These days, long before a mobile app actually gets ready to hit the app marketplace, the marketing team behind swings into action to create buzz and spread the news of the upcoming app far and wide. We call this pre-launch marketing, which has now become a vital part of any mobile strategy.
Launching a mobile app is not going to get any traction or a quick user base from the early days unless it gets the push from a pre-launch marketing campaign. But what are the key aspects of such campaigns that marketers need to follow before the launch of the app? Read below to uncover the four steps you need to take before launching your mobile app.
1. Start with knowing your competition and audience
This is the unmistakable first building block for any marketing and, naturally, for a pre-launch campaign as well. You need to know your target audience in depth as soon as you conceptualized the idea and accordingly can address development and design elements. When you've decided upon the app look, feel, and features, you need to find ways to engage your audience early. In that respect, what your competitive apps are doing is worth taking a look to gain insights. Besides grabbing competition data, it's crucial to take suggestions and feedbacks from industry professionals. Here are a few essential tips.
- To create your ideal user persona, grab data and analyze the users of your competitive apps in the market.
- Make your user persona always with detailed attributes like demographics, monetary status, preferences, social behavior, engagement pattern, location, etc.
- Analyze the ways competitive apps are getting success in addressing the audience and the areas where they are lacking.
- Reach out for the suggestions and opinions from industry experts on these matters.
2. Perfect your app store presence
This is something that cannot be done hastily once the launch date of your app is fixed. It should be planned well in advance. This is why earlier you work on your app store presence, the better it is for your post-launch campaign. Once the app is launched, the app store listing and your app should have the following attributes.
- App Name: Your app is just taking shape around an idea, and this is time to give a perfect name to your app. You need to give it a name combining your brand and the main user benefit of your app. On top of all these, the name must be catchy and impressive. But an app name does worth all such brainstorming.
- App icon: Now it's time to decide over the app icon that perfectly showcases the app idea and the brand while maintaining attention-grabbing quality. It should be clean, minimalistic, meaningful and exciting. It deserves equal brainstorming and creative focus as the app name.
- App Description: Now it's time to tell your audience what the app is all about. Describe the app in crisp, short and an engaging manner. Always insist on how the app is going to help users in real life situations. Use several keywords within the description but do not compromise readability by stuffing keywords meaninglessly.
- App Screenshots: An app is judged mainly by its visual appearance before the potential users take the trouble of looking deeper within. So, beautiful, high definition screenshots of app pages that describe the benefits of your app perfectly through visuals should be used.
- App video preview: As connectivity is increasingly getting better, apps can now utilize preview videos to describe the app benefits and user experience right on the app store description page. Video preview of an app is more persuasive in effect than other elements. Make the video short, specific and engaging.
3. Solid content marketing
Now, as the app is going through development and you're ready with an app store optimization strategy, you need to create buzz around the upcoming app with a solid content marketing strategy. What are the stepping stones to reach out to your potential audience with contents? Here are some useful tips.
- Create a website: Do you want to go all out to make your app grow like a digital brand? Then you invariably need a dedicated website for it. It may be a single page website for a simple function-focused app or a fully dynamic website for a content-focused app. Once you have the website for your app, you can publish contents targeting relevant niche specific keywords to attract the audience and push the traffic for app download.
- Create a blog: Do you want to establish your expertise in a niche and gain traction from loyal users and industry stalwarts? Well, there is no better way to do this than starting a blog and while doing so, you can easily target keywords for your niche app and build traffic.
- Social media content marketing: Most users these days value social media recommendations and suggestions to decide on downloading mobile apps and other digital products. Naturally, you just cannot stay away from social platforms to create buzz for your app long before the launch. First of all, besides the most common two platforms like Facebook and Twitter, limit the social focus of your app within another two or three platforms based on the type of app and audience. Create a dedicated social media page, share contents and blog posts on the app, publish preview video, engage and interact with your audience on a regular basis, start promotions for post-launch benefits, connect with influencers and offer beta versions, run social media ads… There are so many ways you can reach your audience with social media and create buzz before the launch.
4. A landing page to convey the message
It may look like a small step, but it's often more effective than banner ads and promotions. Mainly, a well-thought-of, engaging landing page can work wonders during the pre-launch period. Here are some effective tips.
- Convey the benefits directly as soon as possible.
- Make the copy engaging and specific. Explain the story of the app and how it stands out with benefits that other apps lack.
- Optimize the landing page visually with high quality, contextual images that grab attention.
- Minimize the form fields to a maximum of two or three.
The last piece of advice is to start your pre-launch campaign early and ramp up to the launch date with a well laid-out plan. Try to make the launch bigger by associating with an event, a special occasion or a special date for most of your audience.