Before Twitter became all the rage, branded apps on social networks like Facebook and MySpace were generating all the marketing buzz. And while there isn't a day that goes by where I'm not invited to use some application or Top 5 list, the excitement over Facebook applications has seemed to cool.
One reason many users are turned off is the difficulty that comes with finding an application, and the sometimes inadvertent spamming of friends that comes with activating one. Facebook today unveiled a new application directory that could spur a golden age of apps by centralizing everything in one easy-to-use hub. The social net is even going a step further and suggesting applications you may like – I'm offered Trip Advisor's branded "Cities I've Visited" app as a suggestion.
Facebook is also giving developers a chance to leap the competition, by letting them pay $375 to have their applications displayed prominently, according to the NY Times Bits blog.
I just got back from a whirlwind pair of days at CTIA, the country's largest wireless conference, and one thing is for sure: marketing is getting more interest and attention every year.
Not surprisingly, applications are all the rage these days. With last summer's introduction of Apple's App Store, there's been a tremendous wave of interest and dollars flooding into all things app. Soon enough, most device manufacturers will have their own mobile app stores that bypass carriers' walled gardens and deliver optimized applications direct to the user. Those that plan to last make it through the next couple years should have some application-centric plan ready for prime time.
The more exciting opportunity that mobile applications present to marketers is the growing interest from brands. Everything from car makers to large food brands and even toilet paper have weaved their way into the mobile application game with varying utilitarian value. Brands are no longer looking to extend into typical applications like a basic car racing game for an auto maker. Instead many are trying to find tangential relationships that can be built through more useful, long-term needs. One toilet paper maker, for example, worked on an application that helps... Read more