Kik leads the way in using data to improve retention and more for apps

Messaging app Kik used corny dad-jokes (i.e. "What animal do you never want to play games with? A cheetah!") as part of a special Father's Day-themed experiment with a portion of its user base. Speaking at the recent Decode event in Toronto hosted by marketing analytics firm App Annie, Ronalda Clifton, Kik's head of insights, said it was just one of the ways she and her team are using data to create a solid action plan to improve Kik's overall performance. "We're building attributes of user behavior and creating predictive variables," she explained, adding that at Kik, the key metric driving all its data science activities is retention.

"If you have less users coming in the door than you have leaving, you don't have a viable product. If you have more, you're viable," she continued. "It's about focusing on how you keep more users with you and on your platform. How many days from acquisition they will be active? Obviously over time it has to come down, but how can you influence factors in order to drive that up by a marginal amount at a time?" For more on how Kik and others are using data to show how developers can take action to improve retention and more, check out this FierceDeveloper special report