Duolingo’s Free Marketing: Is It Possible For Your Business?

In just 3 years, the language learning app, Duolingo, has gained 110 million users. That makes it the most downloaded educational app on both Google Play Store and iTunes. What’s more, they’ve done it without spending a single dollar on marketing. In a world with so much digital media and with so many digital media companies offering marketing, you might be wondering how this kind of growth happened, and is it possible for your business?


How They Did It

For the monolinguistic individuals out there (about 40 percent of the world’s population), becoming bilingual rests atop the bucket list. Who hasn’t made plans to learn Spanish, French or even Mandarin, only to put it off time and time again? Standing in line at the checkout one day, a beautiful woman comes up to you and asks for directions. In Spanish. “I should really learn another language,” you say. Or, Cliff from accounting has taken over the holiday party by showing off his skills in French. “Okay, this time I’m really going to learn.”


These situations make us feel inadequate and, in some cases, downright stupid.  The advantages to learning another language reach beyond the personal: it can also be a worthwhile business investment. Mark Zuckerberg made headlines in 2014 when speaking to a group of Chinese students in Mandarin. They immediately burst into impressed laughter. When Bill Gates saw this, what did he do? He downloaded Duolingo. If the ease of downloading a free app along with a huge market of potential learners is what got Duolingo started without any help from digital media marketing, the application’s user experience and word of mouth is what pushed it to the top. The app itself combines a gamelike interface along with machine learning put to use in the ever-addicting Candy Crush. The engineers behind Duolingo created a truly unique educational product– one that teases you along like a game, keeping you motivated to stick with it.


It’s Tough Work Either Way

Having 110 million downloads in 3 years is impressive, and even more so without marketing. However, the vast majority of Duolingo users and foreign language learners in general give up before becoming conversational. It takes hard work and many hours – 34 on Duolingo is equivalent to a college semester – to achieve success. Let that be the lesson here: like learning a foreign language, growing a business takes countless hours of energy and hard work. And, it’s never a bad idea to let the world know, through digital media, just how great your business is.


Will It Work For Me?

It’s hard to say, but probably not. The truth is that marketing, especially in digital media, remains an effective strategy for any business. Online media marketing has become one of the most effective ways to grow your business. It’s also more affordable and trackable than ever before. Take email for example (the most basic form of digital media). the average return on investment is $38 for every $1 spent. In a world where the growth of your company is more and more directly tied to web presence – whether you sell online or not – it’s never been more important to take advantage of the services digital media companies offer. Services like SEO optimization, web content development, and email campaigns can make a huge difference in the success of your company. If you are a business owner and looking to expand your online presence, contact Web Content Development today. We can help you form a marketing strategy and develop an online image that will lift your business into greatness.

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About the Author

Erica D’Arcangelo – De Silva

Erica D’Arcangelo – De Silva has worked in the Internet marketing industry for the last 20-years. Erica is the top-secret SEO weapon to marketing and advertising agencies in the world. She has generated over 300+ million in revenue for high-value brands such as Walmart, Pottery Barn, iRobot, Cutting Edge Firewood, Kelley Blue Book, and many more. Erica has custom-created more than 1,000 content, SEO, and marketing strategies which held the key to doubling and tripling online traffic, and marketing ROI. She has also authored a series of online publications including The Digital Branding Survival Guide, Million Dollar Marketing, 5 Steps to Increase Web Traffic by Blogging, and Repairing Your Online Reputation.