Mobile Debaters is Back


In January we did an event in San Francisco called Mobile Debaters. Basically, we gathered the smartest people we could find, put them in front of a beer lubed audience, and got them to debate all things mobile.

It went really, really well. (See our recap of the last debate.)

So obviously we’re going to do it again.

Round 2 features debates like these guys and many more:

  • Bubba Muraka :: Partner // DFJ 
    Bubba Murarka is a Partner at DFJ, where his current responsibilities include leading early stage investments in consumer internet and mobile technology companies.
    Prior to joining DFJ, Bubba led product development for Facebook for Android and started the Facebook Home project. At Facebook, Bubba also led business development deals with key strategic partners including Microsoft, Netflix,Yahoo, Dentsu and Terra Networks. Previously, Bubba spent seven years in technical and product roles at Microsoft, where he acted as group program manager for Bing’s Bay Area development team, delivering components of Windows, MSN Toolbar with Windows Desktop Search and early versions of Bing Social. He started his career at Microsoft in Seattle as part of the original threedegrees team focused on social products.

  • Ankit Jain :: CEO, Founder // Quettra
    Ankit Jain is currently the CEO & Founder of Quettra, Inc, a startup in the mobile intelligence and big data space. Most recently, he was the Head of Search & Discovery for Google Play. He led the design and building of all of the algorithms and infrastructure that power the top lists, personalized recommendations and search engines in the Play Store. He joined Google via the acq­-hiring of the Cuil team. At Cuil, Ankit helped build several parts of a web search engine from scratch and also designed the real time and social search engines there. Ankit is very involved with the entrepreneurial community via the Startup Leadership Program. Ankit has a BS EECS and MS CS from UC Berkeley as well as a Certificate in Management of Technology from the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley. 

  • Sutha Kamal :: Former Founder, CEO // Massive Health
    Sutha is a product development and marketing entrepreneur and executive. He was the founder and CEO of Massive Health, a mobile health software company acquired by Jawbone. At Massive Health he led design and development of The Eatery app, chosen by Apple as one of the best of 2011. As a consultant, he’s worked on the design and development of several mobile and tablet apps, including for Foursquare and Flickr.

This time it’s April 23 6:00 - 9:00pm. 

You can get tickets at the eventbrite page and use the promocode TapstreamBlog to get 50% off.


When is No Marketing, The Best Marketing? (hint: never)


The joke goes, “on the golf course hold up a 2 iron in a lightning storm, because God can’t even hit a 2 iron.” So if you believe you’re the next WhatsApp, look up the odds of being struck by lightning and know your odds are probably worse.(* answer below). Interestingly, WhatsApp claims it became such a huge success without any ‘marketing’. Could it be that we’ve entered a business universe where the best marketing is no marketing at all?

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5 Tools Every App Marketer Should Use

Marketing is fast becoming as much science as it is art. Marketing as a speciality has only been around since the late 19th century. The word traces back to around 1884 according to the Old English Dictionary. We have “snake oil salesman”, Mad Men, and the book “Story Wars”, largely because of the art of marketing. Some might call it the “dark art” of marketing. It’s really the fine art of persuasion.

In a pre-digital universe, art and persuasion were mostly unmeasurable. Today it’s still about art and persuasion, but now you have a venerable toolkit of applications to measure the results of your marketing efforts. If you can test it, track it, measure it, and analyze it, you can always figure out how to improve it.

Here’s our list of 5 Tools Every App Marketer Should Use:

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Tapstream Gets a Facelift


Today we’re pushing out the new Tapstream experience. We’ve completely overhauled our dashboard user experience with a single focus: to help you make more money from your apps.

Every table and graph has been redesigned with that goal in mind. You will now see cohort information throughout our interface and totals for LTV (Lifetime Value) and several ARPU options (Average Revenue Per User).

Lets start with the new summary screen and the improved navigation.


The old tabs are gone and are replaced with a slick side navigation bar, featuring our new sections.

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Getting Users by Becoming More Social


Getting found is your biggest challenge. Getting your app found without breaking the user acquisition bank is still a huge quandary. Buying users from ad networks is getting more and more expensive. According to SuperData research “in the past two years, the cost per install on mobile increased from $1.30 in January, 2012, to $4.36 in December, an increase of 288%! That’s crazy. More importantly, the average revenue per mobile gamer has failed to keep pace: in that same period monthly spending grew 38%.”

There’s no point in despairing. Keep developing. It’s all about seeing your marketing efforts in a social light. The tools are here. It’s time create your own user acquisition channel by leveraging social dynamics, and getting your users or players to spread the word.

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Grow Your Mobile App with Kamo Webinar

This week we did a webinar with Kamo Asatryan of Revsmirk.

This is pretty exciting because the Revsmirk guys are really good at growth. From their site:

Revsmirk, based in San Francisco, is led by a founding team that has grown more than 200 products, some to as large as 110 million users, and profitably managed more than $150 million in ad spend across Facebook and other display networks on iOS, Android, and the web. We have helped develop in-house analytics systems and predictive lifetime value models. Our team has also optimized email campaigns that went out to over 250 million users.

The recording of the webinar (that we forgot to start until four minutes in- oops!) is below, but some of our favourite nuggets were:

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Tapstream’s Beautiful New Experience


This month we’re introducing something big we’ve been working on at the product team: a redesigned dashboard, built from the ground up to help you make more money.

Tapstream’s data volume has increased by 10x in the past 6 months. We’ve focused on scaling the service and maintaining our industry-leading link and API uptime (99.9995% trailing 3 months). But our interface – the tool you use to manage your app’s growth every day, 20 or 30 times a day for some of you – has been relatively static.

That’s changing in the coming weeks. We’re excited to show you some of the new Tapstream. As well as a design overhaul, the next release includes some much-requested features:

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The Art of Click Bait on Mobile


A few weeks ago, PwC came out with its Consumer Intelligence report dissecting the mobile advertising industry along with consumer attitudes towards mobile ads. Not too surprisingly, consumers are generally frustrated by the number of ads they receive each day on mobile devices which ‘interrupt’ their engagement. If that’s not frustrating enough, nearly 50% of survey respondents say that anytime they have tapped on a mobile ad, it was by accident. The chart below shows total respondents and the corresponding breakdown by age group:

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How to Personalize Your App’s First Run Experience


Guest post by Einar Vollset

It’s a common scenario; a customer is enticed to install your app (maybe from an email blast, maybe from a smart banner). They download the app and are then faced with a generic screen that has nothing to do with the reason they installed the app in the first place. The result is often confusion and quick app abandonment (that’s why so many users only use an app once).

Unfortunately, Apple has absolutely zero tools to help with this scenario; Apple steadfastly refuses to pass any hint to the app about where someone came from when they went to the App Store and downloaded your app.

Fortunately, there’s now a solution: deferred deep linking.

Here’s the scoop – instead of linking directly to the App Store, you link to a device fingerprinting service which will a) take a fingerprint of the device and then b) redirect to the App Store. Once your customer installs and launches the app, your app gets a callback from the fingerprinting service with information about which link the customer came in on.

What does that mean? So many options! For example:

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How to Use Facebook to Engage Users and Get More Downloads


Depending on who you talk to, mentioning Facebook - or Twitter for that matter - as a promotion tool for your app may garner some eye rolls and nasty comments. Developers are so focused on short term user acquisition that they often miss the opportunity to engage existing users and drive additional downloads through social. It doesn’t have to be painful or overly time consuming.

Rather than giving you a listicle or generic how-to post, we’ll take a look at two examples of Facebook pages and see what we can glean from these two different pages.

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