I demonstrated Blindfold Blackjack to many of my colleagues, and many suggested that the game would be great for Blackjack aficionados who want to play the game while doing something else. That was why we experimented with the alternative names like “Audio Blackjack” and “Bored at Work Blackjack”.
We modified the app’s description in the iTunes App Store; the description mentioned how the app is great for playing Blackjack while you are driving, since that’s what everyone said when they heard about the game. Apple immediately rejected the app’s new description, stating that it is against Apple’s policy to encourage reckless behavior.
Here’s our first attempt at a cartoon promoting that bad idea:
We followed Apple’s suggestions, and made the description more appropriate for simply playing the game without anyone knowing what you are doing. Here’s the updated cartoons that appeared in the App Store:
We created a small graphic to use when advertising the product.
We started a Facebook suggested post advertising campaign targeting the 2 million people who have an interest in Blackjack and own iPhones, and used the tag line “Blackjack in your car, or at work, without looking at the screen. It’s free!” and “Just listen and play”.
The suggested post was shown to 27,000 people; 335 people clicked the ad and they were taken to the iTunes App Store page on their iPhone to get the Blindfold Blackjack for free. So far, so good. Two people installed the app. Neither of them purchased an in-app upgrades. Based on how much we spent with Facebook, each installation cost about $40.
Assuming the sighted people really don’t care about an audio Blackjack game, we decided to see how effective Facebook would be at garnering the attention of visually impaired people for Blackjack. At this point, I didn’t have a good understanding of how many blind people use Facebook.
Since the advertising image was irrelevant to our target audience, we changed the tag line to “Play Blackjack without looking at the screen. It’s free. Just listen.” and “Blackjack with your ears”.
We targeted the suggested post at people who stated they were visually impaired, and it was displayed to 3,400 people; 22 people clicked on the advertisement and they were taken to the iTunes App Store page on their iPhone to get the Blindfold Blackjack for free. Four people installed the app. None of the purchased an in-app upgrade. Each installation cost about $11.
We terminated the Facebook campaign at that point, and reached several conclusions:
- Facebook may be a potential way to reach the blindness community, but we need more research.
- Sighted people are not interested in audio equivalent games of popular app games.
- To use advertising to promote our Blindfold Games, we need a better way to generate money from each game.