We had a unique marketing plan for one of our apps (Pawn'd) trying to take advantage of the new iPad launch.
The lines at the Apple stores meant we could target a lot of iPhone and iPad users all at once.
We had friends and family go to Apple stores in 5 different cities around the country bright and early before the stores opened at 8am, with a card we specially printed about our game Pawn'd clipped to a dollar bill. The card had a little info about the game, and asked them to buy the $0.99 game using the $1 gift attached. We gave away the cash and card to the people in line for the new iPad. They could either get the game on their iPhone to play in line, or get it for their brand new iPad. Each of our friends had between 70 and 100 dollar bills & cards to hand out to their line.
All those purchases of the app we hoped would help it climb up in the App Store charts, becoming much more visible. Plus we predicted all those people would be likely to show off the game and talk about how they got it by being handed a dollar in line...it's a good story to tell, people handing out cash to a whole line at the Apple store.
Unfortunately, it was a miserable failure. We did hand out the cards and cash fine, about 350 of the 500 we'd prepared, and many of the people getting a card thought it was a great idea and said they'd go get the game. But then virtually nobody who got a card and cash went ahead and bought the game. This got us about 10 mores sales on the day the new iPad launched, and that's it. The next day was back to the usual very small sales number.
We're all surprised, the game has tons of 5 star ratings and reviews, so it wouldn't be they'd go see bad reviews or ratings.
So I think we bought a lot of people a cup of coffee that day.
And kinda funny, one of our helpers bumped into her dad in line waiting to get his new iPad.