The App Store was buzzing during the holidays and Fiksu’s December Index data not only reflected the frenzy of excited users with new devices, but also showed the maturation of mobile app marketers.

As the mobile app market continues to mature, brands have set their sights on sophisticated goals beyond basic user acquisition, aiming to reach their target users across multiple barriers: over time and across apps and device platforms. Marketers have already experienced the power of retargeting on the desktop – in fact, eMarketer says that 55 percent of marketers view retargeting as one of the most important forms of targeting.

Our November Fiksu Indexes marked the start of the 2013 holiday season rush, with app marketing costs and daily downloads beginning their upward climb. And, when combined with our device usage tracker, they hinted at what’s in store for a record-shattering December!

Last week, Apple released its Best of 2013 rankings, showcasing the apps (and music, and movies) that saw the most success on iTunes and the App Store. We're proud of the success our clients have, and we knew they'd be well-represented on the Top Grossing apps list -- but the extent might surprise you. 

The busiest single period of the app marketing year is going on right now -- and yesterday, on Christmas, all eyes were on the iTunes App Store. Fiksu was carefully monitoring the App Store, watching for the "freeze" -- the period where ranks in the all-important Top Charts stop moving. In recent years, the freeze has been getting shorter and shorter. This year, for the first time, there was no real freeze at all.

It’s the season of nonstop events here at Fiksu: from San Francisco to London to Korea and back, the Fiksu team is wrapping up its multi-country world tour, meeting with and hearing from some of the most influential folks in the industry. After many flights, presentations and demonstrations – and trying to keep track of it all – here is our recap of where we’ve been over the last couple of months.

GAMING INSIDERS SUMMIT – OCTOBER 17

The month of October brought saw new users of iPhone 5s and 5c phones flooding into the market and eagerly downloading new apps, keeping volumes up. However, the increase in advertising activity as some marketers rushed to get in front of this new audience, coupled with consumers’ tendency to be particularly loyal to the first wave of apps they download on a new device, helped keep costs stable throughout the month.

Sometimes it takes a bit of data to understand the impact of something you already intuitively knew. The growth of mobile is widely reported, but user habits are increasingly shifting many activities away from the traditional web and onto mobile. In fact, mobile-only users -- those who only use phones or tablets for common online activities -- are increasingly becoming a force in the market.

Recently Fiksu flew from our offices in San Francisco and Boston to Los Angeles for a week of learning with game and app developers at GDC Next and App Developers Conference.

Your app marketing shouldn't happen in a vacuum: holidays, major cultural and sporting events, and seasonal trends all create opportunities that clever marketers can take advantage of. The trick is keeping track of them all and planning ahead.

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