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App Developers Must Harness Messaging to Drive App Loyalty

By SiliconIndia   |   Friday, October 12, 2012
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Bangalore: A Germany-based mobile interaction specialist, tyntec, has released a white paper focused on helping app developers maximize the effectiveness of their app marketing strategy. Created by recognized mobile marketing and advertising authority Peggy Anne Salz, 'Achieving App Impact: Using SMS to encourage interaction, drive loyalty,' provides app developers with advice on how they can harness messaging to engage and even reactivate users to increase time spent in apps and maximize revenues. The white paper is available free for download at the company's website.

Data reported in the white paper shows a staggering 80-90% of downloaded apps are eventually deleted, and less than 5% of those respondents who download an app are actively using it 20 days after purchase. This rapid attrition rate demonstrates the importance of developers creating lasting customer engagements rather than simply targeting downloads.

One such solution could be SMS, a proven tool to engage and re-engage app purchasers shown to have a significant impact on app performance. A winning strategy for developers is to drive on-going engagement with their apps post-download. While there are many channels open to app developers ranging from push notifications and display banners, to mobile video and 2D barcodes, research shows 59% of people respond to SMS within the first hour of receiving it and 41% within the first ten minutes. When app developers focus their efforts on SMS - it can become the most powerful direct marketing channel ever created.

SMS also complements alternative app marketing mechanisms, including push notifications, which allow an app to notify the user of new messages or events - even when the app is closed on the device. It can also be used to reach all mobile devices globally and even re-connect with users that have already deleted an app.

SMS can drive positive results in a variety of app marketing scenarios the white paper refers to as 'The 3Rs':

Relationship - SMS can be used to build a closer relationship between the app maker and their customer by sending regular, personalized updates with relevant information about the app.
Recommendation - Additional app sales can be driven by embedding 'invite a friend' functionality powered by SMS, allowing users to share an app they love with friends and peers.
Reactivation - Because SMS allows developers to communicate with users who have deleted their app, text messaging can be used in an attempt to re-engage.

"The focus in the app market has been on driving new downloads but, as every marketer knows, it can be more cost and resource effective to maintain relationships with existing customers versus trying to create new ones," said Thorsten Trapp, CTO of tyntec. "Using SMS to engage with app users can help re-invigorate usage amongst your existing customers, driving new revenues and putting new life into your app. App developers need to think about their marketing priorities and this white paper should provide useful insights."

"Connect the dots, and it's not enough to chalk up an app download or sale. You have to engage your customers and encourage on-going interaction," observes Salz, the author of The Everything Guide To Mobile Apps, a book outlining how developers, brands and businesses can make money from their apps, scheduled for release in March 2013. "This is critical for app developers since their ability to build a sustainable market presence rests and falls on how well they keep customers coming back to purchase more features, levels or other functionality they appreciate."

SMS sits at the center of an effective app marketing strategy. "There are other marketing tools, such as display and video, that can help in this process, but it's SMS -- the most effective direct marketing channel ever created -- that has the flexibility, addictiveness and global reach to bring these other channels together," Salz explains. "The ability of app developers to follow the 3Rs -- to reach out to users, encourage them to recommend apps to their friends, and reactivate users who may have deleted the app altogether -- is what will distinguish app leaders from the also-rans."

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