User Life Cycle – The foundation of Mobile Engagement

August 6, 2015 - 4 minutes read
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Engagement is a word a patent attorney may like. A single word that conveys various meanings. Within a focused context of just the Mobile ecosystem it covers both growth & retention. Even the concept of growth can be different things for different people. For a new App it can mean growth in terms of user base, for a more established App it can be growth in revenue or LTV. As the App grows, retention also becomes a big factor else you are just funnelling your users into a leaky bucket. Irrespective of the stage an App is in, Engagement is important. Given that the mobile devices are used more in a snacking manner when it comes to consumption, one can’t afford to lose the mind space of their user.

Given that different Apps may be in different stages of their lifecycle or have different goals, at the very high level, the obvious question where do you start your User Engagement efforts? How do you generalise? Luckily for us, we don’t need to reinvent the wheel. There are various marketing models that exist that can easily be applied to almost any Apps out there. Our favourite being Dave McClure’s funnel that he describes in his Pirate Metrics for start-ups. It breaks the user lifecycle down to 5 key stages:

  1.     Acquisition
  2.     Activation
  3.     Referral
  4.     Retention
  5.     Revenue

Why build a User Lifecycle?

Building a User lifecycle does 2 important things:

  • It breaks down your engagement efforts into goals that can be measured easily and segments your users into definite sets, where engagement can mean different things.
  • It inherently prioritises your engagement activities based on impact level

With this the goal for marketers becomes to increase the size of each funnel, and also push the user further into the funnel. For the Acquisition section, the engagement goal become activation of your users. If you are a dating App like TrulyMadly, your goal is to get your users to sign up. Similarly, if you are an ecommerce App like ShopClues and Snapdeal, your engagement goal at the Revenue stage is to get people who viewed an item multiple times or added to an item to cart to purchase that item. Some other common goals are mentioned below:

 

  1.     Acquisition
    •     Increase Downloads
  2.     Activation
    •     Product search
    •     Added to cart
    •     Welcome message
    •     Registrations
  3.     Referral
    •     Share app with friend
    •     Share link to product with friend
    •     Share wish list on twitter
  4.     Retention
    •     Reactivating lapsed user.
    •     Reactivating lapsed user who purchased- This is of higher priority than the one above.
    •     Cart abandonment
  5.     Revenue
    •     Cart abandonment
    •     First Purchase

Depending on who you are, you can further break down the given stages into micro stages to prioritize your activities. For example, on the First Purchase Goal on the Revenue section, users who added to cart but did not purchase should be given a higher priority because they have already shown interest to someone who has never added a product to cart.

On a closing note, building a user life cycle brings some method to the madness of Mobile App Marketing.

 

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