Your business has built a great app for consumers that’s designed to provide entertainment, utility, or both. Now what? Marketing and soliciting engagement is critical to success. A winning app strategy is based on six key steps.

1. Estimate lifetime customer value

What is each app user worth to your business? This will help you understand the maximum limit you can spend per install while remaining profitable. Start by defining your target audience by age, gender, interest and so on. This will help you determine your target cost per install.

2. Create customer-facing ads

Next, develop ads and an app store page that clearly describe your app’s value. Ads should hone in on one unique selling point and include a clear call to action. An app store landing page should reinforce your ad messaging, including:

  • one key point per screenshot
  • concise descriptions
  • and video previews.

3. Track & measure installs

Once you’ve done all that, how do you know if it’s working? By accurately tracking and attributing installs. If you’re only tracking Android installs, codeless Android install tracking is sufficient, but the Google AdWords SDK, Google Analytics, and third-party tracking can be used for any other installs.

4. Get the word out

Now it’s time to promote your app broadly across search, video, and other app displays to reach all potential new users while they’re going about their business online. Here are some examples of options you can choose when deciding on a cross-channel app promotion format:

  • Mobile Masthead for App Promotion on YouTube can provide reach as well as one-click download capability.
  • TrueView for App Promotion allows you to push app downloads alongside relevant video content.
  • Search ad formats can drive downloads, or you could include an app download extension in a traditional ad.
  • Display and video formats engage users as they use apps or browse the mobile web.
  • Gmail Sponsored Promotions for app download push relevant apps as people browse their email.

5. Adjust based on new analytics data

After a campaign is up and running, you will want to measure its value and optimize accordingly. Use the SDK to track installs and in-app conversions to measure lifetime customer value (and update your estimate in the first step). Google Analytics can also help you to find your best users and optimize for them.

6. Re-engage with existing users

Your app is in trouble if your initial users don’t stick around. Deep linking for search is a good tactic here; this allows brands to direct users to specific relevant pages within apps. Different ad formats allow for directing to pages within the app only or to both the app and mobile site. Display re-engagement works slightly differently, requiring you to develop specific messaging based on user activities and build remarketing lists accordingly. From here, set up custom deep links to the important.