Launching a mobile app isn’t quite as easy as it was 10 years ago. When smartphones were flooding the market back in the mid 2000’s, there was a distinct “honeymoon phase” when it came to apps. In other words, people were much more open to experimenting and trying out new programs.
These days, launching an app to international fame is an incredibly cumbersome task. A study by Gartner predicts that only about 0.01% of applications will be financially successful by 2018.
Many failures can be traced back to the early stages of creation and promotion. The truth of the matter is ideas are a dime a dozen. Poor marketing and execution will quickly put even the most influential apps into the dreaded 99.9%.
To avoid this grim statistic, here are four priceless tips to consider during pre-launch.
1. Educate yourself
Simply put, the success or failure of an app is determined by the program itself. Studies have found that the average mobile app loses 77% of its daily users within three days of downloading.
Before you even start thinking about your marketing strategy, you need to know exactly how to take your idea and turn it into a reality that intuitively provides value. Additionally, it needs to stand out among the crowded market. Regardless of whether you are a Fortune 500 company, or a simple person with a great idea, creating a remarkable app requires an in-depth knowledge of the underlying traits that make indispensable programs.
For this purpose, the book App Secrets, written by PreApps founder Sean Casto, is a must-read for any app creator. The content of this book incorporates and teaches the same principles that made apps like Candy Crush, Airbnb, Snapchat, and Uber into worldwide sensations.
App Secrets is available on Amazon.
Ultimately, a shoddy UX will render all of your marketing and hype-building strategies useless.
2. Create an enticing landing page
Once you have crafted a seamless mobile app, the next step is to create a landing page. This platform is where users will learn everything they need to know about what your app is, and what makes it so great.
The landing page should have a number of objectives prior to launching the app. As education is a primary motive here, one of the goals should be to get visitors to watch an informative video, download a demo, or anything else that communicates your unique selling proposition.
Next, you will need to get people to take further action. Most importantly during a pre-launch, they should be prompted to sign up so you can give them direct updates leading up to the release.
The sign up process should be as quick and painless as possible, fields that only require a name and email will do.
Lander is a wonderful tool to create your app’s landing page. This dashboard is well-known for its user-friendliness and makes the entire process of building custom pages and merging sign up capabilities simple. Even more, the system has a built-in A/B testing feature and analytics to measure engagement levels.
During the pre-launch phase, the landing page is the face of the app. Take your time and make it pretty!
3. Leverage social media
These days, using social media to build hype for your mobile app should be certain. However, this process isn’t always as easy as it sounds.
One of the biggest mistakes app marketers make is assuming the same strategy will work parallel across every channel. In reality, each of the major social platforms requires a particular approach.
For Facebook, some of the common threads of successful marketing campaigns include concise calls-to-action (CTAs). Clearly defining your CTA buttons is a simple practice that can drastically improve engagement. Secondly, you need to have a firm understanding of your intended audience. This can involve all sorts of factors like age, interests, education, and etc. In essence, this piece of the puzzle is all about getting your messaging in front of the most susceptible eyes.
If you use Instagram, be sure the images and videos you promote give viewers a detailed look into the actual usability of the app. The name of the game is providing real-world context that serves as a compelling preview. When using hashtags, do your research and ensure they are relevant to both your app and the ideal user.
Building hype with Twitter is all about amplification. Tweets should have strong, actionable language that drives engagement to your landing page, content, or anything related to the launch. For help with hashtags, Talkwalker has an incredibly useful feature for identifying what is trending with your audience.
These real-time insights are influential in getting your content exposed on a global scale.
4. Promote your expertise
As an app creator, one of the most important ingredients in building pre-launch hype is demonstrating a superior level of knowledge within the genre. This wisdom should work to fuel your efforts in highlighting the app’s uniqueness.
Keep in mind, as you promote your content, you’re not explicitly trying to sell anything. Instead, you are encouraging viewers to interact with your messaging and establish yourself as a credible source of information. In turn, creating trust.
As more people begin to engage with your content, you can begin taking the proper steps to advance them through the sales funnel, and ultimately, get them to take action leading up to the official launch.
The market for mobile apps is one of the most interesting entities to emerge in the past couple decades. The pre-launch process of an app can be a very exciting time. During this time, you will be able to gauge the market interest in your idea, learn how to make necessary adjustments, and develop a platform that improves people’s lives.
This post is part of our contributor series. The views expressed are the author's own and not necessarily shared by TNW.