Why Mobile Will Power Your Marketing Future
For businesses, engaging with mobile should not be a matter of if, but when. And according to App Annie’s The State of Mobile 2020 report, sooner is better than later. The report underscores how important it is for businesses to connect with their customers on mobile. Here are some stats that resonate:
Mobile Is a Way of Life
- According to the report, consumers downloaded a record 204 billion apps in 2019. Annual downloads have grown 45 percent in the three years since 2016, and six percent year over year. As App Annie points out, this growth is especially impressive because it excludes re-installs and app updates.
- Also of note: in 2019, people spent roughly three hours and 40 minutes a day on mobile, a 35 percent increase over 2017.
People Are Spending on Mobile Apps
- Consumers are opening their pocketbooks to engage with mobile—and not just with games. App store consumer spending hit $120 billion in 2019, up 2.1 times from 2016. Although games comprise 72 percent of all app store spend, subscriptions in non-gaming apps leapt from 18 percent share in 2016 to a solid 28 percent in 2019.
Mobile Is Where People Go to Be Entertained
- Time spent on sports apps such as ESPN grew by 30 percent from 2017 to 2019.
- Mobile gaming is, hands down, the world’s most popular form of gaming. In 2019, mobile games enjoyed 25 percent more spend than all other gaming combined.
- New entrants like Disney+ are heating up consumer interest—and competition—in the streaming industry. For right now, consumers seem happy to double-dip: close to 25 percent of Netflix’s iPhone users also used Disney+ in Q4 2019, for example. That’s the highest overlap of users among top video streaming apps in the United States.
YouTube and TikTok Are Exploding
- YouTube enjoyed a staggering 980 percent growth in worldwide active users from December 2017 to December 2019. And as we recently blogged, the platform is an advertising giant, to boot.
- App Annie calls it the “TikTok Tidal Wave”: time spent on TikTok, which as a social networking app and entertainment source poses a double threat, grew 210 percent year over year in 2019. TikTok is also drawing interest from brands; as we have noted, the platform is an ideal place to demonstrate a lighter side through funny videos or challenges.
Social Media on Mobile Is as Strong As Ever
- Social isn’t going anywhere. App Annie notes that 50 percent of time on mobile is spent on social and comms apps like Snapchat. As a result, apps like Snapchat are thriving: as we recently blogged, Snapchat continues to grow, even in a competitive landscape.
- Meanwhile, use of Nextdoor has grown 65 percent from December 2017 to December 2019 in the United States, demonstrating an interest in social networking at a local level.
Gen Z Is Rocking Mobile
- Gen Z are digital natives, and as such lead all other demographics in terms of mobile use. According to the App Annie report, Gen Z has 60 percent more sessions per user in top apps than older demographics. And 98 percent of Gen Z own a smartphone.
Implications for Businesses
- Advertising on mobile is increasingly essential to your future as a brand. You can reap huge benefits by doing so, as our work with Snapfish illustrates.
- If you are advertising on mobile already, don’t put your advertising on pause during the coronavirus pandemic. Phone carriers such as AT&T are reporting a surge in mobile usage as more people work from home.
- That said, you may find yourself adapting your mobile campaign at this time: say, by discussing community building activities that will keep your brand front of mind when the crisis subsides. Sensitivity to the current crisis is key. And patience. Elijah Whaley, the CMO influencer marketing agency Parklu, notes of brands who proceed carefully and wisely through the coronavirus era, “When [consumers] start spending again they are going to spend with you.”
- Capitalize on YouTube and TikTok. These apps are only going to increase in popularity as more Gen Zers come of age. TikTok is just sorting out its ad products, but, as we’ve noted, YouTube already offers strong advertising options.
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