The Role Mobile Apps Play in Your Brand Marketing Strategy

Marketing

Your branded app is a powerful tool for customer service.

But what about marketing?

In today’s crowded digital marketplace, a fully functional mobile app should provide more than just shopping capabilities and chatbots.

Check out the following to find out why your mobile app can go beyond just offering great customer services and support a great marketing strategy and overall help build your brand.

1. Mobile apps empower you to make data-driven decisions.

Big data is big business, and app users provide valuable insights.  Mobile apps can provide data insights into customer’s shopping behavior, what products are the most popular, and  their tastes and preferences. Additionally, based on the setting in your app, you can gather information about their location, purchases, or other apps they use.

You can use this app information in marketing efforts to determine how to reach them and which messages resonate the most. You may uncover interesting behaviors like add-to-carts with no purchases.

Use email marketing or text message marketing to remind the to checkout or recommend complimentary products. Finally, you can learn more about your target customer. Where do they live and what other actives do they enjoy. Fold this information into your marketing and branding efforts to create a lasting impression the target customer can relate to.

2. Branded apps provide instant gratification.

Speed is critical to today’s distracted shopper. Instead of searching for hundreds or even thousands of products on Google or Amazon, all someone has to do is open your app.

Customers can find what they want on the go, and marketers don’t have to worry about competing with retailers that may have lower prices or better services. What does this have to do with marketing?

According to Forbes, instant gratification is an important marketing tactic. The graphic below by Statista shows the sheer volume of requests major websites process in 60 seconds. Speed is critical.

Ensure your marketing efforts stress the always available app and the value it provides to the customer. This can differentiate your brand from competitors that do not have an app.

3. Mobile apps increase brand awareness, even with prospects.

While marketers often think that active customers are the only ones who will download their app, research by Kahuna Marketing shows that people use branded apps even if they aren’t active customers.

Push notifications are the best way to increase brand awareness among app users. However, there’s a fine line between being informative and annoying.

Here are a couple of ideas for your brand awareness strategy:

  1. Create time-sensitive content like special offers
  2. Provide value to their lives by including tools that help users increase productivity or entertain them. Apps with built-in reminders like fitness or health-related apps are a good example.

4. Good mobile apps are an investment that pay handsomely.

One of the biggest mistakes companies make happens before the app is released. Good mobile apps take time and money to work well. Many organizations fail to realize that it can take a year or more to create an app that’s ready for the general public.

Because apps are free, many brands take shortcuts or under spend during the development phase. This leads to a subpar user experience that will hurt your brand more than help it.

The way to calculate the price to develop an app is based on a simple formula:

Project Complexity x Hourly Rates = Total App Development Cost

Each of these factors include a number of variables, such as the type of app, who you hire, and functionality.

While the cost may be high, the ROI is astounding. To determine the ROI of your branded app, check out these formulas by Mind Inventory.

5 Ways to Ruin Your Brand With a Mobile App

We’ve talked a little about the ways mobile apps can help your brand marketing, now we’ll quickly review common mistakes brands make in their apps.

First, a bad user experience can immediately take away any brand value. It is important to remember that the user experience is all parts of the customer journey, including app usage, marketing messages and customer service. Make sure this experience is unified and excellent.  Outdated information on an app can also make your brand lose credibility. To prevent confusion, all information should be the same across the website, app and any documents.

Usless apps or apps that don’t solve a customer problem will frustrate both your team and your customers. Often companies feel they need to have an app without thoughtfully planing how it will bring value to the customer. Ensure you carefully scope what you want your app to do and how it will benefit the customer. Additionally, the process of improving the app and the customer experience never ends. Ensure you are constantly improving the app based on user feedback and new technology. An old, outdated app is a quick way for customers to lose interest and move on to more exciting apps.

Wrapping It Up

Branded mobile apps are an extension of your brand. If they work well, your customers will be pleased. If the don’t work well, your customers will not only be unhappy, but they’ll tell their friends. Word of mouth is still one of the most popular marketing tools, but you can’t control what customers say about you. You can only provide them with the best experience possible.