Apr 23, 2021

about 3 min read

How to attract users to your app: What really works

Creating an app is already an arduous journey with heavy coding and testing that lasts for months on end. But it only gets more challenging after it is done. App user acquisition is one of the main digital challenges for any industry. It is quite difficult for new apps to successfully enter the market with high competition and get targeted users' attention. That doesn't mean you should not build an app in the first place. Creating an app is still a fantastic idea that provides a channel to reach potential customers at any time through just one tap. Read on for the complete guide to attract users to your app, not just the common stuff, but what really works.  


First, let's look at how most people learn about new apps and install them to get a big picture of what you are getting into.


How users discover new apps according to research by Google



Family and friends or words of mouth is the most common source where users find out about an app (51%). In the second place is App store browsing (48%), which is followed by app store recommendations (34%) and in-app ads (33%).


By looking at this table, you can understand that you will need to have a solid marketing plan for your app to appear on multiple advertising channels. And the app itself must be unique, efficient, good-looking, and exciting enough for targeted users.


Attract users on Social & PR channels


Social networks and the press are a great place to make a lasting impression. Use Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter and leverage other social media platforms that are most relevant to your app. For example, if your product is lifestyle-based, you can look to Pinterest and Weheartit. Likewise, for PR posts and articles, choose appropriate public press sources that your targeted users usually read.



What you can do:

Create a branding profile

Join groups and communities to post about your app

Write interesting and helpful answers to questions (for example, on Quora, Reddit)

Leverage contents and pictures

Create ads 

Create your own community of fans

Announce a testing phase and invite early users to join


Attract users with App Store Optimization (ASO)


The product page should be optimized so you can get more organic traffic. This is something you should think about at the early stages of building your mobile app.

What you can do:

Choose a great title: that includes the app name and its unique selling point (USP)

App Icon: should be tactfully designed to ensure a great user experience (UX)

Category: Pick a category that best suits the primary purpose of the app and not just its features

Description: Write in detail about the functions, what the app does and what users can expect. Include the story or inspiration behind your app to attract readers.

Engaging screenshots and videos: This is a crucial part. It will determine the users' impression of your app, about what it is, how it can help them, and whether it's worth downloading.



With good App store Optimization, you can also make it to the recommended list by editors. Note that this list is handpicked, and therefore your app must be attractive, unique, and quality enough to get featured. You can get a natural 30% boost of app installs if you are lucky enough to make it to the recommended list. 


Attract users with Digital advertising


With google ads, your banners and videos can get displayed on a trusted list of publishers (GDN - Google Display Network). You can focus on retargeting to reach people who have already shown interest in your apps/products without installing them.

What you can consider

Social media ads (Facebook ads, Linkedin ads, Twitter ads)

KOLs and influencers

Google ads - GDN


In-app ads


Above is the complete guide to all the marketing methods you can leverage to promote your apps. There is no one best method. The best approach is an integrated method that includes multiple initiatives above simultaneously. After introducing your app to the public, you can get users' reviews and feedback and then go back to upgrading your app to serve their needs better.


If you are already confident in your market potential, contact Golden Owl to build an MVP. We provide best-in-class web and mobile development services that you can trust. For more info, check out our IT consulting services for SMEs & startups.

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