How to Make an Emoji App Like StephMoji for iOS & Android

Ideograms and smileys also known as emojis, have been primarily used by the Japanese teenage girls in the late 1990’s. In the years since then, emojis have evolved into a huge market niche with great business opportunities for developers. Today, you will hardly find a mobile user who knows nothing about it. In other words, if you want to make an emoji keyboard app, it is certainly a good idea for your startup.

How to make your own emoji app? What are the main competitors in the niche? What is the best mobile platform to cover? How to choose the right target audience? How much will it cost to make your own emoji for Android? We will talk about all of this in the article.

Reasons to Create Your Own Emoji App

The emoji-phenomenon continues to make big waves on the market. As we have already said, emojis was initially appreciated by female users only. Today, the figures are as follows:

  • 84% of female mobile users use emojis;
  • 75% of male mobile users use emojis.

According to the statistics, building an app for emojis on iOS or Android is the best bet whenever you want to get involved in the growing mobile industry with your award-winning product. The results of the study conducted by the visual messaging platform Emoji revealed the following data:

  • Over 2 trillion messages sent in 2016 were messages with emojis;
  • Users are still looking for an extended list of smileys as alternative to their standard ones.

The above-mentioned data makes it clear that idea to build an emoji keyboard app has a huge potential. All you need is to attract the attention of your customers and offer some more custom stickers.

How to Develop An Emoji App?

The first thing you need to do is to define the mobile platform your app will support. You should keep in mind that there are two ways to make a custom emoji app:

  1. Build an application that will add new emojis to a standard set of smileys from the iOS or Android keyboard.
  2. You can build an app which will bring new emojis to one of the popular messengers such as Viber, Tango, iMessages and others.

The first method is a tough one. It calls for professional programmers with a clear understanding of how to create emoji for iPhone or Android. The second way is less challenging. Moreover, some of the supported messaging platforms are available as an open source. In other words, all third-party developers are free to deploy messengers’ custom expansions to build their own app.

iMessage is a good example of such source. The platform got a title of the top trend in the field of iOS development 2017. On the other hand, iOS 10 comes with some restrictions for the developers. You will not be able to mix custom emojis with the standard ones. Moreover, you need to additionally consider formats and sizes of your images.

Summing up, the best way to succeed is to build a custom application for iOS. This is how actually StephMoji made a name for itself. Of course, such app will cost you more. However, you will always have a chance to pay off by using various monetization models, premium versions and more.

Things with Android are a bit easier. Your smileys may be displayed as a keyboard only. Opting for Android is hardly the best idea if you are expecting to get fast revenue from your product. On the other hand, the platform can still bring you to instant profits considering its global coverage ad enormous user base. After all, you can always opt for ads and other ways to monetize your app.

How Much Will It Cost?

The price depends on the platform you choose to support. Developing an app for iOS requires hiring experienced designers and programmers + hardware with the latest Mac OS on board.

Your team should feature a high level of expertise when working with stickers and different image collections. Some development teams already can offer several hundreds of styles for you future application.

iOS development calls for precise knowledge of Swift and Objective-C. Otherwise, you will never be able to handle integration and API development.

As for the price, experienced team of developers will cost you from $2,700 to $4,200. The price includes approximately 160 working hours per month. The monthly development process will include project management, programming, and testing.

What Do Branded Emojis Mean?

Knowing your target audience is always the key to success. You may choose various sleek tactics and marketing strategies to stand out from the crowd. Making unique images is cool. At the same time, you can build a keyboard app featuring shoppable emoticons and stickers.

Branded emojis depict logos and images of some popular brands like Pepsi, Coca-Cola or Heineken. The latest studies show that users like these images more, as they let them express themselves better. According to the latest reports, the current statistics is as follows:

  • 54% of respondents will appreciate beer stickers;
  • 45% if users are likely to appreciate Pepsi-branded stickers.

It is up to you what brand to choose. All you need is to do some marketing research and find out the most popular companies. You are free to create smileys with Starbucks or Duncan Donuts. The main mission is to increase the level of your app recognition.

How to Define Your Target Audience?

Choosing the right audience for your keyboard application is not as easy as you may think. The niche is rather specific. You need to consider various factors to succeed and deliver your product to the right people. Check our short list for the most common TA types:

  • Celeb fans – you can create your images based on movie stars, sportsmen, popular singers and other celebrities. Such emojis appeared to be extremely effective during 2016 according to the latest stats. Use stickers created upon Trump, Clinton or Kardashians funny images. Such approach will certainly bring your product to success;
  • Specific app users – you can target customers who use some specific apps like Snapchat (Bitmoji in particular);
  • Seasonal images – a good idea is to create stickers for special occasions, holidays or seasons. People always send different greetings and congratulations. It is also a profitable niche;
  • Stickers for minorities – both iOS and Android platforms are not as tolerant as the society tries to look like. They do not provide enough diversity for the minorities. You can change it and create your emojis for LGBT communities, Afro-Americans, etc. These users will certainly appreciate the slightest chance to express themselves better.

Do not forget to develop an efficient marketing campaign to assign your application. Use the best moment for the launch. Combine it with the release of a new video game, product introduction or a movie premier. Choose the event according to your smileys style.

Final Word

Developing emoji app is a tough challenge. Testing is also a vital part of the development process. For this reason, you should be ready to spend a fortune to bring your ideas to life especially when it comes to iOS platform.
Lunapps offer an affordable solution for your project. Our team consists of dedicated developers, designers and QA engineers who will do all the work for you. We establish reasonable prices and guarantee a great result. Our team will guide you from the stage of planning to the stage of bringing your product to some major app stores. Contact us for more information.