To get the most out of an app, brands must discover how they can be most useful to their consumers, according to a panel of experts who spoke this year at the Mobile Media Summit in San Francisco.
According to the panel, brands have to craft apps in a way that will get consumers to keep coming back to them. The panel says that brands need to think about their apps just like they are any other product. The group also felt that combining a brand with an already successful app can pay solid dividends for consumer awareness.
"If 2012 was about getting the app download, then 2013 will be about bringing utility to your device," said chief product officer at Jumptap Adam Soroca during a panel discussion at the summit.
According to Soroca, brands need to move past the idea that downloads equal success in the branded app marketplace. Soroca believes that usage rates are a better barometer for app success.
During the panel Soroca also preached the value of creating an app that creates cross-platform awareness. He said that apps need to be used as a jumping-off point for getting consumers interested in other advertising channels.
"Think about the app as a starting point to really get out and into those other channels," continued Soroca.
Soroca said during the panel that brands can get a lot out of their apps by using them to leverage other advertising platforms. As an example, the panel shared the idea of using a smartphone or tablet as a second screen to supplement television watching as a good option for cross-platform advertising.
To make it easier for brands, Soroca also said that firms should consider partnering with pre-existing app developers to get the most out of their mobile applications.
"We see a lot of better apps when our clients are working with our partners like Rovio who makes Angry Birds," said Soroca.
In the end, the panel continued to hammer home the point that brands can't think about apps as just a throwaway advertising platform. The panel said that brands need to treat apps just like they would any other product.
"I don't think it's any different than getting someone to buy a new tube of toothpaste," said chief innovation officer at Mediabrands Quentin George while taking part in the panel.
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James is a freelance writer and editor. In addition to ClickZ, his work has appeared in publications like V3, The Commonwealth Club, CachedTech.com, and Shonen Jump magazine. He studied Journalism at Weber State University.