EMAC IJRM Best Article Award 2020

Introduction

Appel, Libai, Muller and Shachar have won the award for their paper on app monetization

POSTING TYPE: Journal News

Author: Cecilia Nalagon


Announcement: Winner 2020 IJRM Best Article

The European Marketing Academy (EMAC) and the International Journal of Research in Marketing (IJRM) are pleased to announce the winner of the 2020 IJRM Best Paper Award:

On the monetization of mobile apps. Gil Appel, Barak Libai, Eitan Muller, and Ron Shachar. (Vol 37, Issue 1, Pages 93-107)

Abstract:

Though the mobile app market is substantial and growing fast, most app providers struggle to monetize apps profitably. Monetizing apps is done in two ways: a) selling advertising space within a free version of the app, and b) selling a paid version, termed freemium or in-app purchase strategy. In this paper, we present a framework for monetization of mobile apps, using two central empirical regularities concerning the relationship between users and their mobile apps: a) Sampling: While consumers have some prior knowledge of their fit with the app, they remain uncertain regarding their exact utility until they are using it; and b) Satiation: The utility of using the app may decrease with time. While work on the monetization of digital goods has largely overlooked the role of satiation and the consequent retention issues, we show that in combination with uncertainty, it elucidates the role of the segments of consumers that download the free vs. paid version of the app, and how to balance these two segments so as to monetize mobile apps. We encounter two distinct scenarios: In the first, advertising drives most of the revenues; while in the second, revenues are driven by the paid version of the app. We explain how uncertainty and satiation affect the prevalence of the respective scenarios and impact the share of revenues from the paid vs free version of the app. We also demonstrate that an app provider can profit from offering a free version with ads even if advertisers are not paying for these ads. In other words, the app provider benefits from offering a “damaged good” version of the app that includes ads, even if this version is free to consumers, and the advertisers are not paying for the ads.

Selection process:

The winning article was chosen from two rounds of voting open only to the members of the IJRM Editorial Board. In the first round, each voter nominated up to three (3) papers from the 48 that were published in IJRM in 2020. Four (4) papers received the most nominations. In the second/final round, the Board Members voted for one paper from this shortlist of five papers. The winning paper is the one that received the most votes.

Four Finalists (in order of appearance):

  • On the monetization of mobile apps. Gil Appel, Barak Libai, Eitan Muller, Ron (Vol 37, Issue 1, Pages 93-107)
  • Virtual and augmented reality: Advancing research in consumer marketing. Michel Wedel, Enrique Bigne, Jie Zhang. (Vol 37, Issue 3, Pages 443-465)
  • Age differences in children’s happiness from material goods and experiences: The role of memory and theory of mind. Lan Nguyen Chaplin, Tina M. Lowrey, Ayalla A. Ruvio, L.J. Shrum, Kathleen D. Vohs. (Vol 37, Issue 3, Pages 572-586)
  • The impact of online display advertising and paid search advertising relative to offline advertising on firm performance and firm value. Emanuel Bayer, Shuba Srinivasan, Edward J. Riedl, Bernd Skiera. (Vol 37, Issue 4, Pages 789-804)