The mobile app landscape is booming incredibly as 81.9% of mobile time in the UK is spent on smartphone apps. With mobile app usage representing more than half of total digital time, it is also gaining more popularity among every part of the market.
The success of an app or digital solution is largely dependent on the level of engagement. Around 90% of users will delete an app if it doesn’t fulfil their needs or engage them. This can have dramatic implications for customer retention and revenue growth. Engaging your mobile audience is, therefore, a crucial requirement to ensure marketing efforts for digital solutions engage its intended audience.
Mobile app usage time is increasing among every age group and is highest among millennials. Members of this demographic spend an extraordinary amount of time on mobile apps. That being said, every segment of the population is using their apps more over time, with 55-to-64-year-olds seeing the greatest year-over-year increase, with growth of 37%.
With a growing demographic of mobile app users, brands have an even bigger competition to drive engagement to their target audience. We can narrow this down to five succinct areas that many successful content apps have in common ensuring digital app solutions provide exactly what consumers want.
1 - Understand the audience
The biggest step to driving digital engagement is to ensure that businesses really understand their consumers. Businesses have the opportunity to use data insight and recognise user behavioural patterns from their audience’s consumption. By identifying key patterns and building the app from this understanding it is a critical part to developing how users engage with the app. Knowing exactly how users utilise the app, why they’re using and what they’re using it for are all fundamental aspects of understanding what the audience want and therefore, have the opportunity to deliver. Data can assist in establishing an unlimited amount of information, in some cases too much, but using it in the correct way can increase engagement levels if it’s executed effectively.
2 - Quality and quantity
If an app has no value or isn’t engaging, users will stop looking at, eventually delete it or, worse, open its competitor's app. Mobile users want to get to the point on their mobile as well as be entertained. Static apps that are not regularly updated with lots of new content can be boring and in an ideal app experience, most users will want fresh content every time they drag their finger down to refresh the page. Releasing updated articles and interactive content within digital solutions can have up to 70% more conversions in comparison to static content which is around 36% according to Marketeer Kapost.
3 - Personalised content
Personalisation can be a very powerful tool to boost engagement, drive value and ultimately to make sure readers keep coming back. According to a recent report from Infosys, 74% of customers generally feel frustrated when content is not personalised. Consumers end up spending more time looking through a range of content that just doesn’t contain any value and eventually stops using it. Delivering a personalised experience for customers is a top priority for almost 94% of senior level executives. Personalisation is critical for new digital solutions in reaching and retaining customers.
4 - Social media integration
Most businesses today are taking social media integration a step further by combining it into their mobile apps whether it’s the brands or the customers. In the same way, mobile users want information instantly they also need the ability to share instantly. This puts brands into an enjoyable and welcoming atmosphere for potential customers, where customers are more open to receiving new information. Even creating hashtags for trends, people can mention brands on their own social media pages raising a brand's awareness for free.
5 - Push notifications
Push notifications are useful tools for driving engagement. They provide up to date information for users and alert them to breaking news and tailored new content. A recent study revealed that app users who receive one or more push notifications in their first 90-days have 66% higher average retention rates. Push notifications are also a valuable way of re-engaging one-time users as they remind them the app is there and is full of lots of new content. Additionally, using advanced analytics, businesses can track open rates, interactions and key patterns that help generate high levels of engagement to tailor push notifications to specific users.
A great app that incorporates these customer-centric ideas is ‘Bandsintown’. The app simplifies concert discoveries where users can track their favourite artists, receive alerts when they're touring nearby, keep track of which shows that have been RSVP’d to, share concert details with friends and post articles on your own feed for friends to see. The app also scans from chosen music libraries within iTunes, Spotify, Deezer, Soundcloud and play music (Google) and searches artist likes on Facebook and Twitter to understand exactly who you are as a fan and build insight into which artists to track. It also gives a various amount of notifications so users are alerted when their favourite artists are in town so they can buy tickets within minutes.
The fundamental elements from this app are all important ideas apps should have to engage their audience and focus on customer centric content. Filtering and tailoring content to users on their mobiles devices to exactly how mobile users want to be spoken too is how apps can form a loyal user base across the increasing demographic of app users.
By Anjana Varsani, digital marketing assistant at Better Than Paper
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