Editor’s note: This is a guest post by Eric Dyck. Eric is co-founder of Tap for Tap, the Tap Exchange for Mobile App Developers, an app lover and the office crokinole champion.
There are many ways app developers can promote their mobile application. There’s social media, blogging, display advertising, search engine marketing, etc. However, most developers don’t have the time or money required to make these methods work. Cross-promotion combines the exposure of media-buying with the cost effectiveness of more grassroots methods, and it is increasingly becoming a more viable and effective promotion method for app developers.
Here are the top 5 reasons to cross-promote your app:
Necessity of Promotion
“If you (just) build it, they will (not likely) come”
With iOS6 changing the way Apple displays apps in their store from a list view to highlighting individuals, the writing is on the wall. App development, like many things these days, is moving towards a winner-take-all model. For this reason, it’s essential that along with sound app store optimization techniques (ASO), you need to promote your app outside of the App Store. You know the numbers,; there are lots of apps out there and increasingly less shelf space for them. Marketing your app can no longer be an afterthought. Promotion is a necessity, so you need to find ways to promote your app.
Whether the cross-promotion arrangement is based on impressions, taps, or installs, cross-promotion deals rely on the principle of bartering or direct exchange, rather than on monetary exchange. This means, cross-promotion has no monetary cost. For developers that don’t have large piles of cash sitting around for marketing, this is a very attractive proposition. Keep in mind, your app has ad inventory. Why not trade that inventory with other app makers who have their own fresh ad inventory? No cost is usually the best cost.
There are many ways to scale the installs of your app, but most are fairly labor-intensive. You’ve got to find your traffic source, set a budget, design your creative, track your results, and, then, optimize, optimize, optimize. With a good cross-promotion network all you have to do is create your campaign, set up the ads in your app and the ad for your app, then turn it live. You now have an ongoing solution for app promotion.
One popular way to gain installs for your app is to pay for them. The cheapest of these methods is incentivized leads. This is a good way to get a burst of installs if you have the cash upfront, but these users are downloading your app because they are paid to do so. This greatly limits their quality. With Apple and Android starting to pay closer attention to your apps engagement levels, incentivized installs are, likely, on their way out. With cross-promotion techniques, you’re only advertising to already engaged app users who’ve chosen to click on your ad and download your app because they are interested in the product you’re offering.
“If you want to be incrementally better: Be competitive. If you want to be exponentially better: Be cooperative.”
– John Ruskin
One of the best things about working in the app development space is the app developer community. There are so many places a developer can turn to for help, advice, or support. There are so many different app communities out there and all are more than willing to help you succeed, if you reach out. Cross-promotion allows you to capitalize on this generosity while also giving back to the community to which you are a part.
Promote your app, while promoting other’s apps; this notion embodies co-operation at its finest.