You know how your iPhone beeps when your friend tags a #tbt pic of you on Facebook? You eagerly open your app to realize in horror that it’s your bad hair and braces in all its junior high glory? That Facebook alert is a mobile push notification.
Mobile push is often confused with SMS or text messaging. Unlike a text message sent from one cell phone to another; a mobile push notification is sent through a mobile application to its users.
As mobile dominates all aspects of our personal and business lives, brands’ adoption and consumers’ acceptance of mobile push notifications will only accelerate.
The Mobile Push Opportunity
Brands can email, call, mail, tweet, and reach customers a million ways. What’s so exciting about mobile push? We’re all obsessed with our mobile phones! Unlike desktops or snail mail, consumers take their phones with them everywhere and spend on average, 117 minutes a day on their phones (that’s more than the time we spend watching TV)! We aren’t just surfing the Internet, making calls, or texting either – 86% of our cellphone time is dedicated to mobile apps. This clearly gives mobile push an upper hand to reach consumers where they’re spending most of their time.
It’s crazy not to use mobile push to encourage users to use your company’s app. Research by Localytics, found that app launches were 88% higher on average among mobile app users worldwide who had enabled push messages. (Some app categories, like e-commerce apps, saw a 278% increase in launches!) It’s clear mobile push can successfully drive users to interact with your app, yet, only 20% of companies use mobile push notifications and even fewer (16%) integrate mobile push with their overall marketing activities.
Geo-location is a game changer
What sets mobile engagement apart from other channel tactics is its ability to target by location, using smartphones’ built-in GPS functionality. Forward-thinking brands take geo-targeting to the next level by combining it with beacons, devices that use Bluetooth to communicate with mobile apps.
Beacons enable marketers to trigger a brand message when a smartphone is in a very specific location, like when customers first arrive at a brick and mortar store or pause in designated aisles. This is a game changer for brick and mortar stores.
Imagine a customer’s delight when they receive a 10% off coupon for Tide Laundry Detergent via mobile push the moment they steer their cart into the laundry detergent aisle.Think about how much more comfortable a customer will feel purchasing a high end television, if they receive a push notification with its full specs and customer reviews at the same time they’re considering the model.
A push notification sent at an opportune time and delivering a relevant, personalized message is hugely influential. (In fact, according to a study by Business Insider Intelligence Report, “beacons are expected to directly influence over $4 billion worth of US retail sales this year at top retailers, and that number will climb tenfold in 2016.” Brands sending rich notifications help customers feel educated in their buying decision, limiting the anxiety most consumers feel about large or expensive purchases.
Mobile push is wasted in a silo
Customers expect a seamless experience everywhere they interact with your brand. They might open your email and get a discount, but forget to use it. When they’re close to your store, don’t you think they’d be happy to be reminded via mobile push to use that coupon? Data drives the extension of your brand experience across every channel without being repetitive.
Your mobile push strategy must be integrated into your overall marketing strategy. The behavioral data collected with each notification – opens, clicks, conversions – needs to be captured in your marketing database to be leveraged in your other efforts, like in email, PPC campaigns, or on your website, to consistently target your audience with relevant content. Without it, you’re blasting consumers with redundant promotions and risking them disassociating from your brand.
Whereoware incorporated mobile push into a campaign for our client to increase registration and participation at their events. Their goal was to engage database contacts, entice them to download the event app, register and attend the event, and then to use the post-event coupons. They leveraged their website, emails, and mobile push to guide customers through each of these steps. Whereoware integrated their database, so all of the customer data from the app downloads, email behavior, and website tracking was captured to further personalize promotional communications ongoing.
Whereoware used IBM’s Mobile Customer Engagement (MCE, previously coined XTIFY) to send the mobile push reminders in our client example (above). MCE allows marketers to deliver rich mobile push notifications based on a variety of consumer segments and behaviors and triggered by mobile app or website activity.
IBM’s MCE is powerful in its ability to send behavioral data back to the marketing automation tool. This allows marketers to segment, target and engage users in real-time via every channel and measure and adjust their overall marketing strategy for greater success. Meanwhile, this integration ensures customers receive a consistent online experience.
Ready for mobile push?
Ready to add mobile push to your customers’ journey? Brands that get ahead of the competition and leverage this new technology before the market crowds will reap the benefits. Get in touch with us to talk through inventive ways mobile push can enhance and advance your digital strategy.