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'Free for a day'

12-09-2009, 08:32 AM
#1
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: UK / Toronto
Posts: 602
'Free for a day'

It seems to getting done by a lot of developers recently, the whole 'Free for a day' promotion, with the latest game to do this being - the pretty popular in its own right - Wheeler's Treasure.


Is this finally becoming a viable promotional model for increasing sales, or are these developers just making the same mistakes that have been made in the past by other devs?
Or do they have some grander plan for how to utilize the promotion?

…Or maybe they're just doing it out of niceness to iPhone owners?
12-09-2009, 10:05 AM
#2
I think a lot of it is to get people talking about their apps (or to be aware of their existence) - it works well if there's a twitter feature, plus new people that notice won't know they got it for free.

Just a thought.

12-09-2009, 10:51 AM
#3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinecure Industries View Post
I think a lot of it is to get people talking about their apps (or to be aware of their existence) - it works well if there's a twitter feature, plus new people that notice won't know they got it for free.

Just a thought.
Looks like a circular path to me:

need promotion for my app->make it free->people need to know about the app->need promotion
12-09-2009, 11:33 AM
#4
Quote:
Originally Posted by mromanuk View Post
Looks like a circular path to me:

need promotion for my app->make it free->people need to know about the app->need promotion
A vicious cycle more like it

Personally I've noticed that free apps are downloaded simply because they're free (then come the weird reviews)
12-09-2009, 11:36 AM
#5
Joined: Jan 2009
Location: Italy
Posts: 1,452
Probably being featured on the appvent calendar solves the promotion issue in this specific case.
There's still another issue - will people buy it after knowing it has been free or will they wait for another free shot? Again, maybe the appvent calendar thing provides for the "once in a lifetime" perception
12-09-2009, 11:37 AM
#6
Joined: Nov 2008
Location: Munich, Germany
Posts: 754
Send a message via Skype™ to mobile1up
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinecure Industries View Post
Personally I've noticed that free apps are downloaded simply because they're free (then come the weird reviews)
keep in mind that the review on delete system hurts. if they download it without wanting it, chances are they will leave a one star review and thats a nasty cycle to get into when you stop being free

// Aaron Ardiri
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developer of Caveman / Caveman HD and GW Series
12-09-2009, 11:45 AM
#7
Joined: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto Canada
Posts: 863
Quote:
Originally Posted by mobile1up View Post
keep in mind that the review on delete system hurts. if they download it without wanting it, chances are they will leave a one star review and thats a nasty cycle to get into when you stop being free
Yup. I've only heard second-hand stories of free-for-a-day promos actually helping an app in the long run. In my experience it's a good way to lower your ratings, and that's about it!

SHREDD GO FAST! FREE!
Nozoku Rush Kick Math's Ass!
Critter Panic Break yer brain! FREE!
Silverfish & Silverfish MAX Hardcore arcade insanity!
Nozoku A casual game of math & logic.
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12-09-2009, 12:00 PM
#8
Joined: Jul 2009
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 2,988
Going free for a while helped Fling! become a fixture in the top 100 whereas prior to their free give away it couldnt crack it. It was free for more then a day, they gave away a *lot* of copies. Reviews were pushed down to 3 stars as per the normal effect, but it didnt seem to matter.

That may be hard to replicate though, because Fling! was so darned polished that it benefitted from word of mouth (i.e., here let me show you this puzzle game I got).

That is the only instance I'm aware of where going free for a while had such a noticeable effect.

Just my opinion but I dont see why anyone thinks that going free for just one day could possibly have much impact...seems to me that for it to work, you need to have a polished game, and give away a LOT of copies.

Currently addicted to Clash Royale
12-09-2009, 12:03 PM
#9
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: Georgia
Posts: 314
Wheeler's Treasure is featured today on the AppVent Calendar. While normally I would agree that going free, even for a day is a bad idea, the 1 free app per day til Christmas promo from the AppVent Calendar suggests that you either get it on the one day it's free or lose your chance for the freebie and have to pay for it. In essence it doesn't leave you feeling like it will be free again if you just wait long enough.

Just my $.02.

Q

Quorlan
12-09-2009, 12:15 PM
#10
Joined: Oct 2008
Location: Toronto Canada
Posts: 863
Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtNJ View Post
Going free for a while helped Fling! become a fixture in the top 100 whereas prior to their free give away it couldnt crack it.
This is what I mean about second-hand stories I've heard this several times but I haven't seen any real numbers or evidence that making it free is what actually made it popular. Not saying it can't happen that way but all I know is I pushed over 20,000 free copies of Pinch 'n Pop! over 2 days and literally saw no change in sales afterwards - those are numbers I can believe in

SHREDD GO FAST! FREE!
Nozoku Rush Kick Math's Ass!
Critter Panic Break yer brain! FREE!
Silverfish & Silverfish MAX Hardcore arcade insanity!
Nozoku A casual game of math & logic.
More: cbox.me Twitter YouTube