Let’s talk about how to build a professional ASO team and understand common ASO team structures and the responsibilities of each role. The variety of approaches to ASO is both a benefit and a challenge. From creating in-store videos to performing data analysis, your ASO activities could include anything. The combination of skills required means that organizations willing to invest in ASO typically need to create a dedicated ASO team structure. Even then, they may need to draw on other internal or outsourced resources.
Depending on the size of the company, the people involved in the ASO team may do so on a part-time basis in addition to their larger role, or they may be fully dedicated to ASO. At the same time, depending on their own resources and ASO expertise, companies may prefer to conduct their ASO efforts entirely in-house or use external resources for partial or full support. As a result, we observe three common types of ASO team structures:
- The Task Force
- The Coordinator
- The Studio
In the task force, A group of experts, each with a specific set of skills and role, who join intensity to conduct ASO. In the coordinator, Most usually one single ASO manager is in charge of a network of external or internal resources to implement the ASO strategy. In the studio, A larger team is in charge of testing all aspects of ASO, often across multiple games or apps locales.
There are advantages to each team structure: While an in-house team will already have an understanding of your brand and product features, a freelancer or agency will have more experience with the intricacies of ASO and knowledge of other use cases. When deciding between committed full-time maintaining a multi-functional team, the former guarantees more time committed to ASO and is likely to gain experience much faster, however the latter can make it easier to coordinate between ASO projects and other marketing projects.
No matter what type of team you find yourself in, you’ll want to think about the organizational challenges. You will want to start productively thinking about solutions of ASO problems so there aren’t any unpredicted barriers; in particular, actively considering where your ASO team fits into the larger organization structure that can facilitate communication and collaboration with other teams.
What is ASO Team and Their Role?
As you think about and evaluate which ASO team structure best fits your company, you’ll need more information on the roles and skills that ASO teams employ in most cases. Depending on the organization’s business activities, you may have a separate professional for each of the following roles or merge overlapping skill sets for one person.
The keyword researcher finds keyword ideas from different sources and creates a complete keyword list for the game or app’s limited metadata space. They then analyze changes in keyword rankings based on ASO metrics and decide next steps. Keyword research plays an important and more technical role and is absolutely essential for app growth.
Copywriters use the keywords researched by the keyword researcher to determine the best text to add to app’s text-based metadata elements, as well as the text that can overlay visual elements such as screenshots. Copywriters can also support customer service by writing the text to be used in standardized prompts for the review process.
Graphic designers play a central role in ASO activities. ASO design is a blend of data and art-driven visual assets that are key to driving conversion by making a great first impression. While basic visuals, such as screenshots of an app’s interface, can sometimes be enough or adequate, custom designs can make a critical difference in driving ASO results.
Video producers help make high-quality video content. Their contributions make apps more appealing to download and notably increase an app’s conversion rate. The catch is that poor quality videos usually tend to hurt conversion rates; making an expert eye truly valuable when managing video production.
Without developers, we would have no apps and no app store optimization. Though, a developer’s work does not end when the app is released. To ensure an app succeeds, the developer(s) must keep and grow the app by fixing bugs, adding features, resizing, or executing and using new technologies made available by Apple or Google that can help users and present more opportunities for apps to gain visibility and be featured in the app store and play store. Developers are also most responsible for releasing the latest app updates on the store, which is the only time you can change creatives or metadata on iOS (at least, up until iOS 14). Therefore, the key to your ASO efforts is to keep up with their update frequency.
Data Science & Analytics
Data scientists help calculate ASO work (such as determining install rates and post-optimization), estimate the share of organic installs vs. paid installs in your store console data, and explain performances to best inform the next steps. Regular optimization is at the main part of ASO; the information your data scientists collect will be important in creating your strategy.
Customer service representatives keep an eye on negative feedback, sort out customer issues, Address the needs of the product, and respond to reviews. This last point is of particular importance, as ratings & reviews are publicly displayed on the play store and app store also affect conversion rates. The feedback and data collected by customer service representatives can also help other roles in the ASO team optimize their work.
To keep your ASO efforts on track, project managers coordinate team members and stakeholders. It is especially helpful to have a project manager when you have a large team or localization in different countries. In this way, your experts can focus on their areas of expertise rather than on admin work.
Paid User Acquisition
Paid user acquisition specialists get large numbers of leads across different ad networks to get a steady stream of new daily downloads for your app. This significant influx of traffic has the potential to significantly change the visibility of your app and conversation rates, as most store algorithms account for overall performance and do not discriminate between traffic sources. Plus, with the growth of native store advertising, user acquisition must now, more than ever, use a variety of strategies that synchronize organic optimization and paid advertising. Keep in mind: Paid traffic may affect organic search and the appearance of store creatives and their campaign install rates.
User retention experts (usually merged with user acquisition specialists) have increased in importance as Google and Apple’s algorithms progressively consider user retention rather than install rates alone. User retention experts use customer data to inform customer relationship management (CRM) campaigns and keep users engaged and happy. These experts can also give direction to ASO to have a clear understanding of the feature of the product that is favored by store visitors and will probably increase the interest of future users.
At the end of the day, how you make the ASO team structure and give responsibilities will depend on your resources. Assess the skills you already have and be open to innovative ways to combine them.