Growth Hacking for Mobile Apps encapsulated in 10 Tactics [SlideShare]

Growth hacking for mobile apps? Ouch!

Truth be told–if you don’t have a budget, you’ll probably fail after just a few tries. You’ll be out of ideas in no time. Seeing no results will cast despair on you and kill your team’s morale. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.

Months and loads of money spent on testing, failing, ideating and tweaking paid off really well. Recently we grew one of our customer’s app from 20,000 to 200,000 MAUs in two months. Not bad, huh? (And it wasn’t the first time we did it).

Below, you’ll find more than just 10 tactics. You’ll find real silver bullets there.

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Mobile App Growth is Tactical (from App Marketing Perspective)

It’s hard to build an app. But it’s even harder to market one.

Apart from product development and management – both crucial for growing a mobile app – often times it’s a marketing role that is responsible for bringing user growth in terms of the acquisition.

It may be an unpopular thing to say out loud, but we believe that mobile app growth is a hardcore tactical thing.

Let me explain briefly:

Solving a problem for a specific audience, researching demographics, figuring out core features – these are strategical, product/market-related matters.


Getting new (valuable) users, testing messaging and acquisition channels – it’s a marketing job.


In the early days and weeks of your app, you don’t have resources to be really thoughtful of every little detail here. So it’s better to test a bunch of proven tactics first–even just to validate the potential of app growth and see what chances do you have to score some quick wins.

That’s why we’ve created this slide deck.


App Growth and 10 Growth Hacks to Boost It [Slidedeck]

mobile app growth hacking

Even though app growth hacking is still a new space, we have tested dozens of tactics and found a few of them to be sort of universal. You can use to thrive mobile app growth with apps of any genre and find results pretty quickly.

Check out 10 growth hacking tactics we use at Whalla Labs to market & grow apps we build for our Clients:

10 Growth Hacks for Mobile Apps from Whalla Labs


#1 Deploy analytics

Big data is now available like never before. It is so easy to setup and uses (well, at least the basic settings) that marketers are using it more and more often to track the success of their online campaigns. No more guessing, as 2016 will be the year of data-driven marketing.

To fully track the growth of your mobile app you should set up the funnel. Define goals, micro-conversions and implement the tracking code – now you are ready to test, test and test.


#2 Release early beta

Nothing will tell you more about your app than the actual users. Releasing early beta will help you to reach first, testing audience and get the feedback about your app’s features.

Aim for at least 2k–3k to make the data relevant. A good idea is also to commission the focus group interview or to test your app using heat maps. Your goal here is to collect as many data about your user’s interactions as possible.


#3 Create fake landing page

App Store Optimisation (ASO) and App Store Marketing are very important part of featuring your app in the app market, butt… it doesn’t make your app’s success in 100%.

You still need to promote you mobile product through as many online channels as it is possible to get to your audience. To do that you can make a fake landing page with the links to the app stores where your app is featured and promote this page with paid advertising, forums, social channels and more.

The more attention your app will get the more downloads and installations you will see.


#4 Follow guidelines

Regardless of the platform, your app is built for–either it is iOS, Android or Windows Phone–you should always respect dev guidelines for each one of them. It will help you to get feature and also will make your app more friendly for the platform users, who got used to its common patterns.

To get your app featured on app store make sure you’ve followed the guidelines and then contact the store owner.

Useful links:


#5 Do some ASO testing

A/B testing is the best way to find out wich elements work best for your app and what to change or remove. Think of several variations of your app’s logo, screenshots and keywords and test which ones are getting you the best results.

It will help you to rank better in the app store and to get more users’ attention for your app.


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growth hacking

#6 Cross-promote

Cross-promotion is using other apps’ advertising spaces to promote your own app and it is a very powerful way to drive more installs. Find other app developers and promote each other’s apps for free. It is a great solution if you are on a tight budget or want to save a bit on advertising.


#7 Use AdWords

I have talked about it above–promote your app in as many channels as you can find, but keep it relevant to your audience.

You can use Google advertising network like AdWords to drive more potential users and therefore more installs for your app. Find out if the keywords you’ve used for ASO promotion are relevant for the search engine like Google and set paid ads for them.

For better results target specific devices like iOS or Android to avoid non-valuable clicks and wasting money.


#8 Ignite activity

Use social connections between the users to better promote your app. Let them add their friends, and then those friends will add their friends, etc. It’s free and it works.

The rule of thumb here is to not force your users to do it. If they will find your app useful and engaging, they will want their friends to be there as well.


#9 Push notifications

Using push notifications will help you to increase users retention by showing short, time-limited messages on their smartphone screens. You can inform them about new features, updates or remind them to use it.

Don’t forget to include an easy-to-follow process of opting out, as push notifications are permission-based.


#10 Target uncrowded platform

This one is optional and depends on your audience, but it’s definitely worth to consider.

In Google Play there are already over 1,800,000 mobile apps, while in the App Store there are over 1,500,000. In the same time in Microsoft Store, there are ‘only’ 700,000 apps.

On certain occasions you can take advantage of the less crowded platform for faster app promotion. Maybe for Windows Phone, there are less mobile apps, but there are also fewer marketers fighting for user’s attention.

And WP users are also hungry for good apps–make it your advantage.


We Will Grow Your Business With Great Apps

We are the software house developing mobile apps for iOS, Android, Windows Phone and for the web. We have made several mobile apps that were downloaded millions of times.

When we are talking about mobile app design, development or marketing you can be sure that we know what we are talking about.


Download our amazing portfolio as a PDF and see for yourself who we have worked for.