Mobile apps are big business today, offering on-the-go functionality, useful tools, and entertainment options to anyone who owns a smartphone or tablet – which is pretty much everyone! In fact, mobile browsing is so popular that it overtook desktop usage for the first time in 2016 – which means that the savvy investor or entrepreneur cannot afford to ignore the power of mobile when it comes to reaching new audiences, boosting sales, and increasing profits.
However, marketing mobile apps can be challenging, given the differences between mobile and desktop functionality and usage – and also, the sheer range of different mobile apps available to meet the needs of potential buyers, regardless of industry.
One of the best approaches to marketing mobile apps is to work with an affiliate scheme, and use affiliate partners to promote and sell your app on your behalf, allowing you to reach a broad range of audiences and mobile users in a very cost-effective manner.
If you are not sure how to use affiliate marketing for apps or how to get affiliates to promote your product, or if you simply want to find out more about how mobile app affiliate marketing works and whether or not you should try it, in this article we will tell you everything you need to know.
How to market your app
So you’ve written a great app that you really think will appeal to your target audience and become profitable quickly – but apps don’t just sell themselves, and marketing mobile apps requires a different approach to promoting desktop content.
There is a range of different options available when it comes to promoting a mobile app and encouraging prospects to make a purchase, depending on how much you are looking to spend at the outset.
Here are some of the main approaches, and their pros and cons.
• Paid adverts and featured or promoted listings in app stores and charts can help to get your app seen, but can be prohibitively expensive, and do not guarantee that your ad will be targeted to your demographic of choice.
• You might want to invest in paid adverts across mobile websites, browsers and marketing through apps that are complementary or relevant to your own product, but researching, approaching and negotiating terms with each individual ad portal can be both time consuming and again, very costly.
• Another option is to hire a digital marketing company or consultant that specialises in mobile apps to identify viable markets and promote your product, if you have a large budget to play with.
• One way to boost your app’s profile is to get a large number of good reviews for the app itself, which means that to start with you might need to consider paid reviews. However, this can be both costly and risky – and if you are found to be artificially manipulating your app’s ranking, you run the risk of having it removed or blacklisted.
• Finally, mobile app affiliate programs can help you to promote your app by letting others take care of the hard work for you, and this is usually the most successful and cost-effective way of marketing mobile apps because you only pay for results – a click, conversion or purchase.
Affiliate programs for mobile apps
Affiliate marketing for apps is taking off in a big way these days, as affiliate schemes and partners continually work to identify new potential revenue streams and opportunities to promote and sell.
Apps affiliate programs follow the same basic model as other types of affiliate schemes – you sign up with a scheme, agree upon a commission structure that you will pay out, provide links and marketing materials for your partners to use, and offer incentives and promotions to encourage affiliate partners to work with you, and to help them to sell your products.
This approach means that once you have convinced an affiliate to sign up to promote your app, the affiliate does the groundwork – marketing, promoting, and showcasing your app through a variety of channels of their choosing. If their approach is successful and achieves the result you have dictated – a purchase, click, trial or sign-up – you then pay them a set amount of commission for their work.
If the affiliate doesn’t manage to achieve the desired result, they don’t earn a commission – which means that you only pay for results, and your affiliate partners are motivated to promote your app and achieve conversions in order to earn.
In this way, signing up with mobile app affiliate programs is virtually risk-free for the app’s creator or owner, because you don’t have to pay out any money unless your affiliate partner first makes money for you!
Mobile app affiliate networks
Not all affiliate schemes offer services for mobile apps, but most comprehensive multi-portal schemes do, and there are also several dedicated mobile apps affiliate programs too, which specialise in getting affiliates who promote apps.
Look for an affiliate scheme that has a dedicated approach to promoting mobile apps for your type of content, and ideally, one that already works with affiliate partners that promote similar or complementary content, and so, who will know the best approach to take.
For instance, if you want to promote a mobile dating app, look for a scheme that works with affiliate partners who know how to promote this type of content, and where to find people who will be looking for it.
It is also worth trying out new schemes and working with new affiliates as well as established ones, because once again, you only pay out for success – and a new pair of eyes or a novel approach may be exactly what is needed to promote your app and give it the best possible chance of competing against established alternatives.
How to get affiliates to promote your product
When you have signed up with an affiliate scheme, you need to be able to attract app affiliates to promote your product, and make money for both of you. If your app is new, your company unknown or your product something unusual or not tried before, it can be hard to encourage affiliates to take a chance on you – because of course, if they do not achieve conversions for you, they won’t get any pay for their work.
You can attract apps affiliates by offering a tempting and achievable commission structure, as well as providing plenty of support and marketing materials such as links, visuals and promotions for your affiliate to use. You may also want to incentivise your affiliates with exclusive offers and deals until you get established too, to help you to get off the ground.
How do you market an app?
Marketing your own app can be costly and time consuming, as well as challenging for people who are not marketing experts with a lot of experience of mobile app use and promotion. This means that you can either market your mobile app from scratch yourself, or make things simple by concentrating on marketing your app to potential affiliate partners, who will then take care of the promotion and publicity for your app on your behalf.
If you want to save time, get started quickly and only pay out for success and conversions; working with app affiliates is the best approach, and usually the most profitable one too!