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Insights & Events
16 May, 2018
Behind every successful app is a user acquisition strategy comprising many different tactics that work together to increase its user base. For many, this raises the question of how much attention should be focused on acquiring organic versus paid users and which brings the most value to your company.
An organic install occurs when a user downloads an app without directly responding to a mobile advertising campaign. The install is not attributed to a specific install source and therefore is considered organic. In other words, all of their impressions of your app, online and offline, drove the user to visit the app store independently and download your app.
A paid install however, occurs when a user downloads an app as a direct result of clicking on a paid ad. These users needed that extra push to be convinced they needed your app.
Let’s take a deeper look into the value of organic users versus paid.
When it comes to organic versus paid, one is not better than the other. Instead it is better to think of it as a symbiotic relationship rather than a competitive one.
With 2.8 million and 2.2 million apps available in the Google Play Store and Apple App Store respectively, it is becoming more and more difficult for apps to get discovered by users. As these numbers are expected to continue rising, app marketers turn to paid user acquisition to improve app store discoverability.
A recent study revealed that for every paid install, apps get an average of 1.5 additional organic installs across all categories. This is because increased installs push your app up the app store ranks improving visibility, making it easier for organic users to find your app and download it. Burst campaigns of short yet intense paid user acquisition, are often used to drive organic discoverability.
Paid advertising is also an opportunity for a user to engage with your brand. This can potentially assist an organic install as studies suggest a prospect needs to come into contact with your brand at least 7 times before they’ll take action.
It is expected that organic users would exhibit the highest levels of in-app engagement as they were self-motivated to download your app. A 2017 study revealed that organic users were retained longer with 4% more organic users at day 30 than paid. Organic users also saw 12% more active sessions on day-after-install than users from paid channels.
Although organic users display higher levels of engagement, with the increasing sophistication of targeting capabilities, CPI advertising with Mpire allows you to target your most valuable user with optimisation towards your KPIs. At Mpire, we look at activity levels in paid users and are able to optimise towards sources of installs that deliver the most engaged audience.
With organic users showing higher engagement levels it is fair to assume they also contribute the highest ROI to your app. This is true in isolation, however in practice it is not always the case.
Just because a user is considered organic, does not mean you acquired them at no cost to your business. Chances are they came into contact with your mid-funnel marketing activities on their path to conversion. These associated true costs of organic installs are often overlooked, warping your ROI measurement.
With a CPI campaign you only pay for the users that click on the ad and install your app. This means you aren’t paying for the many ad impressions you are also getting. Paid user acquisition therefore helps boost brand awareness which is important as 70% of people who download an app have had previous exposure to the brand beforehand.
For every paid user you acquire you receive additional organic users due to increased discoverability. This means the return on this investment for paid user acquisition is greater than first perceived as you are gaining multiple high-value users for every one user you pay for as well as boosting brand awareness for free.
As the number of apps in the app store increases and discoverability becomes more difficult it is essential your UA strategy consists of both organic and paid marketing tactics. Whilst there is no arguing how important organic users are to your app’s success, paid users add significant value to your app. In order to take your app to the next level it’s imperative you enrich your UA strategy with paid user acquisition.
Join the Mpire today to grow your audience the most effective way.