Starting an App business without programming

The app business has reached Nigerian shores, our dearest Lagos in fact, and just as Nollywood was a nascent industry the other day before it overtook the whole of Africa and is gradually inching towards worldwide dominaon ( in its own unique manner) , I am predicng that Nigerians, parcularly Lagosians are poised to turn another industry around on its head. 

Are you a geek and are you interested in this industry? Below we are sharing some insights into what you need todotomakeitintheapp business, remember, the sad truth is most people who start an app business don’t make it. What’s even worse is they typically are very close; they just make a couple small wrong moves that end up being the nail in the coffin. And if we have anything to say about it, it is that you will not be a stasc, so take a read.

RULE #1 – Don’t Program It Yourself

This might be controversial, but through experience more people have success when they do NOT know how to program. This will help you concentrate me thinking about the markeng side of the business. If you look at most successful app companies in the store right now, the person running the company is NOT the one actually programming. This is not a coincidence. Even if you ARE a programmer I strongly recommend outsourcing the develop- ment so you can spend your me thinking about how to get downloads.

RULE #2 – Model and Improve (aka Innovaon is risky)
Instead of reinvenng the wheel, we think you should MODEL AND IMPROVE. That is do not necessarily

create a new thing, not that you should not, if you feel strongly inclined to. But back to model and improve, an example is Game Academy’s hit game, Jump Pack. It is modeled on the popular game Doodle Jump and it paid off like crazy. Jump Pack has made over 1,650,000 ($100k) and has over 1.5 million downloads.

Spot on. Great games need an even beer markeng plan. What can you do?” Number one recommendaon; plan at least 3 months in advance of launch. Because aer launch day, it is extremely difficult to get press aenon.

The App Store moves so fast and there are so many apps launched each day that if you don’t have a plan in place leading up to launch you’ll be just like the 1,000 other apps that launched that day … at the boom of the charts.

Tip 1 – Have a media outreach plan:

Just google “app review” and you’ll find a ton of sites to pitch your game to. Tailor your pitch to their coverage style. 148Apps, AppAdvice, Appcraver, TUAW, MacLife, etc. Send a simple / short / sweet game descripon, link to game, review code and YouTube trailer of gameplay. Spend a fair amount on making the trailer.

Here’s the quickest way to make yourself disappear from Google

Taking advantage of ‘Googles new policy concerning your “right to be forgoen” can be a bit complicated, but one website is trying to make it easier. takes the hassle out of removing unwanted links appearing on the ubiquitous search engine by simplifying the process, opmizing your request and alerng you once Google has received the request.

In order to use the site, you simply sign up for an account and make a search removal request. Within the request form, you’ll be shown a list of the top search results containing your name, but you can add individual links that aren’t listed as well.

Once you’ve selected all the links you’d

like to have removed, you are given the chance to jusfy their removal. Some of the jusficaons include criminal procedure, privacy and death, and you’ll be given the opportunity to edit the text of the jusficaon before you send it.

Once you’ve completed all the steps, you will have two opons: have the team send the request to Google for you or send it yourself. During the “start-up phase,” the service will be enrely free, but that may change once the website takes off.

And that’s it. You’ve officially exercised your right to be forgoen. can track the removal request and will let you know when the link has disappeared.

Tip 2 – App Store Opmizaon:

Your tle and your keywords are the only thing that maer with organic discovery within the App Store; use your descripon to ence/secure the download.

Tip 3 – Adversing: If you have budget

Facebook app install ads are a great resource to target and aract users. You can adverse (and moneze) via Revmob, Chartboost, 4Mads, etc. Expect a 350+ ($2+) cost per install (CPI). This method is really only applicable to freemium games that are monezing through in-app purchases. Ever seen a Clash of Clans ad on your mobile Facebook feed? Yes, it’s a very powerful ad tool.

Tip 4 – Start blogging, taking screen shots, sharing artwork, telling friends, tweeng, retweeng, liking, pinning, snap chang, instagramming, etc. Before your launch to help build an audience before the game is even available. Integrate a waing list form via a free Mailchimp account.

Tip 5 – Theme is important as you want to expand to the largest demographic possible.
The colours used, the style, the simplicity and the theme all come together to make a fun experience for all. If you are looking for commercial success, you have to make that target as big as possible. In other words, broaden your demographic target.

RULE #3 – Keep Cost Down… and here’s howtodoit
Keeping cost down is VERY important. It

is alleged that Game Academy’s Maze+ rocketed to the top of the app store upon release and made over 4,950,000 ($30,000) in its first month. How much did it cost to make? Only 495,000 ($3,000). Why? Because the company just edited the Jump Pack source code to make that game. A large part of the hard work had been done.

Now, you’re probably thinking, “Well that’s great, but I don’t have a code to edit”. To answer that, I have something cool to share with you. You can somemes get free source from some game companies, parcularly the ones that teach people how to develop game apps such as Game Academy.

To celebrate their success, and to help new people get started who might be on a shoestring budget, they gave away one of their best source for absolutely free. Not only that, it was a Match 3 source code that came with both the Android and iOS version, that came 3 videos and an 80 page report on how to get started. Who knows, there are beer offers and opportunies out there, you just have to find them.

There is truly nothing beer than creang a business that brings joy to millions of people. Before the onslaught of mobile devices, it was near impossi- ble to break into, but now with the tools at our disposal, and outsourcing that is cheap and available, it’s easier than ever.

Lagos is waing and with it, the world. Go get em’ Tiger!.

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