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Mobile App User Acquisition Strategy - For 2024

Mobile App User Acquisition Strategy - For 2024

Tired of searching for the best strategy? Know the channels and ways to acquire users for your mobile app.

Mohamed Imran
Mohamed Imran

Developing a mobile app is a real work.

If you have done it, you need to make sure that your app gets to the right audience.

Then, the potential user needs to download and use your app.

How it can be done?

Imagine with the millions of apps in the market, how you’re going to get your app to the user and make them download it.

Here we discussed some effective channels and ways for you to do that.

Identify Who your Target Audience is

If not, you’re missing to address the foundation.

Knowing your target audience means knowing the needs, wants, and pain points of them.

The more you know about them, the better you can tailor your strategy.

Before that, I suggest you do some market research. This can help you along the way.

What are the other things you need to notice from your target audience?


  • The demographic of your target audience (age, gender, location, etc.)?
  • Their interests and hobbies
  • The pain points your app can solve
  • Devices they use
  • How do they often discover new apps?

Now, let’s move to the main content.

Two Ways to Acquire Users for Your App

Organic and paid.

Organic User Acquisition

Didn’t have any clue?

It is the process of acquiring users through natural, unpaid means.

Even though you will not pay anyone, you still need resources and that cost.

If we compare both organic (this way) and paid ways, organic is still a cost-effective option and creates more sustainable ways.

Let’s see the channels you need to focus on.

1. App Store Optimization

What’s its purpose?

You will list your app on the App Store, and you need your app to rank when users search for the keyword.

Am I right?

That’s 'App Store Optimation' for you.

It is optimizing your mobile app's listing on the App Store to improve its visibility and discoverability.

This doesn’t mean you should ignore the 'Play Store optimization'.

The benefits you GET

  • Increased Visibility
  • Higher Conversion Rates
  • Positive Reviews

2. Content Marketing

How does content marketing fit here?

Let’s say you’re in a cosmetic business (just imagine for a minute) and you have much to share with your audience.

I mean the content.

You are creating content on the topic of the best skincare routine.

The content goes viral and people are enjoying and scanning your past videos or posts.

Notice the progress your audience is making.

What would be their next move? They are slowly turning out to be your customers.

That’s how content marketing plays on converting strangers.

But how does it help you to acquire users for your mobile app?

After consuming your content, they are very interested in using your product.

Where would they purchase it?

From a website or mobile app?

I know it’s more of an indirect approach; but believe, content marketing is worth doing and stays long-term.

3. Social Media Marketing

How often do you scroll reels?

This is what most people do in their free time.

I hope you still are scratching your head on figuring out a better strategy.

People consume and share content on social media. Wherever people are, your presence should be.

And social media is the right channels that deserve your focus.

There are different social channels focused on different content forms. You can choose any and build more meaningful connections with your audience - Like building community, creating content, and interacting with them directly.

In the meantime, let them know that you have a mobile app.

That’s how you create a presence for your mobile app and let them search for it.

Being more creative and engaging can help you tailor your social media marketing strategy effectively.

4. Public Relations

People who come across your business or brand have different images and perceptions about you—either good, bad, sweet, or cunning.

Everyone has their perception but forget about that.

You’re in the business here and you want people to use your app.

If they have a bad image of you or merely have any idea that you exist, how can they convert?

Doing public relations can fill the gap.

Your part is to work on creating an image that people could genuinely believe and trust you.

Looks a bit complicated?

  • Let’s put it simply through pointers,
  • Define your message
  • Stay in touch with journalists
  • Create a press release
  • Use social media
  • Participate in industry events
  • Measure and analyze the results

5. Influencer Marketing

The great thing about 'Influencer Marketing' is that it can get you directly to your niche audience.

The bad is that it costs and doesn’t suit every business.

It does exist, however, because it does work for some businesses. Maybe, it suits your business.

Think about this scenario.

When your app is recommended by someone who is trusted and considered as a great sound at where they’re, it is a whole different story.

In other words, your audience could think that your app is worth a download.

That’s what the recommendation from the top voice does.

6. App Referral Program

Now, move on to understanding app referral programs with examples.

You acquired some users for your app. Even though the best experience you created for the new users who are using your app right now, they felt that they needed more reason to recommend your app to someone.

It’s natural. They subconsciously make this choice.

Here you need more than a better experience to let them forget their subconscious mind and to trigger their conscious mind.

A referral program can fill that space.

This means you reward your current users for doing the user acquisition job for you.

The reward can be cash or lifetime membership or whatever. And the people who are getting recommended can be their friends, colleagues, families, or others.

It is a more personalized approach—and has more triggering value, such as creating trust and reliability to download the app.

7. Website Promotion

Not everyone downloads your app right away. They just need time before getting converted.

In the meantime, a website can help with that.

Look. your users need time; above all, they need to feel and see how your app looks and works.

A website can do that job by acting as a glimpse of your app, building trust, and reaping their interest to use the app.

If they are captivated by your website, they will search for your app to download.

And, you need to make the search process smoother.

For that - Showcase your app on your website and make it appealing for them to download and get your app faster.

Let’s move to the paid channels.

Paid User Acquisition

While before, we have seen how you can acquire users to your app using the organic way.

Now we’re gonna see the contrast of it.

There are several channels you can consider.

Let's move there one by one.

1. Search Engine Advertising (SEA)

When the users search for the app, your app appears.

That’s the straightforward answer for you, yet it is not that simple.

Search engine advertising involves processes like targeting, budget optimation, writing better copy, and more.

By running an ad campaign, you can target a more relevant audience to your app and track the result as well.

Unlike SEO, which is an organic way of reaching the audience; here, search engine advertising can help you achieve results faster.

2. Social Media Advertising

It is when you run ads on various social media platforms, such as Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and others.

Compared to SEA (Search Engine Advertising), merely the channels are changed; not the purpose.

Similarly, you can target your audience based on demographics, interests, and behaviors.

This has another benefit, too.

By running a social media ad, there’s a greater possibility of you getting more above the expected results.

Engagement is the add-on.

When a user downloads your app after the effect of seeing your ads, just imagine what if they share the ad with someone who has a similar interest.

That’s the engagement we’re talking about.

3. Native Advertising

What is Native Advertising?

Let’s understand it better with its types.

Types of native advertising:

1. In-feed Ads

In-feed ads appear on the platform’s content feeds, such as social media feeds, news apps, or content discovery platforms.

So you don’t pay the platform; instead, you pay for the business displaying your ad.

2. Sponsored Content

It is the approach where you pay any business or creator who creating the content.

In return, you get your app promoted by them at some portion of their content.

How it can be done?

You can approach the content creators related to your niche and ask them if you’re willing to sponsor the content in return for the app promotion.

Reach out to the creator who you believe has your target audience.

And forget about the content types - It can be either a text, video, or other content format.

3. Promoted Listing

You can reach out to the app stores or third-party directories to list your app.

It can be more relevant.

These promoted listings appear alongside organic search results and give you increased exposure.

That’s all.

It’s all we can recommend for native advertising to acquire mobile app users.

And the list continues if you search somewhere.

4. App Store Advertising

Let’s say a person comes to an App Store or Play Store, what would be their intent?

Of course, the intent is to download the app.

It is not going to change.

App store advertising is the process of paying the App Store and Play Store when users search for your app keyword.

Then, your app would be displayed for the user and they download it.

The benefits of App Store & Play Store advertising:

  • Target the right audience
  • Get a higher ranking
  • Increase the number of downloads
  • Cover the global audience

The END.

While in the journey of your user acquisition strategy, don’t be afraid to seek expert advice.

Talk with people who have done that. They can guide and assist you with their wisdom.

Beyond that, you can partner with a mobile app marketing agency that can support you in navigating the complexities of user acquisition.

Wishing you the best with your journey.

Mohamed Imran

Always been thrilled to write content on Business and marketing.