PreApps looks to generate prelaunch buzz for apps

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It usually begins with an e-mail invitation to an event, whose contents are dissected and interpreted by media and bloggers about a possible product announcement. Speculation builds over a series of weeks until, on the appointed day, TV news shows around the world feast on every moment leading up to and following the grand unveiling. By the time consumers can buy whatever's announced, they are ready to line up around the block. This is how it tends to work for Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) when it launches, say, the iPhone 5. But even Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA) and Rovio Entertainment don't enjoy this kind of pre-launch buzz, leaving the average developer to wonder how he or she could ever generate advance interest in his or her apps.

Last month, PreApps, a small Boston-based startup, said it would soon be offering the first platform on which developers could use social media techniques to attract consumers before their products hit app stores. Its core offering will include apps listing services, tips and tricks for early marketing campaigns and the ability to have interested consumers sign up to offer feedback during the development cycle or to get an app the moment it's released. "We're trying to bring the same tools that the app stores would offer but before you would actually put anything in the store," said Sean Casto, PreApps' founder. Feature

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