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Mobile App Growth Hacks - Developer interviews IOS 8

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We interviewed developers from around the world while conducting market research for Mobile App Growth Hacks. It was an amazing experience! Take a moment and check out their inspiring stories and …

We interviewed developers from around the world while conducting market research for Mobile App Growth Hacks. It was an amazing experience! Take a moment and check out their inspiring stories and learn from their collective wisdom. FOR THE COMPLETE FREE EBOOK COPY WITH ALL 160 INTERVIEWS CLICK HERE:
http://www.serenityappsolutions.com/2014/05/20/developer-interview-book/

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Direct Download Link:
https://gumroad.com/d/5933cc18240a74155313fa166f2066d7

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  • 1. Introduction Mobile App Growth Hacks – Developer Interviews iOS 8 By Chris Flammer and Michelle Nunez Copyright SerenityAppSolutions 2014 Published at iBooks Welcome to one of the most comprehensive collections of interviews with iOS Developers from around the world. We interviewed developers while conducting Market Research for Mobile App Growth Hacks. While we were able to gather the data we needed, we also found ourselves caught up in reading their stories and appreciative of the wisdom they had to share. So we decided to include the entire transcript from some of our favorite interviews in a separate book Each developer was posed 5 questions: 1. How long have you been developing apps and how did you get started? 2. What do you love most about being an app developer? 3. What’s the biggest challenge you face when trying to market your app(s)? 4. Is there anything you would like to see changed or done differently in the App Store? 5. Any advice you would give to developers who may just be starting out? We hope that you will be inspired as we have been by the amazing stories within these pages as well as learn from the many wonderful insights they had to share. *Please note that the opinions and views expressed in these interviews are the opinions of the interviewee and do not reflect the opinions or views of Serenity App Solutions or it’s employees.
  • 2. About Mobile App Growth Hacks In today’s crowded App Store, creating exposure and marketing their app is the biggest challenge small developers and companies face. The number one reason for failure of an app is improper and ineffective marketing. So how do you create exposure for your app, and build your brand in today’s App Store? When it comes to marketing a mobile app, many people tend to think of things like writing press releases, running ads, pitching to bloggers, and so on. These things fall into the realm of traditional marketing. Traditional Marketing is expensive, time consuming, and in most cases completely ineffective. Unless your marketing budget reaches into the hundreds of thousands and you have a full time staff implementing your marketing plans, traditional marketing won’t take you very far. And the biggest problem with traditional marketing is that it often neglects one of the most important facts of App Marketing: Your app is the most powerful marketing tool that you possess. Simply put, the app you’ve created can offer more engagement, connect more users, and reach more people than any other website or blog out there. You don’t need deep pockets or a full time marketing staff to achieve success in the App Store. All you need is creativity, an understanding of who your customers are, and the courage to try new things. In this book, we teach you everything you need to know to run a successful app business by focusing on the driving force of your business: The product. Learn how to build and grow your company right from the inside, starting with everything you should be doing in your app to drive sales and downloads, and create more awareness for your brand. Learn more about Mobile App Growth Hacks here Receive 20% off when you use coupon code: ib20off
  • 3. Developer Name: Harin Wickremasinghe Most Successful App(s) to Date: Smart Chef Substitutions How long have you been developing apps and how did you get started? We are a family business that started when my father lost his engineering job in early 2009 as a result of the economic downturn in Detroit, Michigan. He was 62 at the time and finding work was difficult, so he decided to start reading up on programming (which was not his background) to take a crack at programming apps for the iPhone. My brother and I worked along with him to develop the content, graphics and sound. With a lot of hard work, our first app, Smart Chef Substitutions was published in June of 2009. As you know, it is difficult to make a living in the App Store. However, Apple threw us a bone by featuring Smart Chef on the front page of iTunes and using it in Magazine campaigns. That gave us the boost of confidence we needed to keep going. Later that year, we switched to educational apps. My Mom was, at the time, still teaching at a Montessori school, something she had been doing since 1969. With her expertise in the field, we decided to create a Montessori inspired library of apps. Now that the iPad was out, the possibilities seemed endless. Our first Educational app hit the App Store in November 2009. Since then, schools have picked up our apps and promoted them and today we have a business that supports basic needs of three families. Nobody is getting rich here, yet, but we’re content with our work so far. Now that we have a nice library of apps, we are hoping to be featured in some way by Apple again. Unfortunately, we haven’t been listed in any of the categories that we clearly belong in. Hopefully that will change in the future… What do you love most about being an app developer? We love the fun & challenge of starting with a blank canvas and an idea and working to bring it to fruition. For years we all worked in cubicles for ―the man‖ and now we work for ourselves doing creative things. That’s pretty cool! Our genre of apps gives us the satisfaction that we are helping people, too. We often get reports of parents & educators about how children are really learning important concepts from our apps. That is fulfilling. And, on a personal note, we have the freedom to pursue other things that are important to us,as well. I’m living in Costa Rica now, doing volunteer work – I couldn’t do that with any other job!
  • 4. What’s the biggest challenge you face when trying to market your app(s)? Getting lost in the mix of the App Store is a HUGE challenge. We get emails from our website and Facebook site regularly that people never knew we existed. Our products are good, the problem is, nobody knows we’re here. Recently, our website’s server crashed and our sales plummeted by 60%. That was bad, but also good – it told us where the bulk of our customers are coming from. So, we’ll be putting extra efforts into website related stuff to help reclaim market share. Is there anything you would like to see changed or done differently in the App Store? Yes. The featured sections are filled with apps made by Apple employee friends and their personal favorites, not necessarily, the best apps in each genre. New & Noteworthy sections often feature repeats, which with so many new apps out there, seems like playing favorites. We have apps in Math, Language, Geography & Science fields that are used by entire school systems, yet, they have never been listed in a Math, Language, Geography or Science grouping in the Education field of the App Store. Something needs to change! Any advice you would give to developers who may just be starting out? Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Yes, there are million dollar apps out there, but most developers who have made one or two apps cannot live off them. So, think bigger –a few dollars a day adds up when you have a nice library of apps, quality apps, that is! Take a moment and find out more about Harin Wickremasinghe and Smart Chef Substitutions at http://www.mobilemontessori.org/
  • 5. Developer Name: Alicia Benetz Most Successful App(s) to Date: Word Slug How long have you been developing apps and how did you get started? I have been developing for just over a year now. I got started as a graphic designer working with a team of developers on a web–based flash game. It soon became evident that it would be great if I could do the design work and just lay it out in the code. When we decided to switch from flash to apps, I decided to pick up my coding hat and give it a try. With the help of some developers on my team, I began to learn lua and the cross–platform mobile development tool Corona. What do you love most about being an app developer? I love the ability to easily launch the in–progress product on a device. I find it pretty cool that when I need to be away from my computer, I can still be trying out different things with my in– progress app. Another cool bit is that nearly everyone I know has a smartphone, so when people ask about what you do, they can download one of your apps right then and there. What’s the biggest challenge you face when trying to market your app(s)? I find it hard to determine what would be a good value. Everyone will tell you that their marketing tool, ad publisher, or magical bean will do the perfect thing to launch your app into the King level stratosphere. What comes as a challenge is weeding through the hype to figure out an accurate assessment of ROI for each of the options. In addition, you may have the coolest app and some great marketing, but if a user types your app name directly into a store and it isn’t the top hit (or even in the top 5), you can lose any benefit your marketing brought you because of the vagaries of the app stores. Is there anything you would like to see changed or done differently in the App Store? As mentioned in the marketing question, if users try to find you, it can be difficult to navigate the multitudes listed in the app stores. When they can type in your app’s full exact name and still have a paid or higher–rated or however–it–is–sorted app as the top 5 hits for your app’s exact
  • 6. name, it is challenging and frustrating. Any advice you would give to developers who may just be starting out? I think good testers who will be honest and not just tell you what they think you’d like to hear is a great idea. I think if you put together a game you enjoy playing, as I am still madly addicted to my game Word Slug after over a year of playing, at least you get something out of it… even if your app never becomes a Candy Crush (is it illegal for me to use their name now? Or is that just in naming my own apps :). Take a moment and find out more about Alicia and Word Slug at http://wordsluggame.com
  • 7. Developer Name: Deepti Daryanani Most Successful App(s) to Date: New Best Friends How long have you been developing apps and how did you get started? I am a new in this business. I was inspired to create the artistic media company ―Maadchick Networks‖ in early July 2013, and this children’s book app, New Best Friends is our first piece of work. Having written the stories, I wanted to reach out to all the children in the world and developing a book app made perfect sense. I did a lot of research and finally zeroed down on hiring technical services in developing the app. Also, I am an actress by profession. (www.deeptidaryanani.com) I have taken up this role in app development to bring these stories to children. What do you love most about being an app developer? The most fascinating part for me is to see the merger of art with technology. The artistic ideas needs today’s technological medium. To discuss how far we can build an app that truly communicates its message is something I am interested in. I understand that an app is like a living document. One can constantly reinvent it to better tell it’s story. What’s the biggest challenge you face when trying to market your app(s)? There are so many apps in the market. The challenge is how to make this one app stand out and bring it to the targeted audience’s attention. Mine is a children’s app and as a conscious developer, I wanted to keep the app non–violent and with features that do not disturb the fragile minds but helps develop their learning skills and overall self growth. So automatically, this makes the app not as dynamic and high end as the gaming apps that are very entertaining from the go. So the challenge is to stand out in a market of highly competitive visually entertaining apps. Is there anything you would like to see changed or done differently in the App Store? Maybe the App Store can provide some interesting ways to help market and advertise a children’s book app to parents and educators.
  • 8. Any advice you would give to developers who may just be starting out? I don’t think I am eligible to give any advice to anyone as I am fairly new in this domain. What I can say is that technology is an excellent medium today to share our message with the world. But more than mere developing what really ignites the process is what is it that you want to say through this app. Take a moment and find out more about Deepti and her app at http://www.maadchicknetworks.com and also explore her bio and acting career at http://www.deeptidaryanani.com
  • 9. Developer Name: Will Scott Most Successful App(s) to Date: ServaBid How long have you been developing apps and how did you get started? I have been involved in mobile development since 2012. As for how I got started, prior to mobile apps I was in enterprise systems development, and dabbled in video processing in my free time. I was very interested in video as consumable media, and pondered how video could be leveraged for productivity via mobile. In surveying the mobile ecosystem for video apps, I found that the most adopted applications were for social media and video chat. I decided that I wanted to tackle using mobile video to ―get things done in the real world‖ — this early notion led to ServaBid. ServaBid is an app that lets you take a short video of a home–related job or repair project that you’d like completed. Service professionals view and bid to complete the job right through the app. Video is a powerful medium to convey the scope of the work, and allows service professionals to provide accurate quotes remotely. What do you love most about being an app developer? There are many things that I love about being involved in mobile development, but if forced to answer what I love the ―most‖, I’d say facing the challenge of trying to enrich an end–user’s life (if only in some small way). When I think about mobile devices and mobile apps, it all really comes back to this. Consider calendar apps that try to help you stay organized, social media apps that aim to keep you connected with friends and family, gaming apps that try to make wasting time as entertaining as possible, etc. With successful apps, the common thread is that they provide some value to the end–user. This was always at the forefront of ServaBid development. For the job poster, the goal was to make getting projects done easy and convenient. Specifically, to make it almost like ―magic‖ – i.e., take a video showing a project you want done, and it will be completed. For the service professionals that complete the jobs, the goal was improvements to efficiency and to reduce costs. In many instances, video would allow for providing accurate estimates remotely, saving the time and expense of a visit. What’s the biggest challenge you face when trying to market your app(s)? The ServaBid app is a bit different from many apps when it comes to marketing, as it’s
  • 10. effectively a mobile embodiment of a ―marketplace‖. Here users post jobs they want completed, and a second demographic of users (service providers) bid to complete the jobs. This led to the chicken–and–egg problem of which demographic to woo first. We decided to focus on service professionals first, because without them, no work can be completed. Marketing is always an interesting subject, especially when bootstrapping (we’re currently self–funded). The goal is to maximize return on any marketing investment, but the tricky thing is, there is usually no good gauge to how successful a marketing campaign will be until you actually try it! I’ll be the first to say that this is an iterative process, and I’m far from an expert on the marketing side of things. Having said this, we continue to focus on providing value via the technology and user experience. In taking care of these things, we also hope to ramp up word of mouth referrals — which is the Holy Grail of marketing (it’s very effective and FREE!). Is there anything you would like to see changed or done differently in the App Store? As for the App Store, it’s Apple’s ecosystem, and we must work within the confines of it. In terms of a change, it would be nice to see the cut taken for In–App purchase reduced. This would drive competition from Google to also lower its cut, and would help app developers increase revenue across the board. This will likely not happen anytime soon though. Any advice you would give to developers who may just be starting out? Regarding advice for new developers, I’d suggest starting with an ―all inclusive‖ list of requirements for an initial release of the app. Once this list is generated, marry this with the allotted timeframe for delivery, development resources, testing resources, and funds available to execute on the list. When bootstrapping an app, usually development, test, and funds are very finite resources. Thinking these things through up front will help you prioritize what actually can (and should) be available in the initial release (this is a ―delivery‖ list of requirements). Once the delivery list is defined, the additional items form the basis of a product roadmap, which will allow you to deliver new function as you grow and scale. This approach keeps development and test efforts containable, especially with a smaller team. Take a moment and find out more about Will Scott and the ServaBid Team at http://www.servabid.com
  • 11. Developer Name: David Zobrist Most Successful App(s) to Date: The Sha Man How long have you been developing apps and how did you get started? I did paint level paper design for existing games and created simple stories in form of short comics when I was around 12. But back then there were no real option to study in the technical / creative direction like game art or game design. I found my way back into my beloved field when I was 23 years old. I studied 1 year at the Games Academy Berlin and did a 1 year internship at YAGER Development right after. Which was a lucky first step into a big gaming studio that was busy developing Spec Ops The Line for the Xbox with 2k Games as Publisher. I was not part of that huge team at all. Instead I created game concepts and pitch material for many different ideas, in order for them to have a variety of future projects to work on after their game release. I had big backlashes when I got sick and could not work for 6 months, lost my girlfriend and my apartment. But I recovered and started of in a new Company as an Intern again but this time much better paid and with better perspectives for a real position. I worked at Young Internet later re–named to Goodbeans for 3 years. Starting off as an Quality Assurance Intern moving the carrier ladder up to a Quality Manager and finally to a Game Designer. As Game Designer I was responsible for Content, narrative, monetization and feature design. Through my experience as a Quality Assurance I was highly benefited with insights in all departments and was a crossroad for development. The company did major investment mistakes and broke down step by step, shortly before the sheep sank I decided to jump and this time on my own ship. I used the first day of my unemployment to organize my self–employment plans, visiting seminars and consulting an founding expert. Which helped me to create a bad ass business plan, where I used my pitching skills and his traditional/correct way of setting up all required documents to gain a Founding support from the government. Which worked out 3 months later and since beginning of this year I’m financially supported by Berlin until Juni of this Year, where I have to start living of my own profits. I released my first app ―The Sha Man‖ in December 2013 and the second one ―Sha Cat‖ 23. of April 2014. And now I hope to reach as many people as possible with my work to make my dream come true. What do you love most about being an app developer? The barrier to create digital experiences was never as thin as now, not long ago you had to be
  • 12. ---------------------------------------------------***------------------------------------------------- FOR THE COMPLETE FREE EBOOK COPY WITH ALL 160 INTERVIEWS CLICK HERE: http://www.serenityappsolutions.com/2014/05/20/developer- interview-book/ or Direct Download Link https://gumroad.com/d/5933cc18240a74155313fa166f2066d7

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