On the launch base

I’m going to launch my latest app in few days.
I would like to push it a little bit with some ads, and I was evaluating to use AppBrain or AppFlood.

I was more oriented on AppFlood, but (if I understood well) they are asking to ship the app with the integrated sdk ALSO WHEN ADVERTISING, this seems a little bit odd to me, expecially due to the risk of being checked as virus or spammers, when actually I am paying for ads elsewhere.
Do you confirm this, as you know?

And anyway, which of the two networks (or a third one) do you suggest me to spend some little money for a small boost?


I’m pretty sure you only need to integrate their SDK if you’re going to be exchanging installs through their network, as opposed to paying for them.

If you are just paying for installs then you won’t have to integrate their SDK.
I believe that’s right, but anyone correct me if you think I’m wrong.

Appflood requires you install their sdk even if you are only buying installs. I asked them myself and this is what they told me:

Thank you for contacting AppFlood. Yes, it is possible to do S2S if you didn’t want to integrate the sdk! We just ask you answer these questions first for our engineer:

  1. Is your server collecting these device information?

· AndroidID for android

· Mac_address for IOS: Raw mac_address

· Country: 2 or 3 letters country code

· Language: Using ISO 639-2

· Device version: Please give us an example.

· Device Type: phone or pad

  1. Does your server have static IP? If you want to work with us in this way, we need you to add the IP to whitelist.

  2. Could you call our API every time when your apps start?

Please let me know if you have any addition questions or need any help!

-The AppFlood Team

My reply:

What is the server needed for? I’m not sure what your talking about. Is this needed to track the installs or just for our own statistics? Thanks,

Their reply:

o answer your question, yes, the server is need to connect you to our publishers so we will need you to download our SDK or work with our server.
Are you working with hasoffers or ad-X? Using them would be another option.

The AppFlood Team

Not knowing what they were talking about with setting up my own server, I found it easier to install their sdk. I think it’s needed so that they can track how many installs your app is getting. Appbrain can track your installs without installing an sdk in your app, but I don’t know how they do it. The thing I liked better about appbrain vs. appflood, is price doesn’t change for choosing location of installs with appbrain. Minimum price if you want to select a location with appflood is around $.70 while appbrain’s minimum price stays at $0.20 even when choosing location. The only negative affect of choosing locations in appbrain is you have fewer potential impressions for your ad, so you will get installs slower. I released an app lately and was able to get about 1000 installs per day, limiting the installs to 15 countries I chose by ecpm I had with them in admob. My bid was only $0.20. I’ve heard other people say they could only get a few impressions with choosing locations, but I didn’t have this problem. If your app is not a game, it’s also not a good idea to use appflood, I’ve heard. I would suggest adding a small fund to each service at first to test each one at first. Then fully fund the service that gives you the most installs for the lowest price.

Wow - $200 per day to get 1000 installs !

Wish there was a $0.05 charge if you install an app and kept it say for more than 2 days or something.

We wouldn’t need all these ad networks - and $0.05 per app you keep is not that much and would be tolerable to users - given they are already paying much.

However carrier billing would probably have carriers charging some huge chunk of that - and not implemented fully yet (I am assuming Google looked into that).

I have looked at AppFlood - they DO require you install the SDK and publish it (i.e. leap of faith) - before they approve your app. The no-commission model seems good.

Perhaps only possible because papaya mobile is an app developer (and a publisher or have some SDK that publishers use ?) and having a handy ad network would be useful for them also.

However, being a closed universe - i.e. the advertisers/publishers are more likely papaya mobile-related apps etc. - I was wondering if they give INDUSTRY-standard or higher revenue per app install ?

They have a bidding process - so the issue is are all advertisers on AppFlood cheapskates - if so the overall revenue per app install would be low.

The no-commission language is good - but is the revenue (if not double the industry standard) at least the same ?

I suspect the talk of having a server etc. - is related to AppFlood being able to track actual app downloads - since AppFlood is an app-promotion network, having the SDK in the app installed would be the FAIR way to measure real installs. The other way would be for the SDK to have some memory-resident process running on (as GetJar/Tapjoy etc. seem to do) which confirms that the user has installed the app.

Well the real advantage to buying installs is to bring your app up in the top new lists. I spent a total of $1000 and got to about 200th position in my category. So now I’m averaging about 900 installs per day for free. Of course this will drop after 30 days but should give me a good seed user base. Hopefully people will tell their friends if they like it.

What was the download rate you were getting prior to the AppBrain injection (i.e. this being related to your “keyword searchability” of description/title etc.

So you went from X downloads per day to 1000 downloads per day - with rise on Google Play category list to 200.

Breaking that down somewhat …

Prior to AppBrain campaign - getting X downloads per day - this one could attribute to the “keyword searchability” of your description/title. Left on it’s own this may propel the app upwards as well - did you leave your app unpromoted to have a sense what the natural ranking progression was - or had it reached a point of stagnation at X downloads per day a few days after launch ?

So as soon as you started AppBrain campaign - the downloads immediately went to 1000 downloads per day - this would then be DIRECTLY as a result of AppBrain (or 1000 minus X download per day to be precise).

Thanks to the increased downloads, your rankings would start to rise - leading to a rise in the X downloads to Y downloads per day.

Eventually you would be getting 1000 downloads from AppBrain + Y downloads per day.

On the last day of your AppBrain campaign were you able to measure the downloads attributable to your 200 ranking in your category ?

After you stopped AppBrain campaign - presumably either because you ran out of allocated budget OR saw that the Y downloads were significant and so may not require AppBrain download to keep rank high.

Starting at a 1000 + Y downloads per day - which was yielding you 200 ranking in your category, you then removed AppBrain campaign - which immediately removed the 1000 downloads per day - leading to a shortfall.

This would then trigger the decline in total downloads - first dropping you in rankings by 1 or two places. But next day the downloads be even less (because lower in rankings) - thus leading to a vicious circle which eventually drops the rankings to a level where AGAIN the “keyword searchability” random-discovery-related downloads start to dominate.

The question arises whether your FINAL “keyword searchability” related downloads are bigger or the word-of-mouth related downloads.

And this I guess is the difference between the “viral” apps which keep rising - as at some point the word-of-mouth kicks in OR (more significantly even) if Google starts featuring the app etc.

Or that the app enters the top 10 rankings - so that it CONTINUES to be visible to users - I suspect that being at 200 ranking may get downloads from that (but 200 is a LONG ways down in the list). It is possible that a stable 200 ranking is reached and goes up and down PURELY on the basis of discoverability from keyword searches ? And only when the app has reached top 10-20 is where the ranking-related downloads kick in or what ? Though that can’t be the only explanation, since after all rise in rankings by 10 places (even if it goes from 200 to 190 in rankings) DOES affect total downloads - so what is happening ? A “long tail” of users are looking at the apps at 200 position in Entertainment category etc. and this is what we see impact on downloads ?

If so, getting an app to top 10-20 would have HUGE HUGE impact - and perhaps is the holy grail for new apps which spend cash to get there. When they have spent $1-5M on a new game - they can surely spend $1M in promotion (and plus they have experience from real-world promotion of games etc. to not be fazed by the expenses incurred in such promotion on Google Play).

Anyway … just rambling here - but how were your downloads doing prior to the AppBrain campaigin - i.e. did you feel your trajectory was not going up fast enough etc. or did you plan in advance (knowing what happens generally at launch) that you would use the AppBrain campaign etc.

What ranking is the app now (at 900 installs per day) ?


Comments for new folks here:

Other comments corroborate your preference for AppBrain - i.e. folks saying they were able to drive good download numbers with AppBrain at $0.20 per installs or similar.

While their results with Admob and other were varied - i.e. not able to drive their daily app install budget.

Do you have any guess on the “stick rate” i.e. retention for the AppBrain-derived users ? For non-AppBrain aware users - it is an AppWall - and thus is “non-incentivized” so users are shown apps and they can choose which app they like - thus retention would be higher than GetJar/Tapjoy (which are “incentivized” i.e. user could give a damn what the app is, they are just looking for the coins earned and may uninstall the app soon after). When the user CHOOSES the app to download from among a list of apps, they are probably MORE LIKELY to think it is “their app” i.e. they have selected it, and perhaps more likely to examine it in detail before they uninstall it.

Im not sure what the install rate was before appbrain. I started the campaign on the second day of release. I did heavily promote it in my other apps as well too. Since the end of the appbrain campaign it has dropped to about 220 but still around 900 downloads per day.

Appbrain installs are non-incentivesized installs, so they are likely to have better retention. I think with tapjoy you can get installs as lowvas $0.10 but they are incentivesized. Which may be ok for large app developers who have $100k or more to spend on advertising. They may just want to get in the top ten, then ride the wave from there. Since I didn’t have enough money to get to the top ten I wanted good retention rate. I’m hoping I’ll make the $1000 back in a few months, then it will be a passive income source for who knowd how long after.

oh! Now I understand why some apps have so many installs too quickly. Thanks I will also try it.

So, shall I invest on AppBrain?
Will I get installs for 0.20$?

I was able to get a good amount of installs per day at $0.20. But I’ve heard others say they couldn’t. So you may want to only invest the minimum payment at first and see which service gives you the most installs for the cheapest price.