iPhone Apps: what's your launch strategy?

Source FilesThere are some things to keep in mind when you submit your app to the store in order to make your app a successful one.

Application details

  • The app description needs to be short and to the point. You can change the description anytime later.
  • The app keywords cannot be changed unless you submit an update to the app. So pick the keywords carefully. I suggest you review the top 25 of each game categories, find some game that can appeal similar apps and tailor the keywords for that audience.
  • Take amazing screenshots. Most people will skip the description and look at the screenshots directly. The main screenshot should depict the interaction with the app, not the splash screen.

Launch price

It is crucial to get the app in the top 25 apps for any given category and to create some buzz and positive reviews as soon as possible after the launch, to drive a sales surge that will get the app into a loop of sales (the more it is popular, the more it sells, the more people will see and buy it, the more it becomes popular)…

  • For this reason, I suggest a very aggressive limited offer (1.99)—something that will get the downloads growing fast. You don’t need to specify an end date for the offer.
  • I’m not going to recommend 0.99 as a starting price because people would download the app without understanding what it is, and this may lead to negative reviews.
  • Have friends and family download and leave positive reviews to the app, but don’t give away your promo codes for this.
  • Send your promo codes to the media. People that may review the app on YouTube and popular websites, bloggers and magazines related to your own niche — the purpose is getting attention and build a brand that will be recognized in your niche as you release new apps.

Keeping it up

Some ongoing marketing activity is necessary to keep the sales going. Keep an eye on the download stats. Apple’s own reports are terrible so you’ll need some post processing to get the data out of them.

  • When the sales surge is up enough and before it goes down, it is time to raise the price.
  • When and if the sales drop, you can make a new special offer.
  • Keep an eye on the reviews. You should check for new reviews regularly. People may identify issues that you didn’t see during development, or they may point out any other thing that may require an action (fix and issue an update).

Finally, you should plan to release an update in 3 to 6 months. Whatever the update is about, people will see the app is alive. It will resurrect attention for the app in people that have it sitting there and not using it, and it will generate new buzz around the app in the app store. Remember you should expect a 2 weeks time span to get the app and the updates approved (or rejected).

Are you an iPhone developer?

Please share your experience with us by adding a comment below!