ASO Master Class: Distinguishing the growth-killing myths from real industry success (VB Live)

VB LIVE: Join noted growth-hacker Oliver Kern, chief commercial officer at Lockwood Publishing and Peggy Anne Salz, author of the VB Insight ASO Practitioner’s Guide, as they explore the myths around App Store Optimization (ASO)—what fails, what flies, and how to keep from falling behind.
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“You can’t really predict a winning formula,” says Oliver Kern, chief commercial officer at Lockwood Publishing, makers of Avakin Life, the hugely successful avatar creation system, social network and gaming hub. We quizzed him on what works and doesn’t when it comes to ASO, and it’s clear that being open to surprises is foundational.
“You do the obvious things, and they can do well, but sometimes the things that win for you are not necessarily the obvious things — especially when it comes to graphics and icons.”
The most important factor in converting app store traffic to installs is probably the icon, Kern says, and that’s where most people follow the trends. However, the icon is the exactly the place where you have do something unexpected in order to have a winner.
“You have to test,” says Kern, “and be humble about your suppositions going into things.” In an A/B test series for a company he consulted for prior to joining Lockwood, he found that the response to their two icon possibilities was confoundingly close.
“We could probably have spent a lot more users trying to find the winner between the two, but in the end, they tried something completely different which became the clear winner” he says. Rather than king vs. queen on colored backgrounds, a hand holding a crown came out on top. It sounds trivial in the telling of it, but the outcome was huge.
“It was definitely not the expected winner,” he says. However, he continues, while innovation can bring important wins, too many marketers rely heavily on endless testing of options for only incremental gains.
“When we’re testing, we’re trying to find things that make a big difference. If things are really close, testing doesn’t really matter that much,” he says. If you’re making the effort to test, you should be looking for the option with an impact of 10 or 20 percent — because that’s when percentages actually start to make a real difference.
That’s happened when Lockwood changed their icon — they gained an uplift of almost 40 percent on just organic search, or an additional $400k a year. And they’re still testing concepts, Kern says, because maybe there’s something out there that will do another 20 percent better. “But,” he adds, “we’re not going to change it for something that has MAYBE one percent conversion rate.”
“You have to cover your basics, at a certain frequency, but you need to ensure that things are worth testing to see if they make a big difference,” says Kern, “because if you’re constantly changing your presence and have whole markets where you’re just experimenting, that can have a big risk to the overall performance of your business.”
Want to know more about what’s worth testing, what’s worth ditching, and why localization could be your biggest downfall? Register our free masterclass now.

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Register here for free.

In this half-hour masterclass, you’ll:

Put urban legends around ASO to the test in a no-holds-barred myth-busters marathon.
Determine how (and when) changes to your app store presence will drive positive results.
Identify the tools, techniques and strategies that will encourage installs and boost sharing.


Peggy Anne Salz, Analyst, VentureBeat
Oliver Kern, Chief Commercial Officer, Lockwood Publishing

Watch for the next 3 in the ASO masterclass:

The terrible truth about Black Hat tactics
Localization — how it relates to ASO and why you need it
Video in the app stores and getting it right

ASO Master Class: Distinguishing the growth-killing myths from real industry success (VB Live)
ASO Master Class: Distinguishing the growth-killing myths from real industry success (VB Live)

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