Good article by Elia Freedman, but then it ends with this footnote:
Listening to Marco Arment talk about this problem is frustrating. The guy has an incredible personal brand, like [Loren] Brichter, and the things he touch get instant echo in the iOS chamber. Would The Magazine had been such a success if I had built it? No way. His personal echo chamber made that happen. (Note that I am not complaining in the least about his ability to do this. If anything I’m a little jealous.)
I’ve heard things like this a lot, but I think you’d be surprised at the reality.
A very popular article on this site might get 50,000 hits. Most get more like 20,000. Sponsors have reported getting 1,500–2,500 clickthroughs on sponsored link-posts.
In the App Store, I’m competing with hundreds of thousands of other developers for the attention and money of hundreds of millions of customers, most of whom don’t know or care who I am.
I released a new app a few weeks ago. Here’s its sales graph:
To date, I’ve invested about two weeks of time into Bugshot and it has made a total of $3,531.89. That’s not bad at all, but it’s not going to go very far, especially considering that the average for the last 5 days is just $47 per day, and the trend is clearly falling quickly.
Bugshot got great press, but that’s also most of the press that it’s ever going to get.
You can see the sales bump on July 22 when I invested another few days into it, polishing it more and adding two major features (Blur and “Open In…”). But you can also see that the bump was small and temporary, and further investment in any major features is probably not a responsible use of my time.
My audience gives me an advantage on day one, and that’s certainly significant. But after that, I’m in the same boat as everyone else.1