Lee, Gene Moo, Shu He, Joowon Lee, Andrew B. Whinston (2020) Matching Mobile Applications for Cross-Promotion. Information Systems Research 31(3), pp. 865-891.
- Based on an industry collaboration with IGAWorks
- Presented in Chicago Marketing Analytics (Chicago, IL 2013), WeB (Auckland, New Zealand 2014), Notre Dame (2015), Temple (2015), UC Irvine (2015), Indiana (2015), UT Dallas (2015), Minnesota (2015), UT Arlington (2015), Michigan State (2016), Korea Univ (2021)
- Dissertation Paper #3
- Research assistant: Raymond Situ
The mobile applications (apps) market is one of the most successful software markets. As the platform grows rapidly, with millions of apps and billions of users, search costs are increasing tremendously. The challenge is how app developers can target the right users with their apps and how consumers can find the apps that fit their needs. Cross-promotion, advertising a mobile app (target app) in another app (source app), is introduced as a new app-promotion framework to alleviate the issue of search costs. In this paper, we model source app user behaviors (downloads and postdownload usages) with respect to different target apps in cross-promotion campaigns. We construct a novel app similarity measure using latent Dirichlet allocation topic modeling on apps’ production descriptions and then analyze how the similarity between the source and target apps influences users’ app download and usage decisions. To estimate the model, we use a unique data set from a large-scale random matching experiment conducted by a major mobile advertising company in Korea. The empirical results show that consumers prefer more diversified apps when they are making download decisions compared with their usage decisions, which is supported by the psychology literature on people’s variety-seeking behavior. Lastly, we propose an app-matching system based on machine-learning models (on app download and usage prediction) and generalized deferred acceptance algorithms. The simulation results show that app analytics capability is essential in building accurate prediction models and in increasing ad effectiveness of cross-promotion campaigns and that, at the expense of privacy, individual user data can further improve the matching performance. This paper has implications on the trade-off between utility and privacy in the growing mobile economy.