The iPhone platform has given developers and marketers yet another platform to push out innovative products and express their creativity. A lot of companies have developed free iPhone solutions and used them as a platform to drive sales to their paid applications. In fact, it is not that unusual to have both paid and free versions of the same iPhone application.
Developing an iPhone application is more than just picking up a book, It’s nice to know how to develop native-C applications, but at the end of the day, selling on the iTunes store depends on how smart your business strategy is. In order to have a successful paid iPhone app, you want to:
- Provide unique value: very simple concept but a lot of folks get it wrong. When you develop an iPhone app, you want to make sure that it is something that folks will pay for. There are a lot of free applications available on iTunes, so you want to make sure you top them which brings me to the next point.
- Market your app: have you wondered why some application developers manage to extract $$$ from their customers even though their applications are not that much different from free iPhone applications on iTunes?
- Address a need: this point is tied closely to the last two. The need to have fun, to kill time, to manage tasks, or to find things fast can help you sell more apps. Some needs people die to get. Some others, people rather address for free or pass completely.
- Go Viral: iFart by Joel Comm is the best case study for this point. An application that allows you to schedule farts. How cool is that? The application caught fire via word of mouth. People were talking about it on Facebook, Digg, and … If there is one guy to watch and learn marketing from, it’s Joel Comm.
- Customer Service: No matter how perfect your iPhone app is, there will be folks who will have trouble using it. Make sure to address their questions and create goodwill in the process.
- Price: Don’t get greedy. If you plan to have a long career in this market, you may want to price your first app fairly low to allow enough folks to try your product and get to know your work. Just remember a lot of folks give their first apps up for free. Being greedy can hurt you in the long run.
Did I miss anything? What’s your take on developing successful paid apps?
P.S. check out iPhoneAppsFinder for the latest reviews of iPhone apps.