In 2019, we saw a record of 204 billion downloaded apps worldwide.
According to the App Annies’ report on The State of Mobile in 2020, consumers still actively seek for new mobile applications.
The fast development of mobile technology has transformed the way we live and work. Except for staying entertained, healthy and educated, now people also leverage the mobile app industry to earn money.
This is why they turn to creating app ideas and selling them to companies.
However, today having a brilliant idea is simply not enough since the competition is huge. About 3739 applications are being added only to the Google Play Store daily.
To help you successfully find a buyer for your app idea, we’ve put together a list of five key steps to follow.
Read on and find out what to do before you reach out to potential companies as well as where to find them.
1. Make A Thorough Research
Before you send your pitch to a company, make sure you deeply research the app market, competitors and user base.
This will help you collect useful data that will allow you to make a strong plan and tell the potential buyers why they should invest in your idea.
Here is what to pay attention to:
- Study the app market: At the end of 2019, there were 2.57 million apps in Google Play Store and 1.84 million apps in Apple App Store. With such a huge number of mobile applications, you should find out whether there are any similar to the one you invented. Then, you should discover if they are free or paid, what features they include and in which stores they are available.
- Make an analysis of the competition: Ask yourself whether your concept is unique and how it is similar or different from your competitors’ apps.: how are those apps better or worse than yours? That will allow you to grind out a much clearer pitch, improve your idea and make your app have a few unique pieces that make it irresistible.The way the industry leaders are promoting their apps, the monetization strategies they use are important factors to consider.
- Inspect the audience: You should also collect as much info as possible about the people who are likely to use your application. Put yourself in their shoes and study the audience for your competition. This will help you discover distinctive characteristics about the app user base including gender, age, likes and dislikes and location.
The more information you’ve collected, the better business plan you can create. And gathering relevant data can be the key to making a successful deal.
2. Create A Business Concept
For you to sell your app idea, you need to put together an effective business concept. In other words, you will need to document the project and display a comprehensible business plan.
The key factors you should focus on include:
- Describing the app: Start your business plan by providing the primary features and functionalities of your application. Make sure you explain everything into detail so that you give the potential buyers a better idea about your pitch.
- Providing its benefits: Tell these companies what problems your application solves and how it is beneficial for the world. This will help you make your idea more compelling.
- Telling why it stands out: Explain the similarities and differences between your application and those of your competitors. However, ensure that you put a focus on telling why your app is better by providing proof. Hiring a copywriter to polish your business and marketing plan may not be a bad idea – after all you only have one chance to catch the attention of the company you are pitching to.
- Putting together a monetization strategy: Include a strategy that will show how the prospective buyers can make money with your app. The monetization methods you provide will mainly depend on the type of application and how your audience uses it.
3. Put a promotion plan in place
An app’s success is all about launch, promotion and the finer execution of your plan. Think about content, and the journey all the way from user acquisition down to the Loyalty program you use to make those users stick around..
Develop a marketing strategy that will detail exactly the channels, audience and way the app will be promoted. This is also a part of the competitive research. Knowing the market, knowing the promotion and thus your slide deck with breath examples and numbers.
The app marketplace(s) should never be your only promotional channel. We rather want an omni-channel approach that makes the most use of the strengths of each channel, including your pre-launch. Email marketing is such a combined service, transactional and promotional channel. There are a lot of cheap email marketing software tools that can follow up with full email marketing and push notification campaign planning.
Find out the most effective ways to other similar apps and Saas providers have been working and you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. “Steal” some of their best ideas and expand the value of your app by expanding the app’s reach.
Obviously App use, reuse and user attrition are things to look at, as well as the way to reactivate your unengaged users through channels like email. Similarly, your push notification strategy is the mark of a well thought out plan.
With high use of low cost channels, the budget and Customer Acquisition Costs turn positive and your plan stands out.
4. Create A Prototype
If you can afford, it is highly recommended that you create a visual mock-up of your concept. This will give the potential buyers a better idea of your app since it will function like a real digital model that is clickable and usable.
It will demonstrate the visual look and functionalities, but it won’t include the working code. The more you are able to show, the higher will be the chances that these prospective companies turn into buyers.
If you are an app developer then you can create the prototype yourself. If not, you can search for a professional web design company to build it for you. In that case, you can expect to pay between $500 – $5000, depending on the app complexity.
5. Think About The Cost
It is difficult to determine the price of an app idea until it is fully implemented because many different factors should be taken into account.
The app category can be a key element in defining the final price because some types of applications can bring businesses more money than others depending on their popularity.
For instance, according to Statista, the most popular app category of Google Play Store in March 2020 was games with 13.35% of available apps worldwide. Educational apps were the second most popular category with an 8.95% share.
This means that if your app idea belongs to some of these niches it will be worth much more than some categories that are ranked lower.
Then, other factors can include app development cost and possible monetization strategies.
Furthermore, there are two ways you can charge for selling the app concept:
- Flat fee: This includes a one-time charge and after you get paid you are not involved with the app anyhow.
- Percentage fee: This includes being paid after every sale the owner makes.
Which plan you choose is totally up to your wishes and the contract you create with the buyer.
6. Find Potential Buyers Or Investors
Once you’ve made a business concept, the next step to take is to look for companies that might be interested in buying your idea.
Create a template for your business concept or a presentation and include data properly using charts and diagrams.
Then, visit the following places to meet potential buyers:
- Private equity markets: One way you can find prospective investors is by contacting companies that actually deal with purchasing business ideas. To do so, simply head over to search engines or forums like Reddit and you will get relevant results. However, bear in mind that your success will depend on how strong your business concept is. The more submissions you make, the higher will be the chances to shake hands with a partner.
- Business angel networks: By registering on platforms like Angel Investment Network, Funded.com or Angel Capital Association you can find an investor who can offer you money for your idea. Even if you don’t find a partner here, you can still establish connections that can introduce you to various business circles.
- Professional social media channels: Social platforms like LinkedIn, Plaxo and Xing focus on professional networking. So, you can use them to find a potential buyer. Visit these channels and create profiles. Then add as many contacts as you can and post your idea regularly. To increase your visibility you need your social channel profiles to be active. Post regularly and look for the best times to post on these platforms. You can use social media posting tools to automate posting.
If by any chance you decide to implement the idea yourself, then make sure you turn to:
- Crowdfunding platforms: These platforms have a lot of users who support projects and ideas by donating money. They can either help you raise money or they might also be interested in buying your concept. These platforms include Kickstarter, Pererbackers, Indiegogo, RocketHub and OurCrowd.
- Startup platforms: Another way you can turn your concept into reality is by visiting startup service websites. Simply register on sites like Startup.co and Gust.com. and post your idea. Similarly to crowdfunding platforms, here you can find investors who can help you collect money for your project.
The mobile app technology is booming. Thousands of apps are being added on both Google Play and Apple App stores every day.
This has inspired many people to start investing their time in developing app ideas and pitching them to companies as a way to make money.
However, with so many newly released apps in various categories, the competition is huge, and having a good idea and a great app UX design is not enough.
To successfully sell it, you need to create a strong strategy that will help you make your idea irresistible and end in the right hands.
To do so, make sure you follow these steps:
- Make a thorough market, competition and user base research
- Create a business concept that includes relevant data
- Create an application prototype
- Think about how much you would charge
- Find potential buyers or investors
Before you start searching for a prospective company, try to test your idea by using advertising campaigns. This will help you study the audience’s behavior and will increase the chances of selling the idea.