- April 9, 2015

Unlocking App Audiences: The role of content and demographics in platform selection

The disruption and expansion that smartphones and tablets have brought to digital media consumption is well documented, with mobile devices generating new access opportunities throughout consumers’ days.

Within this space, apps have thrived as an integrated means of accessing content on these platforms: in both the UK and US, apps account for around 80 percent of all mobile internet minutes.

Recruiting app audiences, however, can be particularly difficult: of all those who download any apps in a month (roughly a quarter of mobile subscribers):

  • Half download 2 apps or fewer each month
  • 1 in 4 download just one app in a month

But once this hurdle has been overcome, it is abundantly clear that users are comfortable performing multiple types of active and passive activities on their mobile devices. What also emerges from the data is that the type of content increasingly dictates the platform of choice, with location-sensitive activities predictably skewing more towards smartphone and more stationary media consumption activities skewing towards tablet.

The table below shows the share of app users by mobile platform within selected categories. A coupons, maps and weather skew heavily towards the almost omnipresent smartphone, and content consumption apps (particularly video) enjoy greater audiences on the larger screens of tablets.

Share of smartphone and tablet audiences for selected app categories

Understanding and building upon these nuances can be crucial for both commercial and editorial development, particularly when taking the evaluation down to a more granular assessment involving demographics and individual publishers. Even remaining at the aggregated level, the audience distribution for the TV category of apps varies dramatically for 18 – 24 year old users compared to 45+ users, who heavily favour tablet devices:

Share of smartphone and tablet audiences for tv category apps in selected demographics

By assessing which platforms certain audiences are selecting for selected categories, brands can develop apps and content that will recruit new users for a larger share of this increasing pot of digital time, or plan advertising activity to effectively reach consumers in these environments.

Read the full release, “Comscore Ranks Top UK Digital Media Properties for February 2015” here.
Download the full February UK Digital Market Overview report here.

Multi-Platform Content Measurement

Comscore MMX® Multi-Platform provides an deduplicated view of total audience behavior across desktops, smartphones and tablets.

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