In an increasingly mobile-first age, having a mobile app for your business is a powerful thing. While it’s not essential, it’s a stellar addition to your business strategy that can expand your reach and increase customer retention, setting you apart from your competitors.
Of course, like every aspect of your business strategy, you need a content strategy to support it. This is what increases retention, boosts engagement, and adds greater value to your mobile app as a result.
But what exactly does a mobile app content strategy look like? And how can you create one for your own mobile app to ensure it has resonance and value in 2020? Read on to find out.
Set out clear, distinct goals for your content strategy
We all need a goal. It’s a principle that applies to virtually every endeavor we undertake: you won’t get anywhere unless you have a goal to strive towards. And it’s as true for your mobile app content strategy as it is for everything else in life.
Even the most irreverent or tongue-in-cheek content strategies have a set goal. This is what guides and informs your content, helping you craft a nuanced strategy that has a genuine impact on your target audience.
The goals of your content strategy will vary, and might include:
- Increased sign-ups for a mailing list
- Brand/app awareness
- Increased mobile app downloads
- Boost sales
- Greater user retention rate
These are just a few examples — find those that are most pertinent to your business and build them into your mobile app’s content strategy. When you create content, bear these in mind throughout, and your strategy will have greater resonance as a result.
Know your target audience inside and out
One of the most important tenets of building a successful content strategy in 2020 is to know your audience. This forms the foundation of every good app marketing strategy, and the same principle applies to your mobile app content strategy too.
When you understand your audience, not simply as a mass collective of customers, but as individuals and personalities, you can create tailored content that better addresses their unique needs, interests, and pain points.
Beyond your content itself, knowing your audience also helps you format your strategy too. For instance, if your audience prefers a certain social platform over another, you could include dedicated social sharing buttons for that platform on your app so users can easily share it.
Don’t neglect the visual interface of your mobile app content
Mobile apps present a unique challenge that every app developer must consider, specifically with regards to design. Mobile devices, while increasingly sophisticated and offering a staggering array of functions, are lacking in other areas.
As such, a smaller screen size demands extra care and attention to visual interface elements.
Consider your UI elements to start with. This means your navigation menus, buttons, pop-out boxes, and other functional features. Make these clear and distinct, using contrasting colors and visual delineators such as lines and boxes to make the elements matter clear to the user.
In the same vein, your content also needs to look sparse too. Short, snappy paragraphs, lots of negative space, bold headings, and other elements all go towards creating a content strategy that is easy to view and, consequently, more engaging too. Get your app optimization right and you’ll enjoy increased user retention as a result.
Craft long-form content with a tangible hook
It’s easy to fall into the trap of believing that, because content is being consumed via a mobile device, audiences will not want to engage with longer blogs. The assumption is often that long-form content is better to read on a tablet or laptop.
But the opposite is true. Readers are quite happy to read long-form content via a mobile app, as long as it is engaging. Longer content gives you space to really explore a subject and go into greater detail, delivering greater value as a result.
It is this value that you really need to focus on in your long-form content. If you want your audience to stick with your content to the very end, you need to entice them within the first few opening paragraphs.
Include a solid hook within the first paragraph, and build on it in the next paragraph to convince your audience why they should continue reading. Make clear what value your reader will get from your content, and then deliver on it in your final piece.
Embrace a fresh and diverse content strategy
If you want your audience to keep returning to your mobile app, it’s crucial that you keep your strategy fresh. This means focusing on diversity in your strategy.
When audiences consume the same content ideas or formats repeatedly, they become disengaged. As a result, they fail to return to your content and, as a result, fail to use your mobile app into the bargain.
The best content strategies embrace a diverse array of content formats to keep audiences stimulated and engaged, and your mobile app’s content strategy is no different.
There are plenty of easy and engaging content ideas you can get started with for your mobile app. Examples include:
- Industry explainers: if someone has taken the time to download your mobile app, the chances are they are deeply engaged with your industry. Use your app to shed light on your industry as a whole and offer value to your audience.
- Product sneak peeks: mobile apps are a great way to source customer feedback. Offer teasers for new products and invite customer input via in-app surveys.
- Product tutorials: value is key in your mobile app content strategy, and how-to and explainer videos are perfect for delivering that straight to your audience.
- Sale promotions: mobile apps give you the opportunity to reach your audience directly via push notifications. This lets you promote sales and special offers with immediacy and urgency.
The above are just a few examples of content ideas you can implement in your mobile app’s strategy. But it’s also worth remembering that the way you deliver this content should vary too.
For instance, beyond simply using written blogs in your content strategy, consider leaning heavily on video too. Video is a popular content format that lets you communicate meaning to audiences with visual and narrative tools, helping them engage with it on a deeper level as a result.
Similarly, consider using infographics, live video, and even audio-only content on your mobile app too. Different formats work for different goals, so find the content type that suits your specific needs.
Use metrics to guide and hone your content strategy
One of the benefits of a mobile app is that it offers comprehensive analytics functions that let you track and monitor your users’ behavior online.
Likes and shares are a good indicator of a piece of content’s success. But beyond this, you should also consider other factors that show whether or not your audience is enjoying and engaging with your content.
Take bounce rate, for instance. This indicates how long a user stays on a page before leaving, so you should strive for a low bounce rate.
You can improve your bounce rate by formatting your content in a clear, easy-to-read style. This means paragraphs of no more than two or three sentences, plenty of white space, clear headings and subheadings, bulleted lists, and so on.
In the same vein, your copy itself should be just as minimal. Use concise sentences and eschew unnecessary words to make your articles as easy to read (and, crucially, understand) as possible.
Further to this, visual elements are also useful for keeping users on-page. Use images, video, and infographics to leaven your copy and keep readers on their toes.
Finally, remember that load speed is one of the most important factors in keeping your audience on-page. A long loading speed repels users, so don’t make them wait and shorten page load time wherever possible.
Look to other mobile app content strategies for inspiration
If you’re struggling to hit the sweet spot
Tinder is best known as a pioneering dating app, and it’s easy to think that’s all it is. But Tinder also has a stellar content strategy behind it, the aptly named Swipe Life.
The blog is replete with dating tips, stories, advice, and think pieces that explore the world of love and dating. It’s vast, extensive, and above all, caters to its audience’s very specific needs.
With titles ranging from ‘How To Win At Online Dating When You’re Bad At Witty Banter’ to ‘29 Things To Text Your Crush That Aren’t About Coronavirus’, Tinder’s mobile content strategy covers even the most niche interests of daters in 2020.
Finally, every blog ends with a call-to-action that implores audiences to ‘Get On Tinder’, a CTA that nicely ties into Tinder’s content strategy goal of increasing downloads. It’s a content strategy you’d do well to swipe right on.
Spotify is perhaps one of the most popular apps around, certain to have a place on virtually everybody’s smartphone. With a staggeringly extensive collection of music and an array of customization features, it’s a stellar app based on its function alone.
But beyond music, Spotify also has a great and rather unique content strategy built into its app. Rather than take the form of a cohesive blog, Spotify offers a Behind The Lyrics feature that gives listeners an insight into the lyrics (as well as the lyrics themselves).
Spotify is for music lovers, so this nice content channel adds value to the audience. Beyond that, it also increases the functionality of the Spotify app, helping retain users as a result.
Nike Run Club
Given the recent pandemic that’s sweeping the globe, there’s no doubt that the Nike Run Club has seen an increase in downloads of late. As our time outside becomes ever more precious, we are striving to make the most of what little outdoor time we have.
But beyond the app’s useful run tracking functions, the Nike Run Club app also offers a highly engaging content strategy in the form of various challenges and awards. The app has a range of awards to help incentivize its users, with badges for everything from running three times a week to your fastest 1K.
Alongside this are a number of unique challenges, tailored to the time of year. For instance, there’s a March 100K Challenge that you can join, sharing your results with the millions of other runners on the app.
It’s engaging, community-driven, and most importantly, it encourages users to keep using the app.
Your mobile app’s content strategy needs to be careful, considered, well-researched and tailored to your audience and to mobile devices themselves.
Set out clear, distinct goals for your content from the off so you know what you should be striving for, and embrace a diverse strategy to keep it fresh and relevant. Remember to lean on metrics to guide your content, and don’t be afraid to take inspiration from other apps too.
Follow the tips above and create a nuanced, value-led content strategy that helps you meet your mobile app goals well into 2020.