Self-Promoters Can Go Viral Only With Time and Effort

droidapppublicity3-150x150Self-Promoters Can Go Viral Only With Time and Effort

By Scott Lorenz Westwind Communications

iPhone users, almost by definition, are technology savvy individuals who are ready to embrace new technology and to embrace much of what the technological world has to offer. For that reason alone iPhone users are very likely to be heavily involved in social networking. So any iPhone app developer who want to market their iPhone App must spend some time on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Linked-In, iTunes and similar social networks to spread the word and generate sales. And before reaching out to consumers at social networks a must-do task is to insure that the description you write for the iPhone Store captures interest and conveys the value of your App. Keep refining the description as conditions change and keep adding testimonials and sales rankings.

Social networking is free so your only investment is the time and effort you put into it. Invest wisely! In the pre-launch stage, make sure your App uses search-rich words in its title and make sure you already have a blog or website in place. One Westwind Communications client capitalized on what he foresaw as the fervor that was to ensue for the use of those dreaded Vuvuzelas during World Cup Soccer. He anticipated the turmoil weeks and months in advance and created an iPhone app game called Vuvuzaga to play into this interest. The day after the games started the word ‘Vuvuzelas’ was surging on Google and Twitter and people were talking about this game. Few people outside South Africa had ever heard of Vuvuzelas but this developer clearly had the foresight and acted upon it. Can you? For any social network, invest time and effort into your profile. Create a profile that is robust, enticing, and complete. Networking is all about being personable so add some of your personality.

Include the link where you want others to view or download your App. Twitter is a highly-effective network to use for messaging your product, service and brand. But before you reach for the consumer’s wallet you must give your followers something that interests them. Mike Vallez, of CrazyMikesapps, says the rule of thumb for successfully using social networking for promotion is that 80 percent of the time you offer free information that will benefit someone else and the other 20 percent to promote your app. Twitter allows you to add photos and links, so take advantage of this powerful option.

There are numerous tools online that automatically Tweet your content onto Twitter which will reduce your busy work. The major goal when using Twitter is to grow your base of followers as large as you can so you can increase your App’s exposure. LinkedIn is the Number One business social networking site and is a community where real deals are made. Want to be known for a particular keyword? Place the key words in your profile, in the profile title, and summary. In growing your user base, take full advantage of the work and education suggested contacts on LinkedIn. Join as many relevant groups as you can so you can add members of these groups as contacts. YouTube is the absolutely best networking tool to use to have the best chance of your iPhone App going viral, causing sales to skyrocket.

To have a crack at this kind of success it is important to: make your videos short, interesting, entertaining and explanatory; don’t make them boring or tedious to watch; avoid a monotone voice; humor, properly used, can dramatically increase a video’s popularity. One of our recent iPhone app promotions was for ‘IcePics’ a shoot and send iPhone app. Our YouTube views increased by 13,500 overnight from 11pm to 6am after an interview on Wall Street Journal Radio and a couple of highly trafficked review sites.

On Facebook you must establish a Fan Page because there is no limit to the number of followers on a Fan Page. Never set up a profile as a business because Facebook may disable your profile since it violates terms of use. Remember your family members and friends are on Facebook also so don’t be overly aggressive in pushing your App. And, finally, create links on your App’s website or blog to all social networks where you have a presence.

The more social networks the better because more exposure generates more sales. These efforts are intended as illustrations of how a public relations professional, especially one with Internet marketing savvy, can move an App developer high above the clutter into the niche market arena that will place him in the middle of shoppers, buyers, and highly curious end users.

About Scott Lorenz and iPhone app promotion Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with individuals and entrepreneurs to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz has handled public relations and marketing for numerous authors, doctors, lawyers, inventors and entrepreneurs. Learn more about Westwind Communications’ iPhone app promotion at https://www.WestWindCos.Com or contact Lorenz at scottlorenz@westwindcos.com or by phone at 734-667-2090.

20 Ways to Promote Your iPhone App

droidapppublicity3-150x15020 Ways to Promote Your iPhone App

By Scott Lorenz President Westwind Communications

has now 400,000 plus iPhone applications available for sale at its App Store. The competition is fierce so in order to succeed you must aggressively promote your iPhone app if you want a fighting chance. What’s the best way to promote your app? You must employ multiple tactics to crack the success code. Simply relying on word of mouth is not enough -- you need to get the attention of the news media. How? My solution is to seek publicity to help get the word of mouth going which will then lead to those highly sought after downloads. Here’s a list of 20 tips I’ve compiled on how to promote your iPhone App.

1. Is your name catchy like ‘20 Minute Meals’ or ‘Doodle Jump’ both winners of Apple’s Design Awards? If not, consider renaming your app so it can be found more easily in Google searches and in the App Store.

2. Include and promote content in your app that cannot be found anywhere else.

3. Offer a free download to newspaper columnists, technical and non-technical alike.

4. Send out a well-written press release to the media announcing your new app and its special features no one can do without.

5. Use free online press release distribution. It’s a great way to access trade pubs, blogs, and consumer magazines.

6. Get a launch sponsor and co-promote. Hook up with a company that could benefit from being associated with this app.

7. Create a demonstration video and place it on your own YouTube channel.

8. Distribute the demo video online using free services like TubeMogul.

9. Create a tune or license one to play along with your YouTube video

10. Offer a free trial for users with an upgrade path to the paid version.

11. Host an App Launch Party for friends, family and prospects. Make sure the cake has your logo on it. Order custom imprinted balloons displaying your app’s icon.

12. Get friends and business associates who are well-versed on your app to create a buzz by posting on Twitter, Facebook and MySpace.

13. Set up a Facebook Fan page to showcase your app. It’s free and easy and your fan page can be found in search engines.

14. Create wallpaper with rows of your app’s icon and use it on your profile pages in Facebook, Twitter and MySpace.

15. Within your app, create Twitter and Facebook update features so users can easily post comments on their social network about how great your app is.

16. Participate in Q&A forums online, such as WikiAnswers and Yahoo Answers.

17. Get listed in free online directories such as DMOZ.

18. Place free classified ads on Craigslist.

19. Create your own blog and post an announcement about your new app or about a feature update to your app.

20. Get reviews of your app placed at such sites as AppStoreApps.com, the Apple iPhone Apps blog, AppSafari, 148apps.com, AppCraver, iPhone Application List, AppShopper and AppRater.

 

After reviewing the above list ask yourself these questions: Is our iPhone app getting all the media coverage it deserves? Is our competition getting more than their fair share of media coverage? Would media coverage get people to download my iPhone app? Do I have a PR strategy for continuous year round media coverage for our iPhone app?

If the answers to these questions are not satisfactory developers should consider a publicist who’ll “pitch” the media on their iPhone app. A publicist will create a story idea involving the app that would interest the people who read, watch or listen to a particular media outlet that would cover the app. If you have the internal staff and expertise to commit to your public relations effort then you should still consider hiring an outside PR firm to just promote the iPhone app. The reason?

There is much to do and it’s a big world out there with plenty of media outlets to reach. The outside PR firm can focus on the iPhone app exclusively. The busier you get, the easier it is to “set aside” consistent, important PR activities. Don’t get caught in that trap! If you want your iPhone app to be a success then hire a publicist who can get the publicity you deserve!

-END-

 

About Scott Lorenz and iPhone app publicity Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with individuals and entrepreneurs to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz has handled public relations and marketing for numerous iPhone App developers, authors, doctors, lawyers, inventors and entrepreneurs. Learn more about Westwind Communications’ iPhone app publicity at https://www.WestWindCos.Com or contact Lorenz at scottlorenz@westwindcos.com or by phone at 734-667-2090.

Google Apps For Sales and Marketing Pros

google-apps-logo-150x15011Using Google Apps for Sales and Marketing

by Scott Lorenz, Westwind Co.

Anyone involved in marketing or public relations, like anyother profession, can only maintain their competitive edge by keeping pace withall the available time-saving and energy-saving tools technology offers. Butyou don’t have to invest huge sums in software applications each year to keeppace.

The budget-friendly approach I follow is to take advantageof the wide array of Google marketing apps, many free and the others at low,pain-free prices. And Google apps perform just as well, in my experience, asthe high-priced “premium” business software. The money saved can be betterspent on professional membership, services or office supplies.

Some Google apps are intended to be used with yourBlackberry, iPhone, Android or other smart phone. Other Google apps are used in conjunction with your browser. Among some of my favorite easy-to-use and effective Google Apps are:

MailChimp – An app that makes it easy to send newsletters to your customers, manage your subscriber lists, track campaign performance, and synchronize your email marketing with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social networks.  Because MailChimp uses an open programming interface it can easily integrate with other Google Apps and e-commerce systems. MailChimp has more than 650,000 users, ranging from one-person startups to nonprofits with tiny email lists to Fortune 500 companies with lists in the millions.

SurveyMonkey – This powerful but simple survey creator provides fast and flexible response gathering as well as intelligent reporting and analysis. SurveyMonkey is a browser-based tool for users of all levels, so there is no software to download. Surveytemplates and pre-formatted question types help you get a professional surveyup in minutes. It is easy to add your logo, match colors to your website, and create a survey URL using your company name. You can view responses in real time, and easily export the data or import it into Excel. SurveyMonkey is a wonderful tool for marketing and product research, to survey customer satisfaction, to gather product feedback, and several other uses.

Weespr – Publishyour own magazine quickly, regularly and automatically, both print and online,with Weespr is a neat tool that blends the best of social networking with thestrengths of traditional publishing. Weespr, which integrates with Facebook,Picasa and Flickr, makes it easy to manage and track viewership. Yourpublication is downloaded in the universally-accepted PDF format and allows youto send magazines either electronically or by print.

Smartsheet – This is a sales pipeline management app that allows you to track deal status,close date and next steps, and receive alerts and follow-up reminders. Withlittle effort you can attach documents to the relevant deal or contact. If youare using a spreadsheet to manage your sales pipeline you will soon outgrow it,if you haven’t already. Smartsheet works like a spreadsheet but has a betterreminder structure, better maintains information on leads, and provides a greatway to quickly locate notes and documents associated with the sale.  You can also track key discussions and emailcorrespondence related to the prospect or sale, get at-a-glance highlighting ofwhat’s changed, and access summary reports.

myBrainshark –This is a free service that makes it easy to create, share and track onlinevideos presentations for sales, marketing and other functions. myBrainsharkmakes it easy to create and narrate online videos, share presentation links and embedded videos, track and analyze viewing results. You can start by uploadinga PowerPoint presentation or other document and add your voice by phone,microphone or MP3 upload, and then enhance your content with video clips,photos, surveys, polls or other attachments. With each video you create withmyBrainshark, you can share a link  byemail or through social media sites, embed the presentation within your websiteor blog, or easily publish it on YouTube. Use this tool to promote yourproduct, service or expertise – a great tool for authors, lawyers andinventors.

Web Survey Master – This professional online survey tool provides instant preview surveycreation, an easy to use publication wizard, and real-time analysis. This is abrowser tool that gives you quick access to several easy online software toolsso you can use professionally designed survey templates, predefinedpresentation styles, answer validation, custom branding, password protection,and much more. This tool is very useful for event planning as well as surveytaking.

Google Analytics Dimension Analyzer – This free app allows you to identify and analyzetop landing pages, campaigns or keywords by any metric such as top landingpages by conversions, top traffic sources by new visitors, or other metricsthat better suit your purpose. No software or set up involved.

DirectIQ –This is another Google App to create and send email newsletters that is aimed at small to medium business needs. DirectIQ offers high delivery rates, an easyto use web interface, detailed reports, loads of free email templates, a simplecontact list and seamless contact creation, and in-depth reporting onopen/click rates, bounces, etc.

NetConference –This is a wonderful app for anyone who relies on webinars or videoconferencing. NetConference makes it easy to record, save and sell webinarevents, to upload and broadcast High Definition Videos and to share files toolarge for email as well as conduct Web Video Conferencing. This app can storeall of your important files, share information with colleagues, host digital conferences,present videos or PowerPoint presentations, and more while talking with up tosix people on video camera. Web Conferencing is the future of the way we willdo business and NetConference contains all the necessary tools in onepackage.

VerticalResponse – In addition to sending and tracking email campaigns, VerticalResponsecan be used for direct mail postcards and online surveys. This Google Appprovides self-service email and direct mail marketing and survey solutions forsmall and medium businesses. This app can avoid most spam blockers and processbounces and unsubscribe requests so you can see who’s responding and who isn’tin real time. This app can also automatically share your email newsletters onFacebook and Twitter.

Salesforce –Salesforce for Google AdWords is to be used by companies to manage and measuretheir search engine campaigns. Those businesses who seek to generate new leadsby using Google AdWords can turn those leads into new customers by usingSalesforce to gain greater control over their search engine marketinginvestments.

You likelywill not find all of these Google Apps useful for your marketing, PR orbusiness needs. They are simply a list of my favorite Google Apps.  But I’m pretty confident that within thislist are two or three apps that you will love and that will have immediatepayoffs for you. But rather than take my word you can instead spend an hour orso researching Google Apps at the Google Marketplace at www.google.com/enterprise/marketplace.

About Scott Lorenzand Westwind iPhone App Publicity

Scott Lorenz is President of WestwindCommunications, a public relationsand marketing firm that has a special knack for working with individuals and entrepreneursto help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz has handledpublic relations and marketing for numerous Smart App developers, authors,doctors, lawyers, inventors and entrepreneurs. Learn more about WestwindiPhone App Publicity at https://www.iPhoneAppPublicity.comor contact Lorenz at scottlorenz@iPhoneAppPublicity.com  or by phone at 734-667-2090

Pre-Launch Your iPhone App with an Email Campaign

ClubZoneICONforTestimonia20170x2Pre-Launch Your iPhone App with an Email Campaign

Anyone engaged in mass marketing of any kind must include an email campaign in their marketing plan. This especially is true for iPhone application developers because potential buyers are one click away from downloading an app from iTunes.

Email marketing can be extremely successful in making iPhone App sales go through the roof. Consider the makers of an iPhone app called “Voices.” They had an existing email database of more than 600,000 people built up over time. When Voices was released in the iTunes store, they sent out a single message to their list and sold more than 300,000 apps in just 30 days and became the number one paid app in almost every nation across the world.

Mike Vallez, an iPhone marketing expert, says a good yardstick to use to avoid annoying people with unfocused, repetitive pitches is to send no more than one or two messages in a 30-day period. Another advantage of this rule is it forces you to methodically review what you are going to say as you only have two chances to get it right. Mike Vallez is co-author with Bryan Bowers of a very useful book,“Secrets to Effective iPhone Marketing: 20 steps to Better Better Market Your iPhone App” (https://iphoneappmarketingebook.com/), that I recommend reading before launching your iPhone marketing efforts.

In a press release, marketing letter or email message be sure to have a Call to Action. The Call to Action convinces someone to do something – now! The Call to Action might be to sign up for a newsletter, check out an article, purchase your app ,or download a free report. Key elements to creating a Call to Action are:

Free Add-on: Offer an extra map,extra game level, cheat sheet or free accessory or something else that goes with or helps with your app.

Deadline: Offer something of value for free that expires in a short time frame.

Discount: Also works great with a deadline.

Exclusive Offer: Give something that makes user part of an exclusive group, something not offered to the general public. Make them feel special.

A major use of an email marketing campaign for an iPhone app is to create a pre-launch buzz campaign. The goal is to make people aware of your new app and create excitement and anticipation for the app.

Any successful email marketing campaign must begin months before the launch date because success hinges upon having in place an email database that you developed yourself. Spammers buy lists and use email tools to steal pass words form websites and blogs but this is not the way to build a list or to do business and it will make you vulnerable to civil or criminal charges.

To build a quality database of names, select email address of individuals who will actually have an interest in your application. Start building your database by including people you know – friends, family, neighbors, customers, co-workers, church members, etc. These are people who know you and want to see you succeed. And these are individuals who will be more inclined to forward your message to other people which accelerates your campaign and helps it go viral.

Even if you hire a professional marketing specialist it still is necessary to have a solid data base on hand because a list of email addresses that are relevant to potential customers is not something you can buy.

iPhone App Public Relations

These efforts are intended as illustrations of how a public relations professional,especially one with Internet marketing savvy, can move an App developer high above the clutter into the niche market arena that will place him in the middle of shoppers, buyers, and highly curious end users. For more ideas on promoting an iPhone app visit: www.iPhoneAppPublicity.com

About Scott Lorenz and Westwind iPhone App Publicity

Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with individuals and entrepreneurs to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz has handled public relations and marketing for numerous iPhoneApp developers, authors, doctors, lawyers, inventors and entrepreneurs. Learn more about Westwind iPhone App Publicity at www.iPhoneAppPublicity.com or contact Lorenz at scottlorenz@iPhoneAppPublicity.com or by phone at 734-667-2090.