Google Beta Testing:
Google Play's Beta program is a great way to test your game before it goes live to the public. During the beta testing period, you can see how large groups of players interact with your game and use that information to perfect your product. Once you've set everything up, you'll want to decide what kind of testing to use. Google offers three options: Internal testing, Closed testing, and Open testing. Internal testing is only available for people inside of your organization, closed testing is available for a larger group of testers and isn't publicly available and Open testing will make pre-release versions of your game available on the Google Play store. It’s a great way to do a proper soft launch and also the games in the beta testing program will not get reviews on the store, so you have plenty of time to fix any bugs.
App Store Optimization:
When you are in the soft launch phase, you need to make sure you’ve got the most appealing app store pages possible. The algorithms in app stores always rank apps against keywords, their descriptions, and their titles. The soft launch is the best time to start with keyword research and to optimize app store visuals. Focus on a different icon, screenshots, and feature image and test them multiple times to improve conversion rates and therefore decrease your game’s cost per install, a very important metric on the first steps of your user acquisition strategy.
User Acquisition strategy:
Creating a user acquisition strategy for a soft launch is a little bit different from an app that already has several users and wants to scale. First, you need to know how many new players need to download your game every day in order for you to be able to make statistically data-driven decisions. To reach a decent number of players, start running broad campaigns using Facebook, Google, or Ad Networks. After a few days/weeks when the media sources also have enough data, they will be able to start targeting users that might have a better interest in your mobile game.
Diversifying your user acquisition portfolio is one of the most important parts of the growth and monetization stage because different channels will bring you different users and also different ROI (Return on Investment), you need to find which is a better fit for you. Soft-launching allows developers to collect data, identify bugs and receive early feedback from players. But the soft launch period isn’t just for testing the product. UA teams should be using this time period to test and optimize every aspect of marketing. Pay attention to the Retention, Daily Active Users, Average Revenue Per User, etc…
Doing a soft launch with an efficient user acquisition campaign is not an easy job, those few points are just to provide you a little bit of context on how you need to be on top of every detail when doing this step with your mobile game. Gladly, the Rocket Lab team has already helped several developers to have their successful soft launches with customized strategies. If you also want to build your own get in touch with us, we will be happy to help.