April 25, 2013 § 1 Comment
It is becoming hard to say travel without talking about mobile devices today. By 2014, smartphones and tablets are on track to capture nearly one in five travel dollars. And those who are marketing travel to women should take note of some of the opportunities and challenges.
Travel Decisions Made by Women
Some 80% of all travel decisions are made by women and 40% of travel is planned using a mobile device. The tablet is the preferred device for planning travel and the smartphone is the choice for booking trips while on the go. In fact, three-quarters (76%) of us reach for the smartphone when booking travel on the go.
Poor Mobile Experiences
So you know the drill – you are traveling and something happens to cause you to change your airline reservations. You go to your handy app. But you have a hard time loading the information, it gets confusing and then, you just call the airlines or the hotel or the car rental or the restaurant because it was a hassle figuring it out on that handy app. It’s happened to me before – and apparently, lots of others. A ResearchNow study released by Mobiquity shows the top negatives:
- 60% of smartphone owners, 52% of tablet owners found mobile travel sites slow to load
- 51% of tablet owners rated search and selection options on travel apps as complicated
- 20% of tablet owners were disappointed the apps were not integrated with their loyalty programs
Poor mobile experiences can cause travelers to take an alternative course and could result in decreased revenue for travel brands. More than a third (35%) of connected travelers would be less likely to book again with the travel brand after a slow, confusing of non-optimized experience when research or booking travel on a mobile device. Some of the issues in addition to slow load time are complicated search and selection, poor navigation, not linked to loyalty programs or not designed.
Top Mobile Travel Apps
The top mobile websites mostly include airlines and travel aggregators, such as TripAdvisor and Priceline.com. Of the 8% of iPhone users that use travel apps, the top airline apps are:
United Airlines (1.6%)
Southwest Airlines (1.5%)
Fly Delta (1.3%)
American Airlines (1.3%)
Some of the other popular apps for travel are included in the following infographic:
- Travel fragmentation is extending to mobile (tnooz.com)
April 2, 2013 § Leave a comment
Considering an app to market to moms? A recent study found that 97% of moms made a purchase on their tablet in the last month and they’re spending significantly more time on their tablets than laptops. There’s a huge opportunity for brands to provide value for moms on their tablets.
One way to make the most of moms on tablets is by developing an app for your brand. However, developing an app, especially for the first time, is not an easy task. It requires a big budget, skilled engineers, and dedicated marketers to build a useful, powerful app.
So before you begin, there are 4 key things to keep in mind when planning to develop a new app:
App functionality – In order to be truly effective, apps must be smart, innovative, and provide value to the customer. Know when your customers will be downloading the app and why they need it at that moment. Determine the use case scenario and keep it top of mind throughout all stages of development. Also know that you don’t have to include all potential features in the first release of the app. Prioritize the essential elements and add additional functionality in future releases.
Operating systems – You don’t need to develop an app for all platforms to be successful. Rather, understand the devices before choosing one or a few. First, narrow down your options by knowing which device your target audience uses. For example, about 51% of moms own an iPhone, iPad, or iPod, compared to 52% of teenagers owning an Android. Second, understand the pros and cons of the various platforms. Windows is known for its flexibility and provides a great user experience. Apple has fewer models and screen sizes so testing is easier. However, a rejection from Apple’s App Store means more time and money to make improvements. With Android, though, it’s easier to get apps into the Google Play store. On the down side, there are many Android models and testing on all of them is nearly impossible. Finally, testing on various devices requires lots of Quality Assurance (QA), not only for the first release but also to maintain the app as devices update their operating systems. Don’t forget to budget for ongoing QA as you develop your plan.
Pricing model – Will the app support your core business or will it be the sole revenue stream? If your business has other revenue sources, you may offer the app for free because it builds mobile presence and authority for your brand. If this will be your main revenue source, the app itself might be free but perhaps it will generate revenue through an eCommerce engine or paid membership. While some paid apps are very successful, tablet users have been shown to prefer free apps with ads to paid apps. Paid apps accounted for only 23% of all tablet app downloads in 2012. Does your app offer something that customers will pay for or does it offer another value to your business?
Download strategies – Marketing your app and getting customers to download it provides a huge challenge. Make sure your app is searchable within the app store. You can do this by choosing the most relevant keywords. What will customers be looking for when you want them to find your app? Find out and use those keywords. Note, you are limited a specific number of characters for keywords. For Apple, keywords must be less than 100 characters. Another download strategy is through email marketing. Email your existing customers and include a direct link to the app store so they can download the app immediately. Make it easy for them to find and download. Also consider integrating a social sharing element into your app so users market the app for you.
Creating an app may or may not be worth it for your business, but after thinking through each of these topics you should have a better idea of your approach and strategy. For more insights on the habits of moms on tablets and how to build the best app strategy for your brand, download the white paper, “Tablets 101: A Primer for Mom-Focused Brands.”
This guest post is by Katie Petrillo. She is the B2B Marketing Manager at Punchbowl, where she writes about marketing to moms for the Punchbowl Trends blog. Follow her on Twitter @PunchbowlTrends and find her on Google+.
September 5, 2012 § Leave a comment
It finally happened. My husband is coming to the light. He is getting a new iPhone.
And it seems that he is not alone. While Android phones surged ahead last year, new research shows that iPads and the new iPhones are preferred for the end of the year.
Research from Yankee Group: “A smaller percentage of consumers—only 39 percent of respondents who intend to buy a smartphone in the next six months—plan to buy one that runs Android, indicating that Android interest is flagging. Compare that with the 42 percent of consumers who plan to buy an iPhone in the next six months, and our landscapes suggest that Apple will see another record-setting launch this fall.”
In my humble opinion, there are many reasons that iPhones win. The integration with all Mac devices, the camera, Facetime, and iTunes are just a few. Since everyone else in the family has an iPhone, my husband is realizing how simple it is to be connected with his laptop and his family. Research from Techbargains.com says one in five users who identified as Android users plan on replacing their current handset with Apple’s next iPhone. The survey group of 1,300 indicated that most smartphone customers are seeking longer battery life, a faster phone, and 4G LTE wireless connectivity.
The new introduction of the sixth-generation iPhone is high anticipated. It’s the American way. Competition is good. And when it comes to tablets, here’s an interesting tidbit – for every Android tablet in use today, there are 6.6 iPads. eMarketer predicts the number of iPad users in the US will rise by over 90% this year to 53.2 million, as loyal users replace older models and new consumers purchase the device. eMarketer estimates more than half of tablet users this year to be men (54%), but by the end of the forecast period the gender split is expected to be even.
February 29, 2012 § Leave a comment
Sometimes we forget the obvious. The attached infographic on local shopping is a good reminder for any retailer to make sure they are easy to find on mobile search. Business listings are just an extension of your online and offline marketing. So if you are reading this right now, stop what you are doing and google your business from your smartphone or tablet.
Here are a few of the facts:
• 49% of mobile and tablet users use apps for local business searches.
• 61% of smartphone users conduct local searches from their device.
• 64% of tablet users search for local stores on their device at least weekly
• 61% of those searching consider search results more relevant than paid ads (10%)
• Most popular searches – restaurants, shopping and healthcare
July 28, 2011 § 2 Comments
Just read an interesting study from media research firm Affinity that suggests that each generation has its favorite gadget. Their findings suggest that e-readers are for baby boomers, PC tablets for Gen Xers and smartphones for millennials.
Baby Boomer: Surveying more than 60,000 consumers, Affinity found that 12 percent of U. S. adults own an e-reader, with owners of the readers skewing female and baby boomer. The e-reader is mostly an at-home device.
Gen X: The Gen-Xers are 16% more likely to have a tablet and almost a fourth of them plan to purchase one. This compares with the current 8% of consumers that currently own a tablet. With tablets, men are more likely to be owner than women. Affluent Gen-Xers are 63% more likely to buy a table than their peers.
Millennials: Smartphones are the device of choice for millennials who are 28% more likely to own a smartphone than average. After all, these millennials do not have a land line and depend on their smartphone for almost everything.
But there is another category that this study overlooked: it’s the crazed Apple lover Mom of all generations that has an iPhone, a MacBook, and iPad – and wonders why anyone would ever want a Kindle. (Confession: I fall into that category) These are the folks that are hooked on entertainment, the cool factor, convenience and integration, and the beautiful design of Apple products. According to NPD, the number of moms who purchased iPhones grew 132 percent in the first quarter of 2011 over sales recorded during the same time last year.