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- August 9, 2014
- by Lisa Ann Mason
- mobile apps, Soft Launch, UA tracking, UX tracking,
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So you want to launch a mobile app? Well, you’re not alone. But the process is easier said than done, and you shouldn’t hit the ground running without some careful preparation. If you want to get it right and successfully monetize your app, there are some key steps you can take to achieve your desired results. The most effective of these is a soft launch.
A soft launch allows you to isolate success factors and problem areas in your app through a controlled release in a test market. In fact, independent research shows that about three quarters of game publishers use a soft launch before launching new titles, and the technique works for other types of apps, too. If you bypass this step and release your app to a broad market without any testing, you risk jeopardizing your desired results.
Preparing for a Soft Launch
The basic idea of a soft launch is to release your app in a test market with similar characteristics to your target audience. For apps launching in the US, this usually means testing your app in English-speaking countries like Canada or Australia.
But don’t just dive right in. A soft launch isn’t valuable unless you first consider what you’re trying to measure. A common question is: Does your game or app monetize? I’ve observed that the answer to that question is too often initially “no.” Better to learn that lesson during a soft launch, where you can go back to the drawing board to tweak your monetization strategy, than during a much broader and more costly release.