Some success stories stand out as remarkable. Last week, we brought you the tale of EPIK – AI Photo Editor’s sensational success in our blog, “EPIK App’s Epic Win: Breaking the Social Media with AI Yearbook“. If you haven’t had the chance to read it yet, we strongly recommend you do, as it sets the stage for the incredible journey we’re about to embark on.

Even though only a week has passed, EPIK has fallen from the first place to the 23rd place. So how did this happen? This is what we are going to uncover in today’s blog.

ASO Intelligence developed by MobileAction lets you view your competitors’ in-app events

Focusing specifically on their ingenious use of in-app events and paid user acquisition, as we dive deeper into this case study, you’ll witness how its competitors dethroned EPIK and paved their way to the top of the charts. Let’s pick up where we left off and briefly explore the short-lived success of EPIK.

Quick Recap

EPIK – AI Photo Editor, an AI-based photo editing app, has gained global recognition due to its AI Yearbook feature. Developed by South Korea-based SNOW Corporation, the app generates 60 unique images of an individual based on eight to twelve selfies provided.

The popularity of EPIK has been driven by celebrities and influencers from various backgrounds, who have shared their AI-generated photos on social media platforms. Instagram has been instrumental in EPIK’s success, as celebrities and influencers from diverse domains have actively shared and commented on their AI-generated yearbook pictures.

The in-app events that make EPIK go viral

EPIK’s journey to the top in terms of revenue and downloads began on September 18th, followed by a brief dip in revenue on September 27th. On October 2nd, EPIK secured the third position among free apps and the top spot in the Photo & Video category, dethroning the reigning champion, Lapse application.

The success of EPIK is attributed to its ability to leverage in-app events, which allowed the app to announce its new AI Yearbook feature and update. However, EPIK’s success did not last long due to the strategic brilliance of rival apps.

Lessons Learned – EPIK’s Influence on the Industry

After the release of its groundbreaking AI Yearbook feature, a significant transformation began to unfold. EPIK’s success resonated with other apps in the Photo & Video category, inspiring them to follow suit. As a result, apps in this category started incorporating similar AI-generated yearbook features, recognizing the immense popularity and engagement it brought.

Here are some of the examples:

1) Remini – AI Photo Enhancer

Major Update by Remini – “Back to the 90s with Remini!”

Remini – AI Photo Enhancer, a standout competitor in the Photo & Video app category, has once again demonstrated its commitment to staying at the forefront of viral trends.

Embracing this trend early, Remini has not only added this feature to their app but also accompanied it with an exciting in-app event, named “Back to the 90s with Remini!”

This strategic move is poised to solidify Remini’s position in the top charts of the Photo & Video app category, and it showcases their keen understanding of user preferences and their dedication to enhancing the app experience. With their reactive approach and attention to detail, Remini is undoubtedly successful in their efforts to keep their app exciting and engaging for users.

2) Apps of Prequel Inc.

Prequel Inc. joined the in-app events fest with 3 of their apps

In the highly competitive Photo & Video app category, Prequel Inc. is one of the most popular app publishers. In a strategic move to maintain their standing and captivate their users, Prequel Inc. recently introduced substantial updates across three of their top apps:

  • Prequel: Photo & Video Editor
  • GIO: AI Headshot Art Generator
  • OJI: AI Art & Photo Generator

But that’s not all. What truly sets Prequel Inc. apart is their innovative approach to announcing these updates. They’ve crafted three distinct in-app events, each with its unique charm:

The Nineties Called: A nostalgic journey back in time that promises to evoke memories and sentiments from the ’90s, delivering a unique and emotionally resonant experience.

It’s Picture Day: A clever focus on the yearbook, allowing users to relive the classic “picture day” moments through their photos, with a creative twist brought by Prequel Inc.’s cutting-edge technology.

An Epic Time Jump: A play on words that resonates with “EPIK” drawing parallels with the term “Epic” signifying the monumental nature of the updates.

This thoughtful and engaging approach not only keeps users excited but also reflects Prequel Inc.’s commitment to creating a user experience that goes beyond mere utility. Their dedication to innovation, nostalgia, and captivating events cannot be unseen.

3) Photoleap: AI Art Photo Editor

The 1-month long live event announced by Photoleap

Photoleap, a prominent player in the dynamic Photo & Video Category, has decisively embraced the AI Yearbook trend, positioning itself as a leading competitor. Similar to EPIK and other competitors in this app category, Photoleap released a feature that brings a touch of nostalgia to their app. This major update, named “AI Yearbook Photos,” provides users with a delightful journey back in time.

In their competitive app category, where innovation and user engagement are the keys to success, Photoleap has demonstrated its astute understanding of user preferences. By tapping into the AI Yearbook trend, they have solidified their place among the top contenders in this trend.

Photoleap’s “AI Yearbook Photos” feature not only reflects their commitment to staying at the forefront of technology but also offers a unique and emotionally resonant experience to their users.

4) Reface: Face Swap AI Yearbook

Reface rebranded their app name to make the most out of the AI Yearbook trend

To maximize the potential of the AI Yearbook trend, Reface made a bold and strategic move by rebranding their app. What was once known as “Reface: Face Swap Video AI App” has now transformed into “Reface: Face Swap AI Yearbook”. This name change is not just for looks; it reflects a big change in what the app does.

By seamlessly integrating the core feature of EPIK into their app’s name, Reface demonstrates one of the most astute implications of in-app events and trend adaptation. They have harnessed the power of branding to not only reflect their alignment with the AI Yearbook trend but also to create a sense of anticipation and excitement among their user base.

Reface’s move exemplifies their proactive approach to staying ahead of the curve in the ever-evolving landscape of apps. They’ve brilliantly showcased how in-app events and branding can shape the trajectory of an app.

5) PhotoApp – AI Photo Enhancer

PhotoApp – “AI Yearbook is NOW available!”

PhotoApp took a different route compared to Reface. Instead of changing their app name, they made a notable move by releasing a major update with the announcement, ‘AI Yearbook is NOW available!’. This decision reflects a strategic approach, signaling their adaptability and commitment to staying current with the latest trends.

By keeping their app name intact while integrating the AI Yearbook feature, PhotoApp continues to build on its established brand identity. This announcement not only conveys their readiness to embrace the AI Yearbook trend but also shows their dedication to enhancing the app experience.

PhotoApp’s approach exemplifies their focus on providing users with the latest innovations while maintaining the recognizability of their brand. As a result of their strategic decision, it can be easily said that they tried to make the most out of this trend with their thoughtful execution and potential to capture user attention and engagement.”

6) Some Market Challengers to Keep an Eye On

Photo Lab, Fotorama, Zoomerang, and Linpo also announced AI Yearbook-related in-app events

Several promising apps are making significant strides, positioning themselves as potential first-place candidates in the near future. These up-and-coming apps are:

  • Photo Lab AI Yearbook (now they changed their name to benefit from the seasonality effects of Halloween and secured their place in the Top 10 – Photo & Video App)
  • Fotorama AI Headshot Generator (Currently in 11th place in the Photo & Video app category)
  • Zoomerang AI Video Maker
  • Linpo: AI Yearbook & AI Filter

These apps might not be on top of the Photo & Video category today, but they’re certainly ones to watch. Their commitment to innovation and the adoption of AI trends highlight their potential to enter the race for the top spots in the category. With their distinct offerings and forward-looking approach, these promising apps deserve a perfect 10/10 rating for their potential and contributions to the app landscape.

Paid User Acquisition Efforts

With the radical rise in popularity of EPIK, a domino effect started throughout the industry, leading to significant increases in various keywords closely tied to the brand. Notably, the brand keyword “epik”, closely resembling “epic”, an event-specific keyword “ai yearbook”, and the core value that EPIK represents, “ai photo editor”, all experienced an increase in search volume and user interest.

Keyword popularity graphs of EPIK-related keywords

This increase in keyword popularity didn’t go unnoticed by other players in the industry. Witnessing the heightened demand and competition for these keywords, other apps swiftly adopted a more aggressive approach, intensifying their paid user acquisition strategies. Their goal was clear: to secure higher rankings for these keywords, thereby increasing their visibility and relevance in the industry.

The rapid increase in competition for these keywords reflects the profound impact of EPIK’s innovative approach. EPIK’s success prompted a collective recognition of the importance of these words in the industry, pushing competitors to strive for prominence within this keyword-driven ecosystem. In essence, EPIK’s influence triggered a spirited race among apps to align themselves with these popular keywords, underscoring the transformative effect EPIK has had on the industry’s landscape.

Share of Voice graphs that show organic and paid impression shares

In the examples mentioned above, it’s clear that EPIK holds the highest percentage of impressions for specific keywords like ‘epik,’ ‘epic,’ and ‘ai yearbook.’ Notably, strong contenders in the Photo & Video category, including Remini, Picsart, Photoleap, and Photo Lab, also secure a portion of impressions for these keywords, indicating their competitive presence.

On the flip side, EPIK does not appear prominently in the paid user acquisition for these same keywords. Instead, we observe other competitors, such as Reface, Facetune, Photoleap, OJI, Photo Lab, and Fotorama, capturing a substantial share of impressions for these particular keywords. This dynamic landscape highlights the diversification of keyword strategies within the industry, with various apps seeking attention and recognition through both organic impressions and paid user acquisition efforts.


EPIK’s impact on the industry was like a domino effect, where its pioneering spirit set a new standard and encouraged others to step up their game, ultimately reshaping the landscape of the Photo & Video app category.

Much like the initial push of the first domino, EPIK’s contributions were a catalyst for a chain reaction of positive change in the industry. Their dedication to pushing boundaries and embracing cutting-edge technology not only elevated their own app but also prompted a wave of innovation across the entire sector.

The impact was significant, leading to better features, user experiences, increased competition, more creativity, and higher quality. EPIK’s legacy shows their vision and the way they influenced the industry is proof of their innovative impact.