The changes on Tsu, in part, helped pave the way for the massive success of new download drivers like Facebook’s app install ads, an ad format that has now been adopted by much of the industry. Facebook today uses its relationship with developers, ad targeting capabilities and its significant mobile footprint to get users clicking on its app install ads. You can get a free tsu invite too.
And now for years, Apple has maintained its ban on blatant incentivized install campaigns. It also removed apps that functioned as alternative app stores, too, as they became a new means for similar chart manipulations.
What’s really happening on Tsu social media is that it’s offering app publishers a new way to run something like incentivized app install campaigns – but without directly compensating users. That allows Tsu social media to operate in a gray area with regard to Apple’s ban on pay-per-installs.
To manipulate the charts, developers in years past would contract with third-parties like Tapjoy to run incentivized app installation campaigns – meaning, schemes where developers directly rewarded end users, usually with virtual currency, for downloading new applications and games.
For a bit of background here, attracting new users to mobile applications has been an ongoing challenge for app developers, especially as Apple’s iTunes App Store’s Top Charts highlight more recently popular and growing applications, not new launches.
The idea of this Tsu social media, originally, was that developers could fund new installations of their apps in order to push up their app’s ranking on the iTunes Top Charts. That, in turn, would help them grow their user base and then their bottom line. As Apple considers the velocity of new installs as a part of its ranking algorithms, a pay-per-install campaign in years past could send a new title climbing the charts. But that growth was not “organic” – it was bought and paid for. And it was cheating, said Apple in an update to its Developer Agreement, which allowed it to ban pay-per-install applications from the App Store.
Unlike earlier app install campaigns, which attracted low-quality downloads, Facebook’s precise targeting brought app publishers a better subset of users. And the payout for Facebook has been incredibly lucrative.