John Koetsier, TUNE mobile economist, shared some amazing data and insights with us at App Valley on the the direction of app marketing for 2018. He forecasts and analyzes trends affecting the mobile ecosystem. 

 Here are some of his main points from App Valley. 

There’s a $70 trillion monster out there, which is the global economy, and that’s what apps are trying to access.

1. There is a Battle for Control of the Customer

The key is that there is a way, there are means of aggregating access to customers. This was something that apps fundamentally changed.

The key is that there is a way, there are means of aggregating access to customers. This was something that apps fundamentally changed.

2. Apps Democratized Access to Customers

Apps were a fundamental challenge to aggregating all your customers and having to access them via paying a toll from mass media. The biggest ones still aggregate. But the smart, small, nimble, and fast could connect directly to their customers in ways that were not possible before—no mediation, no bridge, and no toll between them and their customers.

Customers provided the opportunity to de-aggregate audiences, people, consumers. So you can speak to your users, your customers, and not everybody.

3. There Has Been Massive Disruption from Tech Startups.

Take Amazon for example. Amazon was born in the desktop era, but it is a child of mobile today for one reason, and that is Jeff Bezos and his philosophy of “it’s always day one.” As a result of that strategy, Amazon has amassed more than 700 million mobile users to cross all of its apps non-deduplicated. That’s four and a half times all the users of its retail competitors combined, and that’s direct, unmediated access to those customers. The result, of course, has been massive, massive value creation: six times more stock market growth then all of its competitors combined. And of course, where you have creation you often have destruction and so you’ve got massive value destruction for competitors.

I think the disruption that we’re facing right now is fueled by AI, says Koetsier.

Let’s look at the differences more closely.


So, for instance, you’re planning a trip and you could easily spend 30 to 90 minutes, maybe more researching 5 or 6 different apps. Apps for what airline I’m gonna take, what’s the flight situation, what hotel, can I get transfers between those, should I book a table at a restaurant locally, should I get tickets for the game or the show. You can easily spend 30 to 90 minute on that alone and desktop very, very similar with an assistant, the equation changes dramatically.

Assistant Tech

Hey Siri, hey Google Alexa, I want to do a trip to Chicago in three weeks. I want to come in Friday night leave Sunday night, I’m looking for a hotel downtown, three or our stars, not much more than $250 at night. I want a table at Morton’s, and then tickets for the Cubs game afterwards. And please, do all the transfers between them. As you can probably guess, it is much easier with an assistant, and the reality is that it has begun.

4. The Shift is Inevitable: What This Means for You

Consumers will always move towards experiences that are easier better faster cheaper. Assistants are gonna win on two of those—guaranteed easier and faster.

They’re probably gonna win on better but that’s gonna depend on the rest of the experience and how the product is packaged and sent and what the product is. And they have a shot at winning at cheaper. So they’ve got a shot at capturing the vast majority of commerce that’s currently running through apps or that is going to be running through apps and mobile in the next two, three years.

a. Assistance and Commerce

The barriers to entry are going to be fundamentally higher and different than we’ve seen in the past doesn’t mean we’re not gonna be able to surmount them.

b. Natural-Language Processing

You don’t build this overnight, you don’t start working on it on Tuesday and finish on Thursday; you don’t build that with a million dollars in VC. Yes, there are lots of publicly available libraries, and open-source stuff that you can do some amazing things with. However, building it all together into a suite of services that works really well and does amazing things and is super, super useful, is not so easy. There are also massive training-data sets that the companies who are building assistants, have access to that. It’s not as easy (not impossible) for other companies to access.

c.  Distribution at Scale

If we look at distribution at scale right now, this is the methodology this is the distribution method primarily right here if that’s the case advantage Google advantage Apple Microsoft’s biggest problem in this space is that its focus of distribution is on yesterday’s platform not today’s platform Amazon had a really interesting response to this challenge Amazon tried to get into this platform and failed and what Amazon decided to do is say huh I can’t get into that red ocean as too big is too busy it’s too filled it’s the niches are filled I’m gonna invent an entirely new and different class of device where I can win seriously smart intelligent strategy, and therefore we’ve got voice first. We’re already seeing voice-first assistants take the place of apps.

We’ve got tons more from App Valley! To read John’s top tips from the show, click here.


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