A Complete Guide Of Mobile Attribution For Health & Fitness Apps

At this stage of development in the Health & Fitness vertical, apps have a plethora of factors working in their favor to help them achieve their business objectives.

Feb 23 2023
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Convenience and personalization drive installs, engagement, and loyalty in the Health & Fitness vertical, as users rely on apps to keep them on track with their wellness goals. Apps like Peloton, WW (Weight Watchers), Calm, and Headspace have emerged as leaders in supporting healthy habits among their users, and they have set the pace for effective data gathering and optimization.

Furthermore, by providing users with exactly what they want — a personalized experience, anytime, anywhere — and by combining their features with wearables, apps in the vertical have seen remarkable growth in the last two years.

Top challenges that health & fitness apps face

While Health & Fitness apps excel at brand loyalty and sales, they also face several challenges:

Increasing loyalty to encourage downloads, trials, and paid subscriptions.

With so many Health & Fitness brands available on mobile, a user has hundreds of app options, making differentiation in an increasingly crowded market difficult.

Vertical is difficult.

Identifying and securing user commitment to habitual change. Many apps are used to sending push notifications at least once a week, but it's difficult in this industry to identify users who have the potential to be highly engaged and then keep them engaged beyond the first few interactions (e.g. exercise classes, weigh-ins, group activities).

Customizing content.

An app in this vertical can use deep linking, push notifications, and targeted advertising to keep users engaged, often based on patterns in users' activity history (e.g., if a user routinely takes a particular class, then driving them to other instructors who offer similar classes). Furthermore, marketers must strike a balance.

Best Practices for Health & Fitness Apps Attribution

1. Personalization - Not just for UA

With the sophistication of marketing technology and the growing number of apps available, app users expect personalized experiences from start to finish. Re-engage lapsed subscribers by using viewing histories. Reduce uninstall rates by combining deep links with other in-app event data. Choose ad partners who offer behavior or intent personalization and incorporate it into your marketing routine.

2. Intelligently convert trial members to subscribers

How do you persuade users who download your app for free to upgrade to a subscription? One strategy is to incorporate content and genre selection into the onboarding flow as soon as the user signs up. When a user invests in and expresses interest in a genre (for example, cycling or breathing exercises), you have a valuable data point that you can use to engage them with emails or push notifications.

In addition, delivering the call-to-action on the mobile device is an untapped strategy in the vertical. For example, if a user signs up on a laptop, an immediate text message with a link to download the app is sent to their phone. The more you incorporate device downloads into the sign-up process, the better.

3. Check that your partners can deliver on multiple platforms and devices.

Making sure that your platform partners can work across devices is one challenge in cross-platform measurement. Some services, for example, are only available on mobile, which will limit your capabilities if your users use your app on both their mobile phone and their smart tv. If this is the case with your app, it is critical to collaborate with partners who support as many platforms as possible.

4. Deep links should be used.

As previously stated, deep links are only now beginning to gain traction in mobile Health & Fitness apps. Deep links increase engagement, retention, and conversion, but you must test to determine what level of detail (a specific course, instructor, or type of class) provides the most bang for your buck.

5. Measure rich in-app events.

With rich in-app events, you can improve audience segmentation and downstream analytics. These can include a variety of data points from the signup flow, such as the plan users choose (basic or premium), the bundles they choose, and so on (e.g. subscriptions that include particular class add-ons). Following the completion of a subscription, track engagement and retention data points such as visits to specific landing pages with specific content and minutes engaged per subscriber.

6. Retargeting for prevention

Retargeting campaigns should not only prioritize lapsed users but also act as a preventative measure to keep users engaged before they lapse. According to Criteo, users are nearly 30% more likely to remain engaged and convert if they are effectively engaged via a retargeting campaign within the first week of installation. However, to engage without overwhelming, limit preventative retargeting campaigns.

7. Simultaneous creative testing

When it comes to optimizing search ads and creative performance, testing 3-5 different creative sets simultaneously will provide the most profound performance analysis within a reasonable and efficient period. However, as a general rule, it is better to test several different creatives more frequently than to perform tests on large amounts of creative sets at the same time.

Key takeaways

At this stage of development in the Health & Fitness vertical, apps have a plethora of factors working in their favor to help them achieve their business objectives. Consumers' desire to engage with Health & Fitness content at any time and from any location has driven dramatic growth in the last two years, and the vertical is becoming more competitive by the day.

In the face of this expansion, the bottom line takeaway is the importance of granular measurement in propelling marketers forward. If you follow the suggestions and metrics outlined above, you will lay the groundwork for future profitability, performance, and success.