In an effort to change the mobile advertising industry, Tapzilla, a venture backed by Y-Combinator, has created a unique model to help iPhone developers push their apps to the top of the iTunes charts. Traditionally, advertising agencies have focused on offering in-app placements, reviews, and even PPC ads in order to help a company climb the charts, but there's a problem with that - the conversion rate for these types of placements simply aren't high enough to justify the cost.
Tapzilla on the other hand, has chosen to give apps for free to a certain number of buyers per day, effectively bypassing ad placements all together.
How do they do it?
Simple: They ask the developer to front the cost of the app to the customer, taking a $1 cut per download in the process. For example, suppose the app is 99 cents. The developer will be Tapzilla $1.99, 70 cents of which will be credited as commission by Apple. The net cost to the developer would be $1.29 per download.
Although this can get costly when dealing with 1,000 downloads in a short period of time, it's a wonderful way to get your app noticed. Though the system seems to be working great for Tapzilla, we've yet to hear from developers on the effectiveness of this strategy. We'll keep you posted.