Features of application promotion in the CIS, in Western markets and in Asia

    The previous article about 15 non-standard tools for promoting a mobile application unexpectedly went well on Habré. This suggests that the topic for the community is relevant.

    In this article, you will find a large text (TLD: DR!) About the promotion of the application in the CIS, in Western markets and in Asia, with a detailed analysis of each market and a large number of useful links.

    Stock up on tea and welcome to cat.


    Yegor Karpov, consultant for the promotion of mobile applications AppBrain , assisted in the preparation of the article .

    The purpose of this article is to give you an understanding of how to build a marketing plan for your application in each of the regions . How to allocate a budget, what tools to use.

    I'll start with Russia and the CIS, as this is the most familiar market for my readers, most of which focus only on it. All that I will write below about Russia intersects with my video on this topic, but in the article everything will be a little more detailed.

    When analyzing the CIS market, I will tell you:
    • How to work with Russian media;
    • How to work with RU ad networks;
    • How to increase CTR in Russia and the CIS;
    • Features of promotion in these markets;
    • How to make a promotion plan and allocate a budget.

    In preparing this article, I wanted to somehow stand out against other “watery” articles about mobile marketing and talk about special promotion tools in Russia and the CIS countries: porn traffic, pop-under and other little-known channels. But then common sense returned to me.

    How to determine which channels to use for promotion? First of all, think about where our audience sits, where it spends most of its time. Look at the first screen of your smartphone. No, seriously, grab a smartphone right now and look at the first screen. It is in these applications that you spend 95% of the time when using a smartphone. It is in these applications that you can find and sell you a new application.

    On which sites is the mobile audience of Russia and the CIS

    1. Sits on social networks (VKontakte, Facebook, Odnoklassniki, Twitter). Most of the time we use a smartphone, we spend it on social networks. The mobile audience of social networks outperforms the web in the ratio of 70% to 30%. Here are the statistics for September 2015 - now the numbers are even more interesting.


    2. Watch a video on YouTube. The percentage of mobile audience can be seen in the diagram.

    3. Reads sites . For the most part, this is the media.

    4. Scrolling through Instagram.

    5. Plays games.

    No need to invent anything - you need to look for a mobile audience at these sites.


    Everyone who watches my materials knows that I am not indifferent to the media. They can provide tremendous coverage at minimal cost to the budget - of course, provided that you do it right. I have a video on how to work with the media, in the near future I will write an article separately about this tool. I will very briefly talk about working with this channel:

    1. Make a list of publications in which you plan to advance. Think about what your audience is reading. Do not repeat the mistake of most startups and do not concentrate solely on digital publications - see more. Do you have a female audience? The choice is obvious - women's magazines.

    I would very much like to show you an example of a sign with a promotion in the media, but I cannot for ethical reasons: I communicate very well with most editors and do not want to show their contact details. So the structure:
    • link to the media;
    • name of the editor;
    • his contacts (the more the better);
    • preferences and interests of the editor;
    • what message should the article have in order to please the editor.


    2. Write directly to the editor. No “Dear Revision” - make the letter as individual as possible. Consider the interests of the particular editor you are writing to and the interests of his audience.

    3. Complete the table after the announcements. Record how the editor reacted, how long he replied, what effect the publication had, and so on. This will be very useful to you in the future.

    List of online publications that can write about your application.


    I also really like this tool. Why? Everything is simple. The first is low eCPI (effective installation cost).

    In the CIS, this is still an underestimated tool for promoting applications, in contrast to the West, where developers already spend much more time and effort on promoting on YouTube blogs than on the media. Therefore, the cost of a review by a Russian blogger can be quite low, and a review of your application for some 10 thousand rubles will be seen by 100 thousand people. It's very cheap. Speaking specifically and in numbers: with a competent approach, eCPI from YouTube can come out 3-5 times cheaper than from the advertising network.

    Secondly, this is a high LTV. Obviously, your application will be downloaded by people who have already superficially familiarized themselves with it, know what to expect and how to use it. In this regard, audience loyalty will be many times higher than when using any other tool. Accordingly, LTV will be many times higher.

    How to work with bloggers

    1. Make and maintain a table - the same as with the media. Think for your audience: what is it watching?

    2. It is important to let the blogger make the review as sincere as possible. If he does not like something in the application, let him talk about it. In any case, he will not go beyond. They do not particularly like advertising in the CIS, so the more honest the review, the better.

    Remember Flappy Bird? The game received such a sharp increase precisely due to reviews on YouTube, and, believe me, its advantages were not described there. There every second word was abusive, and the smartphone at the end of the video flew into the wall.

    3. You can find out the contacts and prices of bloggers by writing them a letter in the mail. They usually leave the address in the About tab on YouTube.


    For example, the top 100 CIS bloggersthat can tell about your application. Feel free to start from the 30th line and then down.

    Ad networks

    I will not dwell on this tool in detail: I have a separate video on how to work with paid traffic sources. One has only to say that this is a game of mathematics. A simple formula for success with paid tools is LTV> eCPI. Almost all top world developers are involved in the “game”, but this does not mean that everyone needs to use this tool, rather, quite the contrary.

    I advise you to use this tool only when you need very precise targeting settings and you have grown to a point where other promotion tools are no longer enough. Constant traffic replenishment is needed, and all internal application mechanics are debugged in detail. But if you are ready, then let's move on to the numbers:

    1. Advertising networks in the CIS:
    • myTarget - 80%;
    • Google AdMob - 10%.
    • Facebook - 10%.

    2. In the CIS, you can receive up to 10 thousand installations per day using advertising networks.

    3. eCPI varies from $ 0.5 to $ 3 depending on the application and on how well the advertising campaign is configured.

    CTR in the CIS in advertising networks can reach up to 10%. Anyone who has already launched advertising campaigns may doubt this, to put it mildly, because on average, CTR, God forbid, reaches 3%. But 10%, or even 20%, are quite real numbers. Mobile arbitrageurs understand this best of all - it is their blogs that I recommend reading to those who want to minimize the cost of installation through advertising networks.

    How to increase the CTR of a mobile banner

    First of all, it is worth recalling such a fact as "advertising blindness." Our compatriots already subconsciously know where the advertisement will be, and skip it - in the CIS it is much more developed than in any other countries of the world. All of the methods listed below will be aimed precisely so that “advertising blindness” does not work with your banners.

    1. Parasitize on famous brands.
    A combination of a well-known brand and the target audience of its fans is especially effective. How it works: you find on Vkontakte several groups dedicated to Star Wars, with a total audience of 3 million users. Add characters from Star Wars to your ad banner and, using targeting, unscrew the banner only for this audience. This will greatly increase your CTR and, accordingly, greatly reduce the installation cost.


    2. The picture engages in viewing - the text on the banner or above it encourages action. This is the basic principle of a mobile banner.

    3. Use custom contrast. Just increase the brightness of your advertising banner in a graphical editor - this will allow you to distinguish you from the user's news feed.

    4. Use custom combinations. Blue strawberries, red bananas - all that “breaks” a person’s brain and breaks out of the general advertising noise. This will allow you to delay the gaze of the user.


    5. Use slang of your target audience in advertising materials.For example, your audience is teenagers 12-17 years old. Examine their slang and add it to your banner. This again will allow them to stop looking at the banner and also break the "advertising wall": you speak the same language with them.

    6. Use trends. Relatively recently, there was a huge informational hype around the movie Deadpool. Everyone who used it in their materials at this time greatly benefited in conversion.


    VKontakte groups

    An excellent, moderately undervalued tool that can give a very low installation cost with almost unlimited volumes. There are also extensive opportunities for targeting, and as narrow as possible. Right now I'm working on promoting a client application in St. Petersburg, and one of our main tools is the VKontakte group: here is the maximum coverage and low eCPI.

    To search for sites, I used the Sociate service. Their search allows you to maximize target groups by the audience that you need. For this task, it is absolutely free. The service also allows you to buy advertising in these groups and receive analytics from each publication, for which it takes a commission of about 30%. But in our case we are placed directly through the editors, we conduct analytics on our side.

    I talk about analytical services. This is how segmentation settings look:


    You can segment the resulting groups at a price per 1000 views, audience engagement, the number of subscribers, and so on. I advise you to look at CPM.



    About two years ago, I told seminars that YouTube is a great tool for promoting the application. At that time, due to low advertising demand, it was possible to buy a review for a penny and get a huge number of installations. Now the market has changed, and many advertisers have recognized the power of YouTube.

    Now I say that the most underrated tool for promoting apps is Instagram. And I do not mean their advertising platform, which is still crude and gives too high an installation cost, but advertising records directly in the accounts. Instagram can now provide volumes and targeting options comparable to groups on VKontakte, and the installation cost may be lower at times.

    You are compiling a list of well-known Instagram accounts that your target audience can subscribe to. Do not select television stars: they either have publication prices that are too high, or they don’t sell ads in their account. In addition, it is very difficult to reach them. Make a list of accounts of famous bloggers and groups (an example will be below). Contacting them is easier and the cost of recording will be much lower.

    Live case: now I am promoting one of the applications with geolocation to St. Petersburg, and Instagram is the most powerful tool for us. How is the search and placement process:

    1. In Sociate, I select Instagram and set up segmentation.


    2. I get a list of sites and upload them to CSV, then to Excel.As a result, I have a list of about 50 sites, with indicators of involvement and cost of recording. Location - St. Petersburg.


    3. Yes, the guys from Sociate will forgive me - I like to save money and go to write everyone in private messages on Instagram. I agree on the publication and track the results.

    Case MSQRD

    Another cool case that can demonstrate the power of Instagram to promote is the MSQRD app.

    The application, in which my good friend Nikolai Davydov invested, gained a little less than 10 million installations in two months. The essence is simple: it allows you to impose various masks on the image of your face and record it on video or take pictures.


    According to Nikolai Davydov, not a cent was spent on promoting the application - all marketing was based solely on word of mouth. Instagram provided virality: famous people with millions of subscribers posted videos or photos with MSQRD masks in their account. Their subscribers liked the idea of ​​the application, and they downloaded it to themselves: the word MSQRD is placed in the lower right corner of each published photo or video.


    Great tool for promotion, simple and free. It is strange that very few people use it. You may have noticed that links to "Responses@Mail.ru" are very high for many search queries. We can use this to our advantage, and absolutely free of charge.

    If very briefly, the process of working with "Responses@Mail.ru" is structured as follows. We create two accounts. From the first account, we create a pool of questions related to your application, which we compose in advance, based on Yandex Wordstat analytics.

    For example, you have a food delivery application in Moscow. You are posting a pool of questions:
    • Where to order pizza in Moscow?
    • Where to order sushi in Moscow?
    • Home delivery, Moscow.

    From the second account, you yourself answer these questions: "Best of all through Appendix X, I advise you." From the first account, choose this answer the best, which automatically makes it the first. Example:


    So you can compose 30 or more requests, and a small part of them may well get into the top and collect free traffic.

    Additional questions

    1. Do you have your own groups on social networks?

    My opinion does not coincide with the opinion of the majority of “specialists”. Of course, it’s much easier to say: push money into the conduct of your groups, and someday it will pay off, but I do not believe in it.

    In my experience, investing in the conduct of their groups does not pay off. The cost of a live subscriber can start from five rubles, in addition, you simply have nothing to hook it on. He receives entertaining content in other groups, and he is not interested in reading the news about your application - unless he is your fan. It’s better to spend this money on promotion in groups with an already collected target audience. This will give a much greater effect.

    I believe that the application group is needed for technical support on the social network and for news and releases - who cares, he will subscribe himself.

    2. Is it necessary to use motivated traffic in the CIS?

    Only if your application is interesting to every second person, that is, it has a wide coverage. You will also need to work on your page in the application store: users already understand that the applications in the top are not necessarily good. They will read reviews and descriptions.

    In general, for the CIS this is a very risky tool, since it is very difficult to recapture organic costs due to an overheated market. I could advise motivated traffic only for the West - there it works well.

    3. Should I go to the publishers?

    A similar question is “Should I look for an investor?”. Depends on your application and business goals. Here is a list of mobile publishers in the CIS .

    An example of a marketing plan in the CIS countries

    A marketing plan is compiled individually for each application, but I am often asked to set an example. I’ll tell you how I would distribute the advertising budget for promotion in the CIS countries:
    • YouTube - 20%;
    • VKontakte groups - 20%;
    • Instagram - 20%;
    • Media - 15%;
    • Ad networks - from 15%;
    • The rest (motivated traffic, ASO, spam, and so on) - 10%;

    An example of a general marketing plan for one of my clients. And one more visual plan:


    USA and Europe

    There are practically no articles in the media on the topic of promoting mobile applications in the West, especially practical materials. It is believed that today only large publishers can afford an advertising campaign abroad: they say it is expensive. But I think that promotion in Europe and the USA is not so expensive, the main thing is to do it right. Ready to back up the words with my own experience.

    Speaking about promotion in Europe and the USA, we will do the following:

    • We will draw up a promotion plan based on your budget and tasks;
    • Let's figure out how to work with the media. From me a gift with detailed media contacts;
    • Let’s figure out how to work with ad networks;
    • Denote the features of promotion in Europe and the United States. We will understand where and how to localize the application.

    There are also three gifts waiting for you:
    • A list of more than 300 Western editors with all contacts;
    • A list of Western video bloggers who browse mobile applications;
    • List of western forums where you can review the application for free.

    I wanted to divide this part into two: promotion in Europe and promotion in the USA, but when I made detailed plans for these markets, I realized that they were very similar.

    Features of promotion in Europe

    Less competition.

    The Russian market is now competing with qualified marketers with excellent knowledge of the CIS market and talented programmers who create high-quality products. All this greatly warms up the market.
    In Europe, competition, oddly enough, is an order of magnitude lower, especially staffing. Accordingly, the market is less heated, and it is much easier to advance.

    Higher paying audience

    This is an obvious fact - it is worth comparing salaries in the CIS and Europe. In the West they are many times higher, especially given the current ruble rate. In addition, the European audience, unlike the CIS, is used to paying for content.

    People are more socialized.

    Take dating services as an example. If in Russia you say that you met a girl for a permanent relationship on a dating service, it will sound strange. And in the West it will be strange if you met not on a dating service (I, of course, exaggerate). If your project involves communication of the base within the application, then for you, as for the market, European socialization is a big plus.


    Each country needs to be considered separately.

    Do not consider Europe as a separate entity - all the tools you need to consider in a particular European country: choose media and journalists, launch advertising campaigns.

    Where is our audience

    I thought of giving you some narrow and unknown instruments that can only be used in Germany or only in Italy. But then he analyzed what our western audience is spending time on in a smartphone, what platforms it uses.
    • Social networks (Facebook, Twitter);
    • YouTube
    • Mobile web - mainly for reading media;
    • Instagram
    • Mobile games.

    These sources cover most of the mobile traffic in the West. The set of sites is the same as in the CIS - only the format for working with them differs.

    The distribution of mobile traffic on the example of North America


    Let's start with a tool that can provide a very wide coverage with minimal marketing costs - if everything is done correctly. We have already considered the algorithm of working with the media in an article on promotion in the CIS. The only difference is that in Europe and the USA, journalists are a little more spoiled, and they need a more personalized approach.

    Gift - a complete list of media Over the

    past two years of work in the mobile industry, I quite often promoted various applications in the West, in particular in the media, and managed to make friends with the editors. All these two years I have compiled my list of editors, their features, interests, contacts - everything that is needed to promote the application in the media. Now on this list more than 300 media. It can be said to be exclusive.

    For those who promote mobile games, there iscontact list of 200 Western media who can write about them.


    The algorithm for working with YouTube is described in the article on promotion in the CIS. Western developers have already understood the power of video bloggers and are setting up their advertising campaigns for them, often giving priority to them, not the media. I like this tool for two reasons:

    1. Low eCPI. With a competent approach, eCPI from YouTube can be 3-5 times cheaper than with any ad network.
    2. High LTV. Obvious fact: your application will be downloaded by people who have already superficially familiarized themselves with it and know what to expect from it and how to use it. Loyalty is higher - above LTV.


    Gift - A list of YouTube channels .

    I have already started filling out the list of video bloggers and have shown in what format it is desirable to do this. According to this template, you can select those people whose videos your target audience is watching.

    • Several hundred YouTube channels.
    • Channels where you can promote for free.
    • Channels where they like to browse mobile apps.

    I also found a list of 1000 video bloggers for you. You can safely start from the 300th line - add them to our plate and fill in according to the established template. Believe me, these efforts will pay off very much for you with a low installation price, wide coverage and a loyal target audience.

    Ad networks

    Above, on the example of the Russian market, I have already considered this tool. Mobile advertising networks in the USA and Europe are much more developed than in the CIS. If in Russia there are three monopolists, then in the West there are a lot of advertising networks that accumulate a lot of traffic: Facebook, Admob, InMobi, Chartboost, Vungle, Flurry.

    If you have good experience in working with advertising networks and LTV you have more eCPI - you can safely move forward with this tool. You can even limit yourself to it if you are fine with him.

    When we promoted the LoveTime dating service in the West, we focused on buying traffic in advertising networks, and did not even think about advertising in the media, blogs, and so on, which, by the way, was more likely our mistake. Nevertheless, this tool was enough for us to gain 6 million installations.

    Facebook Lookalike

    In my opinion, the best tool from all ad networks. The principle of operation is simple: you know the list of people who paid in your application. Get their ID, phone or email and upload to Facebook. He will find you people whose interests are similar to those of your paying audience. The installation price may go 30-50% lower.


    This is not such a difficult tool as it seems. It will take a maximum of a couple of days to study, given the practice, but it can greatly reduce the installation price and give you access to almost unlimited traffic.

    If you still decide to do “Advertising mathematics”, then learn from the “arbitrage” of mobile traffic. They focus specifically on optimizing advertising campaigns in such a way as to minimize eCPI.



    The algorithm for working with Western Instagram accounts does not differ from that described in the article about the CIS.

    The power of Instagram to promote the application was excellently demonstrated by MSQRD. Sure, the guys took off because of the great product, but Instagram, or rather, the people who shared their videos and photos with MSQRD masks, was the leverage for their growth.



    Quora is a bit of an analogue of the Responses@Mail.ru service, only much more functional. How it works: create an account, find themed questions for your application, for example, “How to increase productivity”, answer in detail and insert a link to your application at the end.


    Quora is also great for finding partners, investors, and publishers for your application. How to use Quora effectively can be found here . We promoted through this service Appintop, and this tool gave traffic comparable to articles in the top western media.

    Reviews of your application

    A great tool to help novice developers get tips for improving your application and several hundred free installations. You can analyze how the western audience behaves in your application.

    Find groups or forums that focus on mobile app reviews and ask them to browse your app.

    Gift - a list of groups and forums where they can free review your application.


    For the West, this is something like Livejournal in the CIS, where people share their opinions. More youth and "hipster" option. Not a very hot tool that can and should be used to promote your application, if its theme allows it. The work follows the same principle as with the media.


    Incent traffic in Europe

    If in the CIS I do not recommend using it, then in the West this can and should be done if there is a budget for this. Organics in Europe and the United States will be much higher. With a higher probability you will repay the invested money. Of course, only if your application is suitable for at least every second or third person.


    There are more and more articles that Snapchat can be used to promote applications. Plus, they recently rolled out some kind of advertising platform.

    I myself am just starting to learn this tool. Best Snapchat article . If you have experience working with him in the West - be sure to write in the comments, it will be interesting to listen to you.


    Something like YouTube for let’s players, plus donation functionality, channel design and more. In working with it, there are almost no differences from YouTube. This tool is perfect if you are promoting a game.



    55-60% of the European audience speaks English, but nevertheless, the application must be localized. Think for yourself - most of you probably know English well, due to the specifics of our field. But you must admit that using the application in your native language is much more convenient than in a foreign one.

    If we are talking about the European market, then you need to localize the application in five languages: English, German, French, Italian, Spanish. Five of these languages ​​will cover more than 90% of the European market.

    How to localize:
    1. Contact the agencies;
    2. Give it to freelance, but then there must be focus groups and proofreaders (local residents who can watch and verify the correct localization);
    3. Be sure to make a description and screenshots of the application for each country. This is not such a time-consuming work, but which can greatly increase the conversion to application installations.


    Soft Launch

    Before starting a promotion in countries such as England, Italy, France, Germany, Spain, make a soft launch in some smaller European country.

    For example, in Portugal before promoting in Spain, or in Ireland before promoting the application in England. And then, calmly, with tuned internal mechanics and monetization, enter larger markets.

    Sample plan in the USA and Europe

    The plan is highly dependent on the specifics of your mobile application. From your mobile marketing skills. From your budget and tasks. But I am often asked to show a “hospital average” plan.

    How would I distribute the budget of the application for promotion in the West:
    • 25% - YouTube;
    • 25% - Instagram;
    • 15% - media;
    • 15% - ad networks;
    • 10% - Tumblr and Twitch;
    • 10% - ASO, Incent, Quora.

    Here is an example plan for one of my clients. It is general, in the next stage, of course, we have detailed each tool.

    Promotion in Asia

    The purpose of this part is to give a general understanding of what features the leading Asian mobile markets have: China, Japan and South Korea. They account for most of the Asian market - about 94%.


    Asian regions are very different from each other. The difference between, for example, the mobile markets of China and Japan is much greater than between the markets of Germany and Russia. So, Asia cannot be considered as a single entity.

    A good illustration of the big difference between the markets is at least the fact that revenue per user in Japan is 8 times higher than in China, but the Chinese market takes its size - in the country, according to various estimates, from 360 million to 785 million mobile players.

    Since the differences between the markets are significant, and the level of penetration of the English language is not as high as in Europe, it is imperative to localize the graphics, and often the gameplay for each region, starting from both the realities of the market and the local cultural background.

    The order of promotion in the Asian market, I recommend the following: South Korea, Japan, China. From relatively simple to complex.

    The first step towards localization in each of them, in my opinion, should be getting to know the local top-ten box office of ten games. Look at how they have done it, how everything is drawn, presented, and try to repeat as part of your project.

    South Korea


    The most “simple” market listed in the article. He is most of all from Asian similar to European and American. Accordingly, it is easier for self-promotion.

    Features of the Korean market

    • Transparent conditions for entering the market;
    • Three app stores prevail: Kakao, App Store and Google Play;
    • Kakao is installed on 95% of mobile devices;
    • 85% of devices work on Android;
    • Koreans have a good level of English, but due to cultural characteristics, they need at least language localization;
    • In our experience, getting into Korea’s TOP 10 Overall was 3 times cheaper than a similar position in the United States. Plus, entering the Korean TOP was 2 times more effective in terms of organic growth;
    • Before going to the TOP and launching a product in Korea, you need to carefully optimize the application page in the store for cultural features of Koreans, take into account their tetrophobia (fear of numbers) and so on. Proofreaders (local residents who can test the correctness of localization) are required;

    Social networks in Korea

    “Mental” game features:

    1. People of all ages are very fond of playing mobile games. It’s absolutely normal to see a 70 year old Korean grandfather playing Clash of Clans.

    2. Graphics should be as bright as possible, rich colors should prevail in it. This is true for all Asian countries, but especially for Korea.


    3. Koreans love animals to give human qualities.


    Favorite Korean genres according to AppLift:
    • Puzzles
    • Race;
    • Симуляторы;
    • Action;
    • Стратегии.

    Как выйти на корейский рынок:

    • Можно и нужно выходить на корейский рынок самостоятельно;
    • План маркетинга очень схож с аналогичным в Европе и США. Тут работают те же инструменты, что и на европейских рынках;
    • Хорошо работает ТОП. Высокий процент органики.


    1. Японский рынок мобильных игр ближе к рынку Южной Корее чем к китайскому;
    2. Японская игровая аудитория очень хорошо платят (по данным EEDAR, в среднем, $9,39 в месяц, против $5,91, которые оставляют ежемесячно корейские игроки);
    3. ARPPU ~$50 — самое высокое в мире;
    4. Необходима очень хорошая поддержка. Японцы привередливы. Часто пишут в поддержку. Очень расстраиваются, не получая ответ;
    5. The Japanese will sit in your game for as long as possible until they buy everything they can. But they will only act this way if they understand that you are ready to develop your application, if you have good Support and you are constantly updating the game;
    6. Five main stories: Mobage, App Store, Google Play, Line and Mixi;

    Where the Japanese audience spends time using a smartphone:


    “Mental” gaming features:

    1. In Japan, modern pop culture revolves around manga and anime. This must be taken into account when adapting a project or at least its promotional materials.


    2. The Japanese are very passionate. This is partly due to the success of gacha mechanics. You can read more about it here .


    3. The main payment audience in Japan is 35+ men and women.

    TOP 5 most popular game genres in Japan:
    1. RPG;
    2. Puzzles
    3. Simulators;
    4. Action
    5. Card games.

    How to get out in Japan

    • You can go out on your own, but still it is desirable to have a local representative in Japan, and even better - a publisher;
    • Content cross-promotion is very popular in Japan when characters of another appear in one of the games. For example, in Sonic the Hedgehog games, the heroes of Angry Birds appeared, and in Puzzle & Dragons there was a dungeon with the heroes of Clash of Clans;
    • Language localization required.



    The most complex market presented in the article.

    A well-known feature of China is 400 app stores. To get the effect of promotion, you will need to immediately advance in at least the 20 largest Chinese stores, each of which aggregates a large amount of traffic.

    Some of the largest of them are:
    • 360 Mobile Assistant - more than 400 million users - market share of 21%;
    • Myapp (Tencent) - more than 64 million downloads daily - market share of 21%;
    • Baidu Mobile Assistant - the main search engine store in China - 13%;
    • MIUI app store - more than 30 million users - market share of 11%;
    • HiMarket - a unique mix of platform for developers and devices - market share of 6%;
    • Huawei App Store - market share of 5%;
    • Wandoujia - more than 10 million users - 4% market share.


    In the market there are services of automatic publication of applications AppTutti and Kii China. But when I worked with them, they gave very little effect.

    They can be used in two cases:
    1. You are well acquainted with the Chinese market. Already self-published in the 20 largest stores. To “finish off” the rest, use these services;
    2. У вас нет ни опыта, ни понимая о том, как продвигаться на азиатском рынке, и вы хотите закинуть приложение на китайский рынок с надеждой “Вдруг взлетит”. Шанс очень маленький, но при грамотной локализации, подкрепленной хотя бы минимальным маркетингом, может повезти.

    Особенности продвижения в Китае

    1. Complex localization (more than 60 dialects) - as the main one you need to use the North Chinese language - “Mandarin Chinese”.

    2. The more content on one screen, the better. This is the specificity of the Chinese mentality. If such a presentation of information “blows the brain” to a European audience, then in China it is loved.


    3. Major global social networks are prohibited. The prevailing social networks are Tencent, QZone, Weibo, WeChat. The 8 most popular social networks in China:


    4. Necessarily need offline marketing, as there are few opportunities for online marketing. TOP positions in the stores are often occupied by applications that were published by the publisher of the very application store where you see them.

    5. Difficulties with billing. You will definitely have to contact mobile operators so that they allow users to pay for internal purchases in your mobile application via a SIM card. This is a big time expense, plus, depending on the operator, the commission from the payment can reach up to 30%. Main operators: China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom.

    6. In China, piracy is very developed. For example: you placed your application in one of 400 Chinese Android stores. Other 399 stories per day steal your APK’s and place it at your place, but without in-app. How to deal with this? Avoid this will not work. The only, and the most correct, thing that can be done is to apply personally to the TOP 20 stories, promise to publish your application with them and ask them not to copy it from other stories. In this case, they are very likely to meet you, but even this is not guaranteed.

    Chinese application interface specifics

    While in China, I looked through more than a hundred applications and highlighted several features:

    1. The Chinese audience loves muted colors that would not seem attractive to the European audience.


    2. The Chinese audience should be given as many opportunities as possible to customize the application, game or hero in it. They love it. In part, this explains the success of the UCWeb browser in this market. It has a huge number of settings compared to any other western browser.

    TOP 5 most popular game genres in China according to AppLift :

    • Race;
    • Strategies;
    • RPG;
    • Card
    • Brain Training.

    Interesting analytics on the main internal mechanics in Asia:

    In the screenshot below you will see an example of the localization of the gameplay from Pop Cap with their ZvP.


    The first part went off with a bang, unlike the second, which was merged in China due to “hard” monetization.

    The main difference between the Chinese version was the changed appearance of the characters, adapted to the local flavor.

    How to enter the Chinese market:

    1. Search for partners. Without them, advancement will be very difficult, almost impossible. A list of mobile publishers operating in the Chinese market with descriptions of them can be found here .

    2. Contact European agencies with experience working with the Asian market.


    Each market has its own characteristics, but nevertheless, the foundation is the same everywhere. With a competent approach, which will certainly include a trial and error method, you can conquer any market.

    I hope this longrid has been useful to you. The best thanks for the work done will be “like” and repost of this article.

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