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Apple, Disney and Facebook top list of most successful brand apps: study


Disney goes mobile

Apple, Disney and Facebook are the top marketers who are generating high numbers of application downloads, according to a new report from Distimo.

In Distimo’s “Apple App Store Performance: The 2012 Top 100 Global Brands” report, the company looked at how iPhone and iPad apps from top brands break down in Apple’s App Store. Additionally, the app analytics firm looked at which brands have an stronger international footprint with their apps.

“For branding in most cases, the number of downloads is the most important metric to gauge and measure an app's success, however, the number of reviews and the number of quality reviews is also another important metric,” said Hendrik Koekkoek, senior analyst at Distimo, Amsterdam.

“Having many downloads, but bad reviews may even be harmful for a brand,” he said.

Branded apps
Distimo used the Interbrand 2012 Best Global report as the source to rank the top 100 brands. Data in the report was collected in September.

Out of the top 100 brands looked at, only 12 did not have an app in Apple’s App Store. Therefore, 88 percent of the brands surveyed had a presence in the App Store.

Besides Apple, Disney and Facebook, Google and eBay also made the list of top brand apps for driving a strong number of downloads in September.

In fact, Google’s YouTube app is the most downloaded app out of all of the brands surveyed. Google’s Chrome also ranked as a top downloaded app.

Both the Facebook and Facebook Messenger app performed well as far as downloads, showing the growth of chat-based apps.

When it comes to promotion uses, IKEA’s catalog app is also popular among iOS users. The IKEA app ranked as No. 32 in terms of app downloads.

Sony is an example of a brand that carves out a strong app presence with a variety of different apps. The company has a whopping 141 apps in Apple’s App Store, which is an increase from 90 apps that the company had available in Sept. 2011.

Having an app in Apple’s App Store primarily gives brands more visibility, per Distimo’s analysis of the data.

Free apps still have a leg up with downloads though. Only one app — Disney’s Temple Run: Brave — made the list as top downloads. However, 90 percent of downloads for the app took place when the app was available for free in Apple’s “Free app of the week” section.

International downloads
The study also looked at how popular apps in the United States compared to worldwide downloads.

For example, brands including Pampers, Gap and Johnson & Johnson tend to have the majority of app downloads take place in the U.S.

Additionally, IBM rakes in 55 percent of its app downloads in the U.S.

On the other hand GE has equal app downloads from its branded apps across different countries.

Other top brands for app downloads at a global scale include Coca-Cola, Apple, Google and Microsoft.

“Given that the top global brands have all increased their app activity in the App Store during the course of the last year, we believe strongly that app marketing is here to stay,” Mr. Koekkoek said.

“Based on the success of the Starbucks app, for example, we believe that brands will find innovative ways to promote their brand with apps that really add value to the consumers who use them,” he said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Marketer. Reach her at lauren@mobilemarketer.com.

Related content: Research, Hendrik Koekkoek, Distimo, mobile, mobile marketing, app marketing

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