We developed a chess app for iMessage and we would like to have people try it out and tell us their opinions.

Do you know a good strategy to give away free promo codes for the pro version of our new game?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. \$\endgroup\$ – Vaillancourt Aug 10 '18 at 12:55

Go to where your audience is.

You have a chess app, so I would recommend to find some online communities of chess players. Read their community guidelines, FAQs and a bit of their content to make sure that discussing your app is on-topic in the community. Read it carefully: unwelcome advertising is annoying and creates more damage than value. For example, definitely do not do this as a question here or on any other stackexchange site! When you see nothing which hints that talking about your app might be unwelcome, just create a thread where you introduce yourself, ask them if they would like to give you some feedback about your chess app, post a few codes and the promise to give a private code to anyone who contacts you privately.

Also do your research and check if there are any influencers around you could collaborate with. Are there any YouTubers, bloggers, news websites, social media personalities or similar who have a non-negligible reach in the chess community and regularly talk about chess apps? Find a way to contact them directly, give them a promo code and ask if they would like to post about it. The relationship between developers and influencers is beneficial for both sides. They get to report about something which isn't available to the general public yet and you get free promotion. So don't be shy. The worst they can do is ignore you.

Also use the reach of your own social media presence (you do have a social media presence, do you?). Dropping a few codes in a public post will likely burn out quickly. But you could at least announce that you are starting a closed beta and anyone who asks you nicely will get a code. Check if anyone talks about your game on social media. When they have some reach, consider sending them a code, too.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you. This very general answer is probably due to editing my question into something I didn't mean to ask. I meant place in the sense of link to one or more specific sites/blogs/forums/magazines that other game developers use for that purpose. \$\endgroup\$ – dracoexmachina Aug 9 '18 at 14:13
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    \$\begingroup\$ @dracoexmachina I'm sorry, but we don't answer questions like that. The philosophy of our community is to teach people fishing, not give them fish. \$\endgroup\$ – Philipp Aug 9 '18 at 14:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ @dracoexmachina: I think the point is that there is no single place that game developers use, as there are only game developers at such places. You have a chess app, so you find chess players. \$\endgroup\$ – RemcoGerlich Aug 9 '18 at 14:21

At a very high level, a possible cycle for finding users goes something like this:

  1. Identify your target audience. (Note this step is not trivial & can be much more difficult to do than it sounds).
  2. List places &/or communication channels where you expect a worthwhile amount of your target audience to be. Look for options that either have a high % of potential users (I.E. most people there would be interested) or that have a large enough over quantity (I.E. most people on Facebook might not play chess, but thousands of chess players also happen to be on Facebook).
  3. Restrict your list from item 2 to places that permit solicitation.
  4. Solicit users.
  5. Invite the users to participate in the process of finding users. That is to say, try to get some of them to repeat the steps listed here in the hopes of discovering previously unknown users.

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