What Does It Take to Get to #1 in the App Store?

Logo quiz apps seem to be everywhere at the moment – you might not have played any, but if youre the kind of commuter who peeks over other passengers shoulders at their mobile screens, youll doubtless have encountered at least one of this recent wave. The idea is simple – the user is presented with a series of logos, badges or flags, and has to name the company, car manufacturer, or country.

Developed by a two-man team, game designer Al Boysan and programmer Bahadir Yerdelen, in just four days, Football Logo Quiz is one of these apps, centered around – as you might have guessed – the badges of football clubs.

Successful format

The app wasnt promoted at all, but within five days, it saw 37,500 daily downloads, and in less than a week, it was the #1 free app in the App Store. It didnt even make its original deadline, the finals of Euro 2012, due to Apple rejecting the app over an issue with licensing Premier League teams, which had to be removed.

So how did it get to the top spot?

“It wasnt our strategy to go for a big hit,” Boysan told Mobile Marketing. “We just got lucky. But I think it was successful because it was based on a previously successful format, combined with another popular theme, football. Its a formula the Americans have been using for years.”

The free app is monetised through in-app ads – which, according to Boysan, makes up 20-25 per cent of the revenues the game pulls in each day – and a set of in-app purchases, which can be used to buy text hints, stars to unlock higher levels, or just to make the ads go away.

Its notable that, given the option, the two have still havent given much thought to porting the game to Android.

“We know is that monetising games on Android is more about advertising, rather than sales,” said Boysan. “But it is an obvious avenue, along with Facebook games, when it comes to expanding the business.”

Back to 3D

Boysan and Yerdelin have released a variety of other apps in the past, as developer team Dirtymartini, but Football Logo Quiz wasnt put out under this brand – it was released under Yerdelins name. Thats because its very different to the type of app Dirtymartini normally makes, which are more complex 3D shooter games.

So, where next – back to 3D games or continue with these potentially lucrative quick hits?

“Well probably try out a few clones of the app, for different sports,” said Boysan. “But our primary long-term strategy is to keep making high-quality 3D games. We can predict better how well do with that, whereas this isnt very stable.”