In his second blog in this series Exploding Phone's Managing Director, Andy Long, shares his thoughts on the subject of App content strategy:
Who is going to provide the content for the app?
App content may already exist or may need to be specially written for the app. Even where content exists for a different vehicle content creation, repurposing and management van be time consuming task. Ideally we require content as early as possible in the project as it allows us to develop the structure of the app and determines the design of the certain pages. Normally it’s OK to receive a rough draft of the content early in development and then update it later as it gets polished. However, if the entire structure of the information or some other fundamental aspect changes late in the project then this can cause delays and potentially additional costs.
Self-contained vs. Dynamic Updates?
There are two approaches when it comes to keeping the information in the app up to date.
With this approach the app has all the content embedded within it. This can include text, images, video, etc. If this content needs to be updated, then the new version will need to be dropped into the app by the app developer. This is usually a chargeable service unless the customer has a maintenance subscription agreement. A new version of the app will need to be uploaded to the various app store for users to download. This approach is the simplest and has the lowest up front development cost. However, it is best suited to when the content changes infrequently as there will usually be a charge every time the content needs to be changed.
This approach generally uses a web-based Content Management System (CMS), through which information in the app is directly edited. The app would periodically connect to the server and download any available updates ensuring that the information in the app is kept up to date. This approach is most flexible but usually has a higher development cost, as the CMS and the update mechanism need to be implemented. There is also an ongoing cost for hosting the CMS on the server.