Posted by: Viki ZabalaNovember 30, 2012
Following the iPhone 5 launch in September, October was a month of opportunity for mobile app marketers.
The Fiksu Cost per Loyal User Index was $1.06, down seven cents or 6 percent, from September’s $1.13. Significant increases in organic searches and app discovery – driven by the arrival of the iPhone 5 and users’ natural enthusiasm for downloading apps on new devices – pushed costs down and created a huge opportunity for mobile app marketers to very cost-efficiently acquire loyal users in October.
Meanwhile, the Fiksu App Store Competitive Index soared to 5.40 million daily downloads in October, a 33 percent increase from September. The Index painted a similar picture following the availability of the iPhone 4S in October 2011, when traffic also surged by a proportional 29 percent, and continues the surge we saw developing at the end of September.
Organic searches soared during the month, as users eagerly explored the App Store, enthusiastically searching for new apps to download on their new iPhones. So while cost for conversions were equal or higher during this time, the heighted period of organic, natural discovery drove down the cost to acquire and engage loyal users. Many savvy marketers wisely chose to ride this “organic wave,” improving user acquisition rates without substantially increasing their spending.
From the iPhone 5 launch, we noticed consumers appeared to be less frantic about updating their devices immediately, many choosing instead to wait several weeks to make the upgrade. Similarly, some seem to be taking more time to select and download new apps, instead of downloading many, all at once. This shift may lead to an even steadier, more sustained opportunity for mobile app marketers in the weeks – even months – following a major device launch.
With the 2012 holiday season underway, early data from Black Friday and Cyber Monday suggests that mobile commerce will have a giant impact on holiday sales – and that mobile apps will have a successful season overall. We’ll see how that plays out in our November Indexes.
A big thank you to all the publications for covering our October Indexes: AppNewser, BizReport, FierceMobileContent, Inside Mobile Apps, MediaPost, Mobile Entertainment, Mobile Marketing Magazine, Mobile Marketing Watch, PocketGamer, TechCrunch, Telecom Lead, TUAW, VatorNews and VentureBeat.
Posted by: Viki ZabalaNovember 14, 2012
- Even though Thanksgiving and Black Friday are next week, the holiday shopping frenzy is already in full force – and there’s no doubt consumers will turn to their tablets and mobile phones to shop.
- Speaking of tablets, one analyst believes the iPad Mini will generate “more demand than it cannibalizes.”
- While the iPhone 5 has been on the shelves for just two short months, Apple is reportedly already starting production for its next generation of the smartphone – the iPhone 5S.
‘Tis the season to use tablets and smartphones to shop. According to a survey of 550 consumers about their expected shopping channels this holiday season, 44 percent of online shoppers anticipate making a purchase on a tablet, and 41 percent say they would use mobile for shopping. Thirty-two percent of mobile and tablet users believe they will make a “big-ticket” purchase on these channels this holiday. “Overall, mobile platforms are the fastest-growing channels for making purchases,” writes Steve Smith for MediaPost.
Apple’s new “iPad Mini creates more demand than it cannibalizes,” says Cowen and Co. analyst Matthew Hoffman, because it will most likely attract entry-level tablet buyers, reported AllThingsD. The analyst firm recently conducted a study of 1,225 U.S. adults about their tablet-buying preferences and found that 12 percent said they would buy an iPad Mini in the next 18 months. Most interesting is that more than 50 percent of those who plan to purchase the iPad Mini are first-time buyers – something app developers and marketers should keep in mind.
While Apple only debuted the iPhone 5 in September, the technology powerhouse is already speculated to start trial productions for its next iPhone – the iPhone 5S – in December. According to Business Insider, which sources a Chinese business newspaper, the iPhone 5S is expected to hit full production in the first quarter of 2013, hinting at a possible spring release. There are also reports that Apple is developing a new iPad – also for the first quarter – that could be the iPad Mini featuring a retina screen. As with all Apple products, time will tell.
Posted by: Viki ZabalaNovember 5, 2012
History has shown us the arrival of a new mobile device generates remarkable opportunities for app marketers to cost-effectively acquire and engage new users, as download volumes surge, costs to acquire loyal users plummet, and user-interest levels peak. So it was no surprise the much-anticipated arrival of the iPhone 5 in September prompted some interesting dynamics in the Fiksu Indexes. While the App Store Competitive Index didn’t depict a huge month-over-month change in download volumes, in reality there was a whirlwind of activity taking place beneath the surface.
Specifically, by examining the data from before the iPhone 5’s arrival and afterward, we identified a clear distinction in app download activity. In the weeks prior to the phone's launch, downloads decreased by 3 percent, but in the weeks after, downloads swelled by a substantial 33 percent.
Meanwhile, the Fiksu Cost per Loyal User Index for September was among the lowest on record at $1.13, down 21 cents or 16 percent from August’s $1.34. The last time the Cost per Loyal User Index came close to this was May 2011, when it was $1.10, as a result of Apple’s ban on incentive-based installs, followed by January 2012 when it fell to $1.14 after the holiday advertising craze.
What does this all mean? Opportunity with a capital O! For app marketers, the iPhone 5 launch in September delivered a prime chance to cost-effectively acquire large volumes of loyal users. In fact, one of our clients even experienced a 20 percent increase in organic downloads and 35 percent revenue gains during the iPhone 5’s post-launch period. Many other clients were able to take advantage of the traffic jump.
As the iPad Mini hits shelves, we may see a continuation of this wave. However, we expect September’s bargain period of rich marketing opportunities will likely be unmatched until the post-holiday frenzy in January 2013.
A big thank you to all the publications that covered our September Indexes, including AppNewser, FierceMobileContent, Inside Mobile Apps, Marketing Vox, MediaPost, Mobile Marketing Watch and Mobile World Live.
Posted by: Viki ZabalaOctober 5, 2012
- With less than two weeks until Apple’s speculated Oct. 17 iPad Mini release, reports show that mass production of the smaller iPad has begun.
- Though the iPhone 5 has just barely hit shelves, some mobile mavens have already started wish lists for their dream iPhone 6.
- As the holiday travel season starts in less than one month, popular smartphone app HotelTonight’s recent acquisition of PrimaTable should allow more personalized recommendations for guests looking to snag last-minute rooms.
- Retailers will be able to learn how to promote m-commerce – especially during the upcoming holiday season – at next week’s Internet Retailer Mobile Marketing and Commerce Forum, where Fiksu and our customer Lemon are co-presenting.
Apple’s Asian component suppliers have commenced mass production of the rumored iPad Mini tablet that is expected to directly compete with Amazon’s recently released tablets, according to The Wall Street Journal. With an expected 7-inch size, the so-called iPad Mini will enter a crowded, low-cost tablet market that includes Barnes & Noble’s Nook and Amazon’s hot Kindle Fire HD. Though its price tag hasn’t been announced, speculation is that the iPad Mini will retail for less than the $499 price of the latest full-size iPad.
As Apple’s iPhone 5 continues to break records, including selling 5 million units during its first weekend, some users are already sharing their desires for the iPhone 6 - even though Apple’s usual product timeline would have the hypothetical release a year off. Some wish-list items include fingerprint screening, near-field communication technology, more storage, and an improved Siri, reports CNET. Apple’s design philosophy is modest: “Our goals are very simple – to design and make better products. If we can’t make something that is better, we won’t do it,” said Apple’s chief designer Sir Jonathan Ive.
With the holiday season kicking off in just a few short weeks, travelers will inevitably flock to hotels worldwide in order to spend time with friends and family. But spontaneous tourists don’t need to plan months ahead, as they can use last-minute booking app HotelTonight for their accommodations. Now, the wildly popular smartphone app just became a little more personal. HotelTonight recently acquired PrimaTable, which provided members-only access to reservations at fine restaurants in San Francisco and New York. According to Mashable, HotelTonight and PrimaTable will combine their algorithms to make hotel booking more personal, creating more relevant search results and rational pricing for users. Read more about HotelTonight’s mobile app marketing success story here.
Retailers looking to boost their mobile efforts during the holiday season can turn to next week’s Internet Retailer 2012 Mobile Marketing and Commerce Forum for actionable advice. Fiksu and our customer Lemon, a digital wallet app, will co-present on new frontiers in app promotion, focusing on Lemon’s successful experience navigating the complex mobile app ecosystem. The discussion will also cover iOS and Android app marketing, as well as attaining customer loyalty. The show takes place Monday, Oct. 8, though Wednesday, Oct. 10, in San Diego. Details and registration here.
Posted by: Viki ZabalaSeptember 28, 2012
Last week, Apple’s highly anticipated iPhone 5 started hitting the shelves, selling a record-shattering 5 million units in its first weekend of availability. Additionally, more than 100 million existing iOS device owners have already rushed to update to iOS 6, Apple’s newest operating system. But, for several weeks preceding the arrival of the iPhone 5, we observed a change in consumers’ download appetites, reflected prominently in our new August Index numbers.
In August, the App Store Competitive Index dropped by 7.3 percent to 4.05 million daily downloads, down from 4.37 million in July. The Cost per Loyal User Index decreased by 20 cents in August (almost 13 percent) to $1.34, down from $1.54 in July.
“Rumors, leaks and hype surrounding the iPhone 5 seemed to be inescapable in August, and the pre-launch anticipation caused both iOS downloads and user acquisition costs to plunge during the month,” writes Kathleen De Vere of Inside Mobile Apps, as she examines the Fiksu Indexes.
Much like the weeks before the iPhone 4S launch in 2011, we observed that many consumers chose to wait for their new iPhone 5 devices rather than downloading new apps to their existing smartphones during August. Similarly, app marketers took the gas off their advertising spending during the month, awaiting the availability of iOS 6 in September and the chance to then promote updated apps. The combined effect made for a slow month overall.
We expect that next month’s Indexes will tell a very different story, now that the iPhone 5 and iOS are here. Be sure to check back next month to see how the September Indexes will reflect what we are calling “Christmas in September,” a time of rich opportunity for app marketers.
Posted by: Viki ZabalaSeptember 21, 2012
Following its Sept. 12 announcement, Apple’s new iPhone 5 device generated record-breaking sales well before hitting shelves on Sept. 21. This Wednesday, Apple released iOS 6, its latest operating system that powers the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, containing more than 200 new features. As part of the new OS, the company unveiled the Advertising Identifier, its new marketing attribution standard to track and attribute in-app advertising. Simultaneously, we unveiled our new SDK Version 3.0 to help marketers navigate this change and ensure a seamless transition to the new Advertising Identifier.
In the first 24 hours following its introduction, interest in the iPhone 5 triggered more than 2 million pre-sales, doubling the previous record set by the iPhone 4S, according to Bloomberg. For AT&T, these early sales made the iPhone 5 its fastest-selling iPhone ever. In fact, because demand for the new phone exceeded supply, Apple said some shipments might now not arrive until October. “It goes to show they’ve got a loyal existing customer base, and with each device they release it becomes more attractive to Android switchers as well,” said Jan Dawson, a mobile analyst at Ovum to The New York Times.
After unveiling the iPhone 5, Apple released iOS 6, which contains more than 200 new features and enhancements, such as improved maps, the Passbook app, an improved Siri, camera panoramas, shared photo streams, FaceTime over cellular and more. “In the end, iOS 6 is to software what the iPhone 5 is to hardware: a big collection of improvements, many of which are really clever and good, that don’t take us in any big new directions,” wrote David Pogue in The New York Times.
With the availability of iOS 6, Apple introduced the Advertising Identifier, which provides a new, standardized way for advertisers to track and attribute in-app advertising. At the same time, we released our new SDK Version 3.0 to help app brands ensure a seamless transition to the new identifier, which will ultimately replace UDID. As a marketer, you probably have questions about the Advertising Identifier and the transition period that is sure to follow. We invite you to join us and discuss these topics on free webinar, “Apple’s Announcements – How Marketing Apps on iOS Will Change,” on Wednesday, Sept. 26, at noon p.m. EDT. Register here.
Posted by: Viki ZabalaSeptember 11, 2012
Tomorrow is a big day for app marketers, and it’s not just because Apple is announcing the much-rumored and anticipated iPhone 5.
It’s because the arrival of the iPhone 5 heralds a fantastic mobile app marketing opportunity for brands – an opportunity that starts with tomorrow’s launch event, picks up steam as the hottest new mobile device hits the shelves mid-month and extends throughout the rest of September well into October and November. Here at Fiksu, we are calling it “Christmas in September!”
To help mobile app marketers and developers understand how to make the most of this rich and timely opportunity, we analyzed data from the last big iPhone 4S launch in October 2011 to help portray what to expect on September 21, 2012.
This infographic spells it all out. If your app is looking to ride the iPhone 5 marketing wave, now’s the time to get in on the action.
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<div><a href="http://www.fiksu.com/taking-advantage-iphone-5-app-marketing-opportunity"><img src="http://www.fiksu.com/images/Fiksu_iPhone-5-Infographic_400px.jpg" alt="Taking Advantage of the iPhone 5 App Marketing Opportunity"></a></div>
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<div><a href="http://www.fiksu.com/taking-advantage-iphone-5-app-marketing-opportunity"><img src="http://www.fiksu.com/images/Fiksu_iPhone-5-Infographic_800px.jpg" alt="Taking Advantage of the iPhone 5 App Marketing Opportunity"></a></div>
Posted by: Viki ZabalaSeptember 6, 2012
While all eyes remain focused on Apple’s official Sept. 12 unveiling of the iPhone 5 and iOS 6, other major mobile competitors are holding their own media events to launch new products ahead of Apple’s highly anticipated launch. Still, reports point to Android’s continued position as top dog in terms of world market share for mobile devices. And, with the holiday travel season just around the corner, mobile users will want to check out the red-hot HotelTonight app that lets spontaneous travelers check-in to hotels for last-minute stays around the globe.
September is shaping up to be a huge month for mobile industry announcements. On Sept. 5, Nokia unveiled its new Lumia Windows phone, which will serve as the flagship handset in its Microsoft alliance, reports USA Today. “The Lumia 920 is a smartphone experience so immersive that you’ll never want to put it down,” said Jo Harlow, executive vice president of smart devices at Nokia, in a ZDNet piece. Similarly rushing to beat the iPhone was Motorola, which revealed a top-of-the-line Droid Razr phone at a Sept. 5 New York event. CNET reports that the device will feature a sharper screen and a higher-capacity battery.
On Thursday, Sept. 6, Amazon is expected to debut new Kindle devices. Technology companies used to divulge new products at enormous conferences, such as the Consumer Electronics Show, but have now followed Apple’s footsteps to create their own press events. “It seems that the rumor of an Apple announcement is having an effect on competitors’ announcements, unless it’s an amazing coincidence,” said Gartner technology analyst Michael Gartenberg to The New York Times.
Though we are just days away from the iPhone 5’s unveiling, Android remains “king” of the world mobile market. According to the latest smartphone sales figures from Kantar Worldpanel Comtech, the Google-powered operating system stakes a more than 61 percent share in eight key regions, including the U.S., European Union and Brazil. That’s a nearly 10 percent overall increase in the past year. In the U.S. market alone, however, Android’s holdings fell 4.5 percent in favor of Apple’s iOS platform.
As consumers eagerly await the new iPhone, Apple is allowing existing users to cash in on their current devices. According to TheNextWeb, Apple is offering through its Reuse and Recycle program up to $345 for older iPhone models. Users can simply input their devices’ model, color and donation, and Apple will calculate what it believes the product is worth. After agreeing to return power cable cords with iPhones, Apple will then generate a gift certificate for the user, redeemable for a new purchase in its online store.
Wildly popular smartphone app HotelTonight, which allows users to book same-day reservations for hotels, has now dropped in to 10 U.S. and U.K. cities and has tallied more 3 million downloads to date. In the past year, HotelTonight has impressively launched apps for iPhone, iPad and Android. “Hitting the 3 million download mark and announcing ten new cities shows how serious we are about our aggressive expansion and fulfilling our promise to be ubiquitous,” said Jared Simon, co-founder and COO, HotelTonight, to TheNextWeb. Read how HotelTonight teamed up with Fiksu to help “book its success” here.
Posted by: Viki ZabalaAugust 24, 2012
Coffee lovers, rejoice! Smartphone users can now pay for their cups of joe at Dunkin’ Donuts via a new mobile app. A new study reveals that tablet sales will balloon in the next four years, while other industry research suggests that mobile ads are viewed most favorably on iPhones. And, in advance of the fast-approaching Sept. 12 iPhone 5 announcement, Apple fans are voicing their “wish lists” for the new device.
While “America Runs on Dunkin’,” consumers can now run the brand’s new mobile app on their smartphones. The donut and coffee retailer debuted its app for iPhone, iPod Touch and Android devices, allowing breakfast fans everywhere to connect and engage with the brand, pay for their coffee virtually, score promotions and interact with Dunkin’ social communities. In a MediaPost interview, John Costello, Dunkin’ Brands’ chief marketing and innovation officer, said Dunkin’ built the cross-functional app to develop deeper relationships with its customers. The free app is now available in the Apple App Store and the Google Play store.
In tablet news, annual sales are expected to surge to 450 million by 2016. While tablets may never completely replace personal desktop computers, they are supplementing larger-screen experiences, Business Insider reports. According to BI Intelligence, there are several drivers to this anticipated tablet explosion – average sales prices are dropping, increased penetration in existing markets, disruptive technologies, and multiple emerging markets ripe for the tablet opportunity. Tablet costs have dropped substantially in the past year – the iPad, for example, is down more than 11 percent from its 2011 price tag – making it more affordable for the masses. Tablets also provide myriads of apps and content such as music, movies, TV shows and magazines, allowing for greater media consumption.
Consumers are exposed to hundreds – maybe even thousands – of ads each day, and as advertisers struggle to optimize app visibility, they’re increasingly turning to Apple’s iPhone. According to a new survey from the Online Publishers Association, iPhone users are more favorable to mobile ads than those on Android. Industry experts, however, advise advertisers to take this research with a grain of salt, saying they shouldn’t be swayed to one platform or another. “This places Android and iOS as equal peers and, given these ads are typically delivered inside apps or through the Web, it is likely advertisers will treat both dominant platforms equally,” technology analyst Rob Enderle said to CIO.
And with the calendar quickly racing toward the rumored Sept. 12 iPhone 5 and iOS 6 reveal, Apple enthusiasts are voicing their desired “wish lists” of features. In particular, gaming enthusiasts are hoping for a bigger screen (the single most important way to enhance the gaming experience,) more gigabytes for more storage, haptic technology, improved graphics technology and support for an external controller, reports MODOJO.
Posted by: Viki ZabalaAugust 9, 2012
As anticipation builds for the reported September release of the iPhone 5 and iOS 6, conjectures about which features will and will not be on the device are surfacing along with high expectations for device sales. In other news, a new study reveals some interesting gender-related trends when it comes to the hottest tablets on the market. And the latest reports from London show that mobile apps are providing golden opportunities for Olympic coaches to review their star athletes’ performances.
Nearly one week after initial speculation about the iPhone 5’s Sept. 12 introduction, rumors continued swirling about the potential feature set of Apple’s newest smartphone. According to The Washington Post, the iPhone 5 will not have a pre-installed YouTube app (though users can still watch YouTube via the Web browser). Additionally, Apple has already introduced its own maps app for iOS 6, replacing Google Maps. There are even reports that Apple may recede from Google services and change its default search engine to Bing. “Microsoft needs Apple to make Bing relevant. Apple needs Microsoft in order to stop paying Google billions,” TechCrunch’s MG Siegler wrote. “This is so obvious. I think we may see a Google-free iPhone sooner, rather than later.”
The new iPhone is expected to sell about 170 million of the 200 million iPhones sold during the next year, according to Asymco analyst Horace Dediu. In a CNET piece, Dediu made his annual market analysis, forecasting that the iPhone 5 will seize about 85 percent of sales. He calculated his predictions based on Apple’s chief marketer Phil Schiller’s recent comment that “each new generation sold approximately is equal to all previous generations combined.” Interestingly, the iPhone 4 beat all three of its ancestors, and the 4S is on the path to exceed sales of the first four models.
Meanwhile, the U.S. tablet market continues to grow, with a predicted 47 percent penetration by 2013. According to TechCrunch, comScore has released new statistics about Kindle Fire and iPad users. In a survey of 6,000 tablet owners, researchers found the Kindle Fire has more female than male users (56.6 percent), while the iPad has more male users (52.9 percent). Android tablets were mostly split even between genders. The survey also found that the iPad has the highest satisfaction rating of all tablets.
And with all eyes on London as the Summer Olympics continues, even the coaches have caught app fever – but not to navigate the city or track official medal counts (though there are apps for that too!). According to Reuters, gymnastics, diving and swimming coaches are using mobile apps to analyze form, execution and timing to improve athletes’ performances. By reviewing their athletes’ routines via apps, they’re able to see errors and correct techniques that could have robbed them from a spot on the medal podium.