So I just read the book: “App Empire: Make Money, Have a Life, and Let Technology Work for You” and must say it’s an amazing book! I learned a lot and will try to implement some of the parts in my own life as soon as possible.
If you want to buy the book here you can get it here. (Strongly recommended!)
If you just want to read the parts which impressed me most you can find below a quotation. It’s a bit long but believe me it’s worth it.
Here you go.
Quotes from the book: “App Empire: Make Money, Have a Life, and Let Technology Work for You”
What this book will teach you:
- Tune your mind for success
- Make an insane amount of money, while working part-time
- Outsource nearly everything, so you can enjoy your lifestyle
- Work with people who can do the technology side of things, so you don’t have to
- Make your product crazy attractive, so people love to give you money
- Partner with other who can double and triple your profits
- Create a sustainable app business
- Live life on your terms
Mobile is king!
Your gold mine needs to be supported by a solid foundation: a positive and focused mindset and the skills to understand the market and grow your business.
Create a Golden Mindset
Tony Robbins taught me to ask on a deeper level: “What kind of life do I want to live?” “What’s important to me?” “How do I want to express myself?” “What do I want from making money?” “What’s my mission?” These kind of questions made me think about business and life in a different way, weeding out the junk and giving myself true alignment.
- Know your “Why”
- Be specific. Make it emotional, something you would strive for, and create your compelling future now. Relate your outcome to something tangible.
- Synergy: 1+1 = 1,000,000
As with any business, your success will be directly related to your understanding of the marketplace. The App Store is the marketplace of the app business so to understand the market your have to understand the App Store.
The more time you spend with apps, the better you’ll understand the common traits of successful apps and what users are looking for. The more you think like the customer, the greater your success will be. You need to be an app addict if you want to be a successful supplier. The mindset has been the lifeblood of my success.
When looking at the market, these are some of the questions to ask:
- Why is this app successful
- What is the rank and has it been consistent
- Why do people want this app (look at the reviews)
- Has this app made the customer a raving fan
- Does this app meet any of my needs
- Did I become a raving fan after trying it
- Does this app provoke and impulse buy
- Will the customer use it again
- How are developers marketing to their customers (screenshot, icon design, description etc.)
- What else can I learn from the company that created the app
- What is the competitive advantage of this app
Every second you spend with an app is part of your market research, which will make you more savvy and knowledgeable as an appreneur. Even as your business grows keep learning about new apps.
Without users finding your products, no sale can occur. Customers have two ways to find an app: through keyword search on the App Store or through browsing its top charts.
The Impulse Buy
It’s easy to act on impulse if instant gratification is only 99 cents and a five second download away.
In the consumers mind, spending 99 cents is not a big deal and doesn’t require much contemplation, especially when people have purchased a relative expensive device like a smartphone.
Hooking the Customer
My tests conclude that you have to show consumers value within 30 seconds, or they will most likely exit your app and delete it forever.
Traits of Successful Apps
- Great graphics and sound
Don’t Fall in Love with your Idea
Make time for market analysis every day. This will help you generate the most lucrative ideas.
Avoid advice from anyone who hasn’t had any success in the app business.
Learn from Existing Apps
Most inexperienced appreneurs spend far too much time trying to be original, when what they are looking for is right in front of them. Get curious and see what other successful developers are doing. You should spend time figuring out why their apps work, read user reviews, and collect data.
Whenever you decide to look into emulating an app, ask yourself these six questions:
- Why are people purchasing this
- Can I do something to emulate this idea and take it to another level
- What other apps would this demographics like
- How many other similar apps are in the market
- How successful and consistent have they been
- How does their marketing and pricing model work
Think about how to take the same concept to the next level while continuing to attract the same demographic. Write what improvements you would make. Would you add a new feature? Change the look? Add better graphics and marketing? How would you give users more value?
Look at more than one competitor. Download all of the successful competitors of this app.
How to Hire Great Programmers
Programmers will be the foundation of your business and allow you to create apps quickly and scale easily, which will allow you to remain the captain of your ship.
What to look for in programmers
- Conflict of Interest
Marketing Basics to Attract more Buyers
Here is the formula for app succcess:
Effective Marketing = Traffic = Downloads = $$$ = Happy Business Owner
The icon is important because it’s how the users will identify with your app. It should capture the essence of the app. It must look good, attract the user’s’ attention, and compel them to investigate your app. It’s the visual ID of your app.
Your title should be exciting, snappy, trendy and catchy.
Having a compelling description for your app is like having a great opening line. The first chunk of your description needs to be packed with information.
Screenshots are great marketing tools because they give a snapshot of what users will experience using your app.
As you can see, keywords are important because your target demographic will use them to find your apps.
How do you know your marketing is working? ANALYTICS!
Tracking app rankings is something that most developers neglect because they think they have no control over it. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Your ranking are an important metrics when it comes to assessing your app’s performance, and you can improve your rankings through various marketing techniques. I’m constantly focused on getting my app ranked, and once they are in the charts, I keep close tabs on their rankings. If I see an app slipping in the charts, I immediately focus on it and figure out why that’s happening and what can be done to raise the ranking.
The only way to know if your users are loving your app is to track the user activity within your app. The nice thing is that it’s easy with Flurry. You can track anything, such as how many times a button is being touched or how often the app is used.
Using stats to your advantage
You must test each one of your changes individually so you can determine which changes are actually effective.
One of the other questions I often get is, “How long should I test a tweak?” When you tweak something to make it better, measure the results for about one week before you make other changes. You’ll see quickly if your improvements are producing results.
Cutting your losses
After you’ve tried to improve your app and it’s marketing elements based on the suggestions mentioned earlier in the chapter for three to four months, it’s time to move on and focus your energy on a different app. Like any relationship or investment, cutting losses is difficult, but it’s vital for you and your business.
Your App Network
You can create a single app that can do well, but when you create additional apps and link them to each other with cross-promotion, you’ll move towards your app empire’s full financial potential.
The app network is so vital that few if any app companies can be successful for a long period of time without building one.
This is why you have to make developing your app network a priority from day one. You’re in the business of creating apps and in the business of creating a kick-ass app network.
It’s a pop-up window that appears when an app is started. It has a short call to action, giving the users the option to download the pro version of the app that has more features than the one they downloaded.
A slick demonstration of value on a nag screen may hook potential buyers, but, if done improperly, it can turn customers away from your app entirely.
Nag screen have been the most critical advanced marketing strategy for my business. You have to utilize them.
Be sure you can change the nag screen without submitting a new update to the app store.
For this to happen, the developer must implement something called a server-side interaction so every time the app launches, it checks in with the server and gets the latest version of the nag screen.
Keep your nag screen simple, short and benefit-oriented.
If the nag screen is your most important cross-promotional tool, your promo page will be your second most important. Unlike the nag screen, you can cross-promote more than one app at a time, and that is the power the promo page.
You might wonder how to direct people to the promo pages in your apps. Every one of your apps needs to have a button with the word “More” on it prominently displayed in the main page or menu section inside your app.
Push notifications are another effective advanced marketing tactic.
The Three Revenue Models
The App Store has three major revenue models. They include the free model, the premium model, and the freemium model.
Reinvesting in your Business
As you scale your business and making money, you must reinvest in your business. You do this by reinvesting in your existing apps and investing in new apps, offering professional versions, or refreshing their look will increase traffic or keep your existing customers coming back. Many developers miss this step, and therefore, their business hits a plateau.
Investing in new apps will replenish and grow your app network.
To create a sustainable app company that makes a lot of money and supports your lifestyle, you have to keep creating new apps.
One of my developer friends has a rule that his company has to come up with two new apps every month. Whether he’s working or hiking through the mountains of New Zealand, his team is aware of this goal, and it always meets it. Set your own goals for growth and pursue them.
Selling Your App Business
Start your business with the goal of selling in mind. That means keeping good records and automating as much as possible. Set it up to be a turnkey business for potential buyers.
Even after I had my app business figured out and was making good money, it took me about a year to put a system in place that allowed me to run my business on cruise control while enjoying the lifestyle I had been carving.
Once I figured out how to outsource and monitor pivotal areas of my business, everything changed.
Setting up your team
Do not cut your corners when hiring people. You can find cheap labor, but that can result in poor quality work or drama that will cost you much more.
Have an accountant and lawyer on hand too.
A fully scaled app team has eight positions: programmer, graphic designer, project manager, marketing manager, data analyst, technical assistant, accountant, lawyer.
It’s time to take your lifestyle to the next level and, if you have the money, hire yourself a personal assistant. Even if you get somebody for few hours a week, do it. You will be happy you did.
The Seven Pillars Of An App Business
- Psychology and a winning mindset
- Market Research
- App Development and Maintenance
- Analytics and Tweaking
- Marketing and Monetization
- Team and System
- Professional Networking
Questions to ask yourself
- Do I have a new app in development?
- How long is it going to take to get new apps out? How can I accelerate the process?
- How can I improve my current apps?
- Am I investing enough revenue in my new and existing apps?
- Can I use some existing code to create new app more quickly?
- How can I the tracking of my numbers?
- What numbers should I be tracking?
- How are my apps doing, and what can I tweak to increase sales?
- What are the results of my previous tweaks?
- Are my app rankings going up or down? Why?
- Are my download going up or down? Why?
- Are my sales going up or down? Why?
- Can I use the feedback in my reviews to improve my app?
- How can I improve my apps to appeal to more users?
Always look for ways to generate the most amount of money from the traffic you have.
You must have a well trained team in place.
Surround yourself with positive and intelligent people and take full advantage of technology to systemize as much of your business as possible.
The life you are meant to live is closer than you think. Don’t hesitate, it’s time. It’s time to jump.”
End of the quotation.