RubyMotion #Inspect2014 - Marketing Your Apps


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You've written an RubyMotion (or ANY) app. How do you think strategically about marketing, iterating, and promoting your app.

This presentation is full of ways to think both practically and tactically as well as concrete examples of how to make your apps appeal to a wider market and tips for metadata in iTunes Connect.

Talk was given at the RubyMotion #Inspect 2014 conference in San Francisco, CA, USA on May 28, 2014.

Video coming whenever it's available :)

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  • I also run a side business which you probably know me better by: Mohawk Apps.

    I’ve got a lot of different hobbies, but my favorite of them all is skydiving.
  • Laurent thinks I’m crazy :)

    But lets talk about marketing your RubyMotion apps. I’m a big fan of RubyMotion and have been using it for almost 2 years now. I’ve got quite a few apps in the app store that are written in RubyMotion.
  • These are all my apps right now. 73% are RubyMotion.
    10 iOS apps and one Mac app.
  • These are all my apps right now. 80% are RubyMotion.
    10 iOS apps and one Mac app.
  • Oh, and 100% of my RubyMotion apps are open source. You can find the source code for all of my apps on my Mohawk Apps github account.
  • My apps have been fairly successful, in my opinion. I’ve been profitable from day one and have have a #2 hit, but never a #1 hit. My goal when I launch a new app is to be in the top or top grossing for the app’s category. I made it into the overall rankings just once and then immediately dropped off.
  • You’ve got to have a plan in place before you write a single line of code. Otherwise you’re putting the cart before the proverbial horse. If you don’t know what your success metrics are going to be and how you’re going to monetize or promote the app, you’re setting yourself up for failure before you run motion create yourapp
  • We’re used to seeing and doing this when we write software.
  • We need to add some steps here.
  • RubyMotion #Inspect2014 - Marketing Your Apps

    2. 2. ME Internal Automation Hacker @ Skookum Digital Works Charlotte, NC Github Twitter Web
    3. 3.
    4. 4. Some Top Rankings: BJCP Styles US - Reference #58 Free Beer Judge US - Productivity #15 - Paid US - Overall #526 Paid Checkout Helper US - Business #17 Paid Canada - Business #2 Paid The Show Closer US - Business #27 Paid Textables US - Social Networking #28 Paid aloft US - Weather #37 Top Grossing
    5. 5. Where To Start With App Marketing? BEFORE you start writing the app!
    6. 6. App Development Lifecycle
    7. 7. App Development & Marketing Lifecycle Market PrototypeResearch Validate
    8. 8. Likelihood You’ll Do Any of These? 0% 25% 50% 75% 100% 125% Research Prototype Validate Design Development Debug Deployment Marketing
    9. 9. Start With a Great App Idea!
    10. 10. Research: • Find competitors • What are they doing RIGHT? • What are they doing WRONG? • How likely is it for a new competitor to emerge? • Look at marketplace need. No need = no sales = no profit. • Ask friends opinion of the idea • Ask some complete strangers on the street
    11. 11. Prototype: • Use tools to generate a clickable mockup of the app • Or use RubyMotion to create an MVP • Don’t worry about: • Bugs • Making it pretty • Creating an icon or loading screen • Do worry about: • Can you get the main point of the app’s functionality across to a new user?
    12. 12. Validate: • Ask strangers to use the app • Conduct focus groups (if in the budget) • Take user feedback seriously • Listen to users • Ask friends for their opinion • Ask family for their opinion • Dismiss user struggles • Take all user suggestions and implement them • Submit this version to the App Store DOs DON’Ts
    13. 13. Now Go Do Your Thing….
    14. 14. 40 features and 400 tests later…
    15. 15. Thinking About Marketing: • Have a game plan! • TACTICAL / PRACTICAL • Execute the game plan! • Know when to change the game plan! • Be OK with changing the game plan!
    16. 16. TACTICAL Game Plan • Marketing page on your website? • App specific landing page & url? • Social Media: • Planning to tweet as the app? • Facebook page / group? • Know your target market! • How will you handle customer support? • App review sites • Promo code distribution • Getting the word out: • Twitter / Reddit / Facebook • Word of mouth • Magazine advertisements • Billboards • Skywriting?
    17. 17. PRACTICAL Game Plan • App Development • Crash reporting • Statistical reporting • Sessions / Duration • User retention • Device type / Carrier • Internationalization • Localization • Accessibility • iTunes Connect • Icon • Keywords • Description • Screenshots • Pricing model • Affiliate links
    18. 18. Reporting
    19. 19. i18n
    20. 20. Accessibility
    21. 21. Do things RIGHT in iTunesConnect
    22. 22. • Description: Get someone else to write the app description. • Keywords: Think like a customer searching the app store. Use keywords correctly: noaa,wind,skydive - not - noaa, NOAA, wind, winds, skydive, skydiving Do things RIGHT in iTunesConnect
    23. 23. Design A Great Icon (or pay someone to do it for you) •Weather application •Shows different wind altitude data: • Speed • Direction • Temperature •Should clearly be about wind •Should indicate the idea of an altitude spectrum
    24. 24. Design A Great Icon
    25. 25. Design A Great Icon
    26. 26. Screenshots
    27. 27. Screenshots
    28. 28. Pricing
    29. 29. Affiliate Links
    30. 30. Changing the Game Plan Agile Software / Agile Marketing Plan •Try new things! •Listen to your customers •Iterate •Release minor updates frequently •Play the long game… not every app is “A Dark Room”
    31. 31. FIN.