Friday, February 27, 2015

As spend on brand apps keeps rising, how to maximize the engagement of brand apps?

This week I came across an article indicates that brand apps are falling short when it comes to consumer engagement. It has estimated that the total spend by British consumers on brand apps has hit £4.04 billion a year – a 24% increase compared to the previous year. Such a strong rise in spend suggests that if brands had worked harder on engagement of their apps to deliver more compelling apps, the results could be even more explosive.
It also suggests that Apple users are the most valuable target audiences for brands since those using iOS spend an average of £89.36 or 29.7% more than those on Android.
Despite the high spend however the study supported the fact that brands must do more to engage their users if they want to maximize user spend and usage. The report showed that the number of apps downloaded by the average consumer rose only marginally from 5.5 to 5.9 year on year. Time spent in app also remained static for nearly a third of those surveyed customers (29.5%) with only a quarter spending more time than ever in the apps.
For those where time spent using brand apps was actually falling, a number of reasons were indicated in the report. One in three said that repetitive or irrelevant notifications were putting them off spending so much time in brand apps while for 16.4% the perception was that brands had got lazy and weren’t being either interesting or innovative enough with their apps to retain users’ attention. Similarly 10% felt that brands’ failure to update apps frequently enough – whether with new content or to remain timely with other marketing campaigns and projects – had been a turnoff.
As for brands, it is always necessary to work harder if they are to increase engagement and release the potential of the app channel and its rising spend further. Brands should not feel satisfied about the current situation – they need to have a content strategy planed in advance, be ready to update their apps with innovative new features at least once every six months, and promote their apps as forcefully as possible through other marketing channels. Most importantly, brands have got to listen to their customers when it comes to things like notifications – if brands fail to do that, they will almost certainly have their apps uninstalled before the apps can actually bring benefits to the company.

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