The picture in this post is of a scene in Enchanted Rock State Park in Texas. If you haven’t been there, you need to go. It’s a beautiful part of a state that many folks think is flat. And that’s the point of this post – things are not always what they seem. To market your mobile app successfully, you have to know your market and how to convince prospective customers that they cannot live without your app.
Guy Kawasaki spoke recently at the Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders Lecture Series at Stanford. The subject – Enchantment – also happens to be name of his new book. The presentation is available as a video or as a download in iTunes U and is well worth a watch and/or listen.
Here’s a nugget from Guy’s talk that anyone marketing a mobile app should know – “Enchant all the influencers.” You may think you know who makes the buying decisions in your target market and you might target your marketing pitch to that person or persons. You might be surprised. For example, if your app is an educational app aimed at pre-school kids, your target market is not just the kid, but the kid’s mother. Sure, the app has to be engaging enough to keep the kid’s attention, but you also have to convince the mother, who will likely make the purchasing decision, that the educational value offered by the app is worth its price (in terms of both price and money). Note that you “also” have to convince the mother. You can’t ignore the kid. Both are influencers. As Guy notes in his ETL presentation, his nine-year old daughter is an influencer in his family because he’ll do anything to make his daughter happy.
Of course, influencer marketing is not limited to directing your message to target purchasers (or end-users). You probably already have a social media component in your marketing plan. Social media marketing allows you to reach influencers who may have no direct interest in your app, but are in a position to influence others who might. This type of marketing was discussed at length a couple of years ago in a blog post on “Social Influence Marketing” by Shiv Singh.
Influencer marketing has been hot the past few years. So hot that some say there’s been a bit too much hype and a tendency to have too narrow a focus that can be ineffective. For a discussion of some of the problems that can arise with influencer marketing and how to address them, check out this recent post by Gary Lee of mBLAST that was published on Mashable. As Mr. Lee says, “Working with influencers can be immensely beneficial in marketing — you just need to be smart about it.” No doubt. If you’re smart about your mobile app marketing, you’ll have a much better chance of accomplishing what Guy Kawasaki calls enchanting all the influencers.
What do you think about influencer marketing in the mobile app space?