Integrate App With Website

In a world where websites are becoming more app-like and apps are becoming more powerful. People peruse websites, but they use apps.

Websites are browsed passively, while apps are used actively. Websites provide information, while apps help accomplish a task. Websites may have a larger audience, but apps have a more engaged audience.

Websites are different from apps in their purpose and performance. 

That’s why these two marketing channels shouldn’t compete for your customers’ attention, they should complement each other.

Don’t think about your app as a mobile version of your website. Let each marketing channel do what it does best, and lean on the other to fill in the gaps. Websites are great at providing information, while apps are powerful vehicles of engagement.

Guide people to the best experience you can deliver on each medium. Move people from your website to your app when they’ve understood your brand message and are ready to convert into customers.

Tip #1: Redirect mobile website traffic to your app

Even if you have a responsive website, direct people who visit your site on their smartphone or tablet to your app. Why? Because mobile apps are more robust, efficient, and usually better designed than the mobile web. Think of your mobile website as a gateway to your app – it’s funneling people to the best experience your brand can provide on that medium.

For example, Amazon’s mobile website allows consumers to search, find, and add items to their shopping cart. But, this same experience is smoother in Amazon’s app, which also includes additional functionality like a “Buy Now” button.

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Tip #2: Reproduce your website’s most beloved features

People who download a company’s app generally expect it to retain the core functionality and purpose as that company’s website, albeit with a more mobile-friendly user interface. Don’t blindside your consumers with an app feels unrelated to your web presence. Instead, bring your site’s most used and most loved features to the mobile sphere.

Take a look at how Amazon built its robust product search and account management features into its app.

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Tip #3: Be innovative and add some app-specific functionality

To be clear, the above tip does not mean that your app should simply replicate your web experience. Yes, your app should include your website’s best features, but it should also enhance them in some way using mobile’s unique capabilities.

For example, Amazon augmented its mobile search functionality by leveraging smartphone cameras so its app users can find items by scanning them!

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Tip #4: Create a seamless experience (and linked conversion funnels!) for people who go from your website to your app

Continuity between devices is becoming increasingly important. Companies need to provide customers with a consistent brand experience as they move from their laptops to their smartphones. In other words, people should be able to open your app and pick up where they left off on your website. So, make sure your app pulls in user information and behavior from your website to create a seamless transition. By the way, one way to feed this data into your app is through profiles!

Returning to the Amazon example, notice how you can add an item to your cart on the ecommerce giant’s website, and then open Amazon’s app to continue the check out process on your mobile device.

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Integrate My App Into Marketing Ecosystem

App must be well-integrated part of your marketing family. App is an extension of your brand and can’t leave it to fend for itself.

Changing your company’s mindset on mobile is only the first step to finding a place for your app in the big picture of your marketing. Now, it’s time to execute on the compelling idea that your app is a vehicle for long-term success. 

Avoid a tug of war between product and marketing departments by giving responsibility of your app to a bipartisan team right at the beginning. This way, you’ll get an app that is both well designed and aligned with your business goals. You’ll get an app with cool conversion funnels with thought given to what’s going to kick off that funnel.

Think of Your App as a Channel

Your mobile app has the potential to be a whole new channel. It can be a vehicle for higher sales, improved customer relationships, increased brand awareness, etc.

Wondering how? Take your app out of its silo and get the right people involved as early as possible.

Big Takeaway: Your app is a means to an end, not the end itself. Understand and embrace its position as a channel through which you can grow your business.

How to Solve the Great “Who Owns Our App?” Debate

Assigning ownership of your company’s app is a tricky thing. Which department do you hold responsible for bringing your app to life? Is it the product or development team? Or is it marketing’s job?

Spoiler alert: The answer is both. Right from the start.

Although it may seem easier to first task your design team with creating a beautiful app, and then hand it off to marketing to launch, you actually need to get these two powers working together from the get-go.

Alone, your product team will build a powerful app that’s chock full of features (but these might not be what your customers want). Alone, they will deliver a bulletproof mobile experience that renders well on any smartphone or tablet (but they might not know how to get people to actually use your app).

With marketing’s early involvement, you can be sure that:

  • Every feature built into your app is in line with user expectations, needs, and wants

  • There is a go-to-market strategy in place to drum up hype and excitement around your app’s debut

  • Your app’s unique qualities are identified and promoted

  • Your app’s user data is funneled to the marketing team for additional insight, and then distilled back to the product team for app updates

Integrate App With Email Marketing

48% of emails are opened on a mobile device. More than half of emails are read on a smartphone or tablet, this channel can be used to drive app downloads. In-app behavior could be used to create more personalized emails that resonate with each recipient.

Email marketing pumps users into apps and in turn, apps pump more personalized content into emails.If someone is engaged enough with your brand to subscribe to your emails, then there’s a good chance they’ll be interested in your app too. Let your email subscribers know when your app goes live and pay attention to how they use it.

Tip #1: Tell your email subscribers about your app and encourage them to download it

There’s a good chance that your marketing team has a precious list of people who have opted into receiving email communication from your company. These subscribers represent a highly engaged brand audience who regularly want to hear from you. So, use this medium to tell them about your awesome new app and bump up your downloads.

Here is an example from CVS. Notice how they used concise copy, impactful visuals, and deep links embedded in their email to announce their app and drive people to its listing page.

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Tip #2: Use in-app behavior to better inform your email marketing

Web marketers know that a targeted email marketing strategy is the key to nurturing your leads and keeping your customers engaged with your brand. But nobody will read your company’s emails if they’re irrelevant. That’s where your app can help. Use in-app behavioral data (i.e. what your users are doing inside your app) to better personalize your email marketing campaigns. Look at what products people favorite, what items they add to their mobile shopping cart, what screens they spend the most time on, etc.To see this tactic in action, check out how CVS uses information on what products people browse in its app to trigger applicable email deals.Integratingyourappwithyouremailmarketing-tip2

Tip #3: Use profile data collected in-app to better target your email campaigns

No matter how much time consumers spend glued to their beloved smartphones and tablets, they have a life and identity outside of their mobile device. Remember, your app users are real people so take every opportunity to learn more about who they are. Depending on your app type, you can collect profile level data (like demographic information, gender, interests, location, etc.) inside your app and then use it to better customize your email campaigns.For instance, when I downloaded Uber’s app and set up my profile, I specified my gender as female. Now, Uber sends me emails about important women’s issues that I care about.

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Good marketing strategy can transform business is not given

Good marketing strategy has ability to provide exposure is certainly beyond question, but its ability to transform products or services from unknowns into lasting businesses is definitely not a given. Only good product or service can give lasting business.

ABC’s popular TV pitch competition Shark Tank, is a national stage. The show now has a history of being able to move the market when it comes to turning apps that would otherwise be also-rans into mobile hits – at least in terms of visibility and downloads, if not user sentiment or long-term success.

Scholly, for example, is being slammed by a number of one- and two-star reviews from consumers who downloaded the app because they saw it on TV and thought it would be useful – especially considering the fight it caused among Shark Tank investors, leading several to walk off the set. But many users soon discovered that the app still had a number of bugs and, in some cases, pointed to outdated information.

In case you missed it, on the most recent episode of Shark Tank, co-founder Christopher Gray introduced his app Scholly as a way for prospective college students to seek out scholarships and grants. The app scours the web for this information and aggregates its results, though in a fairly unadorned user interface. Many complain that the app isn’t really offering much more information than a number of competing websites already do today, and, in fact, the limitations of a mobile interface is actually an inconvenience since the app doesn’t save your place, and you can’t open tabs like you could in a web browser.

In other words, it’s clear that while Shark Tank can drive traffic in droves, it’s not a proven quality filter.

More importantly, perhaps, the exposure that the show provides, while definitely resulting in a sizable bump in app downloads, doesn’t always mean the company will win in the long run.

In fact, when looking back on a number of past apps that have popped up on the show over the years, it’s apparent the results from being on Shark Tank vary beyond their initial boost. http://ow.ly/JFc4V 

With Tickle Kids can Learn to Code and sell in the App Store

This can change the existing method of teaching codes to kids. It will be enabling kids to publish on the App Store.

Tickle differentiates from other programs with its colorful interface and characters. It also keeps kids motivated by showing them what they can produce once they finish a lesson on a programming concept.

In the app, kids first learn how to animate Tickle’s characters by putting together building blocks of code.

From there, they can build versions of popular games, before creating original games that can be sold in the App Store, or learning how to program real-life objects like the Philips Hue smart lightbulb or a AR.Drone.  http://ow.ly/AvzwY