$20K marketing budget, where to spend ?

Hi all,

I have $20K to spend on marketing of our new game but not sure
which channels are good to start with, it all looks huge and
lots of options.

Appreciate if anyone can guide me on how to utilize these funds
for better ROI.

Thanks in advance.

You could always give it to me, I will tell all my friends about your game. :wink:

Joking aside: maybe AppBrain but make sure you target “proper” countries and make some test campaigns first. Or maybe house ads in some of this forum users apps/games (to cut the intermediaries)? What type of game it is?

Lets make clear i have not spend a dollar in promotion so far, but:

I would try to focus on a couple small countries so you can appear in the New Apps rankings

Exactly what I was thinking… try to become a big fish in a small pond first, ya know?

Run whatever you are thinking in one country - most big games used to target Canada first (similar to U.S.).

So you can do a run with Canada.

As you may know Google Play rankings etc. work individually by country (as if they are parallel universes) - this suggests the much mentioned “first month” is different for each country - so I THINK you should be safe - i.e. releasing first in Canada may not harm your first month (later) when you push to U.S. (maybe someone can confirm).

Google gives you one month - you have an excellent opportunity to reach “Top New Free” in that time - your challenge is to leverage that early success to continuing exposure.

You could BUY reviews on the web - most developers here say negative about that (partly because who reads the web - it’s 1/10 of the mobile audience). However having multiple websites linking to your website etc. MAY give you some ranking boost (at least on internet searches).

Make a youtube video - that itself wil give you a good number of downloads - interact with people on youtube via your videos, twitter, facebook etc.

We had a discussion here about how to spend - and one suggestion I gave was to perhaps spend in a RISING trend i.e. spend at an increasing rate (as long as you have money).

So watch the daily downloads and for next day schedule a spend that is say 50% of that or 25% of that - i.e. goal being to “supplement” the natural download rate.

Optimize your description, esp. title (you have limited characters - choose words wisely) - some use Adsense keyword tool website to gauge the value of the keywords.

Maybe think about advertising in “similar” apps - as that demographic will be more likely to install your app - and retain it.

Prior to launch of your app - maybe create some pent up demand by publicizing first - or “coming soon” webpage (not a huge impact - but may have some impact).

I am no expert - but this is all free advice :slight_smile: Experts will charge you for that advice - and their advice may be good or may not.

From comments here - response from admob advertising was criticised - but via AppBrain was praised i.e. $0.20 typical bid for downloads of your app. However as soon as you stop spending you will lose that source of dowloads - which will make you fall in rankings (and be classed as a “downtrend” by Google) - so you need to have ways to have second, third stage of rocket start after the first one fizzles out etc. …

Hopefully your app will be “viral” - will fill a need - will match search keywords (so just get downloads from search).

Note that putting too common names in your title (just because are commonly searched) MAY NOT help you - for example “file” is often searched - but if you put file in your title - that DOES NOT DISTINGUISH your app - I have seen cases of apps whose developers complain here that their app is NOT SEARCHABLE even when you type the title exactly !!! I have confirmed this happens with some apps - and I suspect the reason is that the title words match OTHER apps much more - so first 200 apps are those apps.

So if you call your app File Audio - users who type File Audio will find results that match ALL the other file related apps which already have high ranking etc.

So in a way you need to find words that are good for search BUT the name of your app is distinctive enough - so when people mention your app to others - it is FINDABLE.

So the name being unique helps in that - maybe make sure there are few possibility of spelling variations of the name etc.

North Korea seems to have some space to gain traction :smiley:

This first month window when apps are qualified for the top new free rankings is global for all stores. Check out this video: https://developers.google.com/events/io/sessions/326335584
The guy from google confirms that. So if your strategy is to leverage the top new charts effect, it’s not recommended releasing in one particular country.

$20k is a good budget to begin with. How to spend it depends on your goal? If your strategy is to get as much users as possible and be higher in the top new rankings try buying cheap traffic on a CPI basis. As far as I know, you can buy installs from appflood on a large volume for $0.3 CPI. Appbrain can also be good for that. You can also try going with an incetivized network like tapjoy, they have installs for as low as $0.1. So you can get up to 200k installs for your money. However be careful with the incetivized traffic, as those users are not interested in your game. Most of them will uninstall the game right away after they download it, and this also affects ranking in a bad way.

On the other hand, if your strategy is to run ROI positive campaign, i.e. for every $1 spend you’ll get >$1 back, I’d recommend buying a high quality traffic, like Facebook mobile app install ads where you can get very specific targeting. For example if you have a casino app you can target users who like this kind of apps, you can also target by gender, etc. This works very well for us. However, these ads are generally much more pricey.

This is something I wondered - that if you start off your campaign for a game in Canada (as many game developers report they do - since it is “like U.S.” - does that start the 1 month timer ?

Since many have reported earlier that they do this - I assumed that they would know this would not be harming their precious 1 month window for other countries.

If the 1 month window starts from your first appearance (in any country) - that is something that severely limit early distribution to some country (to test/iron out bugs on a medium sized population of users).

Now Google offers rollout as Beta to smaller group of people found via Google+ groups etc. AND it allows rollout to a “percentage” of all users - so you can test the waters.

The question is - does this start the 1 month window also ?

The things that militate against the idea of a universal 1-month window (as opposed to a geo-location-specific 1 month window) are that from my own observations of apps released, I found that the rise curse (in rankings) for different countries was different - which suggested to me that the 1 month window was not synchronized.

However I don’t remember - it could be that all those staggered (and not all starting same day rise) in different countries was all still within the 1 month window.

Also as soon as the 1 month window was over the apps started dropping fast - now I don’t recall if the drop was automatically the same in all countries - I seem to recall that there were some “straggler” countries - where the graph was not falling at same time but which dropped a bit later (I may not be sure of this).

It is well known that incentivized downloads cost less than non-incentivized downloads - precisely because of the “not-really-interested-in-the-app” syndrome with incentivized downloads (Tapjoy/GetJar).

Yet many app advertisers CONTINUE to use Tapjoy etc.

The factor you mention is very important - i.e. install/uninstall rate being very important for rankings (affects active user base rise) by Google.

Now either these app advertiser know what they are getting (i.e. app installers do not uninstall these incentivized app downloads as readily as WE THINK) - or the future of incentivized downloads (which is essential for virtual currency like Tapjoy etc. is in serious peril.

Hi there,based on my experience and your situation, here are 2 effective app promotion methods for u.

Buying Keyword Search Installs
There is no doubt that it’s one of the best choice for app promotion, because it can boost app ranking instantly, about 8~10 hours.Data shows that over 65% users download an app by searching in the app stores, the higher it ranks, the more downloads will generate. The most important part is that you should choose the relevant keyword for your app.

If you give up boosting app ranking in the app store, means that you give up the 65% users, so this method is really worth to have try.

Buy Positive Reviews and Rating
The reviews and ratings were simply too critical to app discovery and downloads to leave up to chance. Data shows that 88% users trust reviews as much as personal recommendations. What’s more, 80% users have changed their minds about downloading app based solely on the negative reviews they read. Additionally, positive reviews and 4/5-star ratings can also increase your app ranking.

Hope the 2 methods are useful to u.

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