September 19, 2017

5 Big Ideas from our Product Owner’s Guide to the Universe at MWCA

We had a stellar program for “Mobile Product Owner’s Guide to the Universe” at Mobile World Congress Americas. There were a ton of ideas that came from our speakers during the all-day event, and these are five of the most interesting:

1. Exponential Acceleration — and Convergence — of Lots of Tech (AI, AR, VR, MR, Computer Vision, Machine Learning, Mobile and More)

“We used to say disruption is the new normal,” said Tom Edwards, Chief Digital Officer at Epsilon in his keynote address. “But now, I see this more as exponential acceleration. It’s more about consolidation and bundling of existing technologies.” With the rise of interconnected systems, marketers will need to keep up with customer expectations for seamless, intuitive, lightning fast, “magical” experiences with technologies. See Tom’s video that dives into the themes in his keynote here:

2. Leaving Room for Innovation (and Making Sure Your Definition of Innovation is Helping Not Hurting You)

Organizations can’t stop everything to innovate — but they can’t afford to fall behind either. It’s important, said panelists Todd Stricker with MarriottScott Cuppari with Coca-Cola Freestyle and Dorothy Jensen from Southwest Airlines to leave bandwidth on your teams to experiment, ideate and stay ahead of the game — even if many of the ideas never make it into production. They also advocated for carefully considering how your team defines innovation.

 Todd Stricker with Marriott, Scott Cuppari with Coca-Cola Freestyle and Dorothy Jensen from Southwest Airlines at MWCA17

“We frequently define innovation as unlocking value we weren’t unlocking before,” said Stricker. “Re-defining innovation in those terms helps people think in the problem spaces we’re really attacking to unlock customer value. That helps break the paradigm that innovation has to be a massive new crazy thing. It can be at a micro-level, and super meaningful when you’re dogging customer problems and making things better for them.”

3. It’s Time to Revisit A Few Technologies You Might Have Written Off

Technologies you might have tried a few years ago have matured: write them off at your own risk. For example, AI and natural language processing have helped create vast improvements in chatbots and voice assistants, as Vera Tzoneva, Global Product Partnerships, Google Assistant demonstrated.

VR technology is also better and more immersive than it’s ever been, said Andy Mathis, Mobile Partnerships and Business Development Lead at Oculus. For brands that want to connect with customers through indelible, immersive experiences, VR is an avenue that’s waiting to be explored. Red Bull’s VR hub lets you go cliff diving, fly a plane in the Red Bull air race and more, connecting with their adreneline-fueled branding. Tom’s in-store VR experience (see below) makes you an eyewitness and participant, making their brand promise of “buy a pair give a pair” come to life for customers.

4. Creating a Continuous Stream of Crowd-Sourced Customer Feedback to Help Drive Your Product Roadmap

Getting more (and more balanced) customer feedback helps product and marketing teams act on better, more balanced data about what customers want and need more quickly said Rob Pace, CEO of HundredX — and helps bake a listening culture into your organization. That’s critical for ensuring your products and features align to what real customers really want — not just what your team thinks they want.

Rob Pace, CEO of HundredX at MWCA

5. Data-Fueled Context is Increasingly Critical for Personalized Marketing

“The internet of things is too focused on the things,” said Dimitri Maex, President of Sentiance. “It’s on its way to becoming the internet of you — and I believe that will happen through AI and data.”

Maex shared how — using movement, location and time data from mobile phones — it’s possible to learn an enormous amount about a user’s context (Are they walking, driving, boating? Are they near home, work or school? Where are they likely to be going next?) and customize their experience for 1:1 interactions fast and at scale.

The exclamation point at the end gives me cavities, but a period is too bored... Thank you to our speakers, everyone in attendance, and our super smart, super helpful sponsors who helped make it all happen!

Also a big thank you to Urban Airship for this amazing recap! (original article)

May 9, 2017

5 Ways to Craft the Ideal App Experience

We’re fresh off our Dallas breakfast event with the Mobile Marketing Association where Bottle Rocket, 7-Eleven, and Urban Airship shared what effective mobile experiences look like and why they matter. We’re still feeling jazzed about the concepts discussed during the event, and had to share five of our favorites.

Click below to watch the entire breakfast conversation or continue reading for our top 5 takeaways from the event.

Every mobile moment is an opportunity

We believe every mobile moment is an opportunity for a brand to connect to users. Between the rapidly changing mobile market and its technology, it can be hard to keep up. But, consumers expect it. Think about your audience – is it customers, employees, partners? Or a combination of these and more? Effective mobile experiences can serve any variety of audiences when developed with their needs in mind.

People want just a few things from their apps

Users want three things: personal, frictionless, contextual mobile experiences. The needs are few, but the apps that win are successful on all fronts. At Bottle Rocket, we build mobile experiences that exceed customer expectations, bringing them relevant and easy-to-use experiences. Companies like Urban Airship help us take it one step further to ensure we appropriately reach customers in the moments that matter with notification-style messages at every step in the customer journey.

Begin with the user

Through ethnographic research and observing mobile metrics, examine the user journey and learn their experience. Where do they encounter friction and what can a mobile experience do to make things easier? Anticipating these needs makes the experience delightful. You know you’ve done something right when the user responds with, “How did they do that?”

Make it easy

Engage users by extending communications beyond the app with push notifications. Don’t just present thoughts, though—provide actionable prompts, then make taking action frictionless. Take users straight to the app or let them handle business right there in the moment.

Say the right thing at the right time

Since most people use an average of three connected devices per day for more than 200 daily mobile moments, forging connections to users can be difficult. Mobile experiences need to be meaningful. Relevant engagements with appropriate frequency (learned through understanding the user and their habits) can put a brand in users’ good graces. Then, once you’ve got their attention, guide them in taking some kind of action.

Bonus trivia!

  • The farthest 84% of millennials place their phone is on their nightstand.
  • On average, people own 6 connected devices, like smartphones, tablets, and smart TVs.
  • Within the first 30 days of downloading an app, 70% of people delete it.

Want to learn more? We’ve got a lot of experience to share. Tell us what you want to know—we love this stuff!

April 6, 2017

App Rating Changes in iOS 10.3 Update

Bottle Rocket builds apps that include a framework for encouraging high ratings. This framework also funnels negative comments away from the App Store. We call this our Bottle Rocket Applause Generator (BRAG). Apple’s latest 10.3 update brings some changes to BRAG. Here’s what to expect.

Previously, we asked users if they liked an app during the mobile experience. If they did, we prompted them to rate it. If they didn't, we requested feedback, which came to us or the client. In iOS 10.3, Apple will now handle interactions that BRAG facilitated. BRAG also allowed us to drive and know when apps are reviewed. In iOS 10.3, we won’t be notified. But, Bottle Rocket will still access and use knowledge of how users interact with our clients’ apps to determine when we’ll ask for ratings. With iOS 10.3, however, our standard messaging won’t redirect comments to clients or Bottle Rocket. Instead, we’ll have to rely on Apple functionality.

That all sounds a little ominous, but we’re excited about the opportunity it affords our clients. Another change iOS 10.3 brings is one we’ve been asking for the last 5 years—responding directly to user reviews. Responding to common user problems can turn negative reviews into opportunities for education and lessen impacts of negative reviews.

We’ve already done the development on our end to support our clients and allow them to utilize the update’s capabilities. We’ll work with clients to determine the best strategy for handling this process.

We’re ready for 10.3, and so are our clients’ apps.

April 8, 2016

The Key to Retaining App Users

By 2017, mobile users will be providing personalized data streams for more than 100 apps and services every day. Want to be one of those 100? Karen Pattani-Hason, Head of Agency & Strategic Alliances NAM at Urban Airship, shares some tips on how to build genuine user loyalty.

 

5 Methods for Retaining App Users

1. Draw users in with a welcome series.

Offering users a promotion code in your app’s welcome series gets a 300% greater redemption rate than sending the same discount via email.

2. Push, but don’t be pushy.

Apps with push notifications experience 4 times as much engagement as those without, and double the retention.

3. Target your notifications.

Targeting push notifications can increase user engagement by up to 7 times. For example, even one attribute like location can boost customer response by 293%.

 4. Don’t underestimate the power of habits.

“Rituals drive value and repeat visits,” says Pattani-Hason. Just look at the Starbucks app, which has trained customers to expect a “pick of the week” every Tuesday, bringing them back week after week for something they genuinely value.

5. Align your needs and goals with your customer.

What is the value exchange in your app, and where is it happening? “Balance the give and the get,” says Pattani-Hason. “It’s not mobile first, it’s consumer first.”

 

Contact us today to learn more about retaining app users and increasing loyalty.

 

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