$138 billion on mobile games. This is the amount the global gaming community can spend on mobile games by 2025. Among dozens of different genres and demographics, more than 40% of modern gamers play 5+ times a week, averaging 3 games a month.
Casual gamers download and delete games with a speed of light and don’t forget to leave their money at it. The biggest question remains open: How can you acquire the first 1000+ players despite competition?
Today I’ll introduce you to 9 bulletproof strategies that can make your game go viral before you know it.
In the past 5 years, I’ve seen more entrepreneurs build an amazing product but fail to gain early traction than I want to admit.
Before you pull the trigger and start burning thousands from your marketing budget on user acquisition, make sure you answer these 3 questions:
Simply knowing your buyer personas is not enough. Think critically which segment of your target market is most likely to convert at the earliest stage of your business. Is it a professional gamer who does livestreams on YouTube? A casual 35-year old player killing time in a subway on his way to work? Or a high-school student glued to his mobile phone 12 hours a day? Once you have the answer, spend the next month aggressively targeting this ONE segment. Test your hypothesis and double-down on it if it’s working or ditch it and adjust the strategic direction fast.
Location says more about the user than where they live. Knowing the key target regions where your early adopters are can help you narrow down the language, type of mobile device (iOS/Android) they have, their average spending power, and cultural specialties that can come in handy when developing creatives.
You know who your potential players are and where they are located. Amazing. Now, it’s time to figure out where they hang out. Do they spend time on Instagram? Do they hate TikTok? Are they leaving gaming questions on Reddits? Do they follow industry PR? At this stage, your main goal is to identify 3-4 channels you’ll pursue to grab the attention of your target audience.
If you’re still reading, I assume you’re dead serious about getting those first 1000 players in. Good news is that there are proven tactics to help you scale.
The best results come when you combine paid and organic marketing. Paid marketing will drive traffic to your app while organic marketing will boost brand awareness and build recognition in the market to help you lower the Cost of Customer Acquisition (CCA) moving forward.
Marketing can only go that far. Your product roadmap must be adjusted to target early-stage players for a minimum of 6 months.
Here are additional tips to attract your first 1000+ players:
Referral programs help you grow the number of downloads by encouraging existing users to invite their friends and family. One idea to make referral programs more fun is to conduct a give-away competition. You’ll select a random winner out of participants who followed you on social media and referred the game to a friend through an app.
Community-based features are a must for keeping engagement up! If you haven’t done so already, make sure that your app has a convenient chat feature. Take it one step further by introducing anonymous forums where all gamers can chat without fear. If you go this road, don’t ignore the need for a moderator to take care of the spam messages. Depending on the game type, you can also connect people by noble houses, missions, quests, and age to foster a feeling of belonging.
Another idea to cheat the ASO algorithm is frequently releasing app updates. By introducing new app features that address the users’ needs, you can appear in the “New & updated games” section and trend every other week.
Mobile games are here to stay. If you want yours to join the top of the App Store, keep experimenting with mobile app marketing. First, prepare your marketing plan and clearly answer who, where, how. Second, mix paid (Digital ads, KOLs, and PR) and organic user acquisition channels (ASO, Partnerships, Social media). And, last but not least, shape your product roadmap to attract early adopters by introducing referral programs, adding community-based features, and frequently updating the app.
Knowledge doesn't stop here - click on any of these articles and continue your reading