Episode 9: Interview with William Jones who uses the infamous vegas slot machine game template. Hear why it’s so important to not miss any step in the reskinning process. Also listen to the whole interview as we have amazing Lunatik stylus pens for your iPhone or iPad to win in the free raffle. Cheers!
Welcome to the mobile app flipping podcast, this is your host Yohann Taieb. My goal is to help you to get the most out of reskinning apps. Whether you’re already a full time entrepreneur or trying to get a business going, this podcast is for you. We will be interviewing professionals that are already doing app reskinning for a living. We will also invite source code sellers to get to learn about what they have to offer and finally we will talk to industry experts to learn how to become more productive at flipping apps. Now, without further ado lets get started!
Yohann: Today we have an amazing guest. His name is William Jones and William has been doing some app reskinning on the side. William, hello!
William: Hello there Yohann!
Yohann: Yes so, we want to know a little bit about you. Who you are, what you do, what is your background and how you ended up in mobile app reskinning?
William: Ok so I started my career in 1995 so that kinda dates me a little bit as a developer for web, desktop and in recent years mobile. So that’s my technology and in the last 6 years I’ve been on the business side of technology. Primarily software analysis and business management.
Yohann: So what you are doing is app reskinning on the side at the moment. Do you want to make a business out of it or do you want to just keep it on the side?
William: Ride now it’s on the side, I’ve seen lots of success stories that got me excited and I was like wow that’s some download numbers and revenue being generated so I said let me explore that area.
Yohann: And try to get a bite out of this… William: Exactly so,
Yohann: That’s why I brought you here. We got in touch like 6 months ago and I remember you and I and a friend of mine were reskinning on an app. The slot machine and noticed you had great graphics. Your’s was called China Joy Slot Machine isn’t that right?
Yohann: And your graphics were just amazing so and I was thinking you were going to get great numbers and we will talk more in detail about it but that’s why I got you here for everyone to know it not just rosy just because you got the best graphics. It’s just like any other business, sometimes it is going to fall but you just got to get up and go again.
William: Exactly, it’s not the gold rush so…
Yohann: How many apps have you in the app store right now?
William: I have 1 app right now it’s called Flash Victim Prompter. It’s a cure for writers block. That one is my original idea and I coded that from scratch. The next app was a reskin that I was using as an experiment to explore the reskinning territory. That was the China Joy casino slot game.
Yohann: Ok, do you mind sharing some download numbers with us? William: I got 295 downloads so far.
Yohann: It’s not the gold rush yet.
William: Not at all.
Yohann: Lets focus on this process of making the slot machine that you have. We know that Carter Thomas some get really great numbers.
William: That’s what got me really all excited and wanted me to explore this territory.
Yohann: I mean there’s no doubt Carter Thomas is doing something wrong. Carter Thomas is Carter Thomas. He already sold his company for 200,000 dollars right so the guy knew what app reskinning and flipping was about. So tell me about the process I know you are a developer. Did you tweak the game yourself?
William: No I didn’t touch the code. That was one of the things that drew me to reskinning. You really only need to focus on the swapping of graphics for the look and feel and that drew me to no coding.
Yohann: Yeah you just change a few graphics here and there and next thing you know you have an app in the app store and the money just flows in.
William: That’s one of the main reasons I wanted to try reskinning.
Yohann: From what I understand you are a business analyst full time so what I want to know is how did you get the amazing graphics?
William: I’m on oDesk, so that’s where you can find a lot of talent and people searching for artists go to oDesk, freelancer or
Yohann: Ya I use it quite a lot myself. I got to be honest with you I never had anyone that had such great art like you china slot game. Definitely, I was surprised by the quality of it.
William: I looked for graphic artists on oDesk and I probably looked at 20 different profiles and then I saw this one person that stood out and I liked their style. I thought that would be perfect for the idea that I had.
Yohann: How much did you pay for that?
William: I paid 100 dollars.
Yohann: Oh from what I remember it was around 30 images or so.
William: Yeah 30 to 35 images.
Yohann: Great price.
William: Definitely a great price for the quality.
Yohann: I know that the game doesn’t come with walkthrough. How did you know what to modify and what the artist had to do?
William: I’m familiar with looking at comments in the header files and in the header files and tells you exactly what to do like if you wanted to use chartboost or admob. Pop in your code here. And if you try compile the code it will give you errors and highlight those errors and say hey you need to pop in your code here.
Yohann: So let me tell the non programmers in the audience. If you open the code and see the name.h they are all header files that’s where he got the information of what to do and what to change within the game.
William: Then for the artist I would keep the dimensions and just put your creative span on this theme that I had in mind. The name came from a Chinese restaurant right across the street from me where I go to every Sunday and get the combination fried rice so that where the name came from.
Yohann: Watch out they going to come for money they got some copyright on their name…haha William: I just figured when trying to come up with a name I’d just use China Joy.
Yohann: As far as I know you didn’t do much ASO (app store optimization) with keywords?
William: No I didn’t I didn’t do anything, actually I take that back I searched for casino slot game and I saw the first two results and I looked at the keywords they were using and I mimicked those and I put those keywords into my keyword summary.
Yohann: Something that people are wondering should you use the same keywords as the top apps or should you use your own. The issue with using the same keywords is the top apps already have the top spot. Technically you are never going to achieve that rank you are always going to be below them. However those are keywords that people are searching for. People want to know whether to use keywords that have a lot of volume or keywords that have no competition.
William: I guess there’s an argument for both.
Yohann: Did you change the audio files? William: Didn’t touch them at all.
Yohann: Oh right, problem solved.
William: The only thing I did was pop in my key codes from Revmob and chartboost. Swap out the graphics. I built but they never came.
Yohann: Well if I had one advice for you it would be to work on the app store optimization. You can still tweak it and drive it some downloads.
William: Tweak it and improve its performance. Yeah I didn’t spend a lot of time because I didn’t want to spend a lot of time because I was really busy at work. Any time I do side projects it kind of takes away quality time with the family.
Yohann: Yeah for sure. Ok lets talk about time. By the time you got the source code and your product in the app store. How long do you think it took?
William: Probably the longest was waiting on the graphics and then going back and forth with critiques with the graphics artist. About a week on graphics alone and a week submitting to app store.
Yohann: Ok lets say 23 weeks.
Yohann: If you were to reskin it again do you think you would be a lot faster?
William: Yeah a lot faster I’d work with the same graphic artist you know they are familiar with what I’m looking for and we got the system down pack.
Yohann: Did you get the unlimited license?
William: Yeah I can experiment with different themes in the future, I spent 200 dollars for the unlimited license. I just wanted to do something with low investment. And 200 dollars isn’t going to make or break me.
Yohann: You just wanted to get your feet wet. William: I have some future ideas.
Yohann: Ok so now I have a few general questions to help the audience, is there any book you would recommend for someone starting?
William: Resources I use I’ve always Ray Winderlich books. All the tutorials.
Yohann: We had somebody mention him earlier.
William: Yeah his site has all the tutorials. For when your trying to figure questions and bugs. www.stackoverflow.com and www.google.com
Yohann: It was worth mentioning.
William: Yeah, I’ve been using google since 1999.
Yohann: Google is your best friend. So now how do we get in touch with you.
William: Twitter @williamjones and website www.williamjones.info
Yohann: I believe a great freebie for our audience right.
William: I actually have an iPad pen stylus I’d like to give away.
Yohann: For anyone that tweets @williamjones and @Yohann305 “I want the pen” you’ll have a chance to win worth 20 dollars.
William: Yeah good quality stylus and a pen.
Yohann: Choose between red or black or silver. William thanks for everything. I want to hear you succeeding.
William: Hopefully I can tweak China Joy and I have some ideas for future apps that will perform a lot better.
Yohann: Keep at it like some people on the podcast say and you will find that sweet game.
William: And that’s key. Each future one will be easier. Teaches me that I need to do a lot more work marketing the product.
Yohann: Alright, thanks for everything William keep in touch. William: Thanks Yohann!
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