Marketing Resources for Indie iPhone Developers

By Mike Berg / September 1st, 2009 / Resources / 4 Comments

Marketing your iPhone app effectively is a matter of concern for all App Store developers. Getting visibility among the rising tide of apps in the App Store is an overwhelming obstacle for indie developers with limited budgets. Here are a few marketing resources and tips that I’ve come across that have been helpful to me.

Please share any other useful findings in the comments.

Marketing Basics

Game Marketing And PR. Lock It Down. – (AppGamer.net) Step-by-step marketing advice. If you only read one of these articles, read this one.

Launching on the App Store: It’s simple physics – David Frampton. Great advice, short and sweet: “Do it all at once.”

360iDev Henry Balanon + Panel Discussion On Marketing – Excellent podcast by Dan Grigsby on things to think of when launching your app. A great app is not enough, no marketing = no sales; don’t expect to put an app in the App Store and expect it to take off. “You have to sit by the side of a river a very long time before a roast duck will fly into your mouth.”

15 Suggestions for Marketing your iPhone Application – A good list with a lot of ideas specifically for enhancing your website for iPhone sales.

Militant Optimisim Award: Gavin Bowman – Great interview with the maker of Eyegore’s Eye Blast and Sneezies (iTunes links). A bit lengthy, but a thoughtful look at the entire process of making and marketing games, using a publisher, and more. Worthwhile reading. (Gavin also posted a great “1 Year in the App Store” review of his experiences here).

It’s not Apple’s fault that you don’t know how to sell – Rana Sobhany’s keynote at 360iDev. Important words about how the App Store is changing, marketing yourself, and how to price your App and take back the App Store. Watching this is 20 minutes well spent. Here’s part 2

How to score higher in iPhone App Store searches – Learn how to best utilize the keywords in iTunes Connect. SEO for the App Store.

GDC Austin: ‘Tips for Success as an Indie iPhone Developer’ by Imangi Studios – Notes from the presentation given by Imangi Studios (makers of Harbor Master) at GDC. Great tips about developing your concept and how to build buzz before you release.

iPhone App Marketing: What Works (and What Doesn’t)? – An older post (May 09), but has some interesting information and developer feedback.

Building Buzz for Indie Games (Gama Sutra) – A very detailed and useful overview (not App Store specific)

iPhone Boot Camp – Jeff LaMarche on Marketing iPhone (YouTube, 2:37) – Co-Author, “Beginning iPhone Development”

App Marketing 101: Introduction to iPhone App Marketing – A good overview that touches on four important steps when planning your marketing strategy.

App Marketing 101: Pricing your iPhone App – Art and Science – Some help with the ever-present problem of App Store pricing.

Google Analytics for software sellers – If you have a website for your app (and you should), here are some tips to get the most out of your website by learning how to process the feedback you get from Analytics.

Making a Video

Creating an iPhone Game Video – Some helpful tips on physically filming your iPhone game, by the maker of Dapple.

iSimulate (iTunes link) – An interesting idea for recording games combining the Simulator and the accelerometer. This allows you to record the screen for high-quality recordings of your games. I haven’t tried this software, if anyone has, let us know in the comments how it works.

The Art of the Trailer: 8 Top Tips for Creating a Great Game Trailer – Some great tips and things to think about when making your game trailer from a professed “iPhone game trailer lover”.

Getting Reviewed

How to get your iPhone App Reviewed by Bloggers – Another great article with simple steps to improve your chances of getting reviewed, and build a relationship with reviewers.

How To Use And Abuse The Gaming Press And How The Gaming Press Wants To Use and Abuse You. – Great article by gaming journalist Kieron Gillen about getting the press to notice you. Journalists are busy people – do part of their job for them and give them everything they need for an interesting piece. Great read.

Five Tips For Getting iPhone Reviews – Mobile Orchard: “What makes a successful pitch-email?” Lots of good info in the comments here, too.

Traffic Ranked List Of iPhone App Review Sites – A nice list of places to submit your app for review.

Doing a Presentation

The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: The Real Deal Behind The Reality Distortion Field – If you ever need to present your game in person, you should read this article. It’s broken down into 10 easy-to-understand tips for giving not only an interesting presentation, but an inspiring one.

…and don’t forget to get outside!