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Want Investment Funding For Your App? How Video Can Help!

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You don’t need funding to build an app, but funding can mean the difference between a strong marketing push that gives your app its best chance at success, and leaving your app to flounder, lost amongst the millions of other apps currently out there on the market.[1]

Whether you decide to crowdfund or to seek out investors and venture capital, getting funding means convincing people that your app is a strong investment. Having a professional demo video as part of your marketing plan and funding pitch is more than just a good idea – it’s downright essential in our digital, tech-savvy world.

 

How Video Helps

Having a demo video adds a high-quality AV component to your marketing toolbox. Numerous studies have shown that video enhances learning and retention.[2] A video for your app will allow investors to see and experience your app in the most optimal and efficient way, gaining a much faster and greater understanding of your app and what it can do than if you only talk about it.

Video is one of the most effective communication tools in today’s digital world. A video is always available, even when you’re not. It lets you create the perfect demonstration of your app and marketing pitch; if public speaking isn’t one of your strong points, a professional demo video can do a lot of the communication heavy lifting for you. No need to worry about app bugs, connection issues, or tripping over words when talking about your app – let your demo video do the talking for you!

Video is also a more efficient way to communicate, letting you say more with less. You can pack a lot of information into a single 1-2 minute demo video, far more than you can achieve with words alone.  

 

Venture Capital

When it comes to seeking funding from venture capitalists, the pitch presentation is everything.

In today’s busy business world, the strongest, best pitches are short and compelling. You’ll be lucky if you’re even given a full half-hour meeting to pitch your app. Twenty minutes or less is far more likely, which means you need to hone and polish your pitch down to the most essential points. If you’re looking for advice on putting together a pitch deck, we can recommend Guy Kawasaki’s 10-slide pitch or Fred Wilson’s Six Slides as great places to start.

A demo video can be the foundation of your pitch, freeing you from having to explain how your app works and what it does. This leaves you more time to focus on the pitch itself.

In almost every case, a shorter pitch is better than a longer one. Even if you’re given 20-30 minutes, aim for a presentation that is no more than 15 minutes. Time left over means you’ve got the chance to check in with your potential investors and let them ask questions. This gives you an opportunity to have a more natural exchange and conversation about your app, and connect on a personal level with the people in the meeting room.

 

Crowdfunding

Digital technology has made it possible to bypass more traditional methods of business funding and appeal directly to potential customers. The booming crowdfunding industry has hundreds of different sites where businesses and individuals can go to raise money[3] and sites like Kickstarter, IndieGoGo, and GoFundMe fundraised an estimated $34 billion dollars worldwide in 2015.[4]

To run a successful crowdfund campaign, you need a top-notch crowdfunding landing page. This page is the virtual equivalent of the pitch presentation. The focal point of this page is the video; since you can’t personally talk to every potential crowdfunder, your app’s demo video will be the primary way you can reach out to people and make them want to invest in your app. All of the highest-grossing business crowdfunding campaigns had a product video[5] and if you intend to raise money via crowdfunding, you can’t afford to miss the opportunity provided by having a top-quality video for your landing page.

At AppDemoVideos, we create videos designed to showcase and teach users about your app. We utilize marketing and educational concepts to create a demo video that lets your app shine. We work with you throughout the process to ensure the final result is a video that meets all of your needs, and that you’ll be proud to use as part of your marketing plan. If you’d like to talk to us about your video needs, please get in touch! We’d love to work with you.

 

 

[1] Estimate is based on figure listed on Statista website: https://www.statista.com/statistics/276623/number-of-apps-available-in-leading-app-stores/

[2] See: http://elearninginfographics.com/the-impact-of-video-in-education-infographic/, http://cct.edc.org/publications/television-goes-school-impact-video-student-learning-formal-education, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378720605000170, and https://cft.vanderbilt.edu/guides-sub-pages/effective-educational-videos/.

[3] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-drake/2000-global-crowdfunding-_b_8365266.html

[4] http://crowdexpert.com/crowdfunding-industry-statistics/.

[5] See the Forbes article https://www.forbes.com/sites/wilschroter/2014/04/16/top-10-business-crowdfunding-campaigns-of-all-time/#63ce5123e9fd for a list of the top-grossing business crowdfund campaigns.

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Six Strategies for Increasing Your App User Retention

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We don’t have to tell you how important user retention is, and the statistics on app user retention can be a little discouraging if you’re an app developer; only 26% of apps are used on a daily basis, and one out of every four apps installed on a phone are never even used.[1] Nearly a fourth of users who install an app use it only once before abandoning it.[2] Overall, app user retention is just 42% here in the US and even lower worldwide.[3]

Fortunately, there are things you can do to increase your app’s user retention. Here we’ve got six ways you can build greater user retention into your app.

 

Easy Installation and Use

Your app’s account creation and login should be quick and simple; while it can be tempting to try and get as much information about the user during account creation as possible, you’re better off avoiding that. Overly-convoluted and time-consuming account creation processes can result in users deciding to “do it later” (and then never getting back to it, or your app) or deciding to delete your app altogether in favor of something they can get up and running faster.

Something else to avoid is information overload. If you have a robust app with a lot of features and functionality, you definitely need to teach your users how your app works. However, you’re better off doing it as part of the logical progression of the user starting to use the app instead of throwing all of the information at them at once. A series of tutorial videos are a great way to do this.

 

Incentives

There are all kinds of incentives out there that you can use to encourage people to keep using your app. Coupons, special offers and promotions, rewards programs for regular users – all of these can help keep your users coming back. Choose the type of incentive that works best for your particular app.

Gamification techniques – like achievements and collecting badges – are another way to encourage users to keep using your app. Gamification won’t work for every app, but if it can work for yours, adding in badges or achievements is a great way to keep your users engaged.

 

In-App Messages

In-app messages are a fantastic way to improve user retention[4] by encouraging and rewarding your user as they use your app. For example, successfully performing a function in your app can trigger an in-app “kudos” message. Another sort of in-app message might offer the user a “did you know you can do feature y” after they do feature x in your app (this is also a way to teach users more of the features of your app in the process of using it as we talked about earlier). Pre-programmed notifications and messages to the user in direct response to something they do can definitely help keep them engaged.

 

Push Notifications

Like in-app messages, push notifications are another communications method to improve user retention.[5] Push notifications are messages your app sends to your users’ mobile devices outside of your app.

Push notifications are trickier to use than in-app messages; good use of them will increase engagement and retention, but bad use will actually drive users away and make them more likely to uninstall your app. Half of all app users say they find push notifications annoying.[6] That statistic can make you feel like avoiding them altogether. We don’t think you need to go that far – just be judicious in your use of them. Never do general “blasts” to all of your users; instead, use targeted notifications with tailored messages based on individual user’s preferences, behavior, and location.

 

Personalized Experience

Depending on your app, personalizing the experience can be difficult. But there is one thing absolutely every app can and should do – call the user by their first name. It’s simple, and effective. If your app is more robust, you can also offer content based on a user’s preferences and personal information.

Another avenue for some apps – particularly games and “tool” apps – is to create an online community on social media, such as a Facebook group. This provides a means for your users to connect and communicate with each other.

 

Listen to Feedback and Add Value

The number one way you can add value is by providing responsive and robust customer support. Have multiple ways users can reach out to you if they have issues or questions, and be sure you respond quickly when issues arise and provide users with updates and timely solutions.

You should always be reading and responding to reviews of your app, checking in with user feedback, and tracking the behavior of your users via tools like touch heatmaps and analytics. This information is invaluable in discovering the features of your app that get the most use, which can act as a roadmap for what your users want and use most. This will make it easier should you find it feasible to add more content and features to the app in the future.

Implementing some or all of these six strategies can help you not only keep your current users, but attract new ones. Users that have a great experience with your app are more likely to recommend your app to their friends and family, and also to leave your app a great review, all of which acts as free advertising for you!

 

[1] https://think.storage.googleapis.com/docs/mobile-app-marketing-insights.pdf

[2] http://info.localytics.com/blog/23-of-users-abandon-an-app-after-one-use

[3] http://info.localytics.com/blog/app-user-retention-improves-in-the-us

[4] http://info.localytics.com/blog/23-of-users-abandon-an-app-after-one-use

[5] http://info.localytics.com/blog/app-user-retention-improves-in-the-us

[6] http://info.localytics.com/blog/the-inside-view-how-consumers-really-feel-about-push-notifications

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Are App Store Search Ads Worth It?

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If you’re an app developer on a limited budget, advertising of any kind can seem like an unaffordable luxury. However, if you want your app to be a top seller, then not only are app store ads worth the money, they are essential for success. For all but the luckiest developers, word of mouth just isn’t enough these days to ensure your app gets seen by potential customers; paid advertising is a must.

 

Apple App Store

Apple search ads are still relatively new, having only launched in October 2016. Their popularity is quickly growing, though. Many companies are electing to spend money on search ads in Apple’s app store; Apsalar’s third quarter survey for 2016 found that 2/3 of companies who responded planned to spend money on Apple app store advertising[1], and this increase in competition is quickly driving up the cost to purchase ads.[2]

The good news is that through October 31, 2017, Apple will let you try its Search Ads for free with a $100 credit.[3] If you’ve been on the fence about app store marketing, now is the perfect time to get started.

 

Google Play

Google Play’s search ads rolled out in July 2015, but despite the market having been around longer than Apple, the cost for a Google Play ad is far less than an Apple ad[4], so if your app is available on Android, you can get excellent value for your marketing dollar.

 

Benefits of Search Ads

App store search ads are a smart way to use your advertising dollars, as they let you market your app to people who are actively searching for apps, often with the intent of purchasing one in the immediate future.

Search ads are first-party ads, which are more appealing to potential buyers than third-party ads such as those you can run on Facebook or other platforms. First-party ads only require a single click to download and install, so they are easy for potential customers to use. In addition, first-party ads make it easier to observe and track the success of individual keywords with regards to app purchases and installs, so you’ll be able to tell which of your ads are working best for you and adjust your marketing accordingly.

Keyword-targeted search ads are an important part of your advertising arsenal, and can help your app “rise to the top” and stand out from the millions of apps available on app stores. They can be one of the best ways to ensure your app gets seen by those seeking to purchase and download apps, so if you can do so, allocate some of your marketing budget towards these important ads and reap the rewards!

 

[1] https://apsalar.com/138-lp-mobile-marketer-survey/

[2] https://fiksu.com/resources/mobile-cost-indexes/

[3] https://searchads.apple.com/promo-terms/

[4] https://fiksu.com/resources/mobile-cost-indexes/

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iOS 11 Update Bringing Big Changes to Apple App Store Videos!

Apple’s iOS 11 update introduces a wide array of updates to the iPhone and iPad experience, but this time, it also brings a major revamp of the App Store that really puts the emphasis on video. We’ll focus on the three major video updates in this article – you can read about all of the changes here.

Three App Previews Instead of One

That’s right! With iOS 11, it will be possible to upload up to three different App Preview videos. This means you’ll now have the option to upload not just a quick promo video, but also two more previews, giving you the opportunity to further showcase one or two important functions of your app in greater depth.

Apple will also let you choose in which order your videos are displayed. This is important, since not everyone will update to iOS 11 right away. Those who don’t update will only have access to one of your videos, so you’ll need to make sure your primary demo video is the one that displays first.

Video Localization

Our customers have been asking us about App Previews for different languages and App Store localizations for years, and we can finally say that they are available – videos can now be localized! This will allow app developers to target multiple populations and/or countries by having videos in different languages. iOS 11 allows developers to localize their videos for any and all available App Store languages if they wish.

Not sure how this works? It’s easy – you can upload videos in different languages and if, for example, a Spanish-speaker clicks on your video and you have a Spanish version of your video, they will see the Spanish version instead of the English video (provided the viewer has the proper app store localization settings selected on their device).

Auto-Playing Videos (Without Sound)

Videos will now auto-play as users browse the app store. This makes App Preview videos even more important, as they will basically be shown to every person who views your App Store listing. This is a great opportunity to show off more of your app, but it is important to realize that the videos will play without sound until a user interacts with them.

This makes having a well-planned and impressive-looking App Preview essential, as the auto-playing video will immediately draw viewers’ attention to it, making it a substantial part of the first impression they’ll get of your app. Because the video will initially play without sound, it also makes some form of on-screen text something to consider if you have a fairly complex app.

These are huge changes that have the potential to drastically affect app marketing. Not sure how to best leverage these changes for your app? We can help! Get in touch, and we’ll work with you to figure out how to make the most of these changes (without busting your marketing budget).

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Want to Create a Mobile App? Starter Resources for the Complete Newbie!

The mobile/cellphone and tablet market is big business these days, along with the apps that add increased functionality and services to these devices. In America alone, nearly 77% of people have a smartphone, and 51% own a tablet of some kind,[1] and estimates are that as many as 6.1 billion people worldwide may own a smartphone of some kind by 2020[2]. There are literally millions of apps in existence already[3], with more being developed every day.

Given the growth of the smartphone and tablet market, it’s no surprise that many want to try their hand at creating an app – But can it be done? Can someone with little – or no – experience really build an app?

The answer is of course! Just know that if you have an idea for an app and you want to build it yourself, you’re going to have to be willing to spend some time learning and experimenting on your own.

To help you get started, here’s a list of some of the better educational resources for app developers, new and experienced.

Which Platform?

What platform you’re going to build your app for is the first question you need to answer. For someone new to app development, we recommend not worrying too much about which might be more profitable or “popular” in terms of marketability. Instead, for your first app, focus on the platform you use yourself. You’ll already be familiar with the platform and should have at least some familiarity with its apps since you’ll have been using them on a daily basis on your own device. You can always develop your app for other platforms later once you’ve become more knowledgeable about app development.

Android App Development Resources

Official Android Resources

Android itself has excellent educational resources for developers. For beginners, Android has “Building Your First App” which walks you step by step through building a first app. You’ll also find many other useful lessons at that resource, along with articles on best practices and considerations for special situations.

Other Android Resources

Outside of Android’s official resources, there are numerous third-party resources where you can find tutorials, many of which are free.

MIT’s App Inventor has a series of beginner video tutorials for Android, and you can find educational videos at Ray Wenderlich’s website, along with an excellent step-by-step (with screenshots) that walks you through installing and setting up Android Studio. Vogella, a German tech development company, offers instruction on everything from getting started to in-depth tutorials on special topics like Android libraries and Android source code. Both Envato Tuts+ and Treehouse offer free trials, and both have Android app development courses.

There are two official Google Groups for Android development. One is the community for the Android Developer Tools, and the other is for Android Development. In particular, you’ll find the latter useful, as it’s the place to go to ask questions of other developers, find other resources; in short, it’s the place to go if you want community and support in your quest to becoming a better developer.

Apple / iOS Starter Resources

Official Apple / iOS Resources

Like Android, Apple offers beginner resources and training for developers. Its Start Developing iOS Apps (Swift) offers lessons that walk you through the development process as you build an example food-tracking app. Once you’re done, Apple also offers further education on the Swift programming language and other app development topics.

Other Apple / iOS Resources

Ray Wenderlich has a series of tutorials on both the Swift Language and on iOS development and Stanford has a complete iOS Development Course available for free on iTunes. Code School also has an iOS course, which you can try out for free before deciding to enroll.

The best community for Apple developers can be found at the official Apple Developer forums, where you can meet like-minded developers, ask questions, and receive advice.

App Builders

For those who want a little more assistance in building apps and who want to jump right in, there are a number of companies that offer platforms and means of quickly creating the more common types of apps. Appmakr offers the ability to build both Android and Apple apps and has a free of charge option as well for those on a budget. LiveCode has options for multiple platforms and offers services such as code review, documentation, customized training and architecture advice. Shout’Em has both Android and Apple, with an app designer which requires no coding ability and utilizes a user-friendly drag-n-drop interface.

There’s no way we could list every available resource for app development in a single article. While the ones we offered here are far from an extensive list, they’ll help you get started on the exciting road to developing your own app!

 

[1] http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/01/12/evolution-of-technology/

[2] https://techcrunch.com/2015/06/02/6-1b-smartphone-users-globally-by-2020-overtaking-basic-fixed-phone-subscriptions/

[3] https://www.statista.com/statistics/276623/number-of-apps-available-in-leading-app-stores/

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5 Easy Ways to Give Your Social Media Presence A Boost

With social networks an integral part of people’s daily lives, having a presence on at least one social media network is a must for any company. More than two-thirds of American adults regularly use social networking sites as part of their daily lives[1] and social media accounts for almost 30% of a person’s online time[2] - that’s a large audience you can’t afford not to capture.

Your social media presence is an important marketing and public relations tool; these five strategies can help you make sure you’re using that tool effectively and efficiently.

 

1. Create a Social Media Plan

Don’t leave your social media presence to chance; take the time to create a plan that will serve as a guide for your company with regards to how you approach social media.

Define Your Audience

Audience is important; with millions of people on social networks, you need to decide who you’re trying to reach, as this will affect what platforms you choose to be on, as well as influencing your content and voice. For example, Facebook’s users trend older, while Twitter and Instagram trend younger.[3] So if your intended audience is younger, then a strong presence on Facebook may not serve your needs.

Who are your app’s current and potential users? That’s your primary audience. Be aware, though, that if your company develops multiple apps, that may then translate into more than one audience you'll need to target with your content. In addition, when it comes to branding, you may have a broader audience for your company overall when compared to the more specific audiences for your app. If you do find you have multiple audiences, make sure your social media is regularly speaking to all of them.

Define Your Voice

The next step is to decide on your company’s social media tone and voice and then be sure to stick to it on all platforms. If you’re slightly irreverent on Twitter, you want to carry that over to Facebook, Instagram, etc. The one possible exception to this rule, particularly if you’ve decided on a more casual tone, is LinkedIn. Because of its purpose and its users, you may want to maintain a slightly more “business” tone there. You can still let some of your social media persona shine through, but keep it more professional.

Over time, this will create an online “persona” for your company. This persona can and will have a direct effect in how people view your company. For a perfect example of this, take a look at this NPR article about Merriam Webster’s Twitter feed. The impact your social media can have is important to keep in mind as you develop your company’s online persona, so you don’t end up driving away the very people you’re trying to reach.

Set Goals

Do set realistic—and measurable—goals for your social media. Whether it’s garnering more followers or page likes, or increasing post engagement, having a concrete goal will help keep your social media focused.

Use a Social Media Calendar

Pre-planning social media content is essential. Not only will it save you time in the long run (no more sitting at the computer, trying to decide what to post about on any given day), it also gives you the opportunity to try something – like focusing all content around a single theme for a week – and to coordinate unified content across all social media accounts.

You can easily create an editorial calendar on your own in Microsoft Excel (or any other spreadsheet program, including Google Docs), or you can download this really nice one from Curata for free.

 

2. Post Regularly

Ensuring you have posts and content keeping your social media accounts active and fresh is key to both gaining new followers as well as keeping old ones.

With tools like Hootsuite and Buffer, posting on a regular basis is a breeze; just load your content in and let the program do the rest. You can add in spontaneous posts as you have spare time, but with pre-scheduled content, you know you’ll have posts going out on a regular basis, even when you’re too busy to focus on your social media.

A cautionary note: pre-scheduling your content doesn’t mean you can just “schedule and forget it.” There are times—such as if a natural disaster or other tragic event occurs—where you need to be ready to quickly postpone/re-schedule content, to avoid the social media faux pas of posting inappropriate or insensitive content in the midst of a tragedy.

 

3. Be A Real Person

In today’s social media environment, there are far too many accounts that do little more than retweet and share others’ posts, or whose content has no unique personality or voice. Make sure your social media stands out from the crowd. Retweeting and sharing posts is fine, as long as you add a personalized comment when you do so. Always link back to the people you respond to or reference – that pings them with a notification, and ups the chance they will respond back in kind. Remember, you’re trying to build engagement!

If you do choose to outsource your social media to an external third party, be wary of companies who aren’t focused on creating and curating strong content for their clients, but instead on churning out bland content as quickly as possible. Ask a potential social media company for the names of some of their client accounts and take the time to check those accounts to see if they are delivering customized and personalized content.

 

4. Offer Content With Value

No one wants to follow an account that does nothing but ask them to buy something. A good rule of thumb is no more than 20-25% of your social media content should be promotional. The rest should be either educational or entertaining.

Use your app’s videos and screenshots on social media; tutorial videos in particular are great ways to provide your social media followers with value-laden content. Quick tips and tricks about your app are also valuable; to really boost your engagement and reach, pair them with a screenshot, a GIF clipped from a demo or tutorial video, or relevant image. Posts with some form of visual content produce a 650% higher engagement than posts that are text-only.[4]

 

5. Direct Engagement

Pre-scheduled content is the best way to keep your accounts active, but you can’t solely rely on it, especially if you want to increase engagement. To do that, you need direct interaction. The easiest, most efficient way to do this is to carve out 15-30 minutes a day to visit your social media accounts. Take a look at your notifications, reply to any comments made on your posts, answer any questions or concerns, and if you have a little time left over, scroll through your feed and find one or two posts that you can retweet/share, or toss a quick “like” or “thumbs up” on. If you do the latter, be sure to add a quick comment or compliment. Again, it’s about encouraging engagement and relationship-building, and also about showing people that there’s a real person at the helm of your accounts.

Social media is a golden opportunity to reach out and engage with your users and potential customers. It should be an integral part of both your overall business plan—for company branding and visibility purposes—as well as the marketing plan for your app. If your company isn’t on social media yet, or you just don’t feel your current modus operandi is working for you, these five easy ways to boost your social media presence can help get

[1] http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/10/08/social-networking-usage-2005-2015/

[2] https://www.globalwebindex.net/blog/social-media-captures-30-of-online-time

[3] http://www.pewinternet.org/2016/11/11/social-media-update-2016/

[4] http://www.inc.com/larry-kim/visual-content-marketing-16-eye-popping-statistics-you-need-to-know.html

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6 Best Affordable (or Free!) Tools for App Store Optimization

While the ways in which people find apps has diversified over the years, 40% of people still browse their preferred app store in search of apps.[1] And with millions of apps out there (on Google Play alone, there are close to 2.9 million apps[2]) and thousands more in development, the biggest challenge for you as a developer is making sure potential customers actually find your app when they search the app store. That means you need your app to rank higher than your competition. And that means if you want your app to be successful, ASO for your app is just as important as the work you do on your app and company SEO.

Some refer to ASO as “SEO for apps.” We wouldn’t go that far—you wouldn’t want to ignore SEO for ASO. Instead, the two should be working in tandem: SEO strategies can improve your app’s chances of being found outside of the app store, while ASO strategies can improve your app’s chances to be found inside the app store.

Fortunately, when it comes to ASO, there are some great tools that can help you with optimizing your app for app stores. Here’s our list of the six best ASO tools you can use to help you with your ASO strategy.


AppAnnie

It’s no surprise that AppAnnie is at the top of our list. By far the best tool out there, AppAnnie counts Google, Dropbox, Microsoft and Electronic Arts amongst its clients. AppAnnie offers both app analytics and store statistics for free—and these aren’t shallow metrics. Their analytics let you track app performance: downloads, usage, and revenue across app stores and different countries, while their store stats will help you analyze your app’s keywords, rankings, ratings and reviews. If you want to invest in their premium services, you’ll get robust market data intelligence and analysis, giving you access to market data metrics for every major mobile app.


Mobile Action

Mobile Action offers market intelligence and ASO keyword analysis. Their free option allows you to track up to 5 keywords at a time on both the Apple App Store and Google Play, along with basic app analytics, a competitor analysis, and where they really shine is with their Recommended Actions, which is basically a way for you to get advice on how to improve—all for free.


Keyword Tool

This little web extension is handy if you’re just not sure what keywords you want to use. Keyword Tool is exactly what it says on the virtual box: a tool that helps find the best keywords for your needs by allowing you to search for the keywords people are typing in an app store’s search box. The search works on multiple platforms including Google, Apple’s App Store, YouTube, and Amazon.


AppRankCorner

The AppRankCorner tool provides free ASO focused on optimizing keywords, and providing data on rankings, reviews, and revenue. It also has a keyword suggestion tool, taking the guesswork out of choosing the best keywords for your app.


SearchMan

Love playing with Big Data? Then this is the tool for you. SearchMan provides free access to app market research, and has data for both iOS and Android platforms on over 4 million apps and 1.5 million keywords. SearchMan lets you check your app’s visibility and discoverability, track its rankings, and take a look at your competitors. If you’re looking for more specific insights about your app along with recommendations for actions you can take to boost your ASO, their premium service is an affordable $25/month.


Appcodes

Potentially the “best bang for your buck” if you’re focused on Apple’s App Store, for $14.95 per month, Appcodes provides app visibility checking, competitor tracking and press mentions, and the ability to look at other apps’ keywords.


CodeNgo

This seventh tool recommendation isn’t an ASO tool, but we had to include it, as CodeNgo is an app publication tool for Android apps. For a flat fee of $20, CodeNgo helps you self-publish your Android app to more than 30 different app stores, and it also provides app review monitoring and competitor reviews tracking. For Android developers, getting your app out to more than just the Google Play store is just common sense: AppChina alone has 30 million users and 600 million downloads a month—and Google Play isn’t available in China.[3] If you’re an Android developer and you’re only selling on Google Play? There are literally millions of potential customers who aren’t seeing your app. CodeNgo provides an easy way to bridge that gap and get your app in front of those other audiences.


ASO isn’t a replacement for SEO, but it is a vital part of the marketing you need to do for your app. These six tools can help you boost your app’s ASO and get your app seen by more potential customers when they go searching the app store. And if you’re looking for a stellar video to make your app stand out on the app store even more? We’d love to work with you!



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Can I DIY a Demo Video for My App?

This is a question we see a lot, and we get it: a professional video can be expensive, and many are looking for ways to save money.

One of the fantastic things about the evolution of technology is that it has put quality, professional-level tools right at everyone’s fingertips. Creating a video no longer requires expensive video and audio equipment, or access to a special editing booth and software. Today, anyone can record high-quality video; in 2015, the Sundance Film Festival breakout hit movie Tangerine was shot on an iPhone 5S.[1]

So the most basic answer to the question is: Sure, you can choose to create your app’s video yourself.

But should you? Here are three things to think about when contemplating a DIY approach to a video for your app.

Industry Expertise

In the case of your app’s video, you’re not shooting a movie or creating art. Your video has a very specific purpose: to help encourage potential customers to purchase your app. It’s an important marketing collateral piece and as such, not something you want to roll the dice with or risk on amateur production.

Video production companies have experts on staff, with experience in all aspects of video production, from planning and scriptwriting, to shooting and sound recording, to editing and putting the final touches on a finished video. What’s more, they also have the industry connections and resources available, allowing them to efficiently find and hire professional, dependable voice actors, hand models, and animation experts as needed. And because they work often with these industry professionals, they can negotiate better contract terms than an individual.

In our case, AppDemoVideos chooses to specialize in the production of videos for apps, giving us an additional level of expertise. Not only do we have industry experience, our team also has strong skillsets in both marketing and writing that we bring to bear on every project. We know from experience what works and how best to create a video that will engage and draw in your potential customers, bringing your app to life. Our videos have given our clients the edge they needed to befeatured in the App Stores and get front-page coverage from high-profile sites like TechCrunch, Lifehacker and Gizmodo.

There’s another benefit to hiring a professional company to produce your app’s video: it gives you access to an outside, objective opinion about your app. The collaborative process of working with a company will give you new insights about your products and can help shape not just the video, but your entire marketing plan as well.

Technical Expertise

Video production involves more than pressing the Record button on your digital camera or phone. A lot goes into making a video. Plus, there’s the equipment. Sure, you might get away with shooting video on a phone, but recording audio? Not if you want the sound to be crisp and clear.

The real wizardry happens in the editing process—which often includes multiple iterations and lots of tweaks and changes.  Doing all of this and ending up with a seamless, beautiful video at the end requires expert skill.

As an example—did you know that video and sound are recorded separately in almost every case, then brought together and carefully timed in the post-production editing process? If you want music, that’s a third element that must be integrated and synced properly.

Video production is a little like putting together a puzzle; there are many different pieces that must be brought together and carefully made into a whole. However, unlike a puzzle, the pieces don’t come pre-cut to easily fit together. Someone has to take all of the pieces, look them over, and best decide how they should fit and then do the work to make it so.

Time

There’s an old adage about money and time: if you don’t want to spend the money, you better have the time. To create your own video, you’re going to have to take the time to learn and do all of the creative and technical pieces on your own—and the question you need to ask yourself is:

Is this the best way I could be spending my time?

When you consider the value of time spent away from your core business, the truth is that it will probably cost you less to hire a professional than it would to do it yourself.

A professionally-produced video for your app should be viewed not as an expense, but as an investment—something that will pay dividends down the road. With the millions of apps on the market and the competition any app faces in the marketplace today, you can’t afford to not put your best foot forward when it comes to marketing.

Paying a professional means you know there will be a quality product delivered at the end. Your time is valuable – you want to spend it focused on what you know best: your business. If you’re looking for a stellar video for your app, let us work with you to ensure that your video is professional and polished, ready to best showcase your app.

 

[1] http://www.theverge.com/2015/1/28/7925023/sundance-film-festival-2015-tangerine-iphone-5s.

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Special Video Considerations for Social Networks

Social networks are an integral part of most people’s daily lives; a Pew Research Center study in 2015 found that 65% of all American adults use social networking sites.[1] Nearly 30% of a person’s online time today is spent on social media: that’s about two hours each and every day.[2]

Using your app’s demo video (or a shortened ad-specific version of it) on social networks is a no-brainer, and is a great way to market your app and increase its visibility; 50% of app consumers stated that they look at ads when searching for apps and that ads are particularly effective in encouraging potential customers to download apps. 49% said they searched social ads and 43% said they viewed video ads.[3]

Every social network is unique, so if you have the budget, designing multiple videos that are tailor-made for each of the social networks your company has a presence on is a good idea. Let’s take a look at some of the special considerations that need to be taken into account when creating videos for the three most-popular social networks.

 

Facebook

There’s a lot of competition for customer eyes on Facebook and video is everywhere you look, so it’s vital that you catch the Facebook user’s eyes and attention quickly. Many users have auto-play disabled, so you want a thumbnail image that makes them curious and entices them to click play.

The first 2-3 seconds is critical—that’s the amount of time you have to grab the viewer’s attention and make them want to watch the entire video. And while it’s fine to post a full-length demo video and tutorials on your company Facebook page, if you’re going to run a Facebook ad, the video needs to be short: no more than 30 seconds, tops.

Another thing you want for your Facebook video is captions. Many people on their phones watch videos with the sound off, so having captions ensures the most important information is still conveyed to the viewer who can’t hear your audio.

 

Instagram

Instagram is a network going through incredible growth, especially with the 18-29 demographic. The network also appeals to the under 18 crowd; if your app is intended for a younger audience, you definitely want to consider a video optimized for Instagram.[4]

Instagram is unique in that it doesn’t use the horizontal rectangle you see everywhere else. A rectangular video can work, but it will appear much smaller and won’t be as visually appealing as a video designed to fit Instagram’s square space.

Use the full 60 seconds the platform allows, and for the same reasons listed above for Facebook videos, captions are good to have in Instagram videos.

Another way Instagram is unique is that the best videos aren’t a typical advertisement. Instead, Instagram is more about engaging with your audience; promotional tie-ins or very quick demos and tutorials work best. Instagram is also where you’ll often find videos that demonstrate a company’s corporate culture or share a social message, like this video from Air BNB.

Fun and quirky is also key. Tasty is an excellent example of Instagram videos done right, and they have translated extremely well over to Facebook and YouTube (where you sometimes find they’ve added captions and even extended the length—notice in this video the square layout and the empty white space designed to make the rest of YouTube’s rectangular viewing space disappear into the background).

Last, audio is a big consideration; Instagram videos are set to auto-loop, which means you want to make sure your audio doesn’t end in a way that makes it jarring or disharmonious when it loops back to the beginning.

 

Twitter

Long videos and full-length ads are generally a no-no on Twitter. Attention spans are shorter on Twitter, so like Facebook, you need to grab attention quickly and keep your video short. Our recommendation for a good length is 15 seconds. A Twitter video isn’t meant to be an advertisement so much as it’s meant to capture a moment and make the viewer want to learn more.

Twitter is fast-moving, so if you aren’t paying for a promo ad (which will ensure your Tweet shows up at the top of feeds), don’t be afraid to Tweet your video several times a day. Just tweak the language slightly for each Tweet (don’t forget to include relevant hashtags) and you’re good to go!

 

Last Thoughts

Your budget may mean you need to focus on a single video. If that’s the case, focus on a video optimized for Facebook. Facebook remains the most popular social network; of the American adults who are online, 79% of them use Facebook. Neither Instagram nor Twitter are anywhere near as popular; even combined, they can’t match Facebook’s popularity.[5]

In any case, no matter which social network you choose to have a presence on or whether you have a single strong video, or several videos created specifically for each social network, your videos must be mobile-friendly. 65% of Facebook and 47% of Instagram video views are via mobile or tablet.[6]

If you’re ready to branch out into specialized videos to maximize your visibility and ROI on different social media platforms, we want to work with you. We can help design one video, or several that are perfect for whichever social media platforms your company uses.

 

[1] http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/10/08/social-networking-usage-2005-2015/

[2] https://www.globalwebindex.net/blog/social-media-captures-30-of-online-time

[3] https://think.storage.googleapis.com/docs/mobile-app-marketing-insights.pdf

[4] http://sproutsocial.com/insights/instagram-vs-facebook/

[5] http://www.pewinternet.org/2016/11/11/social-media-update-2016/

[6] Facebook stat: https://www.fastcompany.com/3035399/fast-feed/facebook-videos-hit-1-billion-daily-views?partner=rss and Instagram stat: https://www.emarketer.com/Article/Pinning-Bet-Youre-Doing-on-Mobile/1011027?nlid=1

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You’ve got your Video: Now what do you do with it?

You’ve just watched the final cut of your app’s demo video…

Now what?

Video is a great way to build a potential customer’s trust and confidence in your app, and using a video in your marketing can have a direct effect on sales: studies have shown that 74% of potential customers who watched a video about a product subsequently bought it.

You need to make sure that your potential customers see your video. One way to accomplish this is by directly reaching out to them through social media and Email. Another is to ensure your video can be easily found on the internet, preferably in multiple locations.

While every company’s marketing plan will be different, we offer up the following suggestions for how you can put your video to work for you in helping you market your app.

Reviews and Press

You can generate interest and buzz for your app before it even launches. Seek out websites that review apps and technology, and send them your press kit along with a request for a review. Reviewers and bloggers love including video in posts, so sending one to them could make them much more likely to feature your app. Good reviews about your app are free advertising, and can drive traffic to your website and app store listing.

Company Website

A Google survey found that 24% of users discovered apps via a company’s website, so be sure to give your video a prominent place on your website. The home page is best—particularly in the first few months after the app is launched—but the app’s information page is also a good location, and a professional video will continue to pay dividends long after the initial launch frenzy has subsided.

Social Media

People spend a great deal of time on social media platforms; nearly 30% of online time is spent on social media -- that’s nearly two hours each day. You can’t afford not to be making use of social media in your marketing efforts.

Facebook, Google+, and Instagram are all excellent venues for video, and can act as gateways to your company website. Sponsored content can increase visibility and ads can be targeted to those you know are likely to find your app useful, but also give you the opportunity to reach out to new audiences and demographics.

Twitter is sometimes less-considered when it comes to sharing video, but we’d encourage you to include the platform in your social media marketing. Twitter does have the ability to display embedded video and there are many ways you can help grow your app’s Twitter audience.

Email Campaigns

People who have visited your website and signed up for future information have given a clear signal that they are interested in your app, and including video in your Email campaigns to your Email list can increase your open rates by 5.6% and click-through-rates by 96%.

Avoid lengthy explanations in the Email; in particular, keep verbiage to a sentence or two of introduction before the embedded video so that when the Email is opened, the video is immediately visible. Many people check their Email via their cellphones, and a wall of text may mean they simply close and delete your Email.

Email campaigns are most effective when done as part of the initial launch of the app. If you can include a special offer of some kind in your Email, that will provide a further incentive for users to click through and purchase your app.

YouTube

Did you know that YouTube is the second-largest search engine after Google? If your company doesn’t yet have its own YouTube channel, we recommend creating one. You can upload all of the demo and tutorial videos you have for your app—which has the additional benefit of making it easy for users to find all of your video content quickly and easily.

App Marketplaces

In most cases[1], you’ll want to upload your video as part of your app’s listing on your chosen app marketplaces. Screenshots are good and useful, but adding a video can help your app stand out from the competition.

Your video is the best way to show your app to potential customers, and the more avenues you employ in putting it to work, the more success you’ll have with your marketing.

Are you ready to jump-start your marketing efforts by creating a demo video? Get in touch with us today; we’d love the chance to talk with you about your needs and how we can help.

 

 

[1] Apple has specific requirements when it comes to videos that are uploaded to its app store. A video created for the Apple store may not be optimal for other uses. We work with our clients to ensure maximum ROI for their video.

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Why You Need a Video for Your App

You’ve done the work—you’ve built an awesome app, tested it thoroughly, gotten great feedback from pre-launch reviewers, created a top-notch listing—and now you’re ready to finalize your marketing plan and launch your app on the marketplace.

Or are you?

This is the moment when you and your team might wonder whether or not you need a video for your app. Here’s something to ponder:

There are nearly six million apps available for download and purchase

Google Play and Apple’s App store lead the way and are the most popular, but even if your app is intended for a smaller marketplace, your app will still be in direct competition with thousands of apps.

It’s just not enough to build a great app these days; without a way to make sure your app stands out from the crowd, potential customers may never even see your app amongst all the others out there.

Creating a video to showcase your app, either on your website, or right in your app store listing, is a great way to make your app stand out.

We hope this helps you understand the benefits of creating a video. Let’s take a closer look at the different types of videos you might consider creating.

Demo Videos

The demo video is an important marketing tool for your app, and a vital part of your app’s press kit. Not only it is the best way to showcase your app in an app store, it can also be used in your other marketing efforts, such as your website, social media, and online advertising.

A demo video gives a potential customer the opportunity to experience your app; its purpose is to demonstrate your app’s most important features and functionality, and show a user how your app can help them.

Additionally, a good demo video, while focused on giving potential users a look at your app and how it works, can simultaneously let potential customers see how easy your app is to use. Ease of use is something many users look for in an app. Who wants to spend time fighting with an app to get it to work? Not us (and not your customers)!

We don’t want to get too technical, but this category can also include App Preview videos, which are specific to the iOS App Store.

A high-quality, professionally-produced demo video can help boost sales to your app. Without one, you’re hindering your marketing efforts and sales.

Tutorial Videos

Some apps can benefit from short tutorial videos that offer step-by-step instructions designed to help users quickly set up the app and/or get a particular feature functioning properly on their device. Adding an audio-visual component to your user instructions will enhance learning—your customers will gain expertise with your app in a much shorter time. A survey conducted by Google and Ipsos found that apps that provided clear instructions on how to use them were used more frequently than apps without them.

Tutorials can also act as a “first line” of customer service, saving you time and money. Providing videos that answer common questions or which walk a user through how to use specific functions means fewer support requests, and quick and easy answers to questions equals an increase in overall customer satisfaction. Tutorial videos pay dividends very quickly if they answer a question that comes up frequently in your support queue!

While education and customer service are the priorities of tutorial videos, don’t be too quick to discount their marketing value. Tutorials provide an in-depth look at the different features of your app while also showing how easy your app is to use and master, and if you have a paid app that’s particularly complex, tutorial videos are a great way for potential customers to get a closer look at specific features to help them make their purchasing decision.

Do I need both types of video for my app?

Maybe, but a demo video should be your top priority and may be the only video you need, depending on the purpose of your app and how it’s used.

At AppDemoVideos.com, we apply both marketing and educational concepts to create a custom demo video that shines. Our videos are designed to showcase and teach customers about your app, incorporating real interaction to demonstrate its features and functionality. We work with you throughout the process so that you end up with a video you’ll be proud to use as part of your marketing plan. If you’d like to talk to us about your video needs, please get in touch! We’d love to work with you.

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How to Pick the Right Voice Over Talent for Your Video

Choosing a voice over artist for your video is not just a matter of finding someone who speaks and articulates well, because the person you choose to deliver your message automatically becomes your brand ambassador. How your audience perceives and responds to that voice will impact how they perceive your product, too. Deciding on the right voice-over talent for your video means going beyond considering just a male or female voice, and includes looking at the qualities of the voice, the content and intent of your video, and who your audience is.

You might think that the first thing you have to determine is whether to go with a male or female voice. The oft-quoted 2010 Adweek and Harris Interactive study shares some interesting insights on this matter. The study found that 48% of respondents found the male voice to be more authoritative and forceful, while 46% perceived the female voice to be more soothing and caring. However, almost half of respondents indicated that gender did not matter either way when it came to which voice is more authoritative, caring, or persuasive.

Because about half of people think that a male voice is more authoritative, and most of the rest think that it doesn’t matter, if you want to sell computers or cars, you might want to go with a male voice. The low-pitched male voice was also found to work well with senior citizens. But, if you are trying to sell a self-help program, a more “caring” female voice would probably be a better fit.

It also seems that matching the gender of the voice over artist to the gender of the target market (like using a female voice for a cosmetics product) usually gets the best results. As for the children’s market, an energetic and expressive voice is best at capturing their attention.

Here is a brief list of qualities or characteristics to consider when choosing a voice-over talent:

  • Pitch – If you are targeting a specific demographic, such as senior citizens, the pitch of the voice is crucial to ensure that your main points are heard.
  • Tone – Do you need your voice to be serious, enthusiastic, or compassionate?
  • Enunciation – The ability to pronounce words clearly.
  • Modulation – The ability to vary the voice so that it becomes more expressive and engaging.
  • Accent – Whether it is a regional, American, or British accent, choose an accent that your audience can relate to.

Beyond the technical merits of the voice, you should also consider if the artist’s voice sounds unique, has good reading flow and rhythm, and is well-suited for your video. For example, if you are telling a story in your ad, a presenter-style voice will not work well. Some artists are good at story-telling, which requires a flexible and expressive voice to impart the dramatic elements of the story and imbue character into the narration. Others may excel at being cheery, positive, and inspiring, or serious, calm, and measured.

One way to find the right voice to match the needs of your video is to make a list of emotions that describe your brand, and then find the voice-over artist that can deliver them for you. Identifying the right voice-over artist for you may well come down to how well you understand your brand.

If you decide to create a video with us, we have a variety of male and female voice talent that we work with regularly, and we can also find someone outside our standard options to fulfill specific requests. Let us know if you have any questions for us, or if you’d like more information.

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How YouTube Videos Can Help Your Brand Integrity & SEO Efforts

You have spent a lot of time building your brand identity and streamlining your marketing efforts to ensure brand integrity. But, if you don’t have your own official video on YouTube, you might be doing some serious damage to your brand. Producing your own YouTube video may be the smartest thing you can do to optimize your SEO efforts and maintain your brand integrity.

YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world, after Google. That alone should be a good enough reason to have an official presence there, but because Google owns YouTube, YouTube videos are prominently displayed at the top of all relevant Google searches. This means that putting a video on YouTube can put you at the top of the search results for the world’s two largest search engines at the same time.

YouTube creators upload 300 hours worth of videos every minute. There are thousands of YouTube channels devoted to apps, so some of those videos could be about your product or app. Fan videos can be great promotional tools, but they are also wild cards. An unofficial video might be raving about your product or pointing out each flaw. The video itself might be poorly made or have poor reviews, both of which could reflect badly on your brand.

If you don’t have your own official product or app video, one of these “wild card” videos could be sitting at the top spot in search results for your company. You run the risk of losing control of the narrative, diluting your brand identity, and damaging your brand integrity.

According to Skyword, videos are predicted to make up 69% of all consumer Internet traffic by 2017, and there is increasing consumer demand for branded videos. Skyword also cited a survey conducted by Animoto that revealed that “84% [of respondents] have liked a branded video in their social media news feed, and more than half have watched company videos deployed through email.” With increasing demand from the general public, creating your own branded app video is a prudent move in positioning your product ahead of the market.

Videos, in general, are also proving to be a great marketing tool with 73% of B2B marketers acknowledging a positive impact with their use in a study conducted by ReelSEO. So, if you have a great product, and you want to make sure your brand integrity stays intact, making a video should be at the top of your list. And, the best way to ensure that your video gets you the right kind of publicity is through a professional production company that will ensure that your video tells your story in the way that you want it to be told. 

Feel free to contact us if you'd like more details or if there's anything we can help you with!

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10 Of The Best Free Image Sources for App Developers

Have you been Googling “free images” for your app development projects? While this may seem like a good idea, images that come up in “free” Google searches are often protected by copyright and can’t be legally used.

There are, however, sites that offer free-to-use images that are acceptable for any purpose. We’ve made a list of the best royalty-free image sources as a resource for your app development projects. Most of these sites offer images under Creative Commons licensing.

What is Creative Commons?

Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization created to help artists more easily share their work.

There are different Creative Commons copyright licenses that range from attribution to public domain.

A Note About Creative Commons CC0

The Creative Commons CC0 license means there are “no rights reserved.” Images released under a CC0 license are placed in the public domain “so that others may freely build upon, enhance and reuse the works for any purposes without restriction under copyright or database law.”

In using an image under CC0, you can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission or giving attribution (there’s also a CC-BY license that allows commercial use and modification, but requires you to give the creator credit). Note that there are a number of more restrictive Creative Commons licenses as well, so be sure that any images you plan to use are under the appropriate license before using them in your app or on your website.

Here’s our (alphabetical) list of awesome, high-quality, royalty-free image sites for developers like you.

1. Gratisography

Gratisography was created by visual artist Ryan McGuire. If you’re looking for whimsical or wacky images, check out this site. Images are released under similar terms to the Creative Commons Zero with the common sense differences/limitations

2. Jay Mantri

Jay Mantri offers a collection of beautiful images under the Creative Commons CC0 license. 

3. New Old Stock

New Old Stock is a great source of vintage photos sourced from public archives that are free of any known copyright restrictions.

4. Pexels

Pexels says their mission is to “help millions of designers, writers, artists, programmers and other creators to get access to beautiful photos that they can use freely which empowers them to create amazing products, designs, stories, websites, apps, art and other work.” They currently have over 10,000 free photos and at least 1,500 added per month under Creative Commons CC0.

5. Picjumbo

Created in 2013 by renowned designer and photographer Viktor HanacekPicjumbo was launched in response to several stock photo sites rejecting his photos due to 'lack of quality'. His loss is developers gain. After being featured on Entrepreneur, The Next Web, Buffer and others, this free stock photo site now has over three million image downloads.

6. Pixabay

Pixabay offers free photos, illustrations, vector graphics and video under Creative Commons CCO. Pixabay images are user provided – you can choose to support the artists through Paypal donations if you choose to. 

7. Snapwire Snaps

Tumblr-powered Snapwire Snaps uploads 7 new photos every 7 days from talented photographers under Creative Commons CCO. 

8. SplitShire

Created by Daniel Nanescu, SplitShire says it has the “simple aim of giving life to photographs that would have gone into oblivion without any utility.” Instead of thousands of images sitting in the dark of his hard drive, he provides them free for personal and commercial use. 

9. StockSnap.io

StockSnap.io curates high-quality photos from the web and from a network of photographers who share their work for free. All images are under Creative Commons CC0.

10. Unsplash

Created by the team at Crew, Unsplash is a collection of “Free (do whatever you want) high-resolution photos.” Get 10 new photos delivered to your inbox every 10 days. All images are under Creative Commons CCO. 

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What’s the ideal app video length?

One of the hardest things for our clients to figure out is how long their video (or videos) should be. Often we’ll be asked right off the bat for a three or five minute video. While that sometimes may make sense, most of the time a video that long isn’t the right approach.

Instead of starting off with a set length in mind and then basing the video on that requirement, we always encourage our clients to begin by figuring out the purpose of their video and who their target audience is. Those two factors will often dictate how long the video needs to be.

Most of the videos we make fall into one of three categories, each with a different purpose:

1.     Promo Videos: These videos are designed to get viewers excited about your app. You can think of them like a movie trailer or teaser video. They show the main highlights in a fast-paced, engaging way, without really going into much depth. This category also includes most video ads.

2.     Demo Videos: Here the purpose is to show a bit of how your app works to help viewers decide whether your app will meet their needs. This type of video is best for viewers who have expressed some interest in your app (like people who are already on your website) and want to see it in action and know what it does. These videos strike the balance between an ad and a tutorial and have both a marketing and educational purpose.

3.     Tutorial Videos: These videos are for people who are already committed to your app or product. They may be current users, or people who are seriously considering buying it (particularly for more expensive apps). These videos educate viewers on a specific function of your app and walk them through how to do it.

As you can see, each of these styles of videos serves a different purpose and some will be longer than others.

Promo videos are typically going to be watched by people who aren’t familiar with your app. This may be their first introduction to it, so it’s important to keep your video focused on the most exciting features and benefits. We recommend keeping the length between the 30 and 60 seconds so that your audience is engaged enough to stick through until the end. Shorter promo videos (15-30 seconds) may also be appropriate for advertising platforms.

Demo videos, on the other hand, can be a little bit longer because your audience will already have some interest in your product. They may be watching this video on your website, one of your Social Media channels, or in an e-mail you sent them. No matter how they found your app, the important thing is that they have sought out more information about it, so it’s safe to say they have some interest in it. That means you can go into more detail in this type of video (as compared to a promo video), while still keeping the focus on the features and benefits and keeping the visuals engaging. A typical length for most of the demo videos we create is in the 60 to 90 second range.

In our experience, we have found that this length is a great balance between giving viewers enough information so that they understand the app and ensuring that they stay engaged for the duration of the video. Once the viewer is engaged and curious, you can create additional videos to educate your users or highlight other remarkable features.

There are instances where longer videos are warranted. An audience who is already familiar with and invested in your product may welcome tutorial videos that can be up to a few minutes long. These videos are best for complex apps where you have a high volume of customer support enquiries, or if your app/product is expensive enough that potential customers might want to do a lot of research before deciding to purchase it. These videos give viewers a step-by-step guide on how to use your app (or a particular feature of it) and are suitable for an audience who wishes to learn more about your product and are prepared to invest the time to do so.

Typically, we recommend creating a set of multiple tutorial videos that cover different features rather than one long one on your whole app. This way, viewers can pick and choose which videos to watch, and it’s easy for them to go back to a particular video to re-watch something if necessary.

While there are other factors to consider when deciding on the length of your video, such as where it will be shown, it is also good to keep in mind that the majority of viewers prefer short videos. Videos can be a great tool as long as you know what you are using it for. By focusing on your target market, distilling your information to the essential points, and identifying your core purpose, your short video can be powerful enough to acquire, convert, and retain your customers. 

We'd be happy to answer any questions you have about your video possibilities -- please Contact Us to start the conversation.

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What Kind of Video Is Right for Your App?

Videos today run the gamut from screen recordings to animation and live action. It can get a bit overwhelming when you’re faced with so many choices, but there are pros and cons to each that can guide your decision. Knowing the purpose of your video, as well as the signature strengths of each type of video, can help you choose the most effective medium for your message.

An animated video can be anything from cartoon-style graphics, motion graphics, whiteboard drawings, or kinetic text to hand-drawn illustrations. Both children and adults find animated videos to be very appealing and attractive, which can help you reach a wide audience. These types of videos are especially effective at communicating and explaining new or complicated concepts.

One prime example is an explainer video for the premier cloud storage service, Dropbox. In 2007, the idea of cloud storage was so new that they launched with an animated video to explain the concept and how the service works. For Dropbox, animation made complete sense because they were introducing viewers to something new and unfamiliar.

Today, a cloud storage service similar to Dropbox doesn’t need to explain the concept behind it. With Dropbox’s success, the concept of storing your files in the cloud is well-established and almost universally understood. It would be more effective to show your target audience how your particular app works (so viewers can compare it with competing options). This is where a video showing off your actual app interface, complete with human interaction, is most appropriate.

Instead of recreating your app interface for an animated video, these videos feature your actual app and show how real people use it, giving you the chance to highlight the key elements of your app. For example, if your product competes with an existing service by offering a simpler interface or a better suite of features, a real app interaction video can shine a spotlight on those enhancements. Watching an actual human interaction with a new product can also give your target audience the level of comfort they need to actually buy or download your app. This human touch creates a powerful connection between you and your audience.

Finally, if you need to go one step further and show how your app is used in a real-world scenario, a fully live-action video might be the right approach. These videos involve real-life locations and actors to show someone using your app. For most purposes, going to this level of production isn’t really necessary (or even beneficial), but there are some cases that it makes sense.

If you have a physical product or technology that you want to introduce (like a smart appliance), or if your app is designed to augment an activity (like running or driving), a live action video can be the right way to demonstrate the way it will actually be used. This kind of video can also appropriate for crowdfunding, getting investors, or creating an emotional connection with your users. Because of the complexities and logistics involved in creating this type of video, they can be more expensive than other video types, so it’s important to understand your goals and whether live action is the best approach.

At the end of the day, the message and purpose of your video will determine which type of video will give you the most bang for your buck. If your video needs to inform people of a brand new concept, then an animated video may be a more effective way to reach your target market.

Animated videos are also great at generating excitement and giving your audience a feel for the app. However, if your focus is on how the app works, then a real app interaction video will more compelling and useful. It can instill confidence in your target audience and encourage conversion or uptake. Finally, if you have a physical product, or if you want to showcase your app in the real world, a live action video is the way to go.

Each type of video has its own merits and can be equally persuasive and impressive. Contact us to discuss which type of video will resonate best with your audience. 

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Videos & Visual Learning

One of the biggest reasons that people give when asked why they chose a certain app or product over another is the ease of use. Product design and functionality will go a long way in attracting your target market, but you can help to raise the rate of adoption by appealing to the visual learner in each person. And, one of the best ways for visual learners to absorb information is through video.

Visual learning is one of the most common learning modalities, and it has been heavily discussed and debated in pedagogical texts and training manuals. Almost everyone is a visual learner to some extent. Visuals excite and engage us. They impart information at the speed of sight. A text that reads “1 in 3 people” might not sound alarming, but a visual that shows the same thing can make your message even stronger.

Visuals and images have an ability to convey messages with a visceral impact. Dry information can be made more palatable and relevant with graphics. If you say “59% of people prefer A,” your audience might think, “Well, that’s only a little over a half.” But, if you show them an image, they can immediately see the importance and significance of that 59%.

Visual learning makes it easy to process a mass of information on a multitude of levels. If you have ever scoured the internet looking for a step-by-step guide to fixing or doing something, you’ve probably clicked on a video to get your information. With so many people preferring to watch instead of read, video really needs to be a part of your communication strategy. 

Videos are also an effective way to help your customers retain the information because they contain both visual and auditory information. People tend to remember what they both saw and heard better than what they have only read, heard, or seen. 

Videos can even help you bridge that gap between knowledge of a product and adoption of that same product. Some consumers are put off by having to learn a new system, or having to abandon something that they already know. They might even be wary because they don’t want to appear technologically illiterate. All it takes is a short and well-crafted video to give your product clarity and potency.  

Your target market does not need to be knowledgeable about the latest terms or technological innovation. What they really want and need to know is that the product works and the product works well. Rather than a sales pitch or a hard sell, let your product speak for itself through an engaging video that they can watch at any time and any place. 

Video allows your customer to learn about your product and company in an accessible manner that is also conducive to their learning. Giving your customers a visual learning tool that they have complete control over makes them comfortable with your product and more likely to give it a try!

If you're interested in learning more about how video can be a great way to engage with your customers, please get in touch!

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How to Grow Your App’s Twitter Audience

You’ve polished up your Twitter profile and made sure that your website is ready to receive visitors. You know you need to follow others before others will start following you. Now, you’re wondering what else your company can do to grow your Twitter audience.

With a dynamic and organic platform such as Twitter, where tweets live less than an hour, you need to provide consistent and meaningful engagement with your audience.

To help you do this, you need to create a content strategy. You need to stop thinking like a marketing executive and start thinking like an editor.

Your content needs to be valuable, useful, and engaging to show that you are someone worth following. Your content can take the form of shared articles and blog posts, client testimonials, coupon codes, contests, polls, questions, and even pictures and videos. Research has found that people are three times more likely to engage with a tweet if it is accompanied by pictures or videos, so make full use of your visuals. No matter what form your message takes, make sure it adheres to these guidelines:

  • Brevity – You have a limited number of characters to tell your story. Use them well.
  • Clarity – Your tweets should carry only one idea or message in order to create an impact.
  • Resonance – Will my customers find this useful, relevant, or thoughtful? Will they care or be interested in this?
  • Personal – Do not re-use the same blurbs from your website. Personalize the message specifically for each tweet.

Engaging your audience means sharing messages and content about things that matter to them. And, when your audience does engage with you, whether it is through favorites, tweets, retweets, or direct messages, you need to be able to respond immediately. Make sure that there is someone manning your Twitter account because responsiveness and consistency should also be significant parts of your content strategy.

Sending out 50 tweets a day will not make up for the fact that you have been absent from Twitter for the past three weeks, and not replying to tweets or messages will erode the reputation that you have painstakingly built up. A good social media management tool, like Hootsuite, Buffer, or Hubspot, can help you to schedule tweets throughout the day.

Aim to send out three to five tweets a day for optimal engagement. Posts shared at 12pm and 6pm see the highest click-through rates, and posts shared at 5pm have the highest retweet rate. Once you have built your following, you can plan your tweets using the 80/20 rule where 80% of your tweets are fun, educational, useful, and/or valuable to your followers, and 20% are self-promotional.

An audience that engages with your content can help you to promote your brand or your products beyond your current circle. They lend their credibility and trustworthiness to your products when they tweet about you to their followers. That stamp of approval is what moves your brand forward and gains you more followers who believe in your product.

For more ideas and information about how you can grow your Twitter audience as a business, check out:

And, as always, feel free to get in touch with us if you have any questions for us!

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