There are many strategies to reach the top ranks in your app category, and one strategy that we often implement at Mobile Action is localization. Localization in this sense can be defined as adapting a product for a specific country or region
Here’s the scenario:
Your company released an app that is tied to a location dependent service or experience (think the beginning stages of Uber). This is great, but you can only grow so fast, and your initial customer base is only in one or two cities.
Should you be in the top of your respective category? Definitely not. This would not be necessary or cost-effective, and would substantially lower your retention rate. The majority of users that discover your app will either be unable to use it, delete it or even worse leave bad reviews and ratings.
With 63% of app installs coming from in-app browsing, and the ranking in the app store being directly tied to your discoverability- this poses a huge problem.
So, given this scenario, how do you acquire local and high LTV users?
Most companies immediately go for Facebook Advertising, due to their ability to provide the most granular geo-targeted mobile advertising. With and average CPI of $3.00 for highly targeted users, this is not cost-effective, nor is it sustainable.
So what is the solution? Focus on FREE localized organic installs! Here’s the 5 reasons why:
The main concern focusing on ASO is that it seems to not be geo-specific, or targeted if done properly, this could not be farther from truth.
Example: When Uber first launched in San Francisco, they would not want, or need, installs from people in Chicago. How could they promote their service within the app store, just in their specific area?
With keywords such as:
-San Francisco Taxi
-SF Ride -San Francisco Ride
-SF Driver -SF Pickup -SF Hail
You get the point.
For them to rank #1, in even half of these keywords, would have a massive impact on the amount of installs they received.
Think about this scenario:
You need a cab ride, and you know that “taxi” apps exist. You open your phone, open the app store and type in “SF Taxi”, wouldn’t you go with the first result? Most users do.
-High Retention Rate
So you’ve decided to do Ad spending at a $3.00 CPI, but your retention rate is only 20% there is a problem here right? Let’s say your company paid for 1,000 installs at a $3.00 CPI, that’s $3,000, but after 30-days only 20% of the installs returned to the application. This scenario would mean that your company essentially paid $3,000 for 200 active users that’s $15 per user!
Here’s the terrible part:
Paid advertising actually lowers your CPI. These incentivized downloads are often times misaligned with the user’s needs, so they quickly delete your app yet, you don’t get your money back.
The reason organic installs are more effective is because the app store is built on trust, so customers trust that the most popular and effective apps are listed first in the search recommendations. Customers that find you, are much more likely to be engaged and happy users that return to your app. If a customer discovers your app through in-app browsing and search, it’s because it was properly aligned with their needs.
-Discoverability versus Incentivized Downloads
User Acquisition is like dating.
If you’re in a bar and see someone you’re interested in approaching, what is a better situation?
Entice them to approach you or make your move on them? Chase, or be chased. When someone approaches a stranger in a bar, there is typically an emotional wall, because we haven’t built trust.
How about if you are both strangers, yet a mutual friend introduces you? Immediate establishment of trust, because it’s much easier to trust someone your friends already trust. This is essentially how the app store functions they help you establish trust with potential users.
The opposite can be said of advertising, this misalignment actually hurts trust and can cause a customer to be lost for a lifetime. It’s the equivalent of talking to everyone in the bar, and playing the numbers game. Of course, some will engage you in conversation, but very few will trust you or give you the desired result. It’s too aggressive, and often misaligned their intentions or desires.
This brings me to the next point that is massively missed with non-incentive advertising.
– Timing Is Everything
Most people search for applications at the time of need. They have a need or desire, search the app store for the best product to fulfill that need, and if your product is properly aligned, they will give you a chance. This is common knowledge, yet this concept is often missed with advertising, because the customer is currently open to suggestions and actively seeking a solution to their problem. This is the perfect opportunity to showcase the company’s value, and if properly executed, you will not only have a loyal customer but also a brand advocate.
The opposite can be said with advertising, especially with Facebook. When are the “suggestions” being given to you? Not typically in a time of need, or at a time that is even relevant to your immediate actions. If you’re cruising through your feed, messaging friends, or updating your status, it’s unlikely that you will be planning your future cab ride and download an application because of their advertisement. The timing is misaligned, and these advertisements are often unwanted suggestions.
Organic growth is free! While it might take more time, and possibly professional consultation (highly recommended), the benefits are massive! Also, if you are doing moderate ad spending, having your ASO dialed-in properly will compound the amount of organic traffic you receive. Takeaways: – Targeted organic growth is more effective than targeted advertising – Advertising hurts your retention rate – Discoverability > incentivized installs – Timing is more properly aligned with organic installs – Organic growth is the most cost-effective user acquisition strategy
Please feel free to share your experiences with, mobile keyword localization, ASO or Ad networks in the comment section below! Or, the ways in which, dating is similar to UA, that’s fine too!
Mobile Keyword Localization Sources