GLOBAL: Marketers need to look beyond their own apps and gather user data from the entire mobile ecosystem if they are to successfully target "high-value" users within apps, a new report has said.

High-value users, defined as those who have generated revenue in the last 30 days, engage four times more than the average user, according to a study – State of Mobile Acquisition – from marketing technology business RadiumOne based on an analysis of app usage on over 100m smartphones and tablets.

This revealed that high-value users accounted for just 17% of the overall audience but 85% of app revenue across the retail, sports, communication and music/books categories.

Within those categories, the highest proportion of high-value users were found in sports apps, where 28% merited this classification.

Some 18% of retail apps' users were considered high-value, the same proportion as music or book apps' users.

Only 16% of communication apps' users were considered high-value, but they engaged five times as often as the average user.

The average retail app user had a total of three shopping apps on their mobile device, while the high-value retail user had just one other shopping app on their device, which the study suggested demonstrated a high level of loyalty to specific retailers by high-value users.

High-value retail users also had 45% more lifestyle apps on their devices than average retail users, indicating an opportunity for retail apps to reach and acquire potential high-value users via other apps.

For retail companies, said RadiumOne, there is an opportunity to increase high-value users from 18% to 46% by targeting users outside of a company's app.

It advised taking in data from the entire ecosystem, including third party apps and web sites, to see how users act outside of an app.

That way they can "truly get to know their high-value users", said Bill Lonergan, CEO at RadiumOne, and then reach them in a more effective way, ultimately leading to increased revenue.

Data sourced from RadiumOne; additional content by Warc staff