Before launching a mobile app there are many questions that need to be answered. The answers to these key questions will help you to decide if it is worth going ahead with the expense of building the mobile app that you have in mind.
Step One: App Pre-Assessment
This first series of questions seeks to discover the likely demand for your mobile app idea.
What problem is your app going to solve? Will it give people entertainment or will it provide a functional solution to an issue they have?
What unique value does your app bring to the world? Assuming what your mobile app does is not entirely unique, what makes it a better solution?
Who are your competitors? Is there anyone out there with a problem solver similar to yours? This could be another mobile app, it could be a similar online solution or it could be an offline solution.
Competition is not a bad thing. In fact, it confirms that there is a market for what you’re planning to sell.
Step Two: Target Market
Next, we look at who your potential customers will be.
Who are they? You need to define them, narrow down the field, and create your ideal customer’s profile. This will enable you to decide how to design and market your mobile app.
You can start this process off with good old demographic profiling. Their age, income, education etc. You can then refine this with aspects unique to your app.
Is your ideal customer already an avid mobile app fan? Or are they likely to be relatively new to apps or to smart phones?
How do you plan on reaching them? Are you planning on exclusively using the app stores? Or are you planning to using app stores plus some other online deliver mechanism, such as your website.
How are you planning to monetise your app. Will it be free, with paid upgrades? Will it have a flat up-front fee? Can you include advertising? Do your planned customers have the money to buy it?
Step Three: Build and Deliver
OK, your app is still looking promising: it meets a real need and you have a clearly defined customer base with the wherewithal to buy it.
What is it going to take to build this bad boy? That is, assuming it is technically feasible to even build it. If you’re not a programmer, then you will need advice.
What resources will it require to design and build your app? You need a professional design brief to confirm the scope and functionality of your app. This can then be used to get a programming quote and to form the basis of the build.
How long with the build take? With this information, you can plan in your marketing activities.
Will you need to consider multi-channel integration with your business? Or is your app a stand-alone product? If you have to integrate your new app with an existing marketing program, then this will influence the design and marketing of your new mobile app.
Step Four: Ongoing Support
How are you going to manage your app going forwards? There are several things to consider here.
There are several metrics products on the market which can help you to monitor what is going on with your mobile app.
What does success mean to you? Is it the number of downloads? Is it the return on the investment? Is it customer retention?
How is the app going to be physically updated and who is going to do this?
Many mobile apps suffer from two common problems: people download an app and never use it, and secondly, they use it for a time then stop. What tactics are you going to employ to encourage people to use your app and, to keep on using it?
As we can see from the above four stages, creating and selling a mobile app is very similar to creating and selling any product.
It needs to be carefully planned and designed, and above all there has to be a potential market for it.
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Digital Marketing Education.