Startup Kitchen

Mobile app promotion №7. Making up a marketing plan

wrote this on Апр 20, 2015

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You should start the work on app promotion long before the app will be launched. Otherwise, you may fail and lose lots of money. That’s why you should develop a detailed plan of app promotion. We’ll talk about it today.

How to make a marketing plan

About promotion strategy

It’s important to understand common principles as all your advertising campaign depends on them. A typical promotion strategy (getting to the top) may be divided into 3 big stages:

  1. preparations before the main release.
  2. activity in the moment and right after the release.
  3. keeping interest for the app.

Now let’s discuss the stages in a more detailed way.

1. Preparations for promotion

The first stage includes preparation for active promotions. To neglect it — is to fail the whole campaign. That’s why you should be responsible to the limit while doing it.
Here’s an example of pre-release marketing:

  • developing of the common design style of advertising materials.
  • writing texts for reviews.
  • ordering graphics for articles.
  • creating a set of banners of different formats.
  • preparation of app news.
  • creation of a large amount of press-releases in needed formats for various resources.1
  • selecting portals, blogs, journals, etc. for publishing reviews and other materials, finding out text peculiarities for each platform.
  • creating a final list of platforms for the content.
  • choosing communities for advertising in networks.
  • placing a demo version of the app in TestFlight service and providing access to it.2
  • ASO works (from description and screenshots to choosing keywords).
  • connecting all the necessary analytical systems.
  • creating several variants of app teasers.
  • preparing an advertising video and searching for ways of spreading it.
  • creating a landing page of the app.
  • collecting e-mails, preparation of newsletters (from content to design) and choosing a service for the launch.
  • creating a brief project description in several variants.


2. Active phase during the release

It can be divided into 3 parts.

  • banner campaign in Facebook and other networks.
  • buying paid installs.
  • mass publication of reviews in mass media.

The main goal is to get enough traffic for getting high positions in TOP.

The example of promotion plan during the release:

  • active work in social networks for the maximum audience cover.
  • mass publication of reviews on the chosen platforms.
  • ordering video-reviews on popular and profile YouTube channels.
  • publication and spreading of own video-review on YouTube.3
  • launching test advertising campaigns in banner networks, correcting them and start.
  • sending and placing of press-releases on profile resources.
  • correcting ASO according to the first analytical data.
  • editing of landing pages.
  • buying of motivated and unmotivated traffic.
  • active promotion.


3. Keeping audience and natural growth

It’s early to celebrate victory and finish promotion work after getting to TOP. But when you have achieved the necessary positions in ratings, advertising tactics change. A task of keeping existing users comes to the front. You should use the following tactics.

  • push-notifications.
  • offline ads.5
  • news about app and updates.
  • competitions.
  • work with partners.

Example of plan of keeping users and audience interest:

  • sending push-notifications.
  • interaction with partners for app advertising.
  • publication of own videos on YouTube and ordering video from popular video bloggers.
  • article publication on big portals.
  • work with journalists and interview organization.
  • regular news about the app and updates.
  • developing and launching a competition for users.
  • offline advertisement of the app.


Working version of a marketing plan

And here’s the main point — process of running a marketing plan. You can arrange it in any form you like, for example, an Excel table, but it must contain maximum details.
We have examined a common promotion plan, but a working promotion plan must contain an extensive plan of actions along with chronology. You can distribute tasks in weeks or months. It will be easier to evaluate the efficiency of the work done. Definite dates may be written opposite the task.

The list should look like this:


  • to assign copywriters a task to write 3 reviews for the app.
  • check and edit a big article for The Next Web.
  • discuss details of publication on TechCrunch and PocketGamer.
  • start working on creating “noise” on 3 profile forums.
  • post several app screenshots with the description on a Facebook page.
  • etc.


  • remind journalists about publications on Apps4All.
  • appoint interviews with editors.
  • publish an article about app creation.
  • test ads on Facebook on a small selection.
  • assign marketing specialists a task to compile a list of main keywords for Google AdWords
  • etc.

It may be difficult to carry out the plan without some changes so don’t be afraid to correct it, edit tasks, change deadlines, widen the list of your goals. You should keep records of your tasks, close the ones you’ve done and write the results they’ve given you.
What else should include a marketing plan?

  1. Contact list — an inseparable part of promotion. Add there everybody who can be useful — journalists, representatives of interesting platforms for you, bloggers and experts. Besides, it’ll be useful to make a note for each person. For example, “We know each other really well, won’t deny”, “Got acquainted on a conference, promises to distribute a press-release”, etc.10
  2. List of platforms — it will help you in publishing reviews. It must be composed at the beginning of a campaign and widened all the time. Mark the resources which give the most benefits for promotion. Write in comments requirements for the published materials.
  3. Content list — here you’ll keep records of reviews, press-releases, articles, etc. You’ll need lots of them and this list will be helpful for systematization of all the materials and won’t let you confuse. Besides, each text may be assign own status, for example, “in the process”, “at editor’s”, “published” or “denied”.


Such a marketing plan will become your check-list, which won’t let you forget a detail. Moreover, the creation of it and work on it will get you ready for the “battle” part of promotion.

Alexander Sergeev
About the Author

Alexander Sergeev is the Founder of 32dayz (task and time tracking) who loves to build startups and swim.