App Marketing

How to Acquire Users for Your App

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How to Acquire Users for Your App

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Table of Contents

How to Acquire Users for Your App

One of the hardest challenges that developers face is how to get users to initially try your app. You can have the best app in the world, but if no-one uses it, it will still fail. Creating a well thought out user acquisition strategy is critical for your app to have any chance of success.

Here are the types of campaigns you need to know:

Social Media

Having a strong social media strategy is important to ensure that not only do you get new users, but also, that they tell their friends about it, too. Therefore, it’s crucial to develop ‘sharing features’ which both allow and encourage social media interaction between users.

Make it easy for users to post their results, share screenshots, and compete with each other. Make it fun for users to share leaderboards / challenges they’ve completed in the app, and invite their friends with join with just a click of a button.

App Store

62% of users find apps by browsing the app stores, therefore, you have to make sure your app stands out from your competitors.

In your listing, carefully choose the pictures which highlight the best features of your app and make sure you description is enticing.


Reviews can be a cost-effective way to generate new users. Find media channels which cover your industry — like magazines, newspapers, and blogs. Also, do some research and contact key influencers in the industry who could review your app and publish it on their channels to their audience.

Paid User Acquisition

Using paid ads are the most traditional way of acquiring new users. However, they’re also the most expensive.

Paid user acquisition campaigns should be tested during an apps ‘soft launch’ phase. After your soft launch, it’s important to assess the KPIs of the campaign, so that you can optimizeyour strategy before your main launch.

In order to have a profitable campaign, you need to make sure your ARPU (Average Revenue Per User) is higher than your CPA (Cost Per Acquisition).

In the paid advertising world, you will come across plenty of acronyms. Here are some of the most commons ones you need to know:

CPI: Cost Per Install
CPM: Cost Per Mile (Cost Per Thousand Impressions)
CTR: Click-through Rate
IAP: In-app Purchases
LTV: Lifetime Value (of one user)

Ad Networks

Ad networks find apps with advertising to sell and then aggregate the inventory for advertisers to buy.

The Ad network shows advertisements from its central ad server, which responds to an app, once a specific page is loaded. A snippet of code is called from the ad server, which launched the advertising banner.

When deciding which Ad network to use, analyse features such as analytics and control panels, as all platforms do some things better than others.

Don’t forget to find an Ad network which matches your audience. If you want to target gamers, find a game focused Ad network like Chartboost. If you have a Casino app, use a network like AppLovin. Non-gaming app? Try AdMob or Vungle.

Let the campaigns run for a few weeks and analyze the results. Which ones convert the best? Which have the highest install rate? Find this data and drop the poorly performing campaigns.

Burst Campaigns

Burst campaigns involve generating a large number of installs in order to get your app to the top of the charts in an app store.

This is the most effective at the early stages of a launch campaign, after you release a new update, and when your growth starts to plateau. Once you get to the top charts, you can expect to start generating a large number of organic user downloads.

Incent Campaigns

Incent ads are those which give people a reward (virtual currency, coins, access to in-app features, etc.) for completing a specific action, such as downloading an app.

The main goal of incent traffic is to generate a large number of installs for your app within a short period of time.

An important advantage of incent traffic is that installs generated are extremely cost effective, as the Cost-Per-Install (CPI) significantly lower than non-incent CPI.

If you’re conducting an incent launch campaign, you need to ensure that you have a reliable traffic partner who has the ability to acquire users across incent traffic sources quickly and in high-volume.

One of the main benefits is that incent campaigns can give you the opportunity to beat big brand apps in the rankings on the App Stores.

Which method to use?

To achieve success in the app world and build a profitable user acquisition campaign, you need a mixture of the above techniques and strategies.

Use your budget wisely and test out different methods until you find the right combination of incent and non-incent based strategies.

To learn more about how to acquire users for your app, contact us and we’ll be happy to give you some advices.

Skype: gogochart