Why do enterprises go mobile? The well-known motivation is to build closer relationships with customers. Another important one, empowering internal communications, is frequently overlooked, however. This area is especially important in healthcare, where communications form the cornerstone for preserving health and saving lives, especially regarding the immediate availability of information that enables speedy reactions in crisis situations.
Healthcare mobile enterprise solutions can interconnect patients, sales reps, physicians, pharmacists, and other industry stakeholders in a convenient, user-friendly way. Indeed, the adoption of mobile apps creates opportunities for healthcare organizations to benefit in multiple ways.
I’ve already discussed the average profits web developers generate with mobile apps in my mobile app market review last year. Today I’d like to address the subject of mobile app pricing. How do you define the final price level that will bring you maximum profits without discouraging users?
The apps market is overloaded with free mobile apps, and many of them have high-quality sound and graphics along with nice functionality. However, while the huge number of downloads looks tempting, web developers will be hard-pressed to make both ends meet by offering a free product. The cost to develop an app won’t be covered even with a cost of $1-2 dollars per install, so what’s the compromise?
Simple, so-called table-based apps with very basic information (hierarchical topics with a list of available subjects) cost from $1000 to $4000 (money you would pay to a web development contractor agency). Add-ons such as geolocation, social media integration, camera integration, push notifications and all the rest will cost up to another $4000. Database native mobile apps vary between $8k and $50k, and you will be responsible for all the content. This type of app is great for adding structure and logic to the existing content so that it is organized and displays efficiently. You can also opt for a fully dynamic mobile app. The data it relies on is outside the app (on a social network, for example). In the last few years, web-based mobile apps have become more sophisticated and started to replace native apps because they require less memory and use more convenient cloud-based storage for the information they need.
Even before having a cup of coffee or tea, most smartphone users have already opened a mobile app. They may use an app to find their way to the mall, checking the day’s weather, turn off their alarm, or log their breakfast into a calorie tracker.
Mobile apps have become an integral part of making decisions, especially considering the time users spend browsing products (about 30 hours every month, according to Nielsen research). By marketing your mobile app, you can build closer relationships with clients and power up other marketing communication channels, such as promo events, special offers, and coupons. Remember that users open about 90% of all the push notifications brands send. Mobile websites help because users can open the same content on their desktop computers or mobile devices using Facebook, Twitter, and other mobile apps. This ensures that your message is universally flexible.
The growth in the usage of smartphone and mobile apps has made developers and marketers interested in using this new marketing channel or even producing an entirely new independent product. There are many reasons why everyone cares about mobile these days. Can you believe that mobile app usage has exploded by 76% in the past year?
“How much does it cost to make an app?” is the number one question developers and marketers ask themselves and Google when thinking about their mobile strategy for the first time. Oddly enough, this topic is even more mysterious than the actual revenues developers can potentially make out of mobile apps. I’d like to clarify the situation a bit and show you the most interesting statistics along with my experience.
Many marketers assume it’s too expensive to produce a mobile app. A small number have heard about easy-to-use mobile app builders and think they can make one for a very low cost. Both points of view are extreme.
Individuals and some marketers frequently opt for mobile app builders. The pricing starts from $10 a month and goes up to $1k a month, while you can also buy yearly plans. What exactly do you get? Don’t let the “no coding skills required” promise mislead you. Cheap mobile app builders are nothing but a range of templates, and the maximum customization you get is choosing the color and changing the text above and under each of the fields and blocks. Although this type of solution may work great for small local businesses and individual users, they are actually a waste of time for the majority of businesses for several reasons.
Mobile ensures that shopping never sleeps. You are very likely to put your smartphone next to you before going to bed, and many of us indulge ourselves by browsing late at night. Mobile apps have the highest rates for average time spent per session while mobile websites are required for being found by a mobile search. In fact, many people have a habit, even a reflex, for looking for information on mobile.
Should you write a press release for your mobile app? In the following cases, you should:
You published a new mobile app. This is the best time to publish a press release. It’s a great way to inform potential customers about your product.
You released an update for your mobile app. If you have introduced new features, bug fixes, or other improvements, tell your customers about them. Press releases offer a great chance to do so, but you don’t need to write a release for minor fixes that are not relevant to clients. They can be included in the release for your next big update.
There is so much to do in mobile app marketing but to achieve the best results and boost your app sales, you need to concentrate on only two or three digital channels. The first step in choosing the right social media network is to analyze your target audience and try to define where these people hang out on the Internet. Don’t rush to create every possible social account before you find out what is popular among your target users. Effective mobile app marketing implies selling to an audience of at least 5,000 people. If the Facebook groups and pages in your field have a humble population of 10–100 people, you shouldn’t opt for this network. Instead, look at other options.
Let’s look at what social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have to offer for promoting your mobile app.
Facebook is a huge community and nobody can it ignore these days. It is almost impossible to engage all of its users, but your task here is to hook the target users and get them to buy your product or service.
About half of all Facebook users log on to the platform every day.
In total, 20% of all users live in the US.
Your target audience is very likely to use Facebook quite often.
Over 100 million users open Facebook with their mobile devices.
Around 10–15 million users like company pages every day.
A common myth is that mobile users are always on the run leading companies to include only the most important information on their mobile websites and apps. In reality, people turn to their smartphones for virtually anything. Cooking, shopping, commuting, and waiting in line have become much more informative and entertaining thanks to mobile devices. Even at home, users prefer to use their smartphones for browsing rather than their desktop computers or laptops.
I’m happy to finally publish an interview with an expert I conducted some time ago. In addition, I’m ready to cover new topics, so please let me know what you’d like to learn from the experts about marketing mobile apps and related areas.
1) What would be your advice to a company that wants to start mobile app development?
First of all, pick the right platform. That is, where is your audience primarily? iOS? Android? Then come up with a limited feature set, focusing on those things that really matter to users. You do not have to do everything in version 1.0. Just get started and iterate.
It is easy to get un-focused, thought, and make an app that is way too bloated.
As Steve Jobs once said: My best decisions are when I said no.
2) Do you think mobile apps can be useful for marketing and branding? Why?
Absolutely. People spend tons of time on their phones. And nowadays, they just expect a company to have an app. Yet the app must be useful — not just advertising. So provide some type of service, provide a benefit. This will help create some brand loyalty.
An interesting example of this is Ace, which makes bandages. They are a sponsor of Little League Baseball. So to leverage this, they created an app that allowed parents to create baseball cards of their kids. It was very popular. More importantly, it helped to create interest/excitement about a mature, ordinary brand.