You scoured the land and the Internet to find and hire the best app developer in order to realize your mobile app. Then, you found the best app developer and started working immediately on your mobile app. You spent hours, days, and months developing your mobile app; from it’s just an idea in your to a real product.
During the development stages, you’ve focused on developing a mobile app with amazing features such as easy navigation and thumb-friendly layout. Those may have fulfilled the market wants and standards, but what of the marketing? There is no point for you to develop a great app if no one knows about it.
So this time around, I’m going to talk about preparing and strategizing for pre-launch. So take your time reading this and collect all the information you need to help you maximize the app potential and to market the app successfully.
The Pre-Launch Marketing
The Search For The Magic Date
Like many other things, a launch date often decided before or during the early stages of project development. However, it is recommended that you have a few different launch dates as backup. Because there may be setbacks mid development or a couple months before launch. With having a different launch date set, this would allow you to roll out fixes, make adjustments or set up the venue.
Also, when choosing a launch date for your mobile app (or any other product) make sure there are no other mobile app launch that would overshadow your mobile app, especially from well-known and established brands. People would flock to their mobile app instead of yours, so avoid having same launch date. And this is also why you absolutely need to have a few different launch dates in hand.
Determine And Define
In the previous article, I suggested on doing research and analysis on the users’ demographic you’re targeting and your competitors. This is the phase where you would put those data you have obtained to good use.
See Where You At With Unique Value Points (UVP)
As I mentioned in the previous article, you should identify what makes your top competitor’s app received huge downloads. With this information in hand, you can use it to improve and make a unique feature that will appeal to the users. Something that will make users’ life easier. Do not just merely copy, but reinvent and make it better your competitor’s mobile app. This way you will:
- Your app will see more downloads due to its unique feature and it can help them.
- People will start talking about it, telling about it from one person to another. Especially in Malaysia, capitalized on the power, efficiency and weight of makcik bawang words. Word about your app will spread like wildfire.
Talk About Your Brand And App
All the aggressive marketing would be for nothing if you don’t tell the crowds what your brand and mobile app stand for. By telling what your brand and app stands for will help you connect, communicate and establish a relationship with users. For example, Livestrong encourages healthier and positive lifestyle, this makes them a strong advocate for this cause. And this message strongly shows in their mobile app as well, MyPlate, it has an extensive library of items you can log including sexual activities (wink), it is very detailed and suitable for all. By suitable for all, it means that it is not only for people who are looking to lose weight but also for those want to maintain their weight.
The third unique value point in MyPlate app is sending one important message to people, which is; everyone can and should be healthy. And this message resonates strongly with users, thus it able to establish a connection between people and the app. Increasing users acquisition
So for your marketing pitch it should tell about the reason behind the mobile app creation, not solely the features your mobile app have. This because users will want to hear makes your app different and how it can help them or fulfill their needs.
When the time comes for you to make the pitch, include these:
- Reason why you created the mobile app and how the app can help them.
- State the unique features it has.
Build Up The Hype Through Media
Pssst~Go Leak This
One of the best ways to make people excited and hyped is by building the hype days and months before the product launch. There are many ways to build up hype for a product for example; a purposely leaked features or image of the product is one of marketing technique and hype builder. Also, you can get to see initial reactions and feedback from users regarding the features or the product image. This will allow you to rollback and make adjustments according to the feedback and reactions received.
Create Content That Would Go Viral
I mentioned to capitalize and take advantage of the power of makcik bawang in Malaysia? Right, this method is pretty effective and you can take advantage of makcik bawang’s power with this. You can create a teaser video showing the functions and features of the product, showing a quick glance of what it can do and use silhouette to tease how it looks like. By dropping a teasing video like this you will poke at users curiosity and they will anticipate to see more.
Meaning, your target users’ demographic will be keeping a close eye and all ears for your product. The next step is to let the anticipation from the teaser video build up for a few weeks. So, let the teaser video go viral for a while (Oh Malaysians just love viral and trending stuff.
Once you see enough people have seen teaser, the following would be to drop a short trailer video showcasing your product looks, functions and features.
Social Media Is Your Best Friend!
The place where makcik-makcik bawang hold the most influence and power. So all the more reason to run your pre-launch campaign aggressively on social media. Set up a Facebook page, it can be either solely for your coming mobile app or your brand page. Though it is better to have both because on your brand page can be used to constantly update about upcoming apps/products. Meanwhile, a page dedicated solely for your app can be used to notify users upcoming updates, or promos. So once you have set up a page, immediately run a campaign to promote about your soon-to-be released mobile app. You have to chip in a few ringgit in order to post your post. Though it’ll be worth the investment because it WILL reach those makcik bawang and their will spread word about it like a gospel. Good or bad, people will be curious about your app and they will check it out themselves. So leverage on this and draw in the crowds to your apps.
The same can be done for Instagram. If you already have an Instagram account just go to your profile, then click on the hamburger UI on the upper right of your profile. Then, once the sidebar popped-up, select the gear icon and it will lead to another page. On the next page, select “Switch To Business Account” and you will be directed to a series of slideshow. And the rest you can just follow the instructions on how to set up your Instagram business account.
For those too lazy to read, here’s how to access Instagram’s business account set up menu:
Hamburger icon → Gear Icon → Select “Switch To Business Account”
And voila! There you go, your very own Instagram business account. You can connect Instagram business account to the Facebook business that you have created (or will create).
However, Have a Branding Guideline
Marketing across multiple media platforms is a good move, but sometimes you’ll lost track of what you are doing and the message that is supposed to be delivered. Especially if you are going to run a large campaign. So the best way to make sure everyone and everything is on track is to have:
- A board to keep track of things.
- Documents containing details on campaign for each media platform such as what font type will be used and what colors will be used.
With a board or such you can where are your campaigns progress currently at, who’s in charge for which campaign and materials such as hi-res photos, icons and logos design that will be used. Also, include backups plans and materials both on the board and in documents, should anything come up you are already prepared for it.
It’s PR Time!
With all the materials gathered and in place it is time to set the plan in motion. Marketing campaign across multiple media platforms and speaking directly to your target demographic are all well and good. But you can increase the effectiveness by getting social media influencers (Malaysians have tons) to promote and talk about your mobile app. It will add to your mobile app credibility in the users’ eyes, thus convincing them further that your mobile app has the ability to fulfill or help them.
This gesture, reaching out directly yourself to the influencers and letting them to experience your mobile app before others will them appreciate them the gesture. Thus, will encourage them to put out a good word about you and your mobile app.
Execute your PR plan pre-launch, this will help build the hype and anticipation even more. And then go even more aggressive post launch to maintain the hype for a while.
And there many other sources you can outreach to besides social media influencers. You can contact the publication offices in Malaysia (printed and digital) and share the juicier tidbits to our local press (Malaysia’s press love juicy tidbits) to help promote your mobile app both during pre-launch and post-launch.
Build A Micro Website For Your Mobile App
Aha, promotional campaign never completes without micro website or landing site for the mobile app. There are two reasons to why you should create a micro landing site for your mobile app. The reasons are:
- To allow users to pre-register for the app. Through pre-register you will be able to collect users email and through the emails you have collected, you can send notifications such that the complete app is ready for downloads or notification on updates or maintainance.
- One of the ways to start SEO your site early. By doing SEO early on, not only you build the buzz around app but also the domain authority for the app. Thus, increasing the chance of it being discovered.
- To promote the mobile app features using promo video, details on what the app can do and possible future updates.
All these steps must be followed if you want to acquire users and the goal in acquiring high number of users is to generate revenue for your business. Though the efforts do not end with pre-launch and post-launch campaigns, it is actually a continuous thing and ever going. So you and your time will be doing a number of detailed analysis and tracking. This way you can continuously improve your mobile app and in turn receive better reviews. Which will push your mobile app credibility higher.