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Businesses today are fighting for not just customers but their attention as well. They need instant conversion just like how their customers need instant support and gratification. This is the age of on-demand products and services and any company in this economy needs an app to reach out to its customers.

Through native or hybrid apps, companies are looking to get more users onboard through apps and using them as avenues to offer better services and interaction. But getting to that stage isn’t easy.

App marketing requires a separate framework and you need to include a number of different approaches to take your app to the masses. With the market becoming increasingly cluttered as well, it is difficult to stay visible without a systematic approach. 

So, how do you market your product? How do you make revenue out of your game-changing idea?

Well, that’s where targeting comes in.

Targeting is finding out who your potential buyers are, where they hang out, their demographics, income and expense levels, requirements, and more. With the market being cluttered, the more refined your targeting is, the better you would be able to take it to your potential customers.

And if your product is an app, this becomes more daunting as there are over 5 million apps available for download. The Android market has a share of 2.46 million apps and the Apple market has a share of over 1.96 million apps. As we speak, more apps are being developed and uploaded.

So, where will yours be?

On the cloud or in your users’ devices?

This article is all about pushing your app from app stores to your users’ devices. With definitive tips and proven strategies for using social media for app marketing, let’s get that cash register ring now.

Pre-launch Promotion

Okay, rule number one — you do not wait until you launch your app to market it. Start talking about it right from its development stages. 

  • Make use of your website to keep talking about your app. Launch your website with more descriptive information about your app. 
  • Start by making official accounts of your app on multiple social channels. 
  • Make an announcement about its launch date and what it’s about, release a teaser, 
  • Share interesting developments, talk about who dropped by your office for trial and create hype.

The number one reason why Endgame managed to pull even the most hardcore fans of DC into cinema halls was because of the hype. Make as much noise about your app right from the early stages. It will only increase after you launch your app.

Also, make use of your offline social circle. Reach out to your friends and family to promote your app and recommend it to their circles. Why? Because over 50% of users discover new apps through recommendations from their friends and family.

Facebook Ads

Paid ads are best if quick leads or downloads are your goals, especially on Facebook. Facebook is where users log in for leisure, as a retreat from their professional life, seeking personal growth or entertainment. 

Regardless of their requirements, make sure you appear before your target audience with your app along with the download link. Facebook allows multiple types of ads like a carousel, a single image, and even videos. 

Go for what is most appropriate and come up with a quirky copy to captivate readers. Give them a video explaining how it would solve the concern it addresses or how entertaining their free time would be. Treat it like a crowdsourcing campaign and pay attention to the smallest of details. NatureBox is one of the brands that has been nailing its Facebook ads. 

Instagram Posts

While running Facebook ads, you can automatically select Instagram for paid adverts as well. But, you can also run standalone posts on the platform that will help you connect with your target audience closely. From the official account you’ve created, talk about your app through images, videos, and even IGTV videos. 

Run giveaways or exclusive competitions here and generate buzz. For inspiration, follow brands and study their approach. Remember that the intention with Instagram is to engage with audiences and lure them towards your app and not directly fishing for downloads. It’s leading to it.

Also, we can’t skip the importance of hashtags when we’re using social media to promote our apps. Hashtags are modern-day phrases that have the power to connect instantly with users and go viral. Campaigns like #shareacoke or #letsdolunch are all prime examples of this. When you’re using hashtags, consider these best practices:

  • Do not combine more than 2 or 3 words
  • Look for trending ones
  • Use some keywords
  • Stay away from controversial hashtags like political. Don’t jump to all trending hashtags. Understand why it is trending. This will help you to find related hashtags as well. 
  • Consider your target audience and demographics. For example, if you are running an eCommerce portal for woman clothes in New York, you should target women in New York. 
  • Don’t give them a tongue twister

Don’t forget Twitter

Brands like Wendy’s, Slack, KFC and others have been directly interacting with their potential customers through Twitter. 

To do this, you can use the advanced search feature of Twitter to hunt for keywords, locations, users and hashtags that are relevant to your app. For instance, if your app lets entrepreneurs connect with investors in their vicinity, you can search in terms of the words in their bio, accounts and their mentions, place and more to refine your search. With the results, you can then directly tweet or message them introducing your app and its purpose.

Go Live

Today, platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube allow you to share content in real-time. Going live with your app on social channels yields multiple favourable results. With multiple approaches, you can make use of this chance to:

  • Introduce your app and personally talk about it to viewers and push downloads
  • Talk about features in your app that users might not have noticed
  • Discuss additional applications of your app in elevating their lifestyle
  • Share the benefits of in-app purchases if any
  • Announce updates that are on their way
  • Address feedback that users share immediately
  • Turn your users into evangelists by giving referral codes

One interesting statistic reveals that over 25% of the apps that get downloaded never get used more than once. So, as a developer, your focus shouldn’t just be on downloads but engagement and usage as well. Use the live option to push this.

Social Sharing  

Sometimes, we tend to get excited about some apps and immediately want to share it with our friends. Your app should be prepared for such times with fully-functional social sharing buttons. Despite the intention to spread the word about your app, they won’t care to copy the link of your app from app stores and share it with their friends. They’ll do it only if there’s a one-click solution to it. Give it to them. Also make social sharing of your app available on your website.

YouTube Videos

Content generated on YouTube can be used for diverse purposes and nail a presence on the streaming website. So, make sure you come up with as many interesting videos about your app as possible for social repurposing and recycling. Here’s a good example of how to go about this. 

Some other interesting ideas could be:

  • Teasers and promotions about your app
  • Tutorials and how-to videos on installing your app and using it
  • A rendezvous session with your developers or founders sharing what drove you and them to come up with the app
  • Review with a social influencer (more on this next)
  • Success stories from your customers
  • YouTube ads and more

With videos, the possibilities are abundant. You need to simply understand your market and generate content accordingly.

Social Influencers

Okay, two reasons to collaborate with social influencers. Over 70% of teenagers trust influencers over celebrities and 86% of women take to social media/influencers for purchase recommendations. 

Influencers are inevitable today because they can spread good or bad things about your app. From hunting for next vacations to food suggestions, it’s the influencers’ voice that backs people’s opinions.

So, look for influencers in your niche or industry and approach them for a shoutout. In most cases, you would have to give them exclusive or premier access to your app. What they would do is talk about it on their social profiles through posts, stories or even videos. With them, you get brand awareness, new downloads, and opinions from experts in your market.

Apart from these approaches, you can also establish a presence on Snapchat. Numbers reveal that over 78% of its American users are millennials, under 25. This, again, boils down to what your app is about, its purpose and its target audience. If your app is relevant for Snapchat, having a presence would fetch you results.

Now, all these can appear daunting but brainstorming for content, strategies, meeting new people are all exciting. The intention of social media promotion is to let the world know how much fun you had developing something that you felt the world needed. It’s about transferring the excitement that you have over to your users.

If you can think of other ways, share them on your comments. Like we said, your approach to marketing your app should be a balance of two things — pushing downloads and reducing uninstalls.

Good luck!

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Pete McCainAvatarPete McCainPete McCain is a technology startup enthusiast, associated with AppVelocity - one of the best app developers in Canada. He has collaborated with more than 50 entrepreneurs - over the last decade - to maximise growth and contribute to technical excellence.View all posts by Pete McCain