Why do you even need to soft launch? We will be going through 5 reasons why but before that, here are some basics:
I’m usually not a proponent of doing things slowly but for soft launches, you have to balance speed and quality. Do it too fast and you may be setting yourself up for failure but if you are taking too much time trying to make it so perfect, you might end up not launching at all.
Before we jump further, I also want to tackle some fears that app developers are facing. Personally, my greatest on is that no one would want my app! Below are other challenges captured from studies:
Most Challenging Aspects of App Creation for Developers
- Support – 2%
- Testing / QA – 7%
- Multiplatform Distribution – 11%
- Development – 17%
- Design – 21%
- Marketing – 43%
In the past, app creators were focused on design and development but it is seen here that Marketing is now considered as the biggest hurdle. You don’t want to spend a lot of money making your apps then fail because no one knows about it or no one will use it. This is why you have to do a soft launch:
- To Get Early Users – You don’t have to build the whole app or spent too much during this step, all you need is a functional prototype. You can tap resources such as:
- InVision – to create one and there are templates out there as well if you are challenged with designs. Once you have that functional prototype, hand it over to the testers as long as it behaves like the app so you can see how people are interacting with it.
- Use Keynote (Powerpoint) – just Google “how to demo an iOS Prototype in Keynote” and you’ll be guided on how to go about this.
- Use WordPress –this is another inexpensive way to create iOS and Android mobile apps that can integrate with WordPress.
- Write a Blog Post –one of my soft launch strategies is to write an article in Medium and it went viral. Put some thought into your headlines so you can get reactions and this will get you press for the app that you will launch.
- Gauge Reactions– basing on how people react, you will know if you have something going or the opposite of that.
- Test Your Features–you have an idea but it’s not until you get it out into the wild that you will know if it makes sense. You have to check if you have the functionalities and features are placed in properly.
- Usability – does your user know how to use your app? Feedback from a soft launch can feed you valuable information in line with this.
The one thing you better not forget is….
This will be revealed in the next video..see you!
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Now I run an app marketing agency where we’ve helped 8 clients get featured by Apple, 5X downloads with ASO, and get coverage on Techcrunch, Mashable, Venture Beat and other major publications. I also write about apps on The Next Web, Entrepreneur.com, and on my blog AppMasters.co.