Archive for May, 2010

Iron Man Fun With an iPad

Friday, May 7th, 2010

I got this silly idea, just in time for the Iron Man 2 premier:

I created a couple images for it by grabbing a screenshot from the trailer, adjusting the color a bit for my skin tone, and darkening around the edges to make it blend:

Here’s what you need to do:

  • download the images to your computer
  • put them in a folder in the picture directory that iTunes uses
  • connect your iPad to your computer
  • in iTunes, go to the Photos tab and be sure the folder you created is included
  • sync your iPad
  • go to Settings -> Picture Frame on your iPad
  • set it to use the new folder you synced
  • now hit the picture frame button when you turn on your iPad
  • amuse your friends with the fact that you turned a $500 device into a costume prop


Google AdWords Results

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

I started running a Google AdWords campaign on Saturday using a free $100 credit I got from Google. The bottom line: Man, I’m glad I’m not spending my own money! But, I did find out some interesting stuff.

The chart shows how many units per day I’ve sold of Mach Dice (the amazing dice rolling app for the iPhone and related devices, buy it now!), how much went into advertising, and how many people clicked on the ad. I also included the previous week of data for context. For some reason, Saturday seems to be the biggest selling day.

As you can see, the first couple days didn’t seem to make much of a difference. And they cost a lot! But by the third day (May 3) I figured out how to limit how much it would bid per ad. (Note to self: spending $1.10 for someone to click on an ad for a $0.99 app is not good business.) Also, I changed the link from my Mach Dice web page to the iTunes purchase link. I actually prefer the former link because it’s got a video and everything. But I’ve heard that in sales, one of the most important principles is to reduce the number of clicks that a potential customer needs to make in order to purchase something. So, while I like my video and want people to see it, people are possibly more likely to purchase the app if they’re taken directly to the iTunes store.

I don’t have sales numbers for yesterday (Tuesday, May 4) yet, but so far 142 people have clicked on the ad, so that’s a pretty good sign, right?

How to Say “iPhone” on Google AdWords without Saying “iPhone”

Monday, May 3rd, 2010

I’ve mentioned a few times that I’ve tried using Google AdWords to advertise my apps. It seems a little counter-intuitive to spend over $1 per click to advertise something that at most gets me $0.70 per purchase. But hey, Google gave me a free $100 credit so I might as well try to use it.

But for the longest time I couldn’t manage to get Google to accept my ads. At first, they didn’t like my use of the trademarked term “iPhone” in the ad, which makes it difficult to sell an app that’s only available on iPhone OS devices. So then I tried using “iPhoneâ„¢” but no luck. Finally, I hit on the idea of putting the ad only on iPhones and related devices and saying “this device”. Sure, it’s a little kludgey. But at least the ad is making out there and I’m using my free credit. In a few days I’ll see if it’s worth while.