I get asked this question a million times, “How do you get featured in the Appstore?” Well to be honest it’s kind of a club with a secret handshake (just kidding, but not), meaning if a member of the AppStore marketing team ever emailed you to be your point of contact, you never share that information with anyone, including your mom, just play dumb if anyone asks.
few tips before I give you gold.
- Make sure your app is not crashing like crazy when you submit.
- Make sure your app looks amazing, and your app icon is fucking awesome. (app icon catches their eyes)
- Make sure you do some basic ASO strategies to your app marketing page(keywords..etc) try sensortower.com (my fav)
- Don’t send some shitty beta app to get featured, you’re wasting your time (amateur hour)
- Make sure it’s feature worthy, again, don’t send them dog shit.
- Don’t harass them, this won’t work.
OK, so back to getting featured, I’m sure you’ve done your own research by now, or possibly emailed Tim Cook himself about your game changing app, but here is how I did it.
Do this 1 month before you’re app is going live in the App Store, don’t email them the day of, or the week of launch, they want advanced notice.
Step 1: Use LinkedIn to find App Store Managers, these are the people you want to get aquatinted with. Search for managers in your apps category, for example: App Store Manager, also before you start looking at App Store manager profiles, clean up your LinkedIn profile (spelling, jobs, apps..etc) they will be visiting your profile.
Step 2: Download email hunter to find peoples email addresses on LinkedIn, it never hurts to also send them a connection request on LinkedIn, but don’t just say feature my app, message them something like: “Great to meet you, I would love to connect with you, let me know if I can help you at all”
I was lucky enough to have an App Store Manager accept my connection request and also message me back, from that point on we built a good relationship. (calls, emails, meetings..etc) this is where you need to manage your expectations and relations.
Step 3: Get Bananatag (it’s free) this is so you can track the emails you sent, you can tell if the App Store managers looked at your email, forwarded it, etc…then you can decided when to follow up if they don’t reply back.
If they don’t get back for a couple weeks, don’t panic, it could mean anything. But take it as bad news, that’s a way of saying “this app is not ready to be featured”, it’s happened to me too so don’t get down, go fix it.
If they do email you back, let them know you appreciate their time and share your story with them, almost like you’re pitching a VC. (everyone loves a good story) then app for next steps. This might take a few emails first before you ask, and just because you ask doesn't mean you’re getting featured, it means they will fast track your application and get your app in their morning team meeting for other managers to see.
Step 4 if Step 1–3 don’t work.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org they will email you back this template, you can always email them this info first to speed things up (just hand type it in) also tell them why your app should be featured.
Step 5: In 3–4 weeks you should hear back if they want to feature your app, it took me 3 weeks before I got a reply back the first time. Then they will tell you a date (don’t miss this date to send the things they requested to feature you) they will have Art work request and send you a PS template, stick to the design guideline the first time, don’t get too fancy. They will give you the template depending what type of feature you’re getting (Hero banner..etc).
Step 6: Send it back as soon as possible, then sit and wait, you will not get any notice as to when your app will be featured, just keep checking the store on Thursday, Monday..etc the store was a bit predictable last year, but now apps can be featured on a Monday..etc, before it was just new apps on Thursday.
Step 7: When you’re app is featured, get more buzz. Tell all your social followers, and get the app on Product Hunt (if you haven’t been hunted yet) and hit up this guy (sorry Ben). Make sure to also time your emails to the press, don’t email them the day of feature as your first contact, unless you know them already. when you get the email from apple saying you’re going to be featured, it’s helpful to attach this email screenshot as validation of your product when cold emailing journalist, you need to sell them on your story too so don’t make it just about the app.
I’m going to write a app marketing post soon, some tricks and secrets that social apps like Houseparty, and almost any game will use to get into the top 100 in the app store Free section, stay tuned.
Good luck, enjoy the ride..
Follow me on Twitter @korihandy