If you think about promoting your app today, you may get déjà vu and remember your early days of building a web presence. Marketing and development back then involved a lot of people talking about the need to build a website for their business.
You might also remember that that conversation (and hype) quickly changed to be about the intense competition created by the massive growth in the number of websites.
Today, everyone already knows they need “an app for that,” and, already, the app market is an incredibly competitive environment. But there's good news. It is possible to break through the crowd. It comes down to having a solid user acquisition plan that works for the mobile environment.
Once you've finished writing your marketing strategy (including your launch plan, paid and organic campaigns, and success metrics), optimize it with these three tips for identifying your most valuable users.
Let’s be honest: we are all facing a major time crunch. It’s easy to measure success on the simplest metric possible: the volume of new downloads/installs/users acquired. Most of us have just enough time to take it a step further and also track some cost metrics (for example, this could be a metric like cost per install, since that’s easy to calculate).
But few of us extend our definition of success beyond the initial vanity metrics. In fact, a recent VentureBeat Insight report found that while CPI is the preferred method of measuring user acquisition, it is also the least insightful when it comes to understanding who your valuable users are. Don’t make the mistake of evaluating the success of your marketing plan soley on preliminary metrics.
Instead, make sure you also measure the full impact new users have on your business with metrics like lifetime value. This will give you better insight into how successful your marketing strategies were.
Pro Tip - Define “lifetime value” by what’s important to your business. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a monetary value. For instance, if you’re a music app, your definition of value may be the number of minutes users listen to their music stream.
Not all acquisition channels are equal. What works for others may not work well for you. Be nimble in your planning and make sure there's room for experimentation. You don’t have to know all the answers from the start.
Eventually, when you measure success on lifetime value, you will be able to show a clear ROI and then fine tune your plan to focus in on the channels that consistently bring in highly valuable users.
Pro Tip: One of the most undervalued app acquisition techniques is borrowing mobile moments from other apps who have thousands of users. In this case, these mobile moments often come in the form of mobile advertising, where the goal should be to start a conversation.
We all know that a great user experience is key to retaining users. After all, if your users can’t get the info they need quickly, it’s easy to download another free app that looks similar and serves the same purpose.
Only 20% of apps are only used once, making the first few moments of your users' experience one of the most important times to engage your users. First time users don’t necessarily need more information but they do need a little guidance and they definitely need some special attention - especially if you can guide them to the place in your app that delivers the real value.
Make the onboarding process part of your marketing plan and you’ll find your efforts to recruit new users pay off later when more of them become loyal customers.
Pro Tip: Don’t be afraid to nudge your users past the finish line with app marketing techniques like in-app messages that guide the user to the end goal.
Bonus Tip: Considering that the first few seconds users spend in your app are critical AND the fact that users find you from different places with varying levels of knowledge about who you are, personalize the onboarding experience based on the acquisition channel users come through.
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