Because the mobile app market is so competitive, making an app financially successful is uniquely challenging. You need a great idea that’s well-executed, yes. But you also need to make sure your app connects with your target audience. And you need to motivate them to buy the app and/or make a purchase within the app. How can you increase your chances of success? Here are three steps to implement pre-launch that will make your mobile app more profitable.
1. Be Thorough in Your Market Research
Market research should actually happen before a single line of code is created. In order to successfully sell to a group of people, you must understand them. You’ll need to know what their daily lives look like, what inconveniences they face, what frustrations they deal with. You should explore what their goals are, what they dream of, what their hobbies are, what their priorities are in their professional and personal lives.
Beyond your audience, you’ll want to check out the competitive landscape. What other apps already exist that are similar to yours? Which ones are performing well? Looking at the ones that are successful, find out who they’re targeting, what look and feel they have, what their user experience is like. Try to identify what works and what doesn’t, based on what you see in the apps that are doing well and the ones that aren’t. Read the reviews of each of the apps that are similar to your idea. What do people like? What do they not like? Which features do they wish an app had that they otherwise like? This exploration will help you make your product better than all the existing apps out there in the same niche.
2. Get Feedback From Real Customers
Your market research will enable you to make an educated guess about what the market wants and needs. But even if you’re conducting interviews and digging deep, you won’t fully know how your target audience will react to your app until you test it. Once you’ve developed a proof of concept or an MVP, it’s time to get real-life feedback. To get accurate feedback that’s representative of your target market, you’ll need to test with actual users who are in your market segment. Friends are fine, but you won’t get accurate results unless you recruit a representative sample of beta testers. Motivate potential testers by offering rewards like a free first month or year once you release the full version of the app.
3. Bring Marketing Professionals in Early
A common mistake is to create a brand and build the app before getting marketing professionals involved. But marketing will shape everything from the name of your app to the color scheme you choose to your promotion strategy. It’s essential that you get your marketing team involved at the beginning to ensure you don’t waste resources on activities that will later need to be redone or, even worse, result in missed opportunities.
Here are a few things that you’ll want to make sure to tackle at the outset:
- Define your app’s USP (unique selling proposition).
- Learn what keywords you should optimize the app for.
- Decide on a name that will resonate with your particular target audience, one that includes both brand-based and search-based words.
- Craft a description that clearly communicates the USP, that entices the viewer to continue checking out the app, and that’s search-optimized.
- Create a pre-launch marketing strategy. This should include a “launching soon” page with a preview trailer that gets potential users excited about the app, along with an invite to submit an email address for notification when the app launches.
- Develop a PR plan to trigger close to your launch date. You should have a press kit and an outreach plan with specific publications and a list of journalists and reporters to target.
- Develop a social media strategy to get the word out when your app launches. This should include not only postings on your own channels, but also postings in groups and forums where your potential users hang out.
- Create a timeline for when you will accomplish each of these actions.
While success is never a given, you’ll dramatically boost your chances of profitability if you implement these three pre-launch steps. An app that performs well in the marketplace is an app that was planned in detail from the very beginning.
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