For most app developers, constructing an app that lands itself in the Apple (AAPL) store is seen as the most significant and exciting step towards commercial and personal success. As of October 1st of this year, I’m proud to say that the app I’ve developed, BlazeNow, is available in said store. The process was fairly quick and smooth, and assuming Apple’s goal has been to run a store that allows for a straightforward, reasonable process in releasing apps, it has succeeded.
That being said, there’s a lot that goes into the implementation stage of an app’s development, and its relationship with financial constructs (such as publicly traded companies and personal investing) is one that bears exploring.
Publicly Traded Companies and Apps
As the CEO of a publicly traded company, MediaTechnics Corporation (MEDT), I am accountable to a number of groups- company standards need to be met for governing bodies, shareholder satisfaction needs to be met for investors, and accurate, thorough information needs to be communicated with the press. As a result, apps need to be developed carefully and with a great deal of thought.
Here are some major points I’d recommend that publicly traded companies focus on when considering the development of an app:
Embrace the Needs of the Industry: It goes without saying that every industry has its own unique methods of operation- for example, the cannabis industry is booming in terms of the number of start-ups, much like the financial and tech sectors, but waste management doesn’t seem to have a lot of new entrants. The needs of the industry that you seek to enter need to be met, and if one doesn’t particularly enjoy one of its established ‘needs,’ they’d be best served developing a service that eliminates said need. If that doesn’t seem like a suitable option, they should probably get used to it.
Collect Valuable Data: In preparation for the development of BlazeNow, I worked with a number of dispensary owners in California to provide them with free management tools in exchange for key industry metrics and data. In a sense, BlazeNow’s siren song is its large base of data, privy to few (if any) companies in the cannabis industry. In the absence of this key data on prices, locations and factors in the space, BlazeNow probably wouldn’t be in the Apple store. I’d strongly recommend that companies looking to develop apps air on the side of having too much data (to the extent that there is such a thing) rather than not enough.
Consider an Ancillary Business: There’s a plethora of cannabis companies looking to produce, cultivate, or sell marijuana, be it recreationally or medically. However, there seems to be a trend towards the development of ancillary businesses. These range from well-respected marijuana delivery services, such as GreenRush, to vaporizer companies such as Vapeworld or O.penVAPE, and even companies developing brain scan technology, such as Potbotics. In short, companies need to either a) find an angle that hasn’t been explored, or b) look to spaces that have low-quality products or services in place that can be improved upon.
Responsible Investing in Apps
When investing in apps, I’d strongly recommend that people look to two key points to direct their thinking:
Look Beyond the User Side: There’s so much more that goes into app development than meets the eye. While it can be difficult to gain an inside perspective on the development of an app, publicly traded companies are required to disclose more information than the average private company (depending on the industry). As a result, you’re best served starting with apps developed by publicly traded companies.
Experience the Industry Firsthand: If you don’t have experience in the industry that the app serves, don’t invest in it. A company’s performance depends on so many variables that anyone lacking thorough experience in its sector should avoid investing in it.
As one can tell, there are a variety of steps and angles that need to be researched when dealing with apps and publicly traded companies. However, that doesn’t mean investors should steer clear of emerging industries or new apps; on the contrary, the cannabis industry and other similarly new/growing spaces are perhaps the best places for profits to be made. It’s for that specific reason that proper steps need to be followed to ensure for optimum performance.
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