Richard Downey on How You Can Increase Mobile App Users [Podcast]

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Welcome to episode #07 of the Fliplet podcast! This week we were joined by Richard Downey to discuss how you can increase mobile app users and what metrics you should consider when marketing your apps.

Who is Richard Downey?

Richard is currently the Director of Mobile at The Specialist Works. He was formerly Director of New Business at Fetch, and prior to that, he worked in magazine publishing.

He self-admittedly made the move from print to mobile advertising at just the right time and given his wealth of experience in media, publishing and advertising, we were excited to discover more about mobile apps from his perspective.

What impact does the type of mobile device have on app usage and advertising?

Richard points out that iOS is generally perceived to hold more value for companies and users than Android. This traditionally stems from the simple fact that Apple handsets are worth more, and thus, their users provide a more affluent market for companies to target.

It also boils down to trust. Apple, the App Store, and their technology, has been around for a long time now, which may explain why users usually feel more comfortable storing their confidential details, navigating the interface and generally, using iOS apps.

Why is Android not as preferable?

Android and the Google Play store remain confusing for some users and isn’t held in the same respect as their counterparts by many users.

That being said, Richard admitted that it would be unfair to dismiss Android entirely. He has seen a slight shift in interest towards Android in recent times, indicating that more people are beginning to develop an interest in the main alternative to Apple and iOS.

Who is the ideal app ‘user’?

The ‘golden standard’, however, remains the iPad user. They spend more time on average using their device, engage with a wider selection of apps, and are more likely to purchase additional content than smartphone users. The demand for Android tablets remains relatively underdeveloped in comparison.

There’s a big difference between a download and a user

Richard was keen to point out that the main area he encounters confusion with clients is in regards to the definition of a user. In most cases, companies consider a user as someone who downloads their app, but as Richard suggest that is not necessarily the best way to look at it.

A user may be more accurately described as someone who downloads the app and then actually completes a key metric. For example, in the case of a hotel booking app, a user would be someone who not only downloaded the app, but also booked a stay in a hotel.

Data can help you predict user actions

Naturally, you’ll want to know as much about your user as possible. Some companies are capable of carrying out cohort analysis that allows them to identify how valuable a user is to them. By quickly outlining the lifetime prospects of a user, you can determine what content, advertising and marketing to approach them with.

The power of in-app data

Data about the users’ usage pattern within an app, or in-app data, was something that Apple had previously attempted to block companies from having access to. It made it very difficult to determine how your users were actually using your app and limited your information to downloads and revenue.

Apple ultimately failed in their attempts to prevent third-party advertising sources from using iOS apps as a medium to generate revenue, and now in-app data is readily available. This is a powerful source of knowledge than can help app creators redesign the users’ experience and guide them towards desired target behaviors.

How do you actually increase mobile app users?

Richard stresses that although it depends on the type of app there are some key aspects that are transferable across any mobile app promotional campaign.

  • Tell as many people as you can about your app
  • Create a strong message to support your app – what is the unique selling point?
  • Outline why your target marketing should download this to their personal devices – what are the benefits?

How to get people to engage and download your app

First of all, put a lot of thought into your app advertising mechanisms, or how you’re asking people to download the app. Regardless of whether your advertising is through an internal channel or via social media, or display/targeted advertising, it should be persuasive to ultimately convince someone to download your app.

Why would they click on your advertising?

  • Is your app free? – let them know that it is, regardless how obvious it may already be.
  • Is your product trustworthy?
  • Is your product helpful?
  • Is your product useful?

You’re expecting people to download this app onto their phone, so your advertising should reflect all of the above qualities.

Start increasing your mobile app users today

Ultimately, you can increase mobile app users by marketing your app like you would any other product or service. As Richard highlights towards the end of the podcast, you’re asking a lot of a person when you want them to take the time to read about your app, download it, and then use it regularly.

Listen to the full podcast for further insights into mobile, advertising and how you can increase mobile app users.

How do you market your mobile app? Have you seen an increase in the number of users after you used a certain marketing strategy? Tell us in the comments!

You can get in touch with Richard on LinkedIn or through The Specialist Works website.