The first and the most important recommendation we have prepared for you is starting thinking about your first users even before the app development process is started.
You and your team should work on the app with your future users in mind — developing a strategy on how to get users for your app is as important as building code without any bugs and creating an amazing design. So, here are 3 primary questions you have to answer:
What is your target audience?
Developing and releasing an app without identifying its target audience is virtually the same thing as launching a ship with a blind crew aboard — it will sink at some point, and this point will come pretty soon. Knowing your target audience simplifies the development process, as you will know what features your future users are looking for. It will also be easier to develop a monetization strategy and decide on how to market app value.
The more specific your app is, the easier it will be to define the target audience. Consider your users’ gender, age, and motivation. Why do they need your app? How will it make their lives better? The description of the target audience must be as detailed as possible.
Where are you going to find your audience?
After you discover who your target audience is, it is time to understand where you can find them and which channels of communication to use. You can check such sites as Quora and Reddit — they have millions of users. For instance, Reddit had almost 1.7 billion users in March 2018. We bet you can find your target audience there, talk to them, and find out if your app will be interesting for them. And don’t hurry up to conquer the whole world — it is better to start promoting your social app locally, and then gradually broaden the area of your impact.
How are you going to get in touch with your audience?
Will you pay for advertising or simply create posts about your app on portals where your potential users gather? Both options can work, but you have to keep your budget in mind. However, remember that even if your posts don’t bring an immediate result, this won’t mean that your app has already failed.
Something like this happened to WhatsApp — its co-founder tried to promote it with a post on FlyerTalk, and no one really got interested. Now that thread is full of messages with congratulations, as WhatsApp is one of the most popular messengers in the world.
3 Stages of Attracting New Users
The title of this paragraph speaks for itself — attracting new users should be divided into three phases. Here they are:
1. Before the release date.
You still have some time before introducing your social app to users, so here is a short to-do list which you and your team may complete. The earlier you start the better, as this stage is the most important for the app’s success:
- Create a landing page describing what your app offers and its special features — it is a great way to inform users about the app’s development and interact with them even before the app is launched. So, after your product is released, you will already have some potential users.
- Collect the data about users interested in your social app — you will need their contact information (email addresses, phone numbers, etc.) to get in touch with them later.
- Don’t let your users forget about the app: conduct surveys to find out what they think about your product, what they expect from it, and how they would like it to look like.
- Consider “early birds” — offer your potential first users something special. Something which later users won’t get. As an option, you can create a referral system, so current users will get some bonuses for attracting the new ones.
Think about contacts with media and publications in advance, and don’t forget about the embargo. In this case, this term means that the media has the right to disclose nothing until the app will be released. You can also get in touch with writers and bloggers who cover a niche of social apps! Find them and tell them about your project. If your app is really cool (and we know that it is true!), such people will be happy to be the first ones to write about it.
Don’t forget about ASO (or App Store Optimization). You have to think about the title, logo, description, screenshots and video of your app, and keywords. This strategy will not only let your app climb the ranking of stores after it will be released, but also help users to understand if your app is something that they are looking for or not really. Provide them with all possible information, so they won’t get disappointed!
- Create a blog to tell users about your app and provide them with regular updates. Show them your expertise, and they will understand that your product is worth their attention.
- Use a strategy of movie-makers and make a trailer! A really memorable and impressive trailer can attract attention even to the most mediocre film. We know that your application is not mediocre, but creating a special video is still a cool tip on how to market app products. According to Forbes, 64% of people feel more inclined to get a product exactly after watching a video about it. The only thing is that making such a trailer makes sense only when you are absolutely confident that there will be no changes to your app’s concept. But if you are already done with the concept, here is a bit of inspiration for you — check the video from Vero.
2. At the release date.
The first day is extremely important for your app’s future, so do your best in terms of promotion. Remember, you have collected the contacts of your potential users? Great, now inform them that your app is finally out. Apart from sending them emails, you can go for advertising on social networks and posting articles in the media.
Why is the first day (okay, even the first week!) so important? Because the more users you get, the higher your position in the rating is. When users are looking for an app, they check the first results and virtually never go down. No one checks an app which is located, let’s say on the 25th place from the top.
3. After the release date.
Let’s imagine that you have survived the first week after the release date. You have attracted enough users, and your position in the rating is pretty high. What’s now? Obviously, you have to keep your users and attract the new ones. During this phase, you and your team can’t do without analytics — it is essential for monitoring the channels of attracting users and adjusting your advertising budget.
Apart from this, don’t forget to check reviews on the app stores. Users’ feedback will help you to understand if there is anything to improve or to add. However, regular updates and improvements are a good idea in any case — they will keep your users interested.
By the way, when you receive comments or reviews from different users, don’t write a general reply for all of them. Go for a direct conversation, make each of them feel special! Listen to them carefully, answer every question they ask, and do your best to make them happy with your app. Happy users will definitely tell their friends know about your product, so your app will be downloaded again and again.
Here is one more useful recommendation — don’t be shy to apply for awards. Award contests exist in spades: Best New Mobile App, Best Mobile App Interface, and so on. So why not to submit your app into several of them? If you manage to win, the number of your app’s downloads will increase — an award-winning app always attracts more attention than that one which can’t boast an achievement like this.
You See, Gaining First Users Can Be Smooth!
Definitely, attracting new users is not something you can do while having a breakfast. It is a pretty long-lasting (and complicated!) mission, but we know that you can deal with it. Now you have a to-do list on how to get users to use your app, so you won’t get lost. Good luck to you, and we are looking forward to your app release!