Follow Diane Twitter Facebook
Email Diane Email
Education
Jun 20, 2017

Bringing First-Class Mobile Apps To Small Communities

Sponsored Content provided by Diane Durance - Director, UNCW Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

This Insights article was contributed by William Mansfield and Nikki Kroushl.

We live in a world where 72 percent of smart phone users check their phones at least once per hour, and the average user spends almost 70 hours per month using mobile apps. For businesses and communities, app development is increasingly becoming a more attractive way to engage people.
 
Interactive media is important for every business. Today, interactive websites, active social media presences and other technology and media accommodations are basic expectations of every company. People expect to have a high-quality experience wherever they go, and they don’t want it to be newspaper-like, they want it to be media-rich.
 
“I don’t think a mobile app is a destination or a target to be hitting just to hit it; you have to have a particular need,” longtime developer William Mansfield says, warning against creating an app that is basically a mobile version of a company’s website. “People feel like they’re inviting you into their home by inviting you into their phone.”
 
If there’s no content exclusive to an app, there’s no reason to have one. Having a functional app, however, can be great for client engagement.
 
The three most important elements of any mobile app are:

  • Engagement measures how the app engages a user and the success of that engagement. Without engaging material, an app has no function. “The first thing you figure out [when developing a mobile app] is what kind of engagement the app is going to have for the user,” Mansfield says.
  • People must trust an app. They need to know it will do what it is supposed to do. “If an app says it needs location permissions to give directions but actually uses that permission to send targeted ads, the user will lose trust in the app,” Mansfield says. “Users are smart, and as soon as the integrity is broken, the app itself will fail.”
  • App developers should design an app according to user expectations and make it as simple for people to use as possible. This is important not only for the success of the product, but for its development. “The more complexities that exist in the UI [user interface], the harder it is to execute,” Mansfield says.
A small business can develop an impressive mobile app without impressive funds.

“Each app has a different thing it wants to accomplish, and every type has a different strategy,” Mansfield says. If you’re making a game, for example, development requires a totally different strategy than it does if you’re making an interactive app, a calendar app or a data-driven app.
 
“In The LEGO Movie, there’s this notion of the ‘master builder,’” Mansfield says. “That’s sort of the energy I get from writing software. That’s what I like the most - being able to push out a product that people can use.”
 
William Mansfield is a remote Senior Technical Architect at New York-based marketing firm MRY with 15 years of programming experience and five years of mobile app development experience.  
 
Nikki Kroushl is the Social Media and Content Manager at the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

Diane Durance, MPA, is director of UNC Wilmington's Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE). The CIE is a resource for the start-up and early-stage business community to help diversify the local economy with innovative solutions. For more information, visit www.uncw.edu/cie.

 

Other Posts from Diane Durance

Uncw cie taglogo2 300x250 2151694615
Ico insights

INSIGHTS

SPONSORS' CONTENT
Jim ellis headshot 10311631058

Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Digital Agency

Jim Ellis - Signal
Burrus rob headshot 300x300

Which MBA Program Best Meets Your Needs?

Robert Burrus - Cameron School of Business - UNC-Wilmington
Billhunter300x300 b&w

Is Your Phone Listening?

Bill Hunter - Wilmington Design Company

Trending News

In Wrightsville Beach, Office Building Sells For $1.3M

Cece Nunn - Aug 19, 2019

ILM Seeks Proposals For Another Aviation Services Provider

Christina Haley O'Neal - Aug 19, 2019

In The Current Issue

ILM Passenger Numbers Trending Up

The number of travelers using the growing Wilmington International Airport has soared each month in 2019 compared to the same month the prev...


Advocating For Realtors

Anne Gardner, the new CEO of Cape Fear Realtors, talks about her role leading one of the region's largest trade associations....


A New Leaf: CBD, Hemp Products Lead To New Businesses

Last year's Farm Bill opened the door for hemp farming, producing and selling, and that's translated into numerous new businesses nationwide...

Book On Business

The 2019 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!


Galleries

Videos

WILMA's Leadership Accelerator
Power Breakfast - The H Word (June 13, 2019)
2019 WilmingtonBiz Expo Keynote Lunch - CEO, nCino, Pierre Naude`