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What is user acquisition? Say, you just made this mind-blowing app which addresses your users’ pain points. It also has a fantastic user experience! Everything is in place. Now, what? It should automatically become one of the viral apps but it hasn’t! What did you do wrong?

Well, nothing – I’d say (well, hoping you addressed all usability concerns). In other words, you made this “must-have app”, but you still need to promote it and spread the word! How else will people come to know about it?

Let’s look at how to go about it. So, how do you actually start promoting the app with the limited resources you have? For the sake of this article, we’re going to talk about promoting a “music streaming app”.

User Acquisition Plan for Music Streaming App

Problem statement:

Create an online user acquisition plan for a music streaming app in India.

Possible Goals of User Acquisition:

  1. Increase the number of Monthly Active Users (MAUs)
  2. Increase the number of paying users

Media and entertainment apps are dominating the mobile space. As the demand for mobile entertainment rises, it is logical that engagement will also rise. The recent trends in the market show how multiple players are entering the ecosystem as well as how Indians are still price sensitive. Therefore, you should look at increasing the number of monthly active users.


  1. Multiple players in the market (Gaana, Spotify, YouTube Music, JioSaavn, etc).
  2. The market is still growing. The Indian online music listening market is expected to surpass 273 million by March 2020.
  3. India is the largest smartphone market in the world after China with over 400 million users. 
  4. Indian consumers spend an average of 21.5 hours/week listening to music as opposed to the global average of 17.8 hours/week.
  5. According to TechSciResearch, 9/10 users in India are still unwilling to pay for online music listening services. 

Hence, you can focus on the user base. Provide premium trials for a limited period of time and enable the users to see the value offered by our services.

Market Research:

Possible Use cases:

  1. While traveling to work, school, etc.
  2. While driving.
  3. When trying to focus during writing/working.
  4. When relaxing at home or a holiday.
  5. During celebrations – festivities, parties, etc.
  6. While doing mundane tasks – cooking, cleaning, etc.
  7. When at a gym/working out/walking, etc.

Audience demographics and interests:

    1. Look for correlation factors. For instance, users who consume audio content are also interested in consumer goods and retail – Amazon, Groupon, Aliexpress, etc.
    2. Audience demographics (available on Facebook Audience Insights, Alexa, or any competitor research tool):  Data for Age, Gender, Education Level, Job Title, Relationship Status, Location, Languages, and Devices.

Keyword Research:

Also, find the keywords for which the app is ranking right now and make a list of keywords you would like your app to rank for.

Hypothetical User Persona:

Name: Amit

Age: 20 yrs

Education: In college

City: Delhi, IN

Device: Android

Use case: Likes listening to music while traveling to college, working on college assignments and studying. Also, listens to Hindi and Tamil music. Likes to listen to free music but is unaware of the value offered by paid services.

Pain point: Wants new, fresh and updated high-quality audio content. Would also like regional audio content to be updated regularly.



  1. App Store Optimization
    1. Increase search visibility by ranking for “high traffic and relevant” keywords like “online music”, “play songs”, etc.
    2. Rank for competitor keywords on Android & iOS.
    3. Experiment with keywords based on regional artists, etc.
    4. Experiment with artists based and use-case based screenshots.

Paid: Since it is both a search based and browse based query, try both push and pull marketing.

  1. Pull: Apple Search Ads, Google Search Ads
  2. Push: Google Display Ads, Facebook Ads (Facebook + Instagram – due to the detailed targeting options available); experiment with different interests, demographics, custom audiences, and lookalike audiences.
  3. Influencer Marketing: Work with artists to influence their fan following.

Creatives (App Store screenshots and ads):

  1. Author/artist based creatives (e.g. Gaana creatives).
  2. Use-case based creatives (e.g. Spotify creatives).
  3. Focus on differentiating features like exclusive artists, a wide range of content, and personalization.
  4. Experiment with different creatives – video, images, carousels, etc.


KPIs to measure the performance of user acquisition activities:

App Store Optimization KPIs:

  1. App Store Rankings
  2. Top charts Ranking
  3. Category Ranking
  4. Keyword Ranks
  5. Conversion Rate: Impression to Install, Product Page View to Install

Customer Acquisition Metrics:

  1. Customer Acquisition Cost: (# of users acquired)/(the total cost of online marketing activities on different platforms)
  2. Cost Per Acquisition/Cost Per Install: cost to acquire 1 customer (platform wise & total)
  3. Retention Rate: (# of users who use the app at the end of a time period)/(# of users who used the app at the beginning of the time period). 
  4. Churn Rate: 1 – Retention Rate
  5. Lifetime Value of a customer: (avg. value of conversion) * (avg. # of conversions in a time frame) * (avg customer lifetime) 
  6. Daily Active Users (DAU) and Monthly Active Users (MAU)
  7. Stickiness: DAU/MAU
  8. Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) and Average Revenue Per Paying User (ARPPU)
  9. Return on Investment (ROI): (Gain from the investment – the cost of investment)/(cost of investment)
  10. Free to Paid Conversion Rate

Results and Optimization:

Subsequently, on the basis of experimental results, fine-tune the campaigns to find the optimal platform, keywords, audience, and creatives.

Above all, it all boils down to one word – conjecture. You start with a theory and an idea of what will work for you and keep on reiterating based on the results.

Furthermore, an effective app promotion plan not only measures downloads but also what happens after the user installs your app. Look at the entire funnel – from impressions to uninstall to understand how users traverse through your app and how you can refine it. It is also advisable to keep checking industry benchmarks to gauge where do you stand.

What factors do you keep in mind while making a user acquisition plan for your app? We’d love to hear. Pop in and say hello or write to us at [email protected]

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