As always, we have a great show today, folks. Brace yourselves: This is episode 24. That is two dozen episodes, each of which is rated on a sliding scale somewhere between awesome and epic, just like Stewart. And that is not hyperbole.

For instance, in this amazing episode, we have the CEO of Appboy, Mark Ghermezian, who discusses mobile marketing, mobile CRM, and mobile marketing automation. And don’t forget to check out last week’s episode with David Steinberg of Zeta Interactive.

But first, the news.


This week, Ironsource released a new app called Aura. Aura is not what you think it is. It doesn’t show you people’s energy fields or help put cool lights around your phone. Aura is actually software that will be installed on over 100 million Android devices this year, and it helps you automagicially manage your apps and device.

With Android, many OEM companies will add a bunch of apps to your phone that you can’t delete. Some call it “bloatware” or “shovelware.” Aura will help you manage the out-of-box experience, allowing you to choose what you want. It also helps with bulk app uninstallations, app recommendations, and it helps you manage your phone’s storage space and battery, among other things.

Also in mobile app news, Appsflyer released a research report where they looked at over 50 million installs of top shopping and gaming apps. The study shows how apps are performing during the holiday season, and it tells us when to ramp up on Android and iOS, as they perform very differently.

There are lots of actionable insights in this report that will help people marketing their apps this upcoming holiday season. November and December are right around the corner, and there are some great stats and information for anyone planning a holiday campaign.

Speaking of mobile marketing, our guest this week is Mark Ghermezian, CEO of Appboy. Appboy is a mobile marketing automation platform that helps you build relationships with your customers. Any mobile marketer will want to pay attention to what  Mark has to say.

First off, however, Stewart asks Mark about his love of sneakers and why he bought each of the first 100 employees custom Nike IDs with their employee number on the back.

In a moment that could be described as zen-like, Mark explains that “We’re all in the same boat — we’re in the business of our customer’s journey, we are all taking footsteps in the journey in our lives, and we all ended up somehow working at Appboy. I think we all took that step.”

It’s important to keep your customers happy, and it’s crucial to keep your employees happy, as they both have chances to go elsewhere.

Stewart shared VB Insight’s research with Mark around the mobile marketing automation space and how less than 1.5 percent of the addressable market is even using this type of technology.

Why do we think that people aren’t using technologies like mobile marketing automation, marketing automation, or even email marketing? Why is it that tools like MailChimp are still being used for just email and not for marketing automation? When we look at the results of using these tactics, the ROI is amazing, but many businesses still aren’t using them. Why?

Mark explains that the answer is two-fold, and you’re going to want to make sure you hear why in this episode.

We also discuss how Travis recently built out a checklist for a successful mobile app launch (there were over 150 different steps to consider!). He reached out to his friend, Jason Ary, who is a mobile marketing expert and has worked on apps for the NBA, PGA, Dish Network, and Sports Authority. He told Travis that Appboy is a key component for your app and shared the “Success Squad” that Appboy employs to help onboard all new companies’ works.

Mark then explained his thoughts behind having a Success Squad:

There are hundreds of things that are on your checklist to consider while launching an app. And it’s overwhelming. Today mobile marketing automation is all about iOS and Android, being able to move at the speed of them updating their OS’s. It’s cookie-less, it’s understanding when to message them. Should it be a push message? Should it be an email? Should it be an in-app message? There is so much stuff that goes into mobile marketing automation that is much different from desktop marketing.

We discuss how the smartphone really is very different from anything else we had before. It really is the one device that is incredibly personal and private, so marketing on it is completely different.

This was a fascinating discussion with one of the top mobile marketing automation minds in the world. Make sure to listen to the whole thing, because that makes Stewart smile.

Next week, we have Ray Beharry, adjunct instructor of digital content and mobile marketing at New York University, and head of marketing at Pollfish — be sure to tune into that.

Also, a mafia don has been threatening us, saying if we don’t get more ratings and reviews — on iTunes, Stitcher, SoundCloud, and Google Play — that Travis’ dog, Reggie, will be wearing concrete shoes. Please rate, review, and subscribe to this podcast because of this fake mafia don story made up entirely by Travis. Thanks.


Thanks to our sponsor MailChimp for helping to make VB Engage possible.

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