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BigBuddy's App$ = $$$$$ - Case Study [Designer Wallpaper App - iOS & Android]

Discussion in 'Mobile Marketing' started by sagarpatil, Nov 5, 2014.

  1. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    Hey guys,

    tl;dr

    I was inspired by BigBuddy's thread and decided to try my luck at developing mobile apps.

    Wallpaper One - Easily preview, download and use premium designer wallpapers made by famous artists on the web! We went through thousands of artists and wallpapers, handpicked the best so you don't have to.

    You can download it from the links below - FREE
    Apple App Store: http://bit.ly/wallpaperone-ios
    Google Play Store: http://bit.ly/wallpaperone-android


    The Long Version:

    Research

    I came across Big Buddy's thread and bumped into another wallpaper app that was sold on Flippa for $100k and was making $1k per day. I spoke to the owner and figured out how his business model worked and verified the earnings over teamviewer.

    I did some research using sensortower.com and appannie.com and thought I could do it better than him. That was about it. I started right away.

    I downloaded some 20 wallpaper apps, wrote down all their features, where they were getting their images from and reverse engineered their working.


    Design

    Did some scribbling on my own, check out the screenshots/wireframes here -
    http://i.imgur.com/kkme7FL.png
    http://i.imgur.com/jzztIPN.png
    http://i.imgur.com/coGrmcx.png


    Next, I assembled a team. I had 2 close friends who were app developers (iOS and Android developer). I explained the concept to them and they were sold, just like that.

    We all sat down and worked on the framework, curating images, storing it, in app purchases, image copyright, technical difficulties, third party api's to be used and so on.

    I wrote down a detailed document that included all the above discussion. We were hooked to the idea.

    I used to run a creative agency before and was thinking I would hire an UI designer and get the designs done from him/her. I spoke to few people on dribbble, most of them quoted $2k and above. It didn't make any sense to me.

    I spent a day learning how to design for mobile apps, downloaded few UI templates (paid) and icons from thenounproject (paid) and created the first version of app UI. It was pretty basic so the developers could understand the flow.
    Screenshots -
    http://i.imgur.com/Ox9UQEc.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/1ukJW55.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/iHeKW5s.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/yKSCpXv.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/6N9M2Qc.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/Ok0HRB0.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/Lh7Eb0i.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/eZkmDgF.jpg
    and there were more...

    We all met again, the developers worked on how they would hack together the whole system.

    Development

    We spent the next 2 months writing the code and integrating 3rd party API's

    Integrating 3rd party API's
    We used Parse SDK for our backend (storing images, push notifs, analytics), Crashlytics for crash reporting, Social Media API's - FB, Twitter, Instagram, Whatsapp etc.
    We hired our close friends/programmers to test our app, fixed lots of issues.

    And after 3 months of hard work we were finally ready with our final build.

    Uploading to the app store

    We hadn't anticipated this would be the hardest part, only for iOS though.

    I created a logo under an hour
    Screenshot
    http://i.imgur.com/HSD8tZ5.jpg
    Yeah, that's the best I could do, other designers were asking me $100+ for the logo itself.

    Apple requires you upload 5 screenshots for 3.5, 4, 4.7 and 5.5 inches, that's 20 screenshots. This took like forever.
    Screenshots
    http://bit.ly/1plv11i
    http://bit.ly/1uvmDyk
    http://bit.ly/1okrO1m
    http://bit.ly/1uvmM4R
    http://bit.ly/1zwbkHn

    And ofcourse the new app preview video which you can only create on Yosemite using an iPhone device.
    Video Preview - http://on.fb.me/1x8kcR0

    Then there was writing the description, studying ASO to come up with keywords we could rank for and 100 other things.

    Monetization


    I have placed Banner Ads, Interstitial ads (displayed after downloading 3 wallpapers in a row).
    Screenshot - http://i.imgur.com/PGtGU27.png


    In App Purchases - Users can remove ads by paying $0.99

    The wait

    We uploaded our first binary to app store and two days later realized there were a typo, we pulled it down and uploaded a new version.

    Screenshot:
    http://i.imgur.com/jsDnuck.png

    Then Apple took their own sweet time to review the app, there was a lot of going back and forth.


    Pre-Release

    During the waiting period, I put together a website http://wallpaperone.in, collected emails from friends and family, so I could notify them when the app was live. I was able to get 60 double opt-ins.

    Launch Day (Today)

    Our app is finally live in App Store and Play store, I was talking to a BHW member abracadabra before launch on how we could promote our app using FB and Twitter Ads.
    Both of us spoke couple of times and had a launch strategy ready.

    On launch day, I'm spending $200 on facebook and twitter ads, $100 everyday for next 6 days and then probably $10 everyday.

    Countries I'm targeting - USA, UK, Australia, Canada, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Singapore, Italy, France, Japan, South Korea, Sweden and Russia.

    I also plan to open social media accounts on FB, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Tumblr and publish 3-4 wallpapers a day for next 3-6 months, link them to my app so they can download more images.


    Post Launch

    After 10-15 days of launch, we plan to localize our app into other languages. Launch an iPad version and see where the journey takes us.


    Experience

    I have been developing websites for last 12 years and this was my first time working on developing an app, thanks to BigBuddy for all the inspiration.
    We had a great time working together and thoroughly enjoyed our journey.


    Your Feedback

    I know this isn't probably our best effort, but we just wanted to get out there and try things.
    I'd love to hear any feedback you guys have.


    Finally, go ahead, download the app (its free) and have fun. Leave a 5 star review if you like the app :)
    Apple App Store: http://bit.ly/wallpaperone-ios
    Google Play Store: http://bit.ly/wallpaperone-android

    Feeling inspired? Hit thanks and leave a comment :)
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 33
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2014
  2. BuildMoreLinks

    BuildMoreLinks Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    now this is a fantastic post, really got inspired.
    How much was your budget and the two app developers were they paid? - Its fine if you dont answer.
     
  3. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    We did not spend much except for the marketing. Developers get paid %age of profits.

     
  4. BuildMoreLinks

    BuildMoreLinks Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Very cool, so they are partners in the app. Also what was the maximum time spent on? was it the coding part or the design part? And did Apple take a month to review the app after submission?
     
  5. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    Coding of course. Design was like 20% of the total time. Not a month, they rejected our app for some common reasons which we fixed later.
     
  6. Vrill

    Vrill BANNED BANNED

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    You didnt wrote anything about your aso which is the most important part i guess after promotion.
     
  7. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    I read a lot of blogs from sensortower, collected everything I could and worked on ASO. If this takes off, I will probably hire an ASO company.
     
  8. nikiobicata

    nikiobicata Regular Member

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    How did you plan to make money from this Wallpaper app?
    Thank you for this post
     
  9. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    In App purchases - $0.99 to remove ads
    Google Adsense Ads at the bottom.
     
  10. nikiobicata

    nikiobicata Regular Member

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    Thanks. I wish you good luck in this journey :)
     
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  11. powlow29

    powlow29 Power Member

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    Very good thread. Will Download your app on google play and rate it 5/5
    I'm also trying my luck with apps but just editing source codes in bulk. Currently only making in average $2 per day. Let's see how it goes
     
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  12. jegzz

    jegzz Newbie

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    Nice man. I want to get my hands in apps soon as well. I work for an app developer but Im just a salesperson there so I don't know all the technicalities. Seems to be bit too confusing right now lol.
     
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  13. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    Thanks buddy and I wish you the very best.
     
  14. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    Who do you think I am? A sales guy. If you really wanna do it, just jump right into it and don't give up.
     
  15. Ricky Roma

    Ricky Roma Regular Member

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    What about copyright? Did you ask authors for permission? Do Google/Apple care about that when they approve apps?
     
  16. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    All images are licensed by Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0), more information here - https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode
    The original creators of the images are credited for every image once you click on image title, here's a screenshot - http://i.imgur.com/1bJzvm1.jpg
    We also have a DMCA notice in the app, we are doing pretty much the same as other apps.
     
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  17. Aatrox

    Aatrox Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Damn. You really put some effort into this and I wish you guys all the best. Nice work!
     
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  18. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    Why, Thank you!
     
  19. sagarbest

    sagarbest Senior Member

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    Awesome post, this gave me some inspiration ! Moving ahead with my app idea... Thnx :D
     
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  20. sagarpatil

    sagarpatil Regular Member

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    Go for it! Good luck.