We are very honored to have “Mo” founder of Mega Rock Studios as our guest blogger today! We met Mo in Chad Mureta’s App Empire Course last summer and Mo has been one of our super rock star performers! We are excited to have him share his huge success story with us! Thank you Mo and we hope you’ll check out his amazing apps!
Thanks to Judy for the awesome opportunity to share today. Personally, I have learned a lot from some previous contributors, so just looking to continue the vibes. Let’s get right into it!
1) About You
Please call me MO… feeling a little shy about having my name blasted across the internet, so that will do for now :). I was born & raised in Brooklyn, New York, enjoy tasty food of all genres, and hold a Masters of Science in App Ninjitsu (not entirely true).
2) Your games, services and/or strategies
After releasing our first app to the store June 15, 2012. Mega Rock LLC has now released 20+ apps with more ton the way. Just search for Mega Rock, LLC on the app store to check us out! As you might gather, a key component of our strategy is releasing a F@(%LOAD OF APPS! (technical term) Many thanks to Carter Thomas, Trey Smith, and Chad Mureta for the guidance and inspiration.
3) What you’ve learned
I have learned a ton thus far and continue to learn more each day. Can you tell I love this stuff!! One super important lesson is the importance of the icon. This might seem like a cop out, but I truly believe it is your #1 “free” marketing tool. If your icon can stand out on a page of 20 others, you will definitely get traffic & downloads. If not, you will likely have low downloads and all the facebook & twitter in the world cant rescue you. So important to nail all the fundamentals and give yourself a built-in advantage over other apps. BONUS: I wouldn’t even call this a tip as much as a business fundamental. Not original in the least (thanks Trey!), but it’s TRUE… When you are producing an app, always ask yourself the question: “Is this better than Angry Birds?” Now that might sound a little crazy since we are talking arguably the most famous app of all time, but you need to ask the question. This does not mean that you need to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars (check my cost numbers below), but if you are missing big on any of the key elements (design quality, fun/usefulness, gameplay, ease of use, etc), it will be hard for your app to take off. I could keep typing about this all day, but alas… more to come on my soon to be launched blog at megarockstudios.com (one day I have this website finished … but to that point, pay attention to where you spend your time, think about how those things align with your goals… and then focus on those things which will most positively impact your results!)
4) Success numbers – ROI
I would prefer not to explicitly discuss my revenue numbers in such a public forum, but things have been pretty cool. To give some perspective, my day job pays a salary considered pretty decent in today’s America, but for the last 1.5 months app revenue has doubled day job salary. Generally I am spending $500-$1000 on each game and looking to recover this cost within a month (typically happens faster). Given these economics, the more I spend on apps, the more I will make (so I am trying to spend ALOT). Working out pretty well :) Lest you buy into this myth of overnight success too much, I will also share that my first 2 months I did not break the $100 threshold and my next 3 months, I did not break the $2000 threshold. The lesson here is to stay in the game and continue taking action every day. Many of these actions will be incredibly wrong, but you will learn 1000% more than you will learn from poring over any chart or blog (including my wonderful “words of wisdom” :-P). If you can manage to control costs so that you do not bankrupt yourself, you are bound to eventually “get it”, at which point you can start focusing on acceleration. Love seeing people hit this magic moment (Shout out to my good friend Mario!)
5) Tips for our audience/readers
There are so many ways I could go with this… let’s choose one. While you are learning the game, you will make progress the quickest if you identify a proven, repeatable business model and then execute it to the max. It’s not the only way to do things, but probably the quickest and surest. Innovation is really cool, but also a very risky business. This is why the biggest tech firms must spend hundreds of millions each year on R&D. Though some of those innovative products will change the world, many will go bust. If you are doing something “the world has never seen before”, that is awesome, but understand that it is also much more likely to fail. And failure is not inherently a bad thing, as it is often the time you can learn the most, but if you are working with limited budget like myself, it might behoove you to pursue a string of higher percentage plays which “buy you the right” to take bigger risks once your business is generating strong revenue.
6) Ah-Ha Moments
The week of December 1 I had 3 games go live, causing my revenues to jump 10x. This validated for me that games are the easiest apps to monetize in today’s market. Right now, more games = more impressions + IAP = more revenue, so at this point, rule #1 is to push product (coincidentally the same as rules #2-5). Make sure you understand how to launch a profitable product before you start making a ton of them though!
7) Contact info/links/website/twitter/facebook fan pages, etc. Best place to see my apps is on the app store by searching for Mega Rock, LLC. Also feel free to drop me a line through my contact form at megarockstudios.com (the only part of our website currently in use :)). I will try to get back to you as soon as it is possible to do so.
Guess that’s all I’ve got for now. Sorry if that was brief.. the week has been pretty hectic and I am spent! Feel free to email me any questions you have and look out for our blog, coming soon!