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How to use basic analytics to target mobile content like a boss

Big data and the wealth of analytics that are captured are all the rage. But much of what is delivered as a metric is only captured because it can be. Knowing what to do with all those analytics is something different. In many cases you only need a few key pieces of information to get a good start on an intelligent trajectory. The world of mobile app development and advertising provides a nice case study.

According to a recent eMarketer study on tablet apps:

  • Millennials prefer to play games and shop on their tablets

  • Gen-Xers prefer to play games and email on their tablets

  • Boomers prefer to email and watch videos on their tablets

Aside from establishing Gen-Xers as the undisputed cross over generation (we play games like the young folks but still use a lot of email like our hard working parents) the study also showed that the younger you are the more likely you are to click on ads in mobile apps. That is good news for in-app advertisers and the platforms that support them. The people that are most likely to click on an ad are also the ones that are most likely to engage with the kinds of apps that smoothly incorporate an ad experience.

Knowing your target audience is vital when it comes to delivering content – advertisements or otherwise. What else can be teased out from just some basic data insights?

The overwhelming majority of tablet users (76%) are on an Apple device. Women and Millennials are the demographic groups showing the most tablet growth this year outpacing even early adopting, wealthy men.

From these basic, freely available metrics, you can start to target your content. Here are some decisions that can be made on the basis of the previous metrics:

  • Tailor in-game ads to 20-somethings and women unless the game skews specifically male.

  • Target your video pre-roll ads to Boomers and business decision makers.

  • Tailor blog content for easy reading on iPads. Keep it snappy and sexy since Millennials want to “party with your brand”.

  • Then reuse the content in your email news letter that will be sent to the Xers and Boomers and read on their tablets.

  • Finally, tailor the desired transaction to the user.

According to Pew Research’s Mary Madden, the number one reason Gen-Xers and Millennials use social networking is to stay in touch with friends while Boomers use it to stay in touch with family. Millennials who want to party with your brand want to do so with their friends. So share this style buttons that allow users to post your content to their Facebook, Google+ or Twitter activity streams are a must-have. But unless your content or video speaks to family concerns, don’t bank on Boomers clicking that “like” button.

Metrics for the sake of metrics don’t help you. They muddy the waters and can lead to audience analysis paralysis. Understand your target market and user personas then tailor your metrics accordingly. You’ll like what you see and you’ll see it quickly.

For more updates analysis on more recent generations like Gen Z, please visit this post that uncovers Gen Z shopping habits.


This post was first written for Social Business News in 2013 so some of the information and vendors may not be around anymore.

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