April 28 2016

With the increasing number of mobile applications entering the market and the cost per install growing consistently every year, app publishers now need to get more creative with the marketing efforts.

The app developers and marketers need to join hands to formulate effective strategies to growth hack the app in the rising market competition. So to give you a head start, we have tried, tested and collated the top most effective growth hacking tips for mobile apps. These tips are flexible and can be optimized according to your business objectives easily.

The top 10 smart growth hacking tips for mobile apps:

1. Leverage from videos

According to video marketing statistics report by Breadnbeyond, 81% of businesses use video in their marketing strategy. Besides that, people are also 1.5 times more likely to watch videos using their mobile phones. The best way to reach out to thousands of people together is to collaborate with influencers on channels like YouTube and Vine.

2. Make use of online directories

Identify what category your app falls under, what problem/challenge does it solve and who could benefit from it the most. Create a story around it that people instantly connect with and submit it to various online directories accordingly. These online directories don’t just have a number of members, but also rank higher for the keywords you could be targeting. For instance, Airbnb grew its initial user base from Craigslist.

3. Implement cross promotions

One of the most effective ways to drive new installs is through cross promotion. Be it another app that you developed sometime back or that of your friends, this tactic helps you save up to 90% of user acquisition costs. Since the users are already engaged, it is easier to grab their attention towards something new. Promoting the same in GetSocial activity feeds regularly can make these campaigns more effective and natural.


Adventure Smash Activity Feed

4. Create a community and encourage word-of-mouth

Another way to growth hack your app is to create clan based communities for your initial users. Keeping them more involved and updating them first about all the new features or updates you’d be releasing, can make them feel needed. The more they feel involved with the app, the higher are the chances of them recommending it in their circles.

5. Leverage from email marketing

Email marketing is one of the tactics that is driven in high ROIs. It is the one channel via which you can reach out to your target audience directly and speak of your unique selling proposition. But getting started with building an email list can be challenging. While you can focus on building it over time, to get started with, export your connections from LinkedIn instead. People who are already connected with you, are more likely to respond to your mails.

6. Make sharing easy and natural

Make social sharing or adding friends to the app more natural or contextual for the user. By providing them with a variety of invite providers like Whatsapp, Kik, etc apart from social media with Smart Invites, at the right stages of the app, can boost your acquisition as well as brand awareness. For instance, when a user completes a level on your app, ask him to ‘share the news’ with his friends.

7. Vary and test your app store optimization

The most effective way to hack your user growth ‘naturally’ is through the app store. Getting started with proper app store optimization (ASO) right from the beginning is important. Identify your niche, the current competitors in the market and then include a part of their name in your app’s description as well as the keyword submission. You could also include common use cases of the app as mentioned by other app users in the description.

8. Implement push notifications

The key to growth hacking your acquired users is to keep them actively engaged and notifications are a part of this strategy. Implementing in-app or push notifications based on user behavior, activity, community or interests is a must. This ensures they remain hooked to the app at all times – whether they are using it at the given time or not.


Adventure Smash Activity Feed

9. Create an appealing referral program

Continuing on the point of getting people to work for your user acquiring, referral programs are extremely effective. Identify your active users and what they are looking for to create a referral campaign that not just benefits them, but you as well. People trust recommendations from friends 7X more than traditional advertising.



10. Requesting ratings and reviews

If you want to grow your app sustainably, ensure that you get sufficient ratings and reviews from your users while growth hacking. Like we mentioned in the point above, people trust other people like them more. Ratings and reviews can act as social proof to boost your app’s growth. However, you should time it right and let the user experience the app enough before. Circa perfected this growth hack and got 90% 5-star ratings.


Time to get started!

But while you’re formulating your growth hacking strategies, remember to keep them as contextual and personalized to suit your user’s interests. The better your app resonates with them, the longer they stay engaged with it. And the longer they remain engaged, the greater are the opportunities for you to tap into their circles.

Just launching your mobile app? Here are a few posts that might just interest you: