Someone downloaded your mobile app. Awesome.

So now what are you doing in the next 30 days?

It may mean the difference between keeping that potential customer engaged and losing them in the deep digital sea. Researchers found in a study released June 30 that four out of five app downloaders jump ship about a month later.

“What surprised us most when reviewing the data was how quickly most users fell off, regardless of industry,” said Julie Ginches, CMO at Palo Alto, Calif.-based Kahuna, the mobile marketing automation provider that analyzed data from 39 million mobile customers. “It's shocking that on average only 20 percent of users who download an app remain an active user after only 30 days, especially when the download action shows an explicit intent to interact/start a relationship with a brand. The implications of that are interesting.”

Opt Them In

Companies not investing in an automated engagement and onboarding strategy leave behind 80 percent of users, Ginches said. The cost of acquisition averages around $2.25 per user, which means the average company is wasting $180 worth of acquisition spend on every 100 new users in that first 30 days, the CMO added.

julie ginches

OK, so we know Kahuna has an obvious stake here — technology like theirs can help engage those 80 percent.

Nonetheless, the study did yield some interesting results. Kahuna officials measured aggregate and anonymous interactions of more than 39 million customers between January and May.

They found:

  1. For opt-in users, the average 30-day audience retention rate is increased by 125 percent, the average 60-day retention rate is increased by 150 percent and the average 90-day retention rate is increased by 180 percent
  2. The average opt-in rate for push notifications is 62 percent. Android outperforms iOS with an average opt-in rate of 78 percent vs. iOS’s 46 percent (it should be noted users are automatically opted in for messaging on Android devices, but changes to the Android app permission process will likely have an impact on that percentage, Kahuna officials predicted)

“We were not surprised by the variance between the Android and iOS opt-in rates,” Ginches told CMSWire. “The way that the opt-in process is handled on those devices directly relate to the opt-in percentages that we're seeing across industries.”

What Mobile Marketers Need

So what strategies can mobile marketers craft going forward?

She called for more “opportunities to put their brands in the hands of consumers at the precise moment of ‘yes.’”  

“This can be done,” she added, “by accurately automating personalized messages at scale to hit each user precisely when they need or want a message most. In some cases, this might be a behavior-based onboarding campaigns. In others, it might be a conversion campaign to capitalize on items users forget in their shopping carts.”

Too many marketers believe in “persona-based marketing,” Ginches said. It’s the "fiction" there are only a few kinds of people.

“In the mobile era, brands can connect with their customers in highly personalized ways,” Ginches said. “They can send personalized messages to each individual, at the right time, and on the right device. This will become the standard for all marketing. Once you go there, you will never go back.”

Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License Title image by ThomasKohler.