Select Page

App Developer Chat: The Pros and Cons of DIY Marketing

Last time on #AppDevChat we had a discussion about Do It Yourself Marketing for App Developers. We discussed the Pros and Cons of doing it yourself in this fast growing industry.

AppDevChat is open to any app developers, marketers or others interested in learning about developing, creating, inventing, marketing apps. It happens every Thursday at 10am PST on twitter. We post the recap here.

Q1) What has been your biggest hurdle in app marketing?

Reliable external data. Keyword data is one example. Ranking info. Lots based 3rd party algos and guesses. New to know how to interpret data. @nickduddy

Getting people to leave good reviews. people love leaving bad ones, but when it works they just use the app. You could always put that annoying “Do you like us” pop up. @justinesgar


Q2) What are some best practices when approaching marketing on your own?

Make sure you tell the story with your app. Don’t just push/sell – make people believe in what you believe in, find a way. Content isn’t hard just talk. Tweet even! You could always write a book… #shamelessselfplug @justinesgar

Thats only partly right: for example at gambling user don´t want a story, the want to push the big red spin button. Let us be honest: NO ONE knows how to do app marketing for REAL. @playpublic_com

Find someone and hire. Will return in the end…if they are good. @nickduddy

Marketing Strategy has to start from the very beginning of the application. Not just something you do for the launch. @rocksaucestudio

Make sure you have something that the market actually wants. If the product is bad, no marketing will help. @QManning

I like to use  to find out what keywords other popular apps are using to help visibility. @TheCodeBender


Q3) If you’re doing marketing on your own, how have you found your segmented audience?

It’s tricky to find your potential users when your client may not even know. Evaluate what the trends are and do as much research as possible. @rocksaucestudio

For #signmypad linkedin has helped. We join certain groups. @justinesgar


Q4) How can you use Social Media to engage more downloads without having to pay for sponsored ads?

Content content content, help customers, content content. Have support via all platforms. Don’t limit to email only. @justinesgar

Talk to real people and give them what they want. Takes time but works so well. Long term strategy. @nickduddy

Find ways to integrate/unlock features of your app with social media sharing. Make it worth user’s times to want to share. @QManning

Hard 2 do without seeming spammy… usually have to post meaningful content people will get value from all the while subliminally hinting at your own products. @TheCodeBender


Q5) What are the benefits to doing Marketing yourself? Being your own Social Media Manager, Content developer etc…

Obviously the biggest upside is budget/cost. Next up I suppose might be that it’s ur brand and no one really knows it better than u do. So you may get that across best. @TheCodeBender

Cost. Allows bootstrappers to save money. You know your message is yours. Not someone else trying to convey your honesty. @justinesgar

Emotional message is easier to convey. Has a random charm about it. @nickduddy

You know your product, so you know what makes it great. Your passion comes across. And it saves money for bootstrapping :)  @QManning


Q6) Aside from COST, what are the cons to DIY marketing?

Can’t speak for everyone but unless your a marketing guru, experience, knowledge, know-how etc… are all limiting factor. In the app space today, u really only have one chance to get it right… u miss that initial window and its an uphill battle. @TheCodeBender

Misinterpretation of data and info. Idea generation. @nickduddy

It takes your time, and there are connections that a real marketing company or PR firm has that you never will. @QManning


Q7) What have YOU done that has really worked for your app(s) in regards to Marketing?

Got a bad write up on  and made a come back. Did more in a day than we did all month. Give free copies out if it could lead to more sales. @justinesgar

Try and error. @playpublic_com

We reached out to one popular resource for Android Reviews and told them we did something Google said couldn’t be done. It was the truth about the app and we shared it with them first, getting a review on the same day the app was released. @rocksaucestudio

Had a PR company get us a spot on local news one time. It was fun to watch the sign up count sky rocket when the story aired. Tried mass posting to various forums across the internet relating to the app’s topic… less than desirable results @TheCodeBender

Retargeted keywords. Risk of losing traffic but was the right call in the end! @nickduddy


Q8) What are some good examples of unique marketing you’ve seen from other apps/products?

@lyft app launched at #SXSW and gave piggy back rides to promote the app and it worked. @rocksaucestudio

We utilize our own app to network with potential partners who have helped network our app to a greater audience. @CanWeNetwork

Download your app in to peoples phone telling them your business card was in the app…it kinda was. @nickduddy


Q9) Any tips for first time bootstrapping app companies ready to start their marketing plan for their app?

Don’t wait until the app is finished to figure out how your going to market it. May b helpful 2 launch ur app+marketing strategy in a smaller market, like Canada first… get a POC running, then go global. @TheCodeBender

I agree with @thecodebender. Start the story now. Get the blog going. Marketing starts when the idea is made. @justinesgar

Beta test and fix the problems before launch. Will curb negative reviews. @nickduddy

Join us next time on #appdevchat on January 23rd at 10am PST

If you’d like to participate and lead a discussion, please contact [email protected]