Congrats! You’ve launched an incredible app and it’s time to share it with the world. Now the real work begins: marketing your creation.
In today’s connected world, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to app marketing. Depending on which region you’re in and where you want to market your app, you have to pay careful attention to cultural nuances if you’re going to attract the most users — and not offend anyone by breaking cultural taboos in the process.
In this series, we’re taking a look at how to successfully market an app in a few select markets. We’ll start where 90% of companies in 2019 plan to increase their investment in mobile app development, and where users are expected to download more than 33 billion apps: Europe.
1. Know the Leading Operating System
In 2012, Android overtook iOS to become the leading operating system in Europe, where it still holds the majority of the market. Today, around 68% of mobile users are on Android, 27% on iOS, and 3% on Windows.
The tablet market presents an opposite picture. Approximately 69% of tablets in Europe run on iOS, whereas 30% use Android. Depending on your target audience and app use cases, your marketing campaigns may need to reach users of both devices, meaning you’ll want to weigh your ad spend more heavily toward Android on smartphones, and iOS on tablets.
2. Comply With Privacy and Security Regulations
It’s no secret that the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) goes into effect next month. This new regulation will require any company that does business with European consumers to take extra precautions regarding how data is collected and stored, along with the consent consumers give. With steep fines of up to $24 million or 4% of annual global turnover (whichever is greater), it’s imperative that marketers ensure their data systems are in order. This goes for any business that deals with the data of individuals who live in the EU, whether or not a business has an office in the region.
3. Get Hyper-Local
Though geographically compact, Europe’s cultural diversity can also present challenges. Within its boundaries are many nuances worthy of your attention, from languages to differences in social and business customs. In addition, app advertising spend in Northern and Western European countries far outpaces spend in Eastern Europe. Net: Always think local.
4. Leverage the Region’s Most Popular Social Media
Speaking of hyper-local, social media use in Europe is relatively high in the Netherlands, Scandinavia, and the U.K. In aggregate, 60% of Europeans regularly sign on and engage. In Germany and the Mediterranean, social media usage is significantly lower.
Whereas many European brands use social media to build their image or market products, a growing number are also using these platforms to interact with consumers. As an app marketer, analyze which countries you plan to market most heavily to, and invest budget based on local preferences. There’s no point spending all of your ad dollars on social media in a market if customers there don’t use it often.
5. Think Beyond the Install
Paid app spending represented the majority of app revenue in 2013 but will decline from 52% of the total amount apps earn to 36% in 2018, with the revenue transitioning to in-app purchasing. As such, marketers should consider not only the way they promote their app in Europe, but what they do once they acquire a user to increase their lifetime value and recoup the money they spent acquiring the install.
Making a Connected World Feel Smaller
There are a few approaches to marketing your app that seem to be universal across regions: getting customers to leave raving reviews, knowing your customers inside and out (and targeting accordingly), earning high ratings, and doing all you can to optimize for keywords. For the rest, we recommend analyzing the country or region you plan to be marketing your app in, and designing your marketing to fit it — versus the other way around.
Let us know in the comments below: Which region or country would you like us to focus on next?
Becky is the Senior Content Marketing Manager at TUNE. Before TUNE, she led a variety of marketing and communications projects at San Francisco startups. Becky received her bachelor's degree in English from Wake Forest University. After living nearly a decade in San Francisco and Seattle, she has returned to her home of Charleston, SC, where you can find her enjoying the sun and salt water with her family.