I have a mobile game and marketing budget. How do I spend it?

15 replies
I've got a game released on the AppStore. It's getting good reviews, but next to no traction -- maybe 100 downloads per day.

I've got $50k to spend on marketing it. How would Warriors go about spending that?

Curious to hear suggestions from mobile marketeers

What we tried so far:

- AdWords, mobile marketing. The app costs $0.99 and is universal iphone/ipad. So we dumped $15k on marketing it via mobile adwords (aka admob) and that resulted in a $400 return. Not good.

- Spamming review sites with review requests. Nobody replied.
#budget #game #marketing #mobile #spend
  • Profile picture of the author jasontim86
    I have promoted Mobile game apps on LeadBolt with a fair share of success.

    It was a CPA offer. So if you're the advertiser itself, i can see you're easily going to break even, and head to profits. I might be wrong too, it all depends on how you monetize your backend, whether is it the in-app purchases, or just CPM advertisement from other mobile networks.
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  • Profile picture of the author wipeoutmedia
    I released a couple of Apps for the iPhone and iPad called Kezza bee Farm Adventures and Kezza bee Peek-a-Boo in mid 2010. Both built on shoestring budgets. A good amount of work was outsourced, but we did do a fair bit of work ourselves like writing the storyline, creating all the music, writing the narration, creating graphics, icons and cropping image charters for animations, etc.
    We were lucky to release our apps in the boom of the App Store. In fact we had our Kezza bee Farm Adventures developed for the iPad before the iPad was actually available in Australia. Therefore, we were stoked to get top 10 placements under books for weeks at a time. Highest the iPhone got was number 2 in Australia. We received an explosion of download when Apple featured it in the Apple Staff Favourites.
    We have done a lot, and I mean a huge amount of marketing. We created a YouTube account. Kezza bee Adventures - YouTube. where I added many nice (mainly Channel) comments with not only other app developers YopuTube Channels, but also those that create for example nursery rhyme videos for children because our Kezza bee apps were for children ages around 3 to 7 years of age. To this day, although our app is nowhere to be seen or found in the Apple App Store, I still think that YouTube still plays a big part in getting daily downloads - even more than two years later!
    We have submitted to heaps of review sites, you know offering free vouchers for reviews. We have been really appreciative of those that have provided reviews such as the The iPhone Mom: Reviews of the Best iPhone Apps For Moms, By a Mom | The iPhone Mom and Crazy Mikes Apps: App Reviews, App Video, iPhone Apps,iPad Apps,Android Apps
    These people have not only worked for free, but worked tirelessly and often thanklessly to provide this service for consumers, so I have the utmost praise for the reviewers.
    We did do a Facebook advertising campaign but didn't go as good as we had hoped. I guess if you go CPC, which we did, basically paying someone in clicks to basically buy your app for the click cost. We tried CPMs, with nearly 100,000 impressions, and probably got some great branding, but nothing substantial.
    What else have we done!!! We created a Kezzabee website, and did a bunch of SEO stuff with that. We also paid for banner advertising targeting popular iPhone/iPad websites. We created little 125px square button banners, which was basically an animation of Kezza bee walking into the middle of the banner. I did remember that got a lot of attention - quite a lot of clicks. Great value in my opinion considering the monthly fee was very reasonable.
    All in all, the development was a load of fun and we enjoyed it immensely. Both apps have finally paid themselves off - certainly no Angry Birds or Plants Vs Zombies, but nevertheless, they provide a trickle investment now. If we could turn back time (we have asked ourselves this question many times) and we probably would have created another Kezza bee story book series. We had Kezza bee Jungle Adventures in the planning phase but that is as far as it got - who knows, could be a future goer!!!
    Anyway, I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed reminiscing about the development.
    I sure wish you good luck with your apps.
    All the best,
    Damian
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  • Profile picture of the author wipeoutmedia
    Actually I would really like to hear other peoples mobile app stories. I will watch this thread, could be really interesting!!!

    Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author Always-A-Warrior
    I suggest you put away your money and search "app forum" on Google. Go through the top 10 forums and see what they have stored there. They will know exactly what you want.
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  • Profile picture of the author blanchi
    What kind of game is it? Is there a way to take a non-traditional approach to marketing it? For example, if it's a car-related game, hitting up editors at consumer car magazines (almost everyone has an iPhone and almost every traditional media has a blog these days) for reviews works. If it's an action-related game, what kind of game is similar. For example, if it's similar to WOW, there are tons of "WOW cheat ebooks, forums and videos on YouTube - getting an authoritative author/poster to review the game and post a review on his site and also link to your iTunes page would work wonders.

    I have an app (not a game) where traditional marketing would not work very well - it's not something people would get excited about - and that's what I did; trade magazine editors as well as offline authorities in the field who also have blogs/websites and were kind enough to write about my app.

    All you need is for it to get featured or to find a spot on top of a list, so stay focused. 100 downloads a day is better than no downloads a day...

    Good luck.
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  • Profile picture of the author shoopt
    Originally Posted by TheOverall View Post

    I've got $50k to spend on marketing it. How would Warriors go about spending that?
    Promoting your applications over admob is good, you can try few other networks too like adiquity, inmobi, smaato and airpush. They also provide nice platform for advertising and promoting your applications.
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    I am Daniel Jones, working in a Mobile Application Development Company as a Mobile App Developer. I enjoys exploring apps on iOS, blackberry, android and other mobile platforms.

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  • Profile picture of the author Tmark30
    if it is an android app you can consider using pay per download sites to enable you gain traction and rank well at the early stage of the release. i also suggest you use mobile social platforms like openfeint.
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  • Profile picture of the author SJJPFTW
    Try some good authority paid review sites.

    Submit an App for Review & Demo - Daily App Show - iPhone App Reviews & Demos | Daily App Show - Video App Reviews for iPhone and iPod Touch Users is a good one. Video sells as they say. Purchase the high end package if you can.

    I'm not associated with them in anyway either, just enjoy the show :-)
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