App development · Marketing

Community-driven apps – how to find users?

Marcin Brukiewicz Full-stack dev & MD

September 8th, 2019

How can an app gain as many users as possible before the upcoming launch?


We have developed an app that is supposed to be community-driven – it has no real value without the users, but once the user are on the platform the potential user's profits can be significant.


Our app is however a bit different from other apps that depends on the users – it is not free. We provide a 30 (thinking about 60) days of free trial so user can decide whether it really suits his/her needs.


We have developed a "Coming soon" page where the user can sign up and be notified via email when we launch. We however do not have any other ideas other than this, thinking that this has to heavily rely on ads. What's worse is that our budget is very limited at this stage – both of us do it after our regular jobs.


I would love to hear some advice and maybe connect with someone who really knows about ways we can target potential user, gain their attention and encourage to try us out.

Peter V Creativity is my thunder

September 9th, 2019

1) I would suggest you change the free trial to 90 days + provide free basic tier.

2) Reach out to influencers that your audience is watching/listening to and offer them your app for free. Ask them to review your app and share their findings with their audience.

3) If your users are community - where do they gather? Find out and go meet with them, do regular presentation on the topic of how your product addresses their needs (both online and offline).

4) What kind of information your potential users are looking for? Start publishing content on that topic/s

5) Find Facebook/Google groups that talk about the problem that you are solving and try helping them find a solution to the problems they are facing. Reach out, but don’t pitch. Ask for advice how to improve your app or attract more community members.

6) Write PR articles announcing the release of your app and send them to free media outlets. Identify the right publications and right journalists. Identify the journalists who write the kind of articles you would like to be in. Read several of their articles before pitching them. If you can’t identify what they want, then your pitch is likely to get rejected.

7) Content, content, content (youtube, podcasts, Medium, LinkedIn Articles, FB posts, IG, other social media that your target group is on) ... rinse and repeat until you find what makes your audience attracted to your messages.

Mr. Kelly Johnson Looking for Co-founder

September 10th, 2019

I'll 2nd... er.... 3rd the need for a free version.

I don't trust free trials. 30 days, 90 days, doesn't matter. I will always click away if I can. I think charging monthly turns away the customers that might want to use your system passively.


I'm of the belief there are usually better ways to make revenue than charging the user at all directly, let alone monthly. Just takes a little innovative outside the box thinking to identify the better ways.



Nikola Stojkov Software Engineer.

September 9th, 2019

Sounds like a chicken and egg problem - you need users for the app to have value, and you need the app to have value in order to get users.


I'd try incorporating a free tier and/or other incentives to register. These don't have to be directly monetary, maybe free memberships down the line etc.

Now this won't do anything on it's own, so make a plan for the incentives and try doing a PR campaign; Depending on the app, there might be value in contacting journalists directly to let them know about it.


Also lots of written content(blogs, social media, linkedin) wouldn't hurt.

Brendan LaCorte Sales and Marketing founder working on a startup now looking for an experienced web developer.

September 12th, 2019

Find an influencer to help you market it in your particular space and give them a percentage of whatever customers become paying customers on an on going to basis.

Jay Business Development consultant, Product Design Consultant. Fashtech, ecommerce

Last updated on September 9th, 2019

Dear Marcin

there is very less info to give to a relevant actionable suggestions. a lot depends on industry.

in brief

find the demand side fake the supply or create it yourself.

if you can find the paying demand side, supply side is easy to find or build.