First, thank you to everyone who read my last post, left a comment, sent me an email, and/or shared it!
I loved reading how it inspired people. I got so many emails from people telling me their story and goals.
It’s been life changing up till the time of my last post. Little did I know, life was going to surprise again me three days after that post.
I published the $4,739 iPhone app week post on a Monday. The next afternoon around 4:30pm, I get an email that said this:
My name is (name removed), and I am writing on behalf of the App Store Marketing Team to request art assets for a potential upcoming promotional opportunity on the App Store.
The team here is excited about Photo 365 – Remember Your Year One Photo at a Time, but we want to be clear that we cannot make any guarantees about promotion on the App Store. These art assets are necessary for our Design team to have on-hand should App Store featuring for your app be selected by our staff.
For consideration, we would need to receive your artwork no later than 9am PST on Wednesday, August 24th.
I realize this is a extremely short turnaround, but if you are able to accommodate us, please email all artwork to…
Oh….my….goodness. Oh…my….goodness. Oh my goodness!!
The email told me the specifications needed and an example of how it should look.
I reread it so many times. This can’t be really happening I thought. The App store marketing team wanted art for my app? The deadline was 19.5 hours away!
I did a Google search to find out more information. I could only find one post in a forum that talked about it. That person also got an email, sent in the necessary art work but Apple never used it. I learned this is not an everyday email.
My next thought went to calling my younger brother. THANKFULLY he studied illustration at Savannah College of Art and Design. He is a pro at Photoshop. He currently works at an animation company that is working on a cartoon for Adult Swim.
I gave him a call. No answer!! Frantically I sent a text to his wife who also is an also a Photoshop wizard. She was at running errands and I told her I desperately needed her help.
I sent questions to the contact person to clarify their needs. For example, they asked for a company logo but I didn’t have one. This was my only shot and I wanted to get it right. She replied back quickly with answers including not needing a company logo if I didn’t have it.
The Design Process
My sister-in-law and I decided to wait till my brother got off work. He would be better for this. During that time I brainstormed what the art should look like. I came up with nothing.
Apple said it could be simple or could be playful as long as I was comfortable with it. I knew it had to look great. If it didn’t, it had no chance.
She briefed him on what was going on. I sent him the email that they had sent. We talked about how it should look.
What was important was the background represented the feel of the app. The choice for the orange matching the one used in the app was easy.
What to else to put? My app is about taking a photo a day for 365 days. A pile of photos? A camera? A calendar? I wanted it simple but give users an idea of app. Since my brother is the artist, I let him sketch something. He came up with a calendar and a point and shoot camera on top based on my suggestion.
It didn’t feel right.
Then I suggested a pile of pictures on top of the calendar.
He showed me a pile of photos, fanned out, with the main photo being our family dog, Archie. I loved it!! I asked for a few more photos behind that one.
I wondered if using photos of people would look good so I told him to use a wedding photo of Eleanor and I. He did and I showed her. She thought Archie looked better.
My brother said using our photo made it feel like the generic photo you would find in a photo frame you buy at the store. Ok maybe he was right.
He sent me the files in the exact specifications Apple wanted. I went to bed relieved it was done. Total time it took for him was a couple hours.
The next morning, I sent it off. I got a reply saying thanks and will let me know if they need anything from me. It was out of my hands now.
They didn’t say what it would be used for. Just said it was for promo. The size of the art they needed fit the dimension of the art they use for App of the Week in iTunes. That was what I guessed it would be for, but I knew they may not use the art.
Hitting the App Lottery
On Thursday, I worked a full day at the restaurant. I didn’t know what time the featured apps would be change. On break between lunch and dinner, I was on my iPad and read a private message in an iPhone forum about a question I had asked. In another message from that person I read…
APP OF THE WEEK FOR YOU! CONGRATS!
I quickly got on my iPhone. It felt like it took forever for the App store to load! When it did, this is what I saw.
I jumped and screamed and spun around in circles!! People at work probably I thought I was crazy. I didn’t care! I couldn’t believe it! App of the Week!!!
My app had just been released two weeks ago. Now the App store marketing team thought my app worthy enough of being App of the week?!?
The rest of the night I couldn’t focus on work. My heart was racing. I couldn’t stand still. App of the week. App of the week. App of the week. Crazy!!
I sent out a tweet cause I couldn’t hold my excitement!! I got some awesome tweets from many of you. (Thank you!) I tweeted Pat at Smart Passive Income and he couldn’t have been any happier. I didn’t have my computer so I asked him to take a screenshot of what the art looked like on iTunes. He posted the photo to his Facebook fan page. It looked so great.
I love what they said below the title – “We’re having a blast with this app, which chronicles our lives one day – and one picture – at a time.”
That’s the best endorsement money can’t buy!
How much did I earn?
I knew I wouldn’t be able to sleep that night or the next few. How would this impact sales?
I averaged $1,353 a day since being on the New and Noteworthy list a week ago.
What will this do?
The next morning I checked sales for Thursday
It definitely boosted sales since the day before I did $1337! I knew the weekend would pick up.
- Friday – $2,182
- Saturday – $2,936 (record day!)
- Sunday – $2,572
I couldn’t believe my eyes! Three straight days over $2,000! Seeing me make that much money, whether I was working, playing or sleeping was a dream come true!!
My ranking went as high as #20 overall in the app store! My little app!
As for the total for the week? This doesn’t count today’s sales (Thursday) as my last day as App of the Week.
Pretty amazing since three week ago I hadn’t made a penny yet.
App of the Week has been such an amazing ride
Every week things have kept getting better and better. Things have been happening so fast. I’m probably known as the blogger with the app. If so, I’m happy with that!
I’ve gotten asked to write about it. I have an phone interview coming up.
These last two weeks have felt like two months. I never want it to end. However with all good things, they must come to an end. Thursday around 4pm EST, there will be a new app of the week. My hope is I get moved to the “What’s Hot” list, which is still great but it’s not App of the week.
So many developers create apps but never get App the week. There are so many successful apps in the store right now. Ones that make way more money than mine. They never get featured but still have strong sales. However, not all can say they were App of the Week. That’s a pretty cool honor to have.
Writing Down my Goals
Before 2011, I never believed in the power of writing down your goals. This year has been different. I’ve written down monthly and yearly goals. Some goals I write down not knowing how in the world I would achieve it. I write them down, review them, and keep my mind open for opportunities.
It can’t describe in words how it feels to reach seemingly unattainable goals.
Here are the goals I had for my iPhone app. I wrote these down August 8th, three days before my app was released.
- Top 5 photography app (currently #2)
- Top 25 overall app – (reached as high as #20)
I couldn’t believe it really happened.
Then I had a wild goal for the year. One that I didn’t know if it would even come true. I came up with a number that sounded nice. My favorite number is 21 so that’s what I started with.
Again I wrote this down before my app was released. I had no plan. No strategy. No idea of what would happen.
- Earn $21,000 in sales by the end of the year.
What was I thinking? I hadn’t even made one cent yet. At least I gave myself 4.5 months to achieve it.
I reached $21,000 in my 19th day.
Amazing. Those were the only three goals I written down for my app and all three came true.
What’s next for the app?
This app has turned into a little side project into having over 35,000 customers around the world and growing every day!
I know being App of the week has boosted my sales to its highest current levels. I know sales will decrease. I just don’t know how much. I hope not too much.
I will still be archived in the App of the week page. I hope to remain highly ranked in the photo category. I hope people who love the app share with their friends.
Now I’m working on adding more features. That’s taking most of my time now. I get a handful of emails every day with suggestions.
It’s been an amazing week. I’m so thankful and take none of it for granted. I haven’t gone on a wild shopping spree. In fact, I haven’t bought anything that I wouldn’t normally buy.
I don’t want to just be the app guy who had a few weeks of success. I want to turn it into more than that.
Now the real work is ahead of me. No matter what happens, I’ll never forget these last few weeks.
Thank you to you all who have supported me along the way!!
If you want to learn more about my app, you can go to Photo 365.
If you want to develop your own app, but don’t know how, I share everything from how to get an idea that can make money to how to hire someone and not get ripped off. Join my course App Academy and develop your first iPhone app.