Launch-time is a special opportunity for new apps. It marks a transition from building the app into marketing it, though it’s certainly not a clean distinction. Once you release, it’s time to start pursuing growth, and if you are really serious about succeeding, there are some things you should do before launch to set yourself up for success. Here are a few!
This step isn’t so much a step toward success, and more of a step away from failure—good quality assurance won’t help your app to succeed directly, but bad quality assurance will prevent any of your later further efforts from bearing fruit.
QA is the final phase of development, in which you test and test and test to ensure the app functions as intended and without error. Doing a good job here and polishing up the product before release is absolutely critical. Don’t expect perfection—if you wait for perfection you’ll never launch—but make sure to put forth a serious effort to squash bugs and ensure that the vast majority of your users will have a great experience.
App Store Optimization Decisions
App store optimization refers to the various tactics that can be employed in sprucing up your app’s page on Google Play or iTunes (or wherever it can be found). Certain aspects that relate to how well your app store page perform are innately tied to the app itself; such as the app name, and the app icon you use.
Since you have to decide on these elements before you you launch, design them with the goal of attracting new users right off the bat. Make the title somewhat descriptive of the app’s functions, but without being long winded or awkward. This helps bring in new customers who are manually browsing the app store or using searches to find what they need.
Likewise, a high quality app icon is important. Modern design stylings favor flat, colorful icons, though those aren’t the only icons that work. Browse some top apps for inspiration. You want people to see your icon and associate your app with the same level of quality they see in other top apps.
Prior to launch, your marketing can’t actually convert any sales or downloads. Instead, your goal is to spread brand awareness (which will improve conversion rates later on). You’ll build “hype” that hooks potential customers and makes it easy to reel them in once the app is live.
There are several cost effective methods you can use here. First and foremost, you should set up social media accounts for the upcoming app and invite people to follow as a way of getting the latest news. Twitter and Facebook are probably the best bets for this. Other social networks can provide community-building as well, so think about how you can leverage them. If you have good visual content, try Instagram or Pinterest.
Find other communities online that meet the criteria for your target demographic and don’t be afraid to do a little self-promotion there. As long as you come off as sincere and personal, you won’t offend anyone. Forums, blogs, social media groups, etc. can all be great places to mention your upcoming app. You’ll want to refer people to your social media accounts to keep them on the hook for later.
An ongoing blog can also keep people engaged. Urge people to sign up for the mailing list to ensure they don’t forget about you, and every time you publish a blog post they’ll be reminded of your app.
Prior to launch, you can gain a lot of traction by working with businesses and organizations to establish channels of distribution for your app. These can come in many forms, and finding partnerships that can empower your app definitely requires some creative planning and pitching, so I’ll just give a few hypothetical examples to get your brainstorming session started.
- Businesses that had a hand in the creation of the app (by providing APIs or SDKs that power it behind the scenes) can provide you with free publicity by spreading awareness of the app through their networks. They’ll get to tout how their tech is powering it, and you get free publicity.
- Organizations and media companies that work in the same field as your app might be interested in helping to market the app to their own customers.
- Manufacturers and Telecoms can preload your app onto consumer devices.
Your goal is to find allies who will be invested in the app’s success with incentive to help promote it, and partners who can offer you access to new customers.
The sky’s the limit here, but these kind of deals can be hard to establish. Without the necessary professional connections and business development experience, most wouldn’t even consider pursuing these kinds of opportunities.
This is one area where Software Developers India can offer considerable expertise. Thanks to our central Silicon Valley location and our experience working with entrepreneurs, startups, and other businesses in the area we have a strong network across a wide variety of networks. Combine that with our savvy sales team, and we can provide tremendous resources for your app during its formative months.
We’ve got the best resources for social media management, marketing, SEO, and plenty more tools that can prep your app for success. So drop by some time and let’s talk about it! And if you don’t happen to be in the Silicon Valley area, we can chat over the phone at 408.802.2885 any time or you can set up a meeting by leaving your information on our website.