Tag Archives: media

PlaceIt.net

Last year, I wrote a tutorial about creating screenshots for app stores for RayWenderlich.com. In the tutorial, I mentioned using a website called PlaceIt.net because they have a great variety of options and pricing to fit every budget (yes, even Free). Today, I want to take you through step-by-step on how to fully utilize their site to create amazing promotional material for your apps and games.

placeit

PlaceIt.net lets you upload app screenshots, images, URLs, videos, or screen captures (using RecordIt) into beautiful photographs and videos to help advertise and promote your product or brand.

Still Images

You can sort by devices, interactive video, still shots, video, multistage, etc. and then it will list the require resolution needed to fill the stage. You can choose to drag and drop an image, upload it, or even just provide the URL to the image you’d like to insert. If your image doesn’t fit perfectly, you can adjust the cropping to completely fill the area.

https://placeit.net/#!/stages/girl-using-iphone-6-and-imac-at-office
https://placeit.net/#!/stages/girl-using-iphone-6-and-imac-at-office

Once you’re happy with the result, you can choose to Add Effects or Download. When you click download, you’re given the options for the Small Free Version, the High-Res Commercial, or Super High-Res Extended Commercial versions.

downloadplaceit

Depending on your desired use, you’ll have to determine which version you’d like. If you’re unsure of the differences, you can click the “Not sure which license is the best for you?” link and it will explain each license in detail.

placeitlicense

Videos

There is where PlaceIt.net really shines. Sorting by Video, I chose a panning video that would show my children’s book app, Maddie Bear’s Birthday, running on an iPad. I didn’t have a pre-recorded video handy, so I clicked on the Record Your Screen option. This allowed me to download RecordIt, and record the iOS Simulator running on my computer.

https://placeit.net/#!/stages/ipad-on-wooden-kitchen-table?background=192_vi&f_types=video
https://placeit.net/#!/stages/ipad-on-wooden-kitchen-table?background=192_vi&f_types=video

Once complete, the video uploaded and I was able to view and download it. Here you see the free version that I downloaded, which has a watermark on it. Paid downloads do not contain watermarks.

Pricing

Pricing on PlaceIt.net varies depending on the type of media, license, and if you choose a subscription plan or single purchase. Still images range from Free to $59 USD for single purchases and videos range from Free to $189 USD for single purchases. If you you know you’re going to need to download a few pieces of media, it’s worth signing up for a subscription plan. Plans range from $12 a month to $299 a month depending on how many you’re going to need on a monthly basis.

Since they have pricing ranging from free for casual users through $299 a month for corporate users, it really feels like PlaceIt.net is trying to accommodate every user and every budget.

Overview

The sheer number of images, interactive videos, and videos along with flexible pricing, makes PlaceIt.net unparalleled to any other service I’ve tried. In the past, Promotee software was my go-to when I needed a quick promo image of my apps, but it is very limited in the devices you can show, and there’s no option for video. I can’t recommend PlaceIt.net enough for promos and advertising your products.

Pre-Advertising

I still have two more pages of my next children’s book to draw, but just because it isn’t finished doesn’t mean I can wait to advertise it. Once the drawings are finalized, I still have to do minor revisions, export for print, send the files to Amazon, proof the book and then make available…and that’s just for the print version. The app version will open a whole other Pandora’s box of goodies.

Screen Shot 2014-01-14 at 11.30.30 AM

However, the book is far enough along where I need to start getting the word out. I’ve already reserved the placeholder website: www.MaddieBearBooks.com, created a Facebook page, Twitter account, and even Instagram. I’ve been brainstorming ideas how to create more interest such as an in-app purchase inside the app that allows you to buy the paperback version of the book, a limited edition autographed version of the book, stickers, posters, and prints.

stickers

It’s my goal to turn this into a regular book series that I can continue to draw for years to come, so branding will be important. However, I’m still not certain how much money, if any, I’ll be willing to spend on advertising and marketing. I think initially I’ll try social media and word-of-mouth to see how far that goes and determine the next step from there. What are some ideas that you’ve come up with for marketing your products?

Social Media App Hiatus

This week I’ve decided to take break from my two most-used apps on my iPhone, iPad and Macbook: Facebook and Twitter. It feels like a good portion of my day is spent checking those two apps to see what is going on my friends’ lives as well as in the worlds of mobile app development and animation. So as an experiment, I’m not going to check on the Facebook/Twitter apps or websites for one week to see how my life is changed.

Today was my first day without social media and I found myself getting a lot accomplished. I completed my household to-do list by 8:30am, got a lot of work done for my day job, cleaned my home office, worked on my children’s book, designed some stickers to promote the book, and even squeezed in some Xbox before I had to start dinner for my wife and daughter. Now my daughter is in bed and I’m able to write a blog post and maybe work on the book a bit more.

However, there is the possibility that I may fill the social media void in my life with just another distraction. I could find myself playing guitar or Xbox a lot more than I normally would. I’m interested to see how I’m doing by Saturday, but so far it feels like a burden has been lifted since I don’t feel like I have to immediately check on all the notifications of likes, comments, retweets, and mentions.

Mobile Apps & Social Media

I recently decided that I would start working on my next mobile app, a children’s eBook series. I wanted to base the story off of my daughter and two of my friends’ daughters using anthropomorphic animals. However, if you’ve been following the trend of mobile apps these days, you know that you need to spend just as much time marketing your apps as you have developing them. Before I have even finished writing the storyline to my new app series, I spent some time pre-marketing it.

Maddie Bear's Birthday

I did a web search to make sure there weren’t similar products with similar names already coming up on Google. Then I purchased a domain name and made a temporary website placeholder (www.MaddieBearBooks.com) as well as started a Facebook page (www.facebook.com/MaddieBearBooks). I figured the last account I would need would be a Twitter account (www.twitter.com/MaddieBearBooks) and then I’d have all the major bases covered. However, after hearing Noah Malewicz say he also did Instagram to promote his app “City Birds” during the Corona Geek Hangout, I figured I should hit that market as well.

The thing was, I didn’t want to create an Instagram account just to have one. After perusing other Instagram users’ images, it seemed like there were way too many “selfies”, food pictures, and the like, so I decided to try something a little bit more creative for Maddie Bear’s page.

http://instagram.com/maddiebearbooks
Maddie Bear jumps off the Adobe Flash stage onto the timeline.
http://instagram.com/maddiebearbooks
Maddie Bear takes drawing her story on the Wacom Cintiq into her own hands.
http://instagram.com/maddiebearbooks
Maddie Bear takes my Sharpie pen to write her name on paper.

I thought doing some illusions and tricks might be a little more visually enticing to look at versus pictures of me drawing the artwork. Whether if all of this social media marketing will pay off or not is yet to be seen, I should probably finish the app first…