Branded Mobile Apps Lack ROI

Last weekend Apple officially announced 25 billion apps have been downloaded from its application store, plenty of which were bankrolled by marketers hoping to capitalize on the opportunity and wedge their brands into consumers’ hands and pockets. In reality, though, app investment probably hasn’t paid off for marketers, especially the ones that jumped aboard the bandwagon early, writes HipCricket CMO, Jeff Hasen. The biggest problem was the assumption by brands that consumers would somehow stumble across their content, or actively seek it out, he suggests. In reality, it became apparent that they needed to drive attention to the app, and many now do so through mobile advertising or other media channels, which adds another expense to the initiative.

“The lack of strategy is shocking in hindsight—and even during the time—but it spoke to the still naïve understanding of mobile by most companies. They thought of it as an isolated channel, something fun and fluffy, and that consumers would be willing to engage with anything they put in front of them. I think the realization that the channel and consumer were more sophisticated than they realized was a hard wake-up call for brands and agencies. However, those lessons were necessary to force agencies and brands down a more integrated strategy path, one that included proper planning and multiple mobile channel executions and media.”

Read Hasen’s full blog post here.

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