» Strong Mobile App Marketing

iPhone 4's Retina Display v.s. iPhone 3G

Photo: "iPhone 4's Retina Display v.s. iPhone 3G" by Yutaka Tsutano .

It's no secret that modern marketing needs to incorporate mobile devices into the campaign mix. Creating a custom mobile app affords a great opportunity to extend your brand's reach. And while you may already know this will require extra attention within your marketing plan, you should also consider how you will optimize the components of mobile app marketing unique to your app.

Mobile research company Yankee Group predicts as many as 1.3 billion mobile app users worldwide in 2013. Gartner Research predicts 81.4 billion mobile app downloads in 2013. The market is there, yet the quality of your mobile app marketing will determine your ultimate success.

Here's why: 775,000.

That's how many apps you compete against when you release a mobile app into the Apple App Store. Visibility is key, and one important mobile app marketing component to help you get in front of your desired audience is App Store Optimization (ASO), cousin to Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

The premise of ASO is to build your mobile app title and descriptions around carefully selected keywords. When a user searches for one of your keywords, you want your app to appear high in the search results.

Look at your competitors. How do they describe themselves? Can you do a better job? Use some of their keywords and craft a good title, features list, and mobile app description for your own software.

Are your competitors' mobile app marketing efforts completely optimized? Do they have countless app downloads and positive reviews? Spend some time to find alternate ASO keywords and capture "long tail" users who search by less common phrases.

Social media is also important in mobile app marketing. You will find many different variations of social media integration within modern app design. Find a compelling way to integrate this functionality into your own mobile app in a way that makes sense for your brand. Every user that shares an app update to his or her social network acts as an amplifier for your brand awareness.

Another visibility component is number of downloads. Mobile app store search algorithms utilize this as part of how they rank your app. Apps that receive a large number downloads within a short timeframe are typically given special attention.

Some companies accept payment in exchange for downloading your app numerous times. However, think carefully before pursuing this questionable mobile app marketing approach. Apple and others sometimes penalize publishers who go this route. Furthermore, these downloads will not directly lead to sales or engaged users.

Consider instead supporting your app with a well-planned mobile app marketing campaign. This approach has a better chance of landing you quality users who will contribute to your ROI.

Have you developed a mobile app for your brand, or have you thought about doing so? What promotion techniques would you use?