Few weeks ago my colleagues and I attended Apps World North America and here's my brief wrap-up of the key trends and challenges that were most spoken about during this fantastic event gathering over 8,ooo mobile developers, marketers, operators, device manufacturers and other mobile scene actors.
- Top publishers are already investing and planning to invest significantly more in apps and games development and marketing, as they see both skyrocketing revenues and great potential for future success.
- Initial app releases and updates become crucial for the leading publishers such as Gameloft, Zynga, Gree. According to Zynga's Head of Growth Yusuf Bhijee,“app developers should come well prepared to battle for the paying customer”, as the cost of developing and marketing truly disruptive and profitable apps has risen immensely just recently. In order to win the battle, developers should focus on delivering top quality apps and games, as today's market is overwhelmed with cheap and very low quality apps most of which are created within just few hours with automatic app builders. This is NOT the way to go, for sure.
- Speaking about mobile revenues, it is crucial and business critical for app developers to continuously analyze user behavior patterns, channels attribution and other factors using different analytical tools if they want to effectively monetize their mobile products. Josh Williams, CEO of Kontagent + Playhaven, pointed out that “customizing the user experience based on the data is what allows smart app developer to succeed in effective monetization.”
- The days of big push and quick money made overnight are over for developers (Flappy Bird is an exception).
- Brand loyalty and user engagement are the two new imperatives for 2014: the more effectively developers socialize with their users, the more brand advocates they will get over time. Oliver Lo, Founder of App Annie, confirmed it by saying that most of today's successful apps are very social, include features to drive cross-channel distribution and word of mouth, and are able to track user journey from finding your app (a dedicated landing page is a great idea for increasing app's searchability) to engaging with in-app content and making their first purchase.
- In 2014, standalone developers will have the only effective option to reach their break-even point and drive their apps to top grossing charts - finding reliable app development and app marketing partners to help deliver a high quality and bugs-free app created from scratch, and avoid the hidden traps of user acquisition, engagement and data analysis.
Need more details? Please feel free to read my original post in the ComboApp blog.