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I tunes revenue optimization I tunes revenue optimization Presentation Transcript

  • Learn FasteriTunes App StoreRevenueOptimization as featured in:Andrew CohenFounder & CEOacohen@brain-scape.com
  • App Store Optimization Can Be POWERFUL Brainscape Facts Brainscape’s User & Revenue Growth (Oct. „11) Registered Users RevenueProducts• 3 Languages (basic)• 2 Exams (basic)• 4 Gen. KnowledgeUser Acquisition• 60% organic iTunes search discovery• 25% word-of-mouth• No real viral / social component built yetRevenue• Tripled in 6 months, with no marketing – only App Store optimization 2
  • App Store Value-Creation Funnel iTunes Search Results Visibility • Optimize TITLE & KEYWORDS App Store Page Views • Optimize ICON & pricing • Use external traffic sources carefully App Downloads • Have a BOLD marketing description • Watch your REVIEWS Revenue $ • Refine revenue model via experiments • Tweak PRICING religiously Referral • Track your VIRAL GROWTH FACTOR 3
  • App Store Value-Creation Funnel iTunes Search Results Visibility • Optimize TITLE & KEYWORDS App Store Page Views • Optimize ICON & pricing • Use external traffic sources carefully App Downloads • Have a BOLD marketing description • Watch your REVIEWS Revenue $ • Refine revenue model via experiments • Tweak PRICING religiously Referral • Track your VIRAL GROWTH FACTOR 4
  • Make sure people can find your app! iTunes Meta-Data for this sample app Title: Learn Spanish * (It does what it says) Keywords: learn, Spanish, vocabulary, grammar, verbs, 88 chars speak, vocab, study, class, language 5
  • Tips to help show up in Search Results • Use a descriptive and search-term-intensive Title  e.g. “Find Restaurants”, not “Grubulous”  Exception: If you already have a huge online presence and people are already searching for your name on the App Store.  Exception: Games. Game sales not very search-driven. • Minimize non-search-term characters in your Title and Keywords  e.g. “Piano Tuner +”, not “Piano Tuner Deluxe”. (The first one will come up far above the second in a search for “Piano Tuner.”)  Although Apple gives you up to 100 characters for keywords, using all of them may dilute the importance of your target ones • Aggressively target only one or two search-term combos  Test your target users, to see what they type in the Search box. Also check predictive text in App Store search. 6
  • App Store Value-Creation Funnel iTunes Search Results Visibility • Optimize TITLE & KEYWORDS App Store Page Views • Optimize ICON & pricing • Use external traffic sources carefully App Downloads • Have a BOLD marketing description • Watch your REVIEWS Revenue $ • Refine revenue model via experiments • Tweak PRICING religiously Referral • Track your VIRAL GROWTH FACTOR 7
  • Get people to open your App Store page! Hmmm, should I click on this app? Decision Criteria on Decision Criteria on Web Search Results: MobileSrch Results:• Icon • Icon • Company Name• Title • Title • Ratings• Price • Price 8
  • Tips to make your app more “clickable” • Use an icon that is both catchy and descriptive  Try using 99Designs to get a bunch of options cheaply  Test with a focus group of target customers to see which they click. “Most clickable” is not necessarily “prettiest” to you • Make sure company name adds value  Don‟t just duplicate your app title; add a new search term!  e.g. App name: “Find Movies”; Company: “Fandango” • Watch your ratings and reviews  Maybe launch each version for FREE PROMO to get seed ratings. (Nobody wants to be the first sucker to buy an un-reviewed app)  Don‟t do any marketing / PR until you have some real ratings  Careful. Apple will shut you down for fake ratings! (They know) • Set a high price to convey quality, but only if it‟s true! 9
  • Don’t start marketing too early Benefits of Conventional Marketing/PR • Drive direct page views (useful when people may not be searching for your target keywords yet) • Quickly reach critical mass (e.g. for social apps w/ network effects) Dangers of Conventional Marketing/PR done too early Marketing/PR Low Conversion Angry Investors Visitors / Free Downloads Few Repeat Paying Users 10
  • Tips for timing your external marketing/PR • Don’t seek huge exposure until your app has 1. Great App Store page conversion • Hard to measure b/c no publicly available iTunes analytics • A potential proxy for % conversion is a test PPC campaign, where you know how many people clicked to see your iTunes page 2. Consistently high ratings from real early adopters • Your friends with free copies don‟t count. Sorry. • It‟s extremely hard to recover from tons of 1-star ratings after a big (and un-successful) marketing launch 3. Some degree of virality • Need to ensure momentum continues well after TechCrunch article • You may only have one big chance to make a splash (think: Color) 11
  • Know when turn on the marketing$/user Timing your marketing Lessons • Keep tweaking LTV everything with beta users & early adopters, until your Cost of Acquiring a Increase Customer (CAC) is monetization much lower than your Lifetime Value of a customer (LTV) Scale marketing Improve • For many apps, it conversions makes sense to & virality CAC prove your revenue model early, even if it means slower Now Here’s when you early user growth should scale marketing 12
  • App Store Value-Creation Funnel iTunes Search Results Visibility • Optimize TITLE & KEYWORDS App Store Page Views • Optimize ICON & pricing • Use external traffic sources carefully App Downloads • Have a BOLD marketing description • Watch your REVIEWS Revenue $ • Refine revenue model via experiments • Tweak PRICING religiously Referral • Track your VIRAL GROWTH FACTOR 13
  • Secure the Download! Have a Sexy Description Watch Your Reviews! meh ! (not like this) (not like this) 14
  • Tips for “sealing the deal” on the Download • Have an awesome app with great screenshots (duh!) • Lead off your app description‟s text with a powerful problem/benefit, or a knowledge gap that makes users want to read more  (On desktop App Store, only first 2 lines are shown, + „more’ link)  Bad: “As featured in New York times! New release with more badges and bolder exclamation points!!!!!!!”  Good: “Did you know that you may be WASTING most of your Spanish study time on inefficient learning methods? Let me tell you how you can use cognitive science to learn FASTER.” • Watch your reviews!  Most people just look at the first (most recent) 1-2 reviews. Make sure that they are good ones.  If you have systematic bad reviews (e.g. for a crash bug), pull the app from sale. It‟s very hard to recover from poor avg. ratings 15
  • Case Study: GRE Vocab Genius Brainscape’s Mishaps & Lessons Graph from “App All Stars” (download this app now) 1. We were right in the middle of a “free promo” when Apple approved our recent update. Our appearance in search results then plummeted. Lesson: Apparently iTunes‟ search algorithm gives higher weight to apps that have a price at update time. 3 2. We submitted the next app update while 1 the app still had a price. “GRE” Search 2 results appearances rose back to top, and sales thus recovered. 3. We just submitted another update (while priced) and forgot to do a free promo right after. The app didn‟t get enough ratings to reset the historic (poor) avg., so users have been seeing a mere 3.5 stars in search results. Lesson: You need five+ ratings for your avg. rating to reset from its historic avg. to the current version’s avg. 16
  • App Store Value-Creation Funnel iTunes Search Results Visibility • Optimize TITLE & KEYWORDS App Store Page Views • Optimize ICON & pricing • Use external traffic sources carefully App Downloads • Have a BOLD marketing description • Watch your REVIEWS Revenue $ • Refine revenue model via experiments • Tweak PRICING religiously Referral • Track your VIRAL GROWTH FACTOR 17
  • Make some money! Mobile App Monetization strategies Straight-up Free app with ads paid app (maybe with a paid ad-free version) Free app with in-app purchases•“Pro” features •Content sales•Virtual Goods / Cheats •Recurring subscriptions 18
  • Tips for finding your monetization strategy • Start testing monetization techniques as early as possible  As soon as core product is complete and avg. real rating is 4+  If your app can‟t prove to earn at least some revenue, then it may not be a viable huge business • Begin with the simplest and least invasive revenue model  Simplest model to code might be just inserting ads in a free app  Least invasive to users might just be an upgrade to unlock power features for only the top 1% of most active users  You can always expand/pivot to other revenue models later • Remember that your goal is to maximize Lifetime Value of user  Remember the 80-20 rule: Earn 80%+ of your revenues from 20% of your users. Milk users who are in app for 100s of hours!  Holy grails: Recurring Subscriptions or Multiple Purchases/User 19
  • Experiment Religiously! No matter how well you‟re doing, you should always be running at least one revenue-optimization experiment at a time • App description & price can be tweaked whenever you want • Name, keyword, & icons can only be tweaked when you update app • It‟s critical to keep a record of every tweak you make: Sample App Experiments SpreadsheetDate What we did Avg Daily Sales Avg. Daily Sales Notes 2 wks prior 2 wks after9/12 Free promo for 2 days 55 69 Promo helped. We (got 4,207 free DLs), should try varying then re-price promo lengths9/26 In iTunes, changed 69 124 Whoa, “vocab” first keyword to seems much better “vocab”, rather than search term than “vocabulary” “vocabulary”. Nice10/17 Changed price from 124 176 $5 app produces $10 to $5 less revenue. Reset price to $10 20
  • App Store Value-Creation Funnel iTunes Search Results Visibility • Optimize TITLE & KEYWORDS App Store Page Views • Optimize ICON & pricing • Use external traffic sources carefully App Downloads • Have a BOLD marketing description • Watch your REVIEWS Revenue $ • Refine revenue model via experiments • Tweak PRICING religiously Referral • Track your VIRAL GROWTH FACTOR 21
  • Know your tipping point!Relying on expensive marketing and time-sucking PR is an un-sustainableway to grow an app-based business. The app must spread organically. • You should define a single Viral Growth Factor (VGF) that measures how well your app is spreading. This may be a complex calculation that is particular to the data your company collects • Communicate your recent VGF to your team every monthSimple Viral Growth Factor Vf = X*Y*Z Where: X = % of users who invite friends Y = # of invites sent by each inviter Z = % of “invitees” who accept invites & register When Vf> 1, you go viral 22
  • Thank You Company: Brainscape (www.brain-scape.com) Mission: To create a smarter world by simplifying & accelerating the learning process Founder: Andrew Cohen Contact: • acohen@brain-scape.com • (706) 254-6115 • Twitter @acohenNY • Twitter @brainscape 23