest gains in downloads and revenue have come from a much easier, much faster, and much simpler approach.
When we picked a passionate niche of prospective users and then built an app they ACTUALLY wanted things compound pretty quickly.
BOOM! Instant downloads. Instant revenue.
Even if you don’t have the world’s hottest app
Even if your app isn’t featured.
Even if not many people hear about your app
Think it can’t happen?
Case Study #2: Another app called NewfyMoji generated $1547 in the first 30 days just by sharing on our small Instagram account of 300 and Direct Messaging some of them that requested to hear when it was LIVE. We built the Instagram account of 300 in a few days.
Case Study #3: We tested the idea of selling car window stickers based off popular emojis within our app to a small list of 50 and generated over $300 on the first day.
Every single one of these incredible results came from the exact same strategy I’ve spent the past 12 months telling you about: Offering apps / products people actually want through your own channels BEFORE messing with ads, promotions, partnerships, influencers. If you start with a decent and simple base, all those other things can work much much easier (if you even need them).
It’s allowing you to instantly put brand, your app, and any other offers in front of a warm audience of buyers who are perfectly primed to buy from you.
Using this marketing approach works for all types of apps
1. Emoji Apps
2. Photo Apps
4. Utility Apps
5. Even physical products to your app users
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