Friday, July 31, 2015

Peak App?

- Meerkat moves to Facebook
- App Overload
- User generated photos beats commercial photography
- Highest ROI digital marketing tactic?
- Amazon Prime Day kills

Bonus: Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic
- Arthur C. Clarke

Enjoy this demonstration of projection mapping. A technique for using software to project imagery on moving irregular shapes like cars or shoes…in this case, moving panels precisely controlled by a pair of robots

Meerkat has been getting lots of attention recently. Back in March, Twitter blocked the app from accessing it's users to promote it's own Periscope streaming function. At the time, it was seen as a major blow, but Twitter may have done Meerkat a huge favor because it's pivoted to Facebook. Meerkat users can now sign in with a Facebook account and connect to all their friends and followers. Facebook has said it has no plans to build it's own livestreaming app and we know it has a very keen eye for acquisitions, picking up WhatsApp and Instagram at bargain basement prices compared to what they're worth today. Could the slinky little streaming rodent be next?

Over 1000 apps are submitted to the apple and android app stores every day and more than 1.5 million apps are already available. Have we reached peak app? Certainly the odds of having a successful are much longer than they used to be. In the 4th quarter of last year, people spent an average of 37 hours per month on an average of 27 apps. The amount of time has doubled in the last 3 years, but the number of apps has stayed the same, indicating either that 27 is about the app saturation point - that is - most people can't really use more apps than that or that people have found their favorite apps and they're sticking with them. I think people are just getting tired of downloading and managing tons of apps. Oh and BTW, anyone want to guess the most used app worldwide? No surprise, It's Facebook, according to comscore by a 20% margin over it's nearest competitor, YouTube. Something to think about if anyone is considering creating an app. Of course, I don't think apps that are part of a product, like a fitness app that goes with a fitbit, or something similar are in any danger. one of the problems apps have is finding visibility in the crowded app store, but connected apps are not only visible, but necessary to the people who buy the products they're associated with.

A recent study from L2 on User Generated Content shows that more than half of consumers surveyed believe in User Generated photos while only 45% have faith in professional or corporate photos. On Insta, UGC also produces a higher conversion rate. 9.6% higher than Brand photos. So it makes sense for us to look for ways to solicit customer photography and place it in the path of customer's buying journey.

And you've heard this before on this call. What digital tactic has the highest ROI? It's boring old email. Far from being on it's last legs, eMail is one of the fastest growing channels for customer acquisition. better than direct mail or social media. Even spam is decreasing. Down 1/3 from 90% of emails in 2008 to 60% today.

How many of you took part in Amazon's first ever Prime Day? You were part of something really big. Amazon sold more units on Prime Day than Black Friday 2014, which is the biggest Black Friday ever. 34.4 million items across Prime-eligible countries or about 398 items per second. Worldwide order growth increased 266% over the same day last year and 18% more than Black Friday 2014. More new members tried Prime worldwide than any single day in Amazon history. Sellers on Amazon that use the Fulfillment by Amazon service enjoyed record-breaking unit sales – growing nearly 300%. Customers ordered hundreds of thousands of Amazon devices – making it the largest device sales day ever worldwide. It was a huge day for Amazon, and it'll only get bigger each year. But the long tail effect of the hundreds of thousands of new members and 10s of thousands of new Fire tablets, which are really just the company's way of putting little Amazon stores in people's hands, will be astronomical. Did Philips take part? If we did, please someone come on next month and tell us how we did. If not, let's start planning to be part of this phenomenon next year. I predict this will become a new worldwide holiday that people will take off from work to participate in.

A subtle little thing that no one is talking about, Amazon's self-managing infrastructure weathered a 250% increase in their usual daily traffic apparently without even breathing hard. That's a pretty nice endorsement of their Web services product which will likely also generate more business for them.