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DECEMBER - 19 - 2014

So, as you may know, we recently published Moon Runner onto the Google Play Store. Only a few days later, without any fanfare or advertising on our part, we received three, unsolicited e-mails from three different companies all offering to "help" us out with visibility, likes and downloads.

I don't know if these are real marketing companies, phishing scams or something altogether different.

My initial instinct is to ignore them completely, but the logical part of me is admittedly curious. I mean, visibility in such a saturated marketplace is key, right? How does one get their product into the eyes of reviewers and possible users?

Just refreshing the Google Play store's front page yields around 10 or so new titles published every day. Now, those are only the titles that make it to the front page, which means they're generally put out by major developers. I'm willing to guess that at least twice as many apps are actually published per day, which makes for a pretty crowded market.

How is a startup supposed to get any attention in that situation?

My gut reaction to the e-mails we got was negative, and I had to question why.

If the e-mails were actually from real marketing firms, then that means they send out unsolicited e-mails to every single new developer that publishes anything to the app store, without exception. That just makes me feel icky.

I picture a bot, sifting and spidering through the metadata and populating a form e-mail before sending it to each and every default contact before waiting for someone to grab the bait.

I wonder how much money they would want for their services. I wonder if it would actually help get some eyes on our product or website.

For as much as I railed against in-app advertising in the last post, I recognize (and it kills me) that adveritising works. Ad revenue built Google up into the behemoth it is today. Ad revenue makes Youtube stars like Pewdiepie and his ilk into millionaires.

I don't have to like it, but that's the fact of the matter.

Well, in the name of science (or at least to sate my burning curiosity) I'm going to go ahead and reply to those e-mails. I'll post my findings here.



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