Graeme Bryce
Graeme BryceDelivering world class software.

What are some of the smartest ways to acquire users for a productivity app?

I am part of the team launching an app. Other then the obvious "list it on Product Hub" and share it on social media, what are the best ways of encouraging the growth of an app? I will start the conversation with my own top list:- 1. It has to be a great app 2. You have to find a way to show people how it works - you need to do this is 5 second :-( 3. You need a good brand and consistent messaging 4. ... ?
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@graeme_bryce1 I think the most underrated thing is to show context. Most people who are on the hunt for productivity apps (I’m one of them!) has one or two areas in our life, work, or personal growth that we’re not so happy about. Maybe we’re spending too much time on fielding customer feature requests at work, maybe at home, I’m having trouble figuring out how to structure my household chores in a way that’s not as stressful. Either way, I’m looking for a solution, but I’m not just about to switch away from my current setup unless I’m sure it covers this use case and also the pre-existing ones I’m getting with these other apps. So, show a few examples or give me a template that I could get started with real fast. So I can try it out, see if that works for my use case. If it does, and the rest of the features match what I’m using now, and the price is right, switching is a no brained. That’s how I got started with Notion 2.0 and Doo 2. There’s just a very clear path towards me trying it out, and adopting it later.
@graeme_bryce1 @astralwave i think airtable does this really well with all the use cases.
@graeme_bryce1 I fully agree with @astralwave Having used multiple productivity apps for me as well as my team (Asana, ToDoist, Trello and now Clickup), I have observed that I switch to a new app when I have a new goal to track and my current app isn't able to do it comfortably. As most productivity apps are free to start and can onboard you very quickly, I don't mind trying out new products until my goal is achieved. Once I have put my goals, I will need constant notification (on my phone or on email) to remind me to update my progress everyday.
@astralwave @sujoy_chaudhary It is interesting what you say and perhaps I can understand the daily notifications but what is it that the app is doing for you that makes you more productive? I have looked ad todo lists in many forms but generally know what needs to be done and can prioritise my work well. As a team we maintain a high level list that we review regularly and it includes technical, marketing and other sub lists. Twasme is different. It is not an immediate task tracker. It is designed to capture, hold and organise the smaller number of long terms assets that are needed to make one more productive in the moment. It assumes that you can organise the day-to-day but there will be critical bits of information from accounts and passwords to key emails and documents that you need to quickly access when a question arrises or when you need to complete a given task. One of the things that reduces our productivity is an inability to find critical information fast enough. This expands through teams because people ask other people who also don't have the info to hand. Eventually someone finds the info and it is pushed via slack or email, used and forgotten. Next time it is needed we are all once again searching in history. Twasme changes this flow by allowing organised people to curate collections of valuable information including data, documents, dates, secrets and images and then share those collections with others. It is interesting that @sujoy_chaudhary changes app frequently because one list manager is as good as another as long as you are happy to learn the UI. The simplest of lists can be written in notes. It is the gathering of many different types on information into the same collection that created a different type of productivity. Take a look at http://onelink.to/twasme
@graeme_bryce1 @astralwave I checked out this question because it was relevant to me as well. First of all, thanks for this answer, makes a lot of sense (i.e. I need to work more on showing the context.) Secondly, as soliciting as it sounds (sorry for that), but what do you think about my non-trivial reminder app https://threedo.app? It's not on iOS yet, and not all essential features are there yet, but is it something you'd give a try?
@astralwave @paul_danyliuk Hey Paul. Not downloaded the app but I have seen the very simple explainer on the website and love the simplicity. It is however a very crowded market from full feature products from Microsoft ToDo (written by the team from Wunderlist) to the more simple and quick to use. Is it written as a native app?
@graeme_bryce1 your app should have 1) Instant messaging 2) Seamless chat from emails 3) Sharing documents instantly 4) To-Do's 5) Access from anywhere, anytime. Tools which has these features will help being productive and this will be the smartest way to acquire users. Try https://clariti.app/ which has all these features and it's free too.
@graeme_bryce1 I would suggest have a "share your achievement" link in the app. So whenever a person completes all his tasks and is productive for lets say 3 straight days (concept of streaks!) ,he creates a winning streak, he can share his achievement on his network. Snapchat uses the same concept of streaks to get the users hooked onto it. This will help to put the name of your app out there.
@thisissidhant many thanks for the suggestions. Watch this space! I will come back here in a couple of weeks to show how much of that we have auctioned.
@graeme_bryce1 Yeah that's great!. Do ping me up when your site is ready.
@graeme_bryce1 Having pre-built templates or workflows is important, but having blogs posts and videos showing these templates and workflows is just as important. Sometimes a new user may not understand right away how to use the product you've built of even the template that solves a specific use case/scenario. A video walkthrough goes a long way with educating the first early adopters of your app.
@alchen Al, Thanks for that. I am sure the video walkthroughs will be significant and we are trying to figure out how best to create them or whether we just need to engage with a design agency. Ideally we would find tools we can use as we know the product best but equally I feel we may not then do justice to the medium. A poorly made product about a great product may not be the best plan!
@alchen @graeme_bryce1 I am no professional here. But as the end user: your product needs to work seamless from the first day – or at least let them show that you have the vision to make it work seamless regarding their needs.
@alchen @pieterdepauw Explaining the vision to users (like me) with a limited attention span and even less time can be the biggest challengs. Twasme is a compelling application that there is a dedicated core of fans that, from the usage data, love it and use it many times a week. However there are also many that download it and create an account yet do not progress to a single entry. We are working hard to increase the education elements in the early stage of the app. As we go through this process we are intending to allow the first 10,000 users to have free lifetime access to all current and future premium features but even with that there is no EASY way to immediately inspire users as to the value.
@graeme_bryce1 the best one I have seen has been the team from !Focusmate led by @taylor_jacobson - basically just organic referrals from users, the creation of community, and getting out there to tell the story!
@graeme_bryce1 I think you need to actively exploit human psychology in order to get your users ACTUALLY stay productive, but it's a whole separate aspect to discuss...
@graeme_bryce1 Hey Graeme! This is a hard thing to do - getting the first people excited about your project. You should definitely find a way to do a quick video demo that shows the value of your product that's sharable on social media, and on the homepage of your website and/or landing pages. One way to build community is to start a blog about productivity, and talk about all types of productivity (while also plugging your app every once in a while!). If people see you as an authority on productivity, they'll assume your app is incredible. Also, if you can get a small core of users to become evangelists for your product, you'll be able to leverage their networks as well.
@claire_sinozich Many thanks for the reply which is really valuable to me. I will be working through January to make all of that happen. Take a look at the app if you have time. It is on here and called TWASME.
@graeme_bryce1 Is there a really specific piece of the productivity market problem that your solution solves? My assumption is that you built a product to solve a market problem you uncovered. I always like to think back to what problem I'm solving and who else likely has those problems making it as narrow as possible when starting. Go find some more of those people and slowly start building from there. So my #1 would be, solve a market problem!
@andrewtewksbury That is good advise. There is no doubt that Twasme solves a problem. People live ever more complicated lives with increased communication flow through email and chat and way more subscriptions, accounts and passwords than ever before. capturing the important long term stuff from all that noise is frustrating. Twasme allows you to collect important emails, documents, images and data into private secure off-line collections that only you have access to when and where you need them. It's a simple app to use and we have over 2,000 users now active and growing daily but getting a clear massage out there remains an interesting challenge. My thanks for the advice.
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@graeme_bryce1 Medium has been one of our top sources to acquire users (and it's free). Assuming your app is awesome and it does all of the things, you still need to get it in front of eyeballs. I would start with writing some quality content that's very focused on a target audience for your app - you can even hire a freelancer to do this is writing isn't your thing. Use Google Keyword planner to look for search terms that people might be looking for and try to incorporate those into the title of the article. The more specific the better. Maybe it's "How to Plan Out Meals While Working Full-time" or "How to Feel Productive After Your Commute" (p.s. if your app can solve these things let me know 😄) The key is that the content needs to actually be helpful, and ideally show off a feature that your app has done better/different than the competition - but it shouldn't be a straight sales plug. I think this is also a good exercise in product development, you're essentially trying to prove value to a target audience. If while writing your content you realize your app may not actually be good for this, then change our app or change your audience! Using content as an acquisition strategy gives you the bonus benefit of becoming a "thought leader" in the space, and providing value to users before they even sign up for your app.
@graeme_bryce1 THIS: https://blog.gettamboo.com/the-e... 100x. It's a painful and incredible way to get started. Will certainly help you get an early passionate base and, you know, validate your idea. It's quite long (4 parts) but imo worth it
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