Mobile Application


Mobile applications can have many uses. They can act as a container for traditional content such as videos or games, or as a gateway to a brand's multiple services and offers. They can also provide additional services related to a brand's core business, such as a bar locator for Smirnoff or are cope book for Kraft. But most importantly, mobile applications are connected with con¬sumers in a real-time, intimate way, and therefore allow for immediate and precise consumer feedback and insight. The trend towards integrated app stores within smart phones is significant. Screen Digest estimates 150 million smart phones were sold in 2008, and more than 500 million applications were downloaded from Apple's App Store for iPhone and iPod Touch alone. Free applications that provide additional value to the end user are much sought after. Whether it is entertainment, useful services or a coupon, the application works best when it is related to the brand: don't bother offering a krafting game if you sell detergent. There is a fundamental difference between sponsoring a third-party application and taking part in the design of software in line with the brand's values.

There is a lot of talk today about location-based advertising, but the ad inventory to back the hype is not available yet. Intro¬ducing location-based services through a dedicated, useful app, such as a store locator with coupons selections, helps build trust in an otherwise intrusive technology .Brands should also keep in mind the mobile phone remains  above all  a com¬munication device. Address books on our mobile phones can be thought of as the ancestor of today's social networks, and its capacities as a viral communication tool were proven long ago. Of course, optin is paramount. Forgetting this cardinal rule will have disastrous consequences. That is why the added value must be compelling enough for the user to act on the optin proposition. Also, an application that can be customized to better suit the needs of the user will have a longer lifespan. Brands should keep in mind that, even with a useful and free mobile appli¬cation, they are still competing with other forms of services and entertainment on a very small screen. here are several factors to take into account when designing a mobile applica¬tion, especially for iPhone owners, who tend to be early adopters of mobile applications and are also more aware of mobile advertis¬ing.

This audience presents a tremendous opportunity for companies looking to set up iPhone-specific mobile ad campaigns. The first thing to consider is why con¬sumers will use the application instead of a mobile Web site or just plain text messaging. What additional benefits will your applica¬tion provide? For instance, location-based applications can pinpoint a user's exact location, providing value and opportunities that mobile Web sites cannot. Next, be sure to use a rich and engag¬ing interface. Leverage the cool things that the device provides, such as I Phone and iPod “shaking,” touch screen functionality or device tilting to grab users in the first twenty seconds of trying your application. If the user doesn't instantly “get it,” there is a strong chance they will abandon the application and never return.

Now think about longevity. Many people will use a lights a beer game just once because it's all about a single experience, and because free mobile applications are highly disposable in the eyes of the consum¬er. When designing an application, think about what will keep a user coming back. Also, listen to your users by giving them channels to feed back ideas and take those concepts to make constant improvements to your application .Lastly, do not rely on partners. With more than 20,000 iPhone applications to compete with, the success of your applica¬tion cannot be driven by deck placement. Good placement is a reward for success, not the other way around. Remember, career decks and app stores are large meritocratic ecosystems, so the best applications rise to the top. Paying careful attention to design, user interface and ergonomics is critical to the success of your application.