Infographic: Marketers' Growing "App"etite

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Marketers are enthusiastically dishing out mobile apps. And customers aren't the only ones consuming these apps; employees are gobbling them up, too. According to “The Connected Marketer” report by Forbes Insights and Adobe, 44% of marketing and digital development executives surveyed have both external (customer-facing) and internal (employing-facing) audience apps.

When it comes to customer-facing apps, marketers use them primarily for customer communications (83%), customer service or support (79%), and product communications (74%), according to the report. Marketers also use apps throughout the entire customer lifecycle—from creating awareness (18%) to maintaining loyalty (31%). In fact, 59% of marketing and digital executives surveyed say that their brand has one to three customer-facing apps.

It seems unlikely that consumers will curb their appetites anytime soon.  Most respondents (78%) say that their mobile app audiences increased over the past year. Respondents cite making more services and content available exclusively through apps (62%), more users having mobile devices (54%), and promoting apps through other channels (53%) as the prime drivers of increased app adoption. In terms of promoting apps, executives surveyed list company websites (69%), email communications (58%), and company mobile sites (48%) as the main traffic drivers.

Employees are just as hungry for app consumption. Consequently, many organizations use internal apps to give their employees their fair share of app experiences. For instance, respondents cite internal communications (82%), business intelligence (62%), sharing information (62%), and training (62%) as their main app use cases.  And like external apps, internal apps are seeing a lot of traction. Sixty-seven percent of respondents have seen growth in the number of internal users over the past year, according to the report. As with customer-facing apps, respondents cite making more services and content available exclusively through apps (59%), more users having devices (52%), and promoting apps through other channels (50%) as the main causes of internal app adoption. Likewise, executives cite corporate intranet (74%), email alerts and memos (67%), and company newsletters (51%) as key internal app traffic drivers.

Although organizations may be hungry for app adoption, app creation has its own share of challenges. For instance, according to the report, marketers cite designing user-friendly interfaces (54%), supporting multiple device types or operating systems (48%), and keeping apps aligned with app store requirements (47%) as their top app-related hurdles. Despite these challenges marketers are still eating up mobile apps. According to the report, 53% of marketers design and deploy apps as part of their marketing and business development strategies.

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