First off – the bad news: users are getting tired of apps. How tired? How about this – nearly 1 in 4 users are abandoning an app after one use.
OK, so the good news? Using a service like push notifications can increase user engagement dramatically. Users WANT push notifications. So much so that 75% of 18 – 34 year olds have push engagement enabled on their mobile devices. Marketers also experience a 50% higher open rate on push notifications as opposed to email communications.
And while push notifications have given marketers and app developers new ways to reach audiences, one of the most interesting developments to emerge on the mobile scene has been the introduction of hyper-local marketing messages, also known as geofencing.
Essentially geofencing allows you to specify a a location radius (anywhere between 1 and 10000 meters – depending on the service) where when the app user enters or leaves, it triggers an automatic push message.
WHY USE GEOFENCING?
More than just saving time, automation in push messaging can drive engagement rates – as much as a 5% push engagement rate with automatic push messages verses a 2% engagement rate with manually sent messages.
Sure, this is all well and good to be able to send automatic marketing messages, but it’s not the magic bullet that your clients might think it is. For example, what happens when a grocery store sends a geofenced push notification about the latest offers in the store butchery to a customer who is a vegetarian?
SEGMENTS AND CHANNELS – This is where segments and channels come in. By breaking up a apps push notification audience into segments and channels, you can laser target push notifications.Segments are good for sending notifications to a pre-defined audience, such as location, operating system, and app version. Channels, on the other hand, are customizable through the app and allow users to pick and choose to subscribe to push notifications based on subject matter of interest to them. Studies have shown that brands using segmentation and channels have response rates 4 – 7 times higher than those who don’t.
DEEP LINKING – Each push notification has a purpose – whether it’s simply to inform a user or drive them to take an action. When an app user receives a push notification with a deep link – it takes them directly to an action page in the app.
Let’s tie it all together with our vegetarian in the grocery store example. The user has downloaded and enabled push notifications in their grocery store app. The next time they visit the store, the app triggers a push notification based on geofencing. Because this user is subscribed to the “Vegetarian Deals” channel of the app, they automatically receive a push notification alerting them to the latest vegetarian deals when they walk in the store. In addition, the link included in the push notification deep links to a coupon page located in the app.
Result? App engagement, user satisfaction and more retail sales – all done automatically.
With that in mind, in this article we wanted to share some of the ways in which app developers can use geofencing in their client’s apps.
LOCATION BASED MARKETING
This is probably one of the most exciting features of geofencing – being able to interact with customers (or potential customers) in real time. Location based marketing uses geofencing to automatically send a push notification when a user enters or leaves a specific location. For example, an app for a hotel could alert users currently on the property that happy hour is about to begin in the lounge – and send along a push notification with a drink coupon. Or an app for a retail business could alert a user when they pass near the property – perhaps reminding them of a gift certificate that hasn’t been spent or even enticing them with a new gift certificate or an alert about the latest sale items.
But clients don’t have to only target their own business locations with geofencing. How about this? A retail business sets up a geofence around a competing business location. When the targeted users leave the rival business, they are sent an automatic push notification with the latest deals and offers from your client?
SOCIAL MEDIA MONITORING
Your client has a problem – they’ve got lots of customers saying great things about their business – and your client wants to reward them. Geofencing to the rescue. Example? An app user at a hotel on their honeymoon gets that extra little bit of customer service that makes the day memorable and sends out a tweet about it. With geofencing, the grateful guest’s location is identified and extra perks – like a free room upgrade or (if your client isn’t so generous) a bottle of champagne is sent on its way.
This use for geofencing tends to work best in places that tend to have a lot of dwell time from customers, such as hotels, stadiums and (increasingly) coffee shops.
In larger business locations, geofencing can be used to determine how long app users spend in certain parts of the property. This can be tied into the average spend there to determine business viability. For example, do hotel guests spend more money at the pool as opposed to an indoor lounge? Does the dwell time of a guest affect the average spend?
For retail outlets, app data can give an overview of footfall vs. location revenue. For more accurate data, geofencing can be combined with location beacons that can give precise measurement for in-store targeting by department or even down to the exact aisle.
READY TO GET STARTED?
So, there you have it – a little bit about geofencing and how you can use it in your client’s apps. Sound interesting? Why not give Kumulos geofencing and push notifications a free, no obligation trial?
With just a few clicks of the mouse, you’ll be laser marketing your client’s apps in no time.
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