January 2018 and February 2018 iOS Indie Development Reflections and Updates

Hi friends,

Can’t believe how quickly January and February came and went. I hope you’ve had a productive start to the year.

Calendar image from https://pixabay.com/en/timeline-planner-success-achieve-3168323/

I wanted to look back on the amount of work that done in the past two

January

A lot of things happened in January.

  • Daily Vibes is available on the Apple App Store. If you haven’t downloaded it yet, just give it a shot
  • Added a sign up sheet for beta testers:
  • As a result of shipping, started fixing bugs 🐞 here and there
  • was frustrated with App Delivery … a bunch of times …comes as a benefit of exposure to the Apple Ecosystem I suppose 🤔


February

Continued incremental improvement of Daily Vibes

  • Adding small UI accents that I was longing for
  • While using DV, I noticed myself wanting to add multiple entries at the same time. So, I wanted to build something in.
  • This error took a few days to fix …
  • This error also took a few days to correct

Apple Store

I uploaded Daily Vibes to the Apple App Store simply because I wanted to have it out there rather than keep it under wraps. I figured I would add value to the software as I go. In retrospect, it was a good decision because it allowed me to find value quicker (as opposed to when I was working on the app under wraps).

After listening to some feedback on IndieHackers I decided to start working on ASO (Apple Store Optimization). Signed up for Apple’s Ads. Signed up for their Affiliate program. Started researching.

What I have learned so far:

  • Title matters
  • Description matters
  • Keywords matter
  • Having screenshots ??? apparently matters
  • Having a video ?? apparently matters
  • Description and other stuff that you have to fill in… doesn’t matter

What else I have learned?

  • What you actually put in any of those fields doesn’t really matter. Don’t get attached to your App name, App Description, Keywords or anything else to do with it. This is important for indie developers with no ad budget. Why? Because we want to be found so people use our software.
  • If you have a budget then you can pick your Branding carefully and you can ignore what I said above
So, while working on improving Daily Vibes I am also looking at improving my overall marketing. I am going to do it iteratively and learn along the way.

What is my plan of attack?

  • improve title (Daily Vibes ➡️ Daily Vibes: Life Task Manager)
  • improve subtitle (Todo List & Life Day Organizer ➡️ To do list, life day organizer)
  • improve keywords; currently haven’t decided:
to-do, list app, list maker, task list, todo list, list, task, todo, to do, life organizer, daily

todo,list,organizer,tracker,task,project,things,productivity,to do,to-do,keep,reminder,day planner

life organizer, good vibes, daily tasks, daily office, daily calender,daily lists, daily organizer, lists maker,
  • make screenshots localized with pretty text (via fastlane.tools) … something like:
Meaningful screenshots work in progress
  • make AND edit AND upload a video
Video is definitely a work in progress
  • improve aforementioned screenshots
  • improve aforementioned video

All of these ideas are up in the air while I am writing this post. I am hoping to ship them with next release, hopefully sometime next week. Then, I will have to wait and look at the analytics.

Conclusion

A lot of work goes behind the scenes for a single app. I am beginning to appreciate 👍 indie developers and their successful 📈products. You really need to be comfortable with wearing ALL of the hats 🤔 that make a successful business.

For me, marketing is an uncharted area and I was hesitant to start learning it. But look at me now, I can make icons, promo videos, and start being strategic about growth. It is a journey that I am enjoying but it is challenging.

So what is takeaway? Just start. Begin and work on one small thing, today. And do it every. single. day.

And do not forget that these small wins are cumulative.

I also paved the road and did all of the necessary paper work to add in app subscriptions. Now I just gotta figure out my strategy in this area ;)

Oh and in closing news, I wanted to keep to a somewhat relaxed 2 week shipping cycle… and so far I have been sticking to the schedule of regular updates =) I hope I can keep this up!



Thank you for reading and until next time my friend.

Sincerely,

Alex