Music: The New Standard
One of the most used genres of apps are those intended for finding or listening to music. This can obviously be quite intimidating to a company trying to break ground in the music app industry, but with features that keep the user engaged and interested this shouldn’t be an issue right? Well, mostly. Users tend to stick to what they know, and to what works. Being a new app in the music world where there are already giants like Spotify, Pandora, and Soundcloud sounds quite difficult and intimidating, but there are some ways to help build towards success. Making an app with cool new features that has a vibe that people will enjoy can take it from one of the apps you scroll by, to a top download in the app market.
Establishing a Brand
Since the music app game is so popular right now it seems like there might be a plethora of troubles ahead of a starting company. The best way to begin is to establish a brand. Many big companies and products today have grown so successful that even just seeing a glimpse of their logo puts the product they are pushing in mind. Starting with a sturdy branding as well as a quality and unique service will allow people to recall the app easier, as well as attract more potential users. As the app goes through development its team could post about their progress or have special events and interact with their user-base. Starting off accumulating a base of users through these kinds of events makes it much easier to gain new users once the app launches then to pick up a whole user-base at launch.
Keeping Users Once You Get Them
After this app has gotten its bearings in the industry and has had a successful launch, there is the issue of keeping people using the app. Most of the apps for music out there don’t really have an incentive for users to stay active or to not uninstall their app. Spotify for example doesn’t communicate too much after you have payed for premium. It is in this way that a new music app could take the market by storm. Through adding in indicators of user prestige based on their duration of active membership on the app. This could be something like designer-made re-skins of the app, or a special icon or banner around the user’s profile. This kind of banner or icon would be made relevant by allowing users to talk about tracks similar to how Soundcloud operates. Users who have been around longer will be easily picked out amongst the heaps of other commenters allowing their opinion to be slightly more visible than others. This would incentivize membership and continued use of the app as well as add in a way for users to communicate and share thoughts about new music. Having re-skins of the app available to users would also make a cool experience when sharing music in person.
Competing With the “Big Kids”
To match up to the already established music apps on the market, the new app will have to do something useful and new that will draw the attention of users. This kind of attraction can start as early as pre-alpha. While the app is in development there could be a Kickstarter that rewards contributors with a certain duration of full membership once the app launches or even some cool memorabilia sporting the app logo and an exclusive skin for the app. These contributors could also get early access when the alpha drops. The alpha would have to be wicked cool so that these contributors stay interested and feel like they got their money’s worth. For a music app this would be a mix of being able to pay less for membership, allowing users to show off their prestige over each other (as stated earlier) and allowing users to engage in discussion over new music. Sure, other music apps allow for producers to showcase their profiles in ways that other users are unable to do, but allowing every user the opportunity without making music would be a hip new feature that could attract some people.
For a music app, success can come in a few shapes and sizes. this list of successes changes as the app progresses, so in order it would go something like this: Having many contributors pre-alpha, hyping the alpha while it is being developed, having a ton of users in the alpha, keeping users from the alpha and gaining new users on launch, reaching the front page of Apple and Google app marketplaces, and getting good reviews from users. This all sounds fine and dandy, but the road to this success takes dedication. From user retention, to deciding what to add once the app is made (updates are very cool), to becoming popular enough to appear on an app store’s front page, there are many areas that the team must be able to efficiently excel in.
When making progress and shooting to make the best music app on the market, it is important to keep in mind what the actual goals are for the company. Sure making lots of money sounds like a good goal, but while making a name for yourself as a company it is also important to remember the deeper reason for doing what it is what you are doing. For a music app I’d make, I would say that the main goal is to make an app that allows users to listen to music in the way they want, with all of the cool quirky features that make it unique. In the grand scheme of things there are some other goals for this kind of app. These might include things like inspiring other small developer teams to make their own dreams a reality, helping to raise awareness by donating part of the profits to a cause or charity, or even to just make an honest music app that has good features and doesn’t squeeze money out of the user through micro-transactions and thousands of ads. Making an app isn’t always a money scheme, sometimes people just want to make a change in the world and think the best way to get their ideas out there is through an app.