Any developer that has been featured on the Apple App Store can tell you how excited they were when they received the, “App Store: Promotional Artwork request for…” email. While the anticipation around this email is electric, the realization that Apple’s pressing requirement for additional creative assets starts to set in quickly.
One of the key assets Apple needs is the Promotional Artwork. This piece of artwork is displayed at the very top of an app’s product page and has been equated to Google Play’s Feature Graphic.
While the promotional artwork and feature graphic are both additional pieces of artwork that can help convert users, they are inherently different for just a few reasons.
Promotional Artwork vs Feature Graphic
You may be asking yourself, “So, what are the differences between the Promotional Artwork and the Feature Graphic?”
To start, the Feature Graphic is available to all Google Play developers. There is no waiting for a golden ticket, as it’s considered to be just another creative asset in addition to icons and screenshots. Located at the very top of an app’s product page, the Feature Graphic is the very first visual element aside from the icon that potential users will see. The Feature Graphic should be treated as an app’s “first screenshot” as the majority of users downloading an app on Google Play visit an app’s product page first. If there is a video, a play button is displayed in the middle of the Feature Graphic, so users can immediately tap to start watching.
The Promotional Artwork, however, is more “special” in a sense because Apple is more exclusive about which developers and apps are able to display one on their app page. So far, it appears that Apple has contacted only top developers with a certain number of downloads for this additional asset. Unfortunately, like all things, Apple has been rather secretive about which developers they request Promotional Artwork from.
Just as a word of caution, when Apple asks for these source files, they can adjust or change the files however they want.
While the current number of apps that have Promotional Artwork is small, it’s gradually growing since the launch of iOS 11. As Apple took the extra step to make a separate upload form, it’s likely that Promotional Artwork will become more prominent for well-known apps.
Promotional Artwork Guidelines
If developers receive that coveted email from Apple, they should immediately start creating their Promotional Artwork. However, they’ll have to ensure that they do it according to Apple’s guidelines.
Do Not Include:
- Marketing taglines
- Website addresses and URLs
- App icons
- Any reference to pricing
- Third-party trademarks
- “App Store,” “iTunes,” or “Apple Inc.”
- Hardware and devices
If any of the above are included, the submission will be rejected. On top of making sure that they don’t include anything that could possibly get their Promotional Artwork rejected, developers will have to remember to follow the seven Dropwells. These essentially exist to make the process easier for apps and games when they are chosen to be featured.
Despite having to follow Apple’s guidelines, developers can of course still utilize most of the ASO best practices that apply to screenshots when creating their Promotional Artwork.
- Brand colors
- Concept or character art
- High contrast with open spaces
Additional tips that developers can consider are:
- Creating a seamless flow between Promotional Artwork and product page
- Images that are relevant and memorable
Unfortunately, unlike screenshots, developers cannot localize their Promotional Artwork for every country their app is available in, as it is not country-specific.
If you’re a developer that has received an email from Apple about Promotional Artwork, it’s highly recommended to jump at the opportunity for the potential uplift of installs to your app. This piece of artwork is another chance to convert users and drive traffic to your app.
Make sure that you follow Apple’s guidelines before creating Promotional Artwork, as no one wants to get rejected. It’s also wise to consider some ASO best practices when creating your Promotional Artwork to create an image that will truly captivate users.