Monday, August 26, 2013

AdDuplex’s First Evangelist


I am excited to announce that I have recently become the first developer evangelist for AdDuplex!

What is AdDuplex?

AdDuplex is a cross-promotion and advertising network for both Windows Phone and Windows 8.  They allow developers to display ads for other apps within their own, and in return, get their ads shown in other developer’s apps.  With the low return on ads, unless you have a large user base, this gives developers a great alternative for promoting their app, and growing their user base before trying to monetize.  Their slogan is appropriately “Advertise before you monetize.”

If you have a new app that you want to jump-start, you can also purchase ads, which are both cheaper and more directed than any other option.  It is the only ad network that lets you target Windows 8 and Windows Phone (you can even target between WP7 and WP8), meaning that every time your ad is displayed, the viewer is only two clicks from installing it.

Why I Use AdDuplex?

I have been using AdDuplex for almost a year, since the day Memorylage was released on Windows 8.  My biggest focus at that point was trying to find a way to reach the early adopters of Windows 8, and not waste money advertising to people who didn’t have it.  AdDuplex was perfect for this.  And when I released the app for Windows Phone, back in February, AdDuplex again gave me the ability to target just those users who had Windows Phone 8.

Between the yearly ad subscription that I purchased, as well as the ad impressions I receive from using the control in my apps, I have maintained a steady stream of clicks and downloads for both versions, without having to do any continued advertising elsewhere. (I obviously still did plenty of work at launch to reach out to web sites, create a web page/promo video etc.)

What Does Being an Evangelist Mean?

My job is focused on two things: spreading the word about AdDuplex, and helping devs with any issues they might have using the service, or setting it up.

I will be writing periodic posts about some technical aspects of using the service (setup, configuration, etc.) on both this blog, as well as the AdDuplex blog.  I will be promoting AdDuplex in-person at events I attend, and online as well, but will do my best to not be “spammy” about it.  Smile

If there are any questions about the technical stuff I write about, or AdDuplex in general, feel free to reach out to me on Twitter at @jrharmon82.  As I am not in any way the official support channel for them though, any other questions, such as account related ones, should be directed to AdDuplex directly.  They can be reached on Twitter at @AdDuplex, or through email at

Learning More

Here are some links to more information:

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Windows Phone Finally Alerts Devs About Being Featured

The first time my app Memorylage was featured in the Windows Phone Marketplace, I found out about it by my friend emailing me that he had seen it.  The same thing happened when it was featured on Windows 8.  While I was excited to see it featured, it was annoying that I had no way of knowing about it, and could easily miss it.

I eventually found an app called App Spotlights, which actually tracks where and when your app is featured, all around the world, and can even notify you when it is.  It's a great app, but still reactive.

Listening to Feedback, and Improving

As I, and I'm sure many other devs, had asked for some kind of a heads up when being featured, it was great to get an email this morning telling me that my app was going to be featured, when it would be, where it would be, and on what devices (I didn't even know that they targeted them differently).  Below is the full text of the email.

Dear Windows Phone Developer,

We have exciting news for you! Your app is scheduled to be featured in the Windows Phone Store on 20 July 2013. Each week, the Store features a fixed number of notable apps and games in prominent promotional spots for the day. Apps are featured in different combinations where they are visible based on market, placement, and device. These promotions help give great apps like yours the visibility and attention we think they deserve.

Targeted Promotional Markets for your Windows Phone 8 app(s)
TitleAll phonesOnly phones from manufacturers other than NokiaOnly Nokia phones

Many developers have also found it valuable to increase this exposure with their own marketing efforts. The blog post How to Market Your Windows Phone App can help you get started. You can also download the Dev Center app to track your app’s progress.

Occasionally we need to modify the promotion schedule after we have sent a notification to you. We want you to be aware that this may result in a change to your app’s featured date(s).

All of us here at the Windows Phone Store appreciate your support, and we can’t wait to see your next creation!

Windows Phone Store Team

Learn more details about this program in the Frequently Asked Questions section below.

If you would like to provide feedback about this notification simply reply to this email.

Microsoft respects your privacy. To learn more please read our online Privacy Statement.

If you would prefer to no longer receive this email click here or reply to this email with the subject line – “Unsubscribe from Windows Phone Store Merchandising communications”. Note: removal may take 48 hours.

To set your contact preferences for other Microsoft communications, click here.

Microsoft has no obligation to feature your application during this proposed campaign, nor an obligation to feature your application in any future promotional activities. Microsoft reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to make all final decisions regarding this campaign’s timing, frequency, placement, and application selection. This notification does not modify the Windows Phone Application Provider Agreement.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: I received an email that my app would be promoted in the Windows Store but it wasn’t there on the date promised. What happened?
A: Sometimes we need to make last minute changes in the promotion schedule, and we are not able to pass this information on to the developers affected by the change. When this happens, we do our best to move these apps to the next available featured spot in the Store.

Q2: How does Microsoft choose which apps to feature?
A: This blog post and video provides an overview of Microsoft’s promotion criteria.

Q3: When Microsoft promotes my app, will I see an increase in my app’s download activity?
A: There are many factors that contribute to an app’s download activity. Microsoft cannot guarantee that being featured will result in an increase in download activity.

Q4: Where in the Windows Phone Store will my app appear?
A: Your app will appear in the Store, Apps, or Games hubs in one of the following slots:
• Featured app of the day
• one of eight Spotlights
• one of three Icons

Q5: Is it possible for Microsoft to promote my Windows Phone 7 apps?
A: While we do promote Windows Phone 7 apps, this notification program is for Windows Phone 8 apps only.

Q6: For which countries do you notify participating developers?
A: We will be notifying participating developers when their Windows Phone 8 apps are promoted in Australia, Brazil, Chile, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, Poland, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Spain, South Africa, Thailand, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Plugging Into Windows 8–Presentation Slides

I will be doing a talk at the Windows 8 Boston user group tomorrow, February 12th.  The slides that I created have a bunch of links, and a little bit of code, so I wanted to place them online so that people can easily grab them.

If you have any questions about anything presented, or want a copy of any of the code demonstrated, just send me a message on Twitter (@jrharmon82).