Mobile apps have become the first option for every daily activity, from ordering food to buying clothes, and even to spend free time watching movies and tv shows or playing mobile games. Thus, competition among apps has grown since, and advertisers now need an effective app marketing strategy in order to stay relevant.
App marketing means promoting your mobile app in order to grow your user base and your business too, by getting users to engage with the app and to generate revenues, either through ads or in-app purchases. There isn’t only one way to achieve this goal, so advertisers can choose among several mobile app marketing channels such as the following:
- Influencer marketing;
- App store optimization (ASO);
- Social media;
- Programmatic advertising;
In this article, we’ll go through each mobile app marketing channel, describing benefits and drawbacks of each, along with their main features.
As the name suggests, this app marketing channel focuses on enlisting influencers with the aim of promoting your mobile app. This way, advertisers can leverage influencers’ reach and target wide audiences with ads and even promotions.
Influencer marketing makes you save time in the targeting strategy, since influencers’ audiences are already built and well-described, making it easier to compare them with the target audience for your app.
However, it may be difficult and costly to scale the volumes of new users by selecting influencers as your only mobile app marketing channel.
App Store Optimization
App store optimization, a.k.a ASO, is the equivalent of search engine optimization (SEO) for mobile apps. Indeed, it is the practice of improving your ranking in the app stores for users’ searches.
App store optimization relies on tools such as app’s descriptions, logos, ratings and reviews. Even though a high rank in the app store search terms doesn’t always mean huge volumes of installs, app store optimization represents a successful mobile app marketing channel since it helps organic user acquisition with a very limited budget.
Furthermore, climbing the charts for your app category and the overall apps available in the store considerably increases brand awareness and helps also paid user acquisition activities. That’s why the combination of app store optimization and paid app marketing channels often results in an effective growth strategy.
The third mobile app marketing channel in our list is probably included in every advertiser’s growth plan, since social media provide the widest audiences, along with specific segmentation.
Google, Facebook and Tiktok provide advertisers with sophisticated targeting capabilities, making it possible to show ads to very specific segments of users, with the most likelihood to install and engage with your mobile app. Their platforms are self-service and allow you to set up a paid user acquisition campaign in the shortest time possible.
However, the biggest drawback app developers face when running app install campaigns on social media is the budget required in order to get big volumes of new users. Even though these platforms allow you to set a maximum budget per day and also a CPI/CPA target, it becomes expensive to scale installs at full speed with a limited budget.
Last but not least, app developers can partner with ad networks and DSPs (Demand Side Platforms) in order to run programmatic app install campaigns. Cost control and the chance of scaling volumes are the two main benefits of such mobile app marketing channel.
Indeed, programmatic partners often let advertisers run app marketing campaigns with performance-based pricing models such as CPI (cost per install) and CPA (cost per action), making them spend money only for valuable results. In addition, they also leverage machine learning algorithms in order to set sophisticated targetings and optimize the app campaigns.
With programmatic advertising app developers can use any ad format they desire, even A/B test them in order to optimize the media buying towards the best performers. Also, ML-based optimization often allows advertisers to target and acquire high-quality users, who generate in-app revenues, making your app marketing ROI-positive since day 1.
To sum up, the choice among mobile app marketing channels is essential to your strategy. The channels listed in this article are not mutually exclusive; actually some of them work better if combined and lead to successful results. However, before choosing which mobile app marketing channels to include in your strategy, you should consider the following aspects:
- Growth’s goals (grow user base or revenues);
- Target audience;
- App’s business model