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So you want to take your business mobile?


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So you want to take your business mobile? …

So you want to take your business mobile?
DC Web Women
Tuesday, February 26, 2013 from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM (EST)
Washington, DC

It's hard to escape all the press about the proliferation of mobile devices, and how you must have an app! There is immense pressure to devote resources to app development, to take advantage of yet another outlet to reach your audience. But where do you start?

Join Alison Heittman, a leading web and mobile application developer, as she gives us her insights on app development and how to set yourself up for a successful mobile project. She will walk you through the range of questions you should be asking yourself and your stakeholders, ranging from "Should I even be building an app?" to "Do I build native iOS & Android apps, or embrace the mobile web?" There are many decisions to be made before development can even begin. After this event you will better understand how to ask and find answers to the questions that are most applicable to you.

About Alison Heittman
Alison Heittman is the Founder and CEO at Solertium, Alison leads her smart software team in the development of web and mobile apps for outstanding brands such as Five Guys Burgers & Fries, boloco, The Freddie Awards, The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, TRAFFIC International, Save the Elephants, BirdLife, and more. This month she launched Appygram, a simple communication service for web and mobile apps.

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  • 1. So you want to take your business mobile? February 26, 2013 for DC Web Women at iStrategy Labs @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 1
  • 2. Alison Heittman, CEO Solertium ✤ Former corporate librarian ✤ Information architect ✤ Woman with many hats & collaborative problem solver ✤ I build web and mobile applications for outstanding brands @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 2
  • 3. The Reference Interview Conversation between a member of the library reference staff and a library user for the purpose of clarifying the user’s needs and aiding the user in meeting those needs. - Bopp & Smith, Reference and Information Services, An Introduction The great thing about being a librarian is you don’t have to know everything, just how to find everything. - me @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 3
  • 4. Your expertise is required. frequent traveler award voting elephant tracker ✤ You have expert knowledge of your industry burger, burrito, and boulangerie ✤ Your developer should have expert knowledge of citizen science/bird monitoring application development iPad restaurant point of sale ✤ You + Developer = Your App Emirates cultural project @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 4
  • 5. Your team ✤ Internal stakeholders: expert knowledge of the problem & market ✤ Marketing: branding, promotion, market research ✤ Graphic design: asset development ✤ User experience: leverage platform features to provide best UX ✤ Software developers: expert knowledge of platform(s), development ✤ Quality assurance: testing ✤ Project management: keep everything on track @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 5
  • 6. Need vs Want @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 6
  • 7. Why do you want to have an app? ✤ Save staff time ✤ Reduce costs ✤ Increase revenues, visitation, loyalty ✤ Attract new customers ✤ Insight into customer behaviors @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 7
  • 8. Who is your app for? ✤ Your clients? ✤ The general public? ✤ Other businesses? ✤ Your staff? @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 8
  • 9. Smartphone & Tablet Ownership (MM) Source: comScore MobiLens & TabLens, US, 2003-2012 @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 9
  • 10. Have you asked your users what they’d like you to build? @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 10
  • 11. Top Mobile Media Activities by Share of Smartphone and Tablet Users Source: comScore MobiLens & TabLens, US, 3 month avg ending Dec ’12 @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 11
  • 12. Find the pain, then solve it. @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 12
  • 13. Market research ✤ Do you have first mover status, and is that good or bad? ✤ You get there first, so yay ✤ How hard will it be for your competitors to catch up? ✤ Can you learn from your mistakes as easily as they will? ✤ How much is achieving parity with your competitors worth? Can you do it better? ✤ Evaluate successful competitors ✤ Evaluate failed competitors @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 13
  • 14. What can you leverage? ✤ Customer portal? ✤ Internal tools you could expose to your customers? ✤ Desktop tools that your employees could benefit from accessing on smartphones & tablets? ✤ Paper forms? ✤ Digital media? @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 14
  • 15. 5 Whys Should result in: ✤ Get money ✤ Save money ✤ Achieve mission @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 15
  • 16. Where do you fit in? ✤ iTunes App Store: Books, Business, Catalogs, Education, Entertainment, Finance, Food & Drink, Games, Health & Fitness, Lifestyle, Medical, Music, Navigation, News, Newsstand, Photo & Video, Productivity, Reference, Social Networking, Sports, Travel, Utilities, Weather ✤ Google Play Store: Games, Books & Reference, Business, Comics, Communication, Education, Entertainment, Finance, Health & Fitness, Libraries & Demo, Lifestyle, Live Wallpaper, Media & Video, Medical, Music & Audio, News & Magazines, Personalization, Photography, Productivity, Shopping, Social, Sports, Tools, Transportation, Travel & Local, Weather, Widgets @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 16
  • 17. How will you stand out? ✤ more than 775,000 apps ✤ 649,155 apps & games ✤ 300,000 native iPad apps ✤ 25 billion downloads from Play ✤ 500 million active accounts ✤ 504,988 free apps, 146,475 paid ✤ 40 billion total downloads ✤ largest installed base ✤ 20 billion downloads in 2012 ✤ 1.5 billion downloads/month ✤ 2 billion downloads in Dec ✤ plus other Android stores Sources: Jan 7 ’13 Apple press release; Feb 25 ’13 AppBrain stats, and Google at @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 17
  • 18. Ask yourself the hard questions ✤ Why would someone download/use your app? ✤ How will they know you have an app? ✤ Why would they open it a second time? ✤ How likely are they to stop using it? ✤ What bad things will they say about your app? @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 18
  • 19. How will you measure success? ✤ # of downloads, installed base ✤ size, frequency of orders ✤ media coverage ✤ customer feedback (both in iTunes/Play stores and in-app) ✤ brand awareness @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 19
  • 20. Have you asked your users what devices they use? ✤ Mobile web ✤ iPhone, iPod Touch ✤ Android smartphones ✤ iPads ✤ Android tablets ✤ Android eReaders (KindleFire, NookHD, etc) ✤ other OS: BlackBerry, Windows, Firefox, etc. @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 20
  • 21. Share of Browser-Based Page Traffic by Hour for Computer, Smartphone and Tablet Platforms Source: comScore Device Essentials, U.S., Monday, Jan. 21, 2013 @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 21
  • 22. Go native or mobile web or both? @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 22
  • 23. Have you asked your users what they want? @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 23
  • 24. Your audience may surprise you Frequent Travelers overwhelmingly carry iOS devices! So far, less than 10% of mobile voters in this year’s Freddie Awards are using Androids. @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 24
  • 25. Native apps: pros & cons ✤ Litmus test: You need access to hardware features of the device that you can’t get to via the browser ✤ Pro: Launcher icon = constant brand presence ✤ Con: harder and therefore more expensive to build ✤ Con: harder to approve and deploy ✤ Con: cost multiplies by the number of platforms you support @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 25
  • 26. What do these have in common? Hint: litmus test @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 26
  • 27. Mobile web: pros & cons ✤ Litmus test: You have to build something that is standards-based and equally accessible to everybody ✤ Pro: nothing to install = less activation energy ✤ Pro: more forgiveness by users ✤ Pro: no deployment lag ✤ Con: inferior user experience; slower, doesn’t have access to all the platform features (but this is changing) @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 27
  • 28. Seasonal app Freddie Awards desktop voting app, used annually Feb 15 - Mar 30 @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 28
  • 29. News Portal with a mobile audience, leverages Twitter Bootstrap @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 29
  • 30. Hybrid apps ✤ Can be the best of both worlds, when built correctly ✤ There are online tools out there that can help you to build these ✤ Industry-specific ✤ Technology-specific @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 30
  • 31. Developer lunch Example: open source conference app code on GitHub @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 31
  • 32. User support User managed You manage ✤ App store reviews ✤ In-app Feedback Forms ✤ Social media (Twitter, Facebook, ✤ Google Play allows developers Google+, etc.) to reply to reviews ✤ Blogs ✤ Exception logs ✤ Analytics @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 32
  • 33. You want to hear from your users @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 33
  • 34. And now.... The Talk @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 34
  • 35. Planning your roadmap ✤ Initial Release ✤ Identifying & prioritizing new features ✤ Frequency of updates ✤ How will you deal with changes in technology? @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 35
  • 36. How much does it cost to build an app? How much does it cost to build a house? Source: Http:// @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 36
  • 37. Questions? Twitter: @alisonheittman Google+: alison.heittman email: @alisonheittman @dcww #gomobileWednesday, February 27, 13 37