Any small business with a mobile app understands that creating and launching the app is only part of the battle – You also have to actively drive downloads to ensure the app’s content is reaching an engaged audience. While this process might not be easy, it’s absolutely worth it. Today, 90% of all mobile minutes are spent in apps.

There are several high-level methods for getting recognized in the App Store and driving mobile app downloads. Similarly, there are also many techniques for driving app downloads through advertising, email marketing and word-of-mouth.

The examples below can be easily implemented into any mobile marketing strategy to promote your mobile app and drive downloads.

  1. Promote on social media – Social media is one of the most effective platforms to engage users and convince them to take a preferred action. Support downloads by adding mobile app promotions to your existing social media content calendar.
  2. Promote at your brick-and-mortar – Encourage foot traffic to download your mobile app through in-store promotions. Add window or mirror clings, hand out marketing pieces during checkout or post promotional signage throughout your store.
  3. Be your own word-of-mouth marketer – If you’re in the service industry without a true brick-and-mortar location, you can still leverage foot traffic. Hand out “business cards” for your mobile app, including a download link, on all of your service appointments.
  4. Offer in-app coupons or discounts for app users – Incentivize users to download your app by offering app-only coupons or discounts. In-app coupons may be used for mobile transactions or provide app users with a discount to be used in-stores.
  5. Use social media advertising – Paid social media advertising is also an effective method for increasing your reach through targeted ad campaigns to drive new downloads and keep users engaged with your mobile app. Consider Facebook ads and Twitter for advertising options.
  6. Send out a press release – Alert key journalists, bloggers and influencers about your mobile app with a well-written and factual press release outlining the app’s unique and newsworthy features. Submit the release individually to popular websites or through a distribution service to gain exposure for your app.
  7. Generate app reviews via app review sites – Attract new users and generate word-of-mouth about your app by acquiring reviews from mobile app review sites.
  8. Blog about your mobile app – Stimulate interest and spread the word through blogging about your mobile app. Blog upon launch and for any updates or new versions. Distribute these posts across all social media channels.
  9. Include download links on all channels – Add download links for your mobile app across all of your owned channels to capture this traffic and convert to downloads. Include links on your homepage, marketing emails and social media. You may also consider sprucing up your email signature with a download link!
  10. Create a referral program – Reward your existing app users with a referral program for inviting new users to your app. The reward may be limited-time free access to “premium” app content, a promo code or free item. Users will also be far more likely to share on their own social media platforms, increasing your reach and word-of-mouth marketing.
  11. Engage your current user base through email newsletters – Encourage your user base to download your app through regular email newsletters. Use these newsletters to alert users of any app updates, special events, promotional campaigns and more.
  12. Include an app download link in your triggered emails – Do you have triggered, or automated, emails enabled? Include an app download link on all of them! These include service emails, abandoned cart emails, purchase confirmation emails and all other email campaigns.
  13. Leverage event marketing – Already attending industry trade shows, seminars or conferences? Are you a sponsor or exhibitor? Use these opportunities and networking events to promote your app in-person and to distribute marketing materials aimed at increasing downloads. You may even consider running a contest!
  14. Build a landing page to capture interested users – About a month or two before your app launch, create an attractive landing page for potential app downloaders to submit their email addresses. Add these emails to your mailing list to send promotional announcements regarding your app!
  15. Encourage reviews (and quickly resolve negative ones) – Not only is a happy customer an excellent brand ambassador for your app, but your number of positive app reviews directly impacts your app ranking. Ask your customers for reviews and monitor responses closely to resolve negative issues as soon as possible.
  16. Consider remarketing – Already use remarketing? Considering adding it to your marketing arsenal? If so, think about adding ads to retarget your website users and direct them to a download link for your app.

How do you promote your mobile app to drive downloads?