Food for Thought – Some Key Industry Trends for 2016 (Post 4 of 4)


Our last post discussed why issues of user quality warrant your attention. Now let me move on to the final theme: Marketers are focused on proactively improving post-install engagement with investments in mobile marketing automation and remarketing.

Let’s start with automation It’s no surprise to anyone here that a lot of VC money has flowed into automation. When we think of mobile automation, most of us think first of push notifications. Push notifications have a big effect on app retention. Two different studies – one from Localytics and one from Kahuna, showed that people who receive push notifications are more than twice as likely to keep using an app over time.

push notifications

Moving on, we found the following benchmarks.

Opt-in rates for push are holding pretty steady, at roughly half of users accepting them, on average. Almost 2/3 of pushes are now customized to user behaviors rather than just being broadcast messages like…come back to the app. Click through rates for pushes run 5-10% for commercial apps, on average. And there’s a lot of evidence to show that more than a couple of pushes a week drives spikes in opt-outs. I hope those figures answer at least some of those questions, and we will send this deck out to folks after the presentation so you have them.

Now let’s move on to remarketing.

Discussions of remarketing and retention are really captivating the industry these days. Here is just a small sampling of the headlines. And remarketing is consistently one of the most frequent topics we are asked about.

remarketing headlines

Apsalar launched a remarketing audience product in 2015, because clients were looking for ways to easily segment users and deliver more targeted retargeting messages to users. Apsalar Audiences enables you to create high-performing audiences and deliver customized creative to them through your choice of media partners. You can analyze your audience OR actually deliver and audience of device advertising IDs to whichever retargeter your prefer. For example, identifying all the people who had registered, or put an item in a shopping cart. And the money is flowing. Across our clients we are seeing very fast growth. 300% growth in 3 quarters. Off a small base, to be sure, but I bet we’ll hit 10% in Q4 of 2016.

Now, what is the profile of the companies that are retargeting? Well, there are exceptions and variances, but there are three insights I can provide with surety.

Companies with big install bases are the most likely users of retargeting. They have the most potential revenue to gain, and when you have a big install base, your media partner can actually find lots of your users when they are connected, so you can get program scale.

From a category perspective, gaming you can also access if you click to visit website, retail and travel are the verticals showing the most interest And when a company has big ticket items for sale, or items with really big profit margins, like IAPs, then retargeting is much easier to pay out.

When we examine the remarketing programs brands are running, we see certain use cases coming up over and over.

The most popular tactic we are seeing so far is app cross-marketing, when a brand creates an audience of users (or frequent users or payers) and targets them with advertising for another app. Payers and engagers are the focus here, because these are people that have been shown to be of value to a business. Getting more of their time and attention has good odds of paying out, and the targeting can be done cost effectively, especially when the app has a large user base.

This an other tactics involve segmenting users and delivering customized messages. We are also seeing interest in companies trying to improve their lookalike modeling by profiling high value users – like registered users and payers, for those models. It’s early days for this, but intuitively it seems like a great way to use data to improve UA in addition to retention.


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