Co-marketing as a way to monetize mobile applications
Of all the business models that are used for promotion and monetization, co-marketing, or mutually beneficial partnerships is the youngest direction. The lack of attention to the form of marketing activity, which involves combining efforts and obtaining mutual benefits, is due to several factors. And this is not only the lack of motivation and understanding why this is necessary, but also the long coordination of the details of working with partners, the reluctance to share a client base, upholding only one’s interests and many, many others.
At the same time, co-marketing is much more promising and has a greater number of benefits and advantages compared to other forms of promotion. Partnerships with a company that has a similar target audience, as well as the ability to integrate their products into a partner’s application or create jointly more valuable products, open up new, and most importantly, effective, ways to increase profits. The ability to bring benefits to our customers also plays a key role, which increases loyalty, the number of recommendations and positive reviews. Provided that you work with suitable partners and constantly replenish cooperation with another brand, monetization can be accelerated several times.
Example # 1. Creating a new product
As an example, when a more effective and valuable product was born in a union of two developers, we can cite the joint project Localytics and Optimizely.
The Localytics platform allows you to use analytics for mobile applications in a mode, separate users by segments, analyze activity, find out where it came from and what it does. The American company Optimizely has a similar direction, but is more specialized in optimizing software for other companies, taking as a basis all the same user preferences.
As part of the joint work, the companies released a product that, according to their statement, gave mobile marketers everything they needed to successfully bring applications to the market. The integration of Localytics and Optimizely helps test customers and optimize their applications with a combination of powerful testing, analytics and other marketing opportunities.
According to Travis Bryant, Vice President of Sales and Affiliate Optimizely, the company is committed to providing its customers with the ability to integrate with best-in-class platforms. “We are pleased that Localytics is joining the Optimizely partner ecosystem to help our customers achieve better results on the web and on mobile devices.”
Together, Localytics and Optimizely are able to provide customers with advanced testing capabilities, mobile analytics, targeting and multi-channel marketing tools that help make decisions based on existing data. Customers can also use this integration to perform a complete funnel analysis based on Optimizely's test results, and then use Localytics' marketing functions for targeted users. According to Brian Satoff, Localytics' strategic director, integration with Optimizely helps customers better understand what works and what doesn't, and select the best ways to engage users.
When one company specializes more in the acquisition and processing of data, and the second - in the creation of tools, the pooling of available resources opens the way for creating a more valuable and effective product.
This form of cooperation can be used if:
· your application has decent functionality in order to become interesting to other developers;
· You are open to working with colleagues, ready to be flexible and make concessions;
· Soberly evaluate your own resources and expected benefits
Example # 2. Promotion
As a variant of co-marketing interaction, such a model of partnerships can be used in which users receive rewards from the developer’s partners for performing certain actions. This format may involve a fee to the developer for the opportunity to become part of the application and enter the motivation system. The application can also earn by taking a share of the income from rewards that has been activated by the user.
For example, for active use of the application when playing sports, a user may be awarded a discount in a sportswear store or free access to a fitness room. For timely entry of data into the pregnancy calendar, expectant mothers can get a discount in the corresponding stores, etc. Thus, the functionality of the application is increased, user loyalty is increased, and with mutual advertising, you can count on attracting new users.
Such an advertising strategy is better perceived by users than traditional advertising, since it is related to the application selected by the user and meets the purpose of this application. Moreover, all participants in the interaction receive their benefits. Developers increase revenue, advertisers get more ad space, and users get free promos.
Integrating the logo of an affiliate brand or creating an interactive element referring to a partner is a ready-made way to switch traffic to an affiliate application. If the necessary conditions are met, users can be given the opportunity to unlock exclusive rewards and incentives provided by partners. Using this strategy, the monetization of the application is painless for users, without annoying them with intrusive advertising banners.
This model can be useful if:
· you have an application that allows you to award awards for activity in the application;
· You are against the use of intrusive advertising banners;
· Open to new and unusual;
· Do not be afraid to stimulate the downloading of a third-party application and do not be afraid to exchange user groups.
Example # 3. Extension of functionality
Another option for obtaining additional profit is to expand the functionality of a mobile application. For example, in the weekly application you can enable the function of paying bills, calling a taxi, booking a table in a restaurant, movie tickets, etc. Having a well-developed daily planner, the developer can make a paid "entry" for advertisers or take a percentage of the incoming client.
Who is stopping fitness apps from adding functionality to order products in health food stores? And an application related to cars, take an auto parts store, etc., as partners?
Something similar is being introduced by Japan's largest telecommunications operator, DKKI. He actively collaborates with many companies. Not so long ago, LIFENET Insuarane insurance company became a partner. Integration involves the full integration of platforms, which will allow users to choose life insurance or property insurance services from the mobile operator’s application.
Joint marketing in mobile has the broadest prospects in terms of combining the capabilities of manufacturers and mobile developers. The inclusion of new features in the functionality is beneficial to both parties. But here another question arises - where to look for partners open to cooperation? English-speaking developers use the Hubspot platform.
For Russian marketers and developers, the AKO-M platform provides similar functionality, bringing together more than 500 participants, including retailers, manufacturers, developers, large and small entrepreneurs. For participants, such interaction is promising from the point of view of expanding the audience. First of all, it is interesting to companies producing goods and services. Engaging with a stronger brand will help pave the way further down the sales funnel.
Co-marketing as a business area is just beginning to develop. But since millions of people use smartphones and tablets a hundred times every day, competent application marketing is a key task for any developer. Joining forces makes it possible to achieve a number of advantages, among which the leading ones are the opportunity to reduce promotion costs and gain access to a new audience.