how to market apps

What are app reinstalls and why it matters for marketers

Let’s face it – without apps, our phones and tablet would be pretty boring.

Gaming, productivity tools, meditation, health, and every other category are stuffed full of apps of varying quality. Some are awesome, some are just not. Most apps are free, some have ads, some have in-app purchase options, and some are paid for.

Essentially something for everyone.

This is a great opportunity but is also a double-edged sword for any app company:  On one hand, the app market is booming. People are seeking out all kinds of apps to augment their work and personal lives but the flip side is that app marketers must vie for attention within a saturated marketplace.

So how does one app company stand out? How does an app company continue to generate income and engagement from their app when the user loses interest?

It all boils down to the following:

Understanding the usage patterns

It is important to understand that not all apps are created equally.

We all tend to use our arguably “essential” apps such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Email. Those types of apps are not going anywhere and are installed by default and normally sit on top of the most-downloaded app list.

We then have apps we use “every once in a while” such as a banking app or a photo editing app. These apps are on our phones and we fire them up when we need them.

Then there are purpose-apps which we install, use to fulfill a purpose and then uninstall. Typically these would be travel apps, or research apps.

Now that we understand patterns, we need to find ways to keep top-of-mind so the app isn’t uninstalled whenever the phone’s storage starts to run out and there isn’t an expandable storage (looking at you iPhone).

This is where smart marketing comes into play.

Apps reinstalls Are on the Rise

The phenomenon known as reinstallation is on the rise. eMarketer reports that nearly 30 percent of app installs in North American between the November 2017 and May 2018 were reinstalls. Furthermore, “reinstall rates were higher for specific app categories, particularly those for which consumers had a short-term need, such as travel apps and dating apps.”

This makes sense.

Before an upcoming vacation, you might install some travel apps, read the reviews, book flights and hotels, hire a car, find restaurants and activities to do. However, once the vacation is over,  there is no reason to have an app offering you discounts at a restaurant in another country.

Ads for apps work

It is common for us to see personalized targeted ads for goods and services, so why should apps be any different?

DazeInfo reports that existing users have a 60 to 70 percent chance of making an in-app purchase; new users have a 5 to 20 percent. Therefore, by engaging with smart retargeting advertising companies to set up targeted ad campaigns, the mobile app usage for existing users is then revitalized.

The key to ads is making them personal to the user and not generic. A 50% off discount coupon for a retail shop in another country is pointless, but a 15% coupon for a local store where I already shop makes complete sense.

The same applies for apps.

For example: a mobile user in New York City searches for flights to Orlando, perhaps even beginning the booking process but not completing the transaction. A smart marketer would show them a retargeting ad with messaging like “Orlando right now sounds amazing right? We think you deserve to go – don’t you?” along with a “Open App Now” CTA (call-to-action) button. Really smart apps would show the user where they left off, making it easy to book that flight with little more than a few taps.

So in summary:

One of the core components of running a successful business is investing in the marketing of the business. Great business that no one knows about will close down. Apps are the same.

Smart app owners understand the value of ad campaigns, and they continue to invest in them thereby gaining more awareness, more customers, retaining existing ones and growing their business.

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