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Success in Mobile Marketing: Is Your App Reaching its Full Potential?

As part of a two-part series, I’m sharing my thoughts on how brands must adapt to succeed in this new era of mobile marketing. Earlier, I addressed the need to move from a download-driven to a data-driven mobile advertising strategy. Today, I want to share how brands can use data to discover new opportunities within their mobile ecosystem.

Is Your Mobile App Reaching its Full Potential?

Is your mobile app doing everything it can for your business? This might seem like a simple question, but it is so rarely asked. Mobile apps should not only provide a clear, definitive added value for your user, but also for your business.

Apps aren’t always developed to solve a critical business issue. Sometimes businesses launch apps to keep up with the competition or simply because they think it is expected. Perhaps a company launched an app years ago but now its functionality is outdated and it no longer serves a vital business need. As business needs evolve; so should an app.

But how do you get there?

Assess What You’ve Built

The first step in finding new opportunities in mobile marketing is understanding what currently exists. Consider the value your app currently provides, both for your business and your users. Examine usage data to understand how, when and why people are using what you’ve built for them. Many companies are shocked to find that users are engaging with their app for a completely different reason than intended.

For instance, maybe there are certain hours during which users are spending more time within the app or key features that have a higher engagement rate. It is just as important to understand why people are not engaging. If users are not traveling through the intended customer experience, at which point are they dropping off and why?

Leverage the data and the group of brand loyalists available to you to better understand the successes and gaps in your existing product. These insights will provide you with a blueprint for any necessary updates, changes or advances in your app.

Redefine Your Opportunity

After assessing current app usage and users, examine and establish critical business needs to better define the opportunities mobile provides. Look at how your business has evolved during the past decade, paying particular attention to what has traditionally been successful. Reflect on new challenges facing your business and don’t put limitations on the types of challenges. Consider the obvious and the obscure; everything from slowing profits or diminishing sales channels to customer service quality assurance or an aging demographic. Then, ask yourself how mobile marketing can help solve these problems and create new opportunities for your business.

Marriott has consistently done an excellent job understanding their new business needs and reevaluating how their app should work for them. Initially, mobile presented a new revenue stream for Marriott, so the app was born purely to drive bookings. However, as their users and business needs evolved, Marriott saw the need to innovate. They conducted member research, examined usage data and customer feedback and evaluated their own business. This lead to a complete app redesign, launched last month, focused on providing a personalized customer experience that will adjust based on the services users are most likely to require in real time. By examining their existing app, they uncovered the need to provide users with a more comprehensive guest experience and the opportunity for mobile create a new channel for customer service.

Apply this thinking to your own app strategy; there are features and functions you can add to your app that might have an indirect, but valuable impact on your bottom line. 

Be Inquisitive

Change is inevitable and innovation is essential. The only way to understand your app’s full potential is to be inquisitive. Assess what exists, ask questions, challenge assumptions, search for weaknesses and discover new opportunities. Once you’re done, start the process all over again.

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James Mullany

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