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APNs Legacy Binary Protocol

APNs Legacy Binary Protocol

After a stay of execution, on March 31st Apple are finally discontinuing the APNs legacy binary protocol used to send push notifications to iOS devices. If you have an app in the App Store with push notification capability or an Apple Developer account, you will have likely already received an email from Apple telling you to update to the HTTP/2-based provider API.

In this article, we’ll quickly explain what this means and what you have to do (spoiler alert: if you’re a Kumulos customer – nothing)!

First, some background…

The Apple Push Notification service (APNs) was first announced in June 2008 as a more battery efficient way to send or push messages to apps than long-running background processes that would continually poll for and pull new messages if there were any. Interest in the service was immediate and led to Apple pushing back the initial launch so they could re-architecture APNs to scale to meet to the overwhelming demand.

APNs was first launched in June 2009, back when iOS 3.0 was the operating system of choice on your iPhone 3GS! Since then, push notifications have become widely accepted as the single, most effective way to reach out to and engage (or annoy if done badly) a mobile user.

APNs Legacy Binary Protocol

Back in 2009, if you wanted to send a push notification, you had to call APNs directly using the APNs Legacy Binary Protocol (of course it wasn’t legacy back then, but keep reading, all will become clear). Writing this as a long-ago Comp Sci graduate, who started out coding C++ on Unix servers for Telcos, even I can fully appreciate that although highly efficient and functional, binary interfaces are challenging to use, unforgiving of errors and therefore not necessarily for everyone. Therefore, it was no real surprise that in 2015, Apple released a new HTTP/2 provider API for APNs.

In the intervening years, and with Google adding Push Notifications to Android in May 2010, some vendors such as yours-truly, emerged as a means to abstract away the complexity of interfacing with the APNs Legacy Binary Protocol and Google Cloud Messaging (GCM – as it was called back then). Furthermore, these vendors such as ourselves, incorporated analytics to expand upon the basic push functionality of APNs and provide sophisticated, intelligent user, behaviour and location-based audience segmentation and targeting, accessible either through an easy-to-use campaign management UI or a transactional, RESTful API that worked with both platforms. However, under-the-hood, these vendors were all using the APNs Legacy Binary Protocol themselves.

Apple supported the APNs Legacy Binary Protocol and the HTTP/2 Provider API alongside each other for the next four years, before announcing in 2019 that support for the APNs Legacy Binary Protocol would be discontinued. At first, this was expected in 2020 but a stay of execution was then granted until 31st March 2021 – perhaps due to the aforementioned vendors who were still using it themselves!

What do you have to do?

First off, if you are a Kumulos customer, nothing! Why? Because we have already done this for you! Kumulos switched over to the HTTP/2 Provider API in early 2020, not long after the initial announcement from Apple. Win!

If you are using another push notification vendor, then the chances are you won’t have anything to do either. However, it might be worth checking in with them, just in case. It is widely believed that the reason Apple granted the APNs Legacy Binary Protocol a stay of execution was to allow some vendors, who had not been as prompt as Kumulos in adopting the HTTP/2 Provider API, further time to migrate. Best not leave anything to chance and give your vendor a call today.

Finally, if you have built your own in-house integration using the APNs Legacy Binary Protocol and haven’t yet updated this use the HTTP/2 Provider API, then you have some work to do, and fast!

Build vs. Buy

The re-opens the debate of build vs. buy. Why pay a vendor such as Kumulos when you can call APNs directly using the HTTP/2 Provider API? If your app is only available on iOS and only ever targets notifications to individual users, this may be a compelling question.

However, there are four significant reasons why using a specialized mobile messaging vendor to send your push notifications might be the way you want to go from now on…

  1. Firstly, and most obvious, is that vendors such as Kumulos, enable you to send mobile push notifications across different platforms including iOS, Google Android and Huawei Android through a single SDK, UI and/or API without having to build interfaces against each platform’s APIs (which we have already done for you).
  2. Secondly, vendors such as Kumulos are backed by analytics and as such provide intelligent user, behaviour and location-based audience segmentation and targeting options, all through an easy-to-use campaign management UI – functionality that increases the impact of your push notification campaigns and functionality that you will have to code and build yourself, should you choose to go down that route.
  3. Next-up, and related to the above, vendors such as Kumulos invariably incorporate other messaging channels such as in-app messaging, web push notifications, SMS and email, enabling you to provide a rich, seamless experience through the complete user journey.
  4. Finally, and perhaps most importantly in this context, vendors such as Kumulos shield you from numerous changes to the platform APIs and the significant complexity in using them. For example, Apple require you to hold open and reuse existing connections to the HTTP/2 provider API for “as long as possible” (for many hours to days) and have also recently required all connections to incorporate a new root SSL certificate. In addition, Google have also deprecated their own legacy HTTP API and are encouraging everyone to migrate to the latest HTTP v1 API – we also migrated to this API in early 2020, so again no action required for Kumulos customers.

Wider Implications

One of the wider implications of Apple discontinuing support for the APNs Legacy Binary Protocol is that many apps and vendors used the feedback mechanism, rightly or wrongly, as a proxy for app uninstall events. The HTTP/2 Provider API will return if a token is invalid it (either by blocking push notifications or uninstalling the app) but, for privacy reasons, this will only happen after a random delay of days or even a few weeks.

However, rather than focusing on the uninstall number, we would instead recommend you focus on retention and engagement – how many users you have retained, engaged and converted to the next step in their journey through timely, personalized messaging? Great! Now what can you do to increase that number!

For those that do drop-off or for those who simply prefer to be engaged via different messaging channels, the Kumulos platform contains a range of features designed to ensure you know and can target users on the channels they are most active on, without having to broadcast across them all (or worse, shout into an empty room). For more details on our reachability checks, Contact Us and we’ll be happy to discuss the options that are right for your app and its audience.

In Summary

Despite the somewhat alarming email from Apple, users of Kumulos and more than likely most other push notification vendors will have nothing to do. If, however, you have built your own integration with the APNs Legacy Binary Protocol, then you now have a decision to make – update this to the new HTTP/2 Provider API or start using a specialist push notification vendor, such as Kumulos. There are a number of factors that will influence this decision, but in our experience, more and more are stacking up in favour of outsourcing the delivery of push notifications to specialist providers, freeing you and your team up to focus on the app itself.

We’d be more than happy to discuss the pros and cons of both approaches with you and promise absolutely no hard sell. Contact Us today and we’ll put the kettle on!

Further Reading

To find out how to build and execute an effective push notification strategy, download our Push Notifications Best Practices Guide now.

IDFA changes – good news for your users, good news for you

Apple IDFA Changes

The Apple IDFA is changing and based on some of the headlines and news reports, you could be forgiven for thinking the sky is falling in. In this article, we’ll look at what this change actually means in practice for you and the opportunity it presents to shift your focus onto engagement and retention.

In doing so, you might find that this has a much greater impact on your bottom line than any new user acquisition campaign ever can.

What is the IDFA?

Not to be confused with Dua Lipa’s 2017 hit single IDGAF, the Apple IDFA or Identifier for Advertisers is a unique identifier generated for each Apple device. Although it doesn’t contain any personal identifiable information, the IDFA enables advertisers to serve targeted, customized adverts based on the actions you have performed in other apps that track in-app event behaviour and associate this with your device’s IDFA.

It also enables advertisers to track and measure which mobile advertising campaigns you then interact with to further refine and target the adverts you and others will then see, the principle around which has spawned the multibillion-dollar mobile app attribution industry.

Why is the IDFA in the news?

Although the IDFA is not new, it hit the headlines at WWDC in June 2020 when Apple announced it would that as of iOS14 (released in September 2020), you would have to give each app explicit permission to use the IDFA (just as you do for push notifications or location tracking). This is one part of a wider Apple initiative called App Tracking Transparency (requiring apps to be completely transparent about the data they collect and hold about you) and a wider shift in the industry away from third-party tracking data (such as Google’s proposal to block third-party tracking cookies in its Chrome browser).

You have always had the option to opt-out of being tracked via the IDFA, but in practice few of us did this, with well over 70% of us not bothering to reverse our implicit consent. However, with the simple change of requiring us to give our explicit consent it is widely accepted that this figure will fall to only 10% – 15% of us allowing apps to track what we do for the purposes of serving targeted adverts.

Why are we still talking about the IDFA now?

As we’ve previously discussed, iOS14 adoption was swift (pun intended) reaching 90% adoption within three months of launch (by contrast iOS13 was only at 76% adoption by that same time).

Apple IDFA - Worldwide iOS14 Adoption after 90 days

So why is the IDFA still in the news now?

Well, for that there are two simple reasons. Firstly, bowing to pressure from mobile ad networks and attribution companies, Apple announced in September a grace period delaying the change to requiring explicit user consent to use the IDFA until Spring 2021. This was to allow the industry time to switchover to using Apple’s new SKAdNetwork (which allows advertisers to measure the overall success of their campaigns, but not to an individual user level).

Secondly, the reason the IDFA is still in the news is because the mobile ad networks and attribution companies want it to be, in the vain hope of forcing Apple to reverse their decision. In a blistering attack in December, Facebook accused Apple of hurting small businesses reducing their sales by upto 60% by limiting their ability to serve personalized adverts (Facebook themselves are expected to take a multibillion-dollar revenue hit as a result of these changes).

When will the change actually happen?

With the sun getting higher in the sky, spring is now well and truly underway, so when will you require explicit user consent to use the IDFA? The answer is no one really knows.

The one thing that could delay the change is the relatively low levels of adoption of Apple’s new SKAdNetwork, currently sitting at around 20% as many ad networks are still evaluating their options. Rather than accept the seismic change, many have simply buried their head in sand hoping that Apple will bow to commercial or legal pressures.

Similar to the ongoing investigation by the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority into whether Google’s proposal to block third-party tracking cookies (that many argue will make advertisers even more reliant on Google than they currently are), a number of legal complaints have been lodged against Apple’s proposed changes to the IDFA claiming they amount to an antitrust violation. However, early indications are that these are set to fail, with the French Competition Authority refusing to order Apple to further delay implementing the changes as the French trade body the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) had been seeking.

Furthermore, in a recent press release from Apple they doubled down on data privacy, improving transparency and putting you firmly in control. So, although we don’t know for sure, we are still expecting the change to happen sometime soon before spring makes way for summer. Regardless, there is now an opportunity to revaluate how you reach and connect with your mobile audience and here at Kumulos, we recommend you take it!

First off – does this change impact Kumulos?

No! Kumulos does not use the IDFA and so this change will have no impact on Kumulos. In fact, we are fully supportive of the principles that are driving this change. You can continue to use Kumulos to track first-party analytics events within your app, remaining compliant with Apple’s privacy policies, and then use this to segment your audience for targeted messaging campaigns but rest assured, this data belongs to you and we will never, ever share this data with anyone else.

Furthermore, Kumulos Deferred Deep Links are deterministic, and we do not use device finger-printing or any other probabilistic tracking techniques to try and identify your users.

Be transparent! B-E transparent. B-E-T-R-A…

Secondly, whether you have to yet or not, be completely transparent about the analytics data your collecting and why! For years, we’ve been explaining that if you want to track users’ location or send them push notification, you need to explain why to maximize your opt-in rates.

“Allow Cloudburger to access your location?” vs. “Allow Cloudburger to access your location so we know when you will be arriving at your local restaurant so we can start preparing your order.”

“Cloudburger would like to send you notifications?” vs. “Cloudburger would like to send you notifications such as updates on opening times and weekly special offers”

The exact same principles apply to analytics, for example “We’ll record what you order from our menu the most, so we can display them first and also make suggestions of new items we think you might like.”

Focus on Engagement and Retention, not just Acquisition

Another thing we’ve been advocating for years is to shift more of your focus from new user acquisition to onboarding, activation, engagement and retention. We’re not saying user acquisition doesn’t matter – of course it does – but acquiring a new customer is much more expensive than retaining an existing customer yet has a much lower chance of conversion! Whereas even just a small increase in retention, can have a significant impact on the bottom line.

Apple IDFA Changes - Focus on Activation, Engagement and Retention

Think about how you onboard new users into your app. What can you do to activate and engage more of them? Measure retention and use analytics to see where and when most users drop-off. Then, make small, incremental changes to increase activation and retention. For example, a timely message with a personalized money off coupon for your first or next order. Measure the impact and then repeat the process moving onto the next drop-off point. Build-Measure-Learn!

Make the most of the other channels you control

Just because the IDFA is going to become less prevalent, doesn’t mean you can’t still connect with your users via other channels. Use the other channels you control to acquire more users into your app (ideally, with a personalized onboarding flow) and re-engage lapsed app users with Deferred Deep Links. Whether this is by email, SMS, social or even a QR Code on the side of a pizza box, you can acquire new users for your app or re-engage and drive existing users back to your app, increasing retention. 

Close the loop

Good things happen to good people! Use Crash Reporting to monitor the user experience, be transparent about the information your collecting and ensure your messaging campaigns are personalized, timely and relevant to each individual user. If done well, you’ll see this reflected in the star ratings and reviews your users give your app, which will improve discoverability in the App Stores, increasing acquisition and so it goes on!

In Summary

Despite what some tech giants might want us to believe, requiring explicit user consent to use the IDFA is coming, and its hard not to argue that putting your users in control is a good thing. It gives us all a chance to think about how we connect with our audience. If this leads to a greater focus on engaging and retaining existing users, away from constantly acquiring new users, then not only will that be better for your users, it will also likely be better for you. If this strikes a chord and you want to know more, let’s talk!

Further Reading

If you want to learn more about how you can use the other channels you control to acquire more users and re-engage lapsed users, download our Ultimate Guide to Deferred Deep Links.

Remote-Working – How to improve your mobile marketing team’s productivity

working from home

As mobile marketing teams settle in to the new remote- working landscape, the need for innovative marketing tools that enable seamless collaboration across countries and continents is becoming ever clearer.

For mobile marketing teams, the ability to pivot rapidly to meet the ongoing challenges of remote-working, while at the same time being able to successfully respond to a radically redefined mobile customer, has been challenging – but critical for future growth. 

Because whilst teams and budgets may have found themselves negatively impacted over the last 12 months, mobile app use skyrocketed a massive  25% YoY in Q3 2020  – and across multiple sectors:

  • 2.3 billion Hours in mobile shopping apps – in a single week
  • Time spent in finance apps surged by 45% 
  • Health and Fitness app downloads increased 30% 

Managing this new mobile landscape while at the same time shifting to managing remote teams has meant mobile marketers are experiencing both a lack of transparency across campaign activities, and a lack of consistency across channels, making it difficult to manage team activities and, by default, meaningfully optimize campaign impact.

 

challenges marketers face during remote working

Remote-working challenges facing marketers – Marketing Week

 

In response to these challenges, we’ve implemented new capabilities across the Kumulos platform – capabilities that allow teams to improve the efficacy of building and shipping campaigns, and at the same time do so efficiently, cost-effectively, and transparently. 

Bolstering security 

Security has always been important when it comes to accessing and managing customer data.  In 2021, with unprecedented increases in mobile use, mobile marketers now have access to an ever-more complex, wider pool of customer data than ever before. 

On the one hand, it’s a marketer’s dream. On the other, however, securing access to (sensitive?) data across large, distributed teams (that can quickly lose visibility of roles and permissions) can become problematic. So we’ve integrated the ability to enable two-factor authentication and set password policies in ways that align with the often very specific needs of their own organization. 

Streamlining consistency

And one of the quickest, most effective ways of streamlining processes across distributed teams is the ability to set up processes so that they’re easier to understand and undertake – so when your team’s working on multiple mobile marketing campaigns across multiple user groups, geographies, and timezones, the time-consuming, resource-intensive activities have already been taken care of.

We all know how important it is to reach the right customer at the right time with the right message; never so crucial than in the current marketing climate when one wrong move can undo years of hard graft. But how do you ensure consistent, on-brand, relevant messaging when your team is separated and working on multiple campaigns with different, often complex needs? With Push Notification Templates, of course!

Push notification templates make it super-easy to create and send pitch-perfect push campaigns that hit the right note every time, enabling marketing teams to easily replace any dynamic content with their own campaign-specific content – so, think titles, deep-link destinations, user attributes for personalization, and button titles, all helping streamline consistency across entire teams and freeing them up to focus on individual campaign goals.

Optimized Approval Process

With nine out of 10 marketers telling us that it’s the delays in the approval process that are the top reason for their deadlines being missed, we know that there’s a problem. 

Streamlining an often complex sign-off process across multiple campaigns is challenging – doubly so across a remote team where clarity and visibility around projects can often be missing. Over-running deadlines, even by a couple of hours, can soon become problematic, particularly when it becomes a habit.  

Building and integrating message approval workflows is our way of helping teams address these challenges, allowing teams to specify users that can draft push notifications and in-app messaging campaigns, alongside allocating permissions for specific users to approve them before shipping. 

Users can be assigned roles such as Content Editor, Approver – or both – with the ability to implement approval permissions such as target audience, message content, and delivery schedules. 

We’ve also built these new capabilities in such a way that team members don’t miss a beat – once a message has been submitted for approval, an email alert will let the designated approver know that there’s a message awaiting their approval. And the icing on the cake? You get a full audit trail of the workflow so you’ve got 360 visibility of who created, approved, and sent each message. 

Combined, these features will make it easier for large, distributed enterprise organizations to retain and engage their web and mobile audience in a secure, controlled, and highly effective way.

Conclusion

Being able to engage and retain the 2021 mobile customer means recognizing the importance of an efficient, effective web and mobile messaging strategy, while at the same time making it easy for large, distributed enterprise teams to collaborate seamlessly, and in a highly effective way. 

The mobile marketing strategies that drive healthy conversions are focused on producing optimized content and campaigns – those that deliver an exceptional customer experience and streamline effortless behind-the-scenes management. Kumulos clients are excited about the ways these new platform features stand to impact their app business by improving security, transparency, and consistency. If you’d like to join them, let’s talk!

How mobile technology is redefining the hospitality industry in the wake of COVID

Post-COVID, the hospitality industry is suffering – a rapid drop in bookings, huge job losses, and lost revenues mean that many won’t survive.

For many, it’s difficult to see the path forward. Yet waiting until there’s a clear view is only going to ensure that when travel does return to a near-normal (and it will), guests that can’t trust their preferred hoteliers to have stepped up to the plate to address their new needs and offer them an exceptional, safe guest experience, will simply turn to those that can – leaving the stragglers struggling to bounce back.

The solution? A focus on mobile technology investments that support and foster a safe guest experience, way into the future …

Hospitality in a post-COVID world

The disruption caused by COVID has changed how we all engage with the world around us, forcing commerce to reimagine what ‘doing business’ looks like as we adjust to that very different way of life.

Travel and hospitality especially are feeling the impact of this new world order. Strict travel bans and lockdowns on repeat, social distancing, and an exceptionally wary public have delivered a devastating blow to what was, until March 2020, a thriving hotel industry. Add to that the uncertainty of when we can expect to see rooms starting to fill again with the sound of happy travelers, and it’s small wonder that many have been caught out like the proverbial rabbit in headlights, unsure what to do next, unclear what the road ahead really looks like.

The American Hotel & Lodging Association told us only last week that half of all hotel rooms in the US are projected to remain unoccupied this year, and business travel is unlikely to return to pre-COVID levels until 2023 at the earliest. 

But – and it’s a positive ‘but’ – over half of leisure travelers are already telling us that they’re planning to travel this year, encouraged by vaccine roll-outs and, by extension, the gradual relaxing of restrictions. When that happens, it’s going to pay to be ready to deliver the new guest experience – a secure, more safe experience that confidently fosters trust and loyalty – and keeps guests returning time and again. 

How mobile technology can help meet the needs of the 2021 guest

With each passing year, the global tourism industry has accelerated industry innovation through the use of technology, and delivered through the gadgets in our hands. Air travel, hotel booking, exploration, and guest experiences … utilizing the power of smartphones and the apps they deliver has redefined how we discover the world around us, making travel more accessible, convenient, flexible and personal than it’s ever been.

The post-COVID travel experience, while very different to the one we’re used to,  will also be underpinned by that industry-defining technological innovation, and delivered by our smartphones.

Not convinced? Right now, almost nine out of ten travelers would choose a hotel that offers a mobile app that can provide an entirely contactless mobile check-in, reservation and concierge services, and check-out over one that doesn’t.

But what does a focus on mobile look like when it comes to delivering an optimum guest experience in a post-COVID world? How can mobile help guests feel safe and confident, informed and reassured?

Here are the areas where we’re seeing the biggest potential for success:

Mobile check-in and keyless room entry

Guests are becoming increasingly aware that contactless entry is already widely available in many hotels already, influencing booking decisions and rewarding operators who have been quick off the mark to implement the technology.

Introduced last year in response to the COVID crisis, the Time Hotels app features a wide range of mobile services that meets new guest requirements  -including online check-in and check-out and mobile entry room keys.

This innovative solution – already used by a multitude of hotel operators – allows guests to check-in and access their room upon arrival using the app’s smart lock to unlock the door with their smartphone and negating the need to visit a busy front desk or locate concierge services to assist.

Dwayne Pascal, CTO at Criton agrees,

“We’ve certainly seen the adoption of mobile technology for driving a ‘contactless guest journey’ and features like check-in, mobile keys and payments are features we’ve built in that will certainly continue to gain traction in 2021.  Going forward however, we must go beyond this and give guests the information they want when they want it and wherever they are.  Optimising those micro-moments through personalisation and up-to-date information will build trust and help hotels provide additional benefit to guests which can also add revenue.  Over time, hotels will need to bring together all their services into a common place where it’s easy for guests to find everything – and as the market recovers, the answer to that is increasingly mobile.”

 

keyless mobile check-in

Keyless mobile check-in with Time Hotels mobile app

 

Chatbots and Live Chat

With many concierge and guest service teams now working with reduced staff numbers, chatbots and live chat facilities provide a simple, effective and efficient way to meet guest needs for information and answers to questions that they might have during their stay – and at the same time meet that need for less contact.

Chatbots themselves can quickly and easily address guest queries around most key topics – think pricing, room information, location, accessibility etc – with the more complex questions connecting to  flesh-and-blood guest services who are able to provide more detailed answers. The benefits are manifold. Not only can chatbots quickly ease the pressure on reduced teams, but they’re often far more efficient in terms of speed, and timely responses.

Mobile Concierge Services

Concierge apps are enjoying a boom ‘thanks’ to COVID – supporting operators to deliver their services in ways that ensure customer safety and trust. We know that guests are looking to minimize time spent with concierge during their stay – if not doing so already, hotels should now be looking at all points of guest contact and planning how to mitigate the need for face-to-face services during their stay.  One of the most well-known of the concierge platforms – HotelFriend – enables hotels to provide all that a physical concierge offers, without the risk. For example:

  • Arranging housekeeping visits when occupants are out, minimizing contact, and adhering to distancing requirements
  • Ordering fresh towels, extra toiletries, or morning coffee, avoiding the front desk
  • Booking excursions or taxis and avoiding busy travel desks.
  • A concierge chat facility – allowing real-time communication from a distance.
  • And digital gratuities – providing the ability to tip staff without hand-to-hand exchanging of money

A great example of concierge services delivered via their mobile app is Hilton’s Honors app, providing keyless room entry, the ability to chat with hotel staff, and the functionality to order items like pillows or toiletries for your room.
digital hotel check-out

Mobile Payments

Perhaps unsurprisingly, many hoteliers have spent the last 12 months looking at restructuring their payments systems with a view to becoming both cashless and contactless – after all, the exchange of cards and cash are now considered to be a key risk factor in the transmission of COVID.

shangri-la hotel in-app payments

Shangri-La Hotels mobile app provides in-app payments for guest activities and services

 

Whilst most travelers rarely pay for rooms with cash, there is a myriad of hotel services and activities throughout a guest’s stay that not too long ago would have had them reaching into their wallet to pay for – but which now have them reaching for their smartphone. Restaurant bills, spa treatments, poolside cocktails, and tipping, as we kick off 2021 with neither guests nor staff relishing the prospect of business-as-usual when it comes to payments, we can expect to see cashless, contactless payments via mobile the absolute rule of thumb, keeping guests and staff safe and (as a knock-on effect), streamlining processes and efficiencies.

Voice | Alexa for Hospitality

No mobile technology listicle is complete in 2021 without mentioning Voice, in this case, “Alexa for Hospitality”, coming to a mobile strategy near you, supporting the post-COVID guest experience, and delivering a multitude of benefits along the way.

amazon alexa

If you thought Alexa was all about reminders and weather updates, think again …

 

Released in  Summer 2018, Alexa for Hospitality made minor waves in a big industry – but its moment in the proverbial spotlight may just have arrived. Addressing contactless, touchless guest needs, Alexa for Hospitality delivers in buckets to provide vital guest information (think safety information, room-service hours, entertainment activities, spa hours, and check-out times); allowing guests to request services such as room service or housekeeping, and can be customized to deliver smart-hotel functions such as adjusting heating, tweaking lighting, opening, and closing blinds, playing music, placing calls and so on … minimizing the need for face-to-face concierge interaction and positively empowering guests to customize their own safe experience for the duration of their stay.  Even better, providing that information in a melting pot of languages. Our top pick is a technology that will go from strength to strength during these unprecedented times.

Conclusion

Today, no savvy hotel operator can ignore the essential role that mobile plays at every stage of their guests’ journey – from deciding where to go, to how to get there, to booking, arrival, stay – and departure. And no savvy hotel operator can ignore mobile in a world where COVID has changed the rules of doing business, perhaps for good.

But mobile technology is about so much more than helping keep us safe  – mobile enhances the guest experience, helps increase engagement (and by default, boosts revenues), saves valuable time and already squeezed resources, and can, when done well, boost guest satisfaction and loyalty ten-fold (and more!).

Hoteliers will bounce back from these challenging times. If you’d like to find out how Kumulos can help, let’s talk. or if you’d like to find out more about our platform…
Please sign up for your free demo.

How to Maximise Boom-time for Fitness Mobile Apps.

Jogging with mobile phone

We’ve seen an explosion in the use of digital fitness apps over the last year, largely due to COVID-19. Gyms being closed, exercise classes cancelled and team sports a no-no, fitness fans or just those who have binge watched Netflix have been downloading home fitness mobile apps like never before. We have seen a year on year increase of more than 60% in fitness app downloads, with Europeans spending 70.2% more in health and fitness apps in 2020 according to new data from SensorTower.

It’s not just all about downloads, we have also seen interesting shifts in exercise habits. With working from home being the new norm, time-habits have shifted, we’ve seen how daily exercise habits have changed.

 

We talk to a lot of mobile app publishers in the Fitness Space. Some of the world’s largest and most successful fitness, health and wellness apps are on the Kumulos platform.

Many mobile apps have found it straightforward to ride this wave of demand and collect new users, but the big challenge is understanding how to capitalise on this change to mobile fitness and turn COVID-casual users into long term super-users. Like pretty much any good habit in life, it has to be worked on. Mobile app publishers have to work hard to keep this surge of new users on habit, engaged and maximise the commercial success.

Data from Appsflyer found that in 2020, apps lost on average $57,000 per month because of uninstalls, marking a 70% increase over uninstall rates in 2019. Apps that don’t invest enough time in an engagement strategy will not retain users long term but focus needs to be applied at every stage of the customer acquisition cycle.

Exercise notification on iphoneAcquisition is an essential stage in growing revenue, attracting the right kind of user will see loyalty build and revenue increase. Retaining those users for longer and turning a higher percentage into highly engaged super-users will also have a huge impact on your bottom line.  Just a 1% reduction in churn can deliver a 10-17% increase in profitability for the app, especially if this is amongst your high value highly engaged app user cohort.

When it comes to health and fitness apps, it’s clear to see that now is the time to capitalize on current user behaviour and keep these users engaged and retain them through-out the lifecycle of the app.

So here are our top 7 ways to drive up user retention in fitness and health apps. 

 

1. Get a Holistic View of App Users

expanded message on iphoneYou can’t fix what you can’t see. 

Effective Retention is all about the technology stack that you have in place. Knowing what’s happening and acting on those insights with highly relevant and targeted messages separates the successful fitness apps from the also-rans. Making sure that there aren’t blind spots in your data and that you stay in touch regularly with users is important. Having this in one place, with a single-source-of-truth, so you aren’t flip flopping between different systems is crucial. 

What we often see is apps with decent visibility over user behaviour like download volumes, DAU/MAU ratios, engagement and retention statistics. Which is great. But the thing about behaviour analytics is it’s after the fact. It’s viewing your app through a rear view mirror. Changing what’s gone is much harder than predicting what’s going to happen and preventing it. 

So, what we see successful fitness apps doing is making sure they have a holistic view of their app users, across the entire life-cycle of the user in a unified platform so everyone across their team is judging success based on the same data set.

2. Focus on User Experience

Knowing how well the app is performing in the hands of the user and proactively communicating any problems will keep users interested. For example, knowing that a large number of your users in-app experience has got worse recently (which was a common issue after the sudden release of iOS14 last year), means you can predict churn and act. Seeing and acting on app crash increases early, before too many users are impacted can stop a glitch turning into a rout of users on that operating system. All too often this crash data is only accessible by the developer, not the product owner and as such is a blind spot. Often the first thing Product Owners see if they are watching carefully and if their analytics package gives them this granular visibility, is an up-tick in churn for Apple device users. For bigger apps, this trend can often be lost in the overall noise of the app, so they don’t see the root cause until it’s a rout and too late. Users are gone. This is a common problem when apps scale rapidly, as many fitness apps will have done in recent months.

3. Understand User Sentiment

Another common blind spot is Customer Sentiment and what users are saying about the app in public places where potential new users hang out. App listing in the app store or Google PlayStore for example. To continue the example of iOS 14, being able to easily see how a technical glitch with users of that OS version is causing a rise in poor app store reviews, then with your behavioural analytics seeing a fall in new downloads on that platform and an increase in existing iOS customer churn means you can see the impact on both new user acquisition and user retention. Seeing the cause and effect means you see both sides of the equation, are on the front foot, alerted early and have a chance to stem the churn.

And what about when things go well? User churn is a fact of life. 

4. Predictive Churn

To really boss at managing-up user retention you need to be thinking proactively and catch users before they think of churning. World-leading Fitness Apps use automatic predictive messaging to contact users when their behaviour change could signal churn.  Fitness, wellness, mindfulness, diet and many health apps have a huge advantage here as routine is important. So, understanding user cadence and knowing early when user behaviour patterns change means you can be proactive and catch wavering users before they churn. A platform that watches usage patterns and when they change sends a series of  situational messages to engage users, drives up retention. This catches users as they wobble, before they fall out of the habit of using your app. 

5. Perfecting Situational Messaging

So what do we mean by situational Messaging? For users, not all contact is good contact. We often get asked about best practice around frequency of contact. In fact this is the wrong question. Its not about frequency, its about relevance. Relevance to the situation of the user at that specific moment in time.  I would be happy to get 4+ messages a day from one app but from another app, one message a week would annoy me. If the message is relevant to my here-and-now and is information I want, then I am happy to get the message. If it’s noise, messages trying to sell me stuff, upgrade to this, pay extra for that, special offer for you only today… then that’s noise I’ll simply screen out, or worse, your attempts to stop me churning may actually encourage me to uninstall the app.  Especially true for Fitness Apps, content needs to support my goals (the reason I downloaded the app in the first place) for it to be valuable to me. 

That doesn’t mean messages can’t sell. You are a business after all. To receive a message that’s personalised and specific. 

in-app message on android“{{insert percentage}} % of users with goals like you to {{insert goal}}  get {{insert percentage}}%  better results by using  this feature. Try it now.”

A message like this is more compelling than 15% discount today only. First, you don’t need to cut your price and second you are making it clear that your app will deliver the results they want, if the user maximises its potential.

 

 

 

6. Content is King

Rich media content messages drives substantially better results. Up to 43% greater message interaction from rich media messages compared to text only. All forms of fitness, wellness, mindfulness and health apps are perfect for highly visual,  rich media messaging. Here you can embed video into your messages to promote new content or just coach users on better techniques. Send out a series of messages on Technique Optimization to maximise users results. Good for your highly engaged “super-users” as well as capturing those at risk of churn. 

7. Intelligent Timing

Lastly, time of day. Like the bubble chart above shows, not everyone exercises at the same time of day. So, don’t send me messages at 8am if my routine is to exercise weekday evenings after work. Apps that know my routine and send me encouraging prompts to use the app at the time of day that I am most receptive has a huge impact on results. We see interaction rates rise by more than 38% when messages are intelligently delivered at the time of day that fits the individuals exercise patterns. 

Final Thoughts

Big successful apps lose fewer users. They have simple but effective ways to capture users attention with contextual and situational rich media messages that keep super-users engaged. They know when user cadence has changed, spot the signals of churn early and re-engage users before they have even considered deleting their app. Lastly they understand what each individual user is trying to achieve and communicate with them in language that supports their goals.

If you’d like to find out more about how Kumulos can help your fitness app engage users and retain them longer, please sign up for your free no obligation demo of our platform and find out how we can help your app.

Mobile user engagement – Why it’s important and how to measure and improve it

woman using mobile phone

Increasing competition, declining customer confidence – finding a new audience in 2021 is more challenging than ever. And if 2020 has shown us anything, it’s that the days of business infatuation with quick gains and endless rounds of growth hacks to overcome these challenges are over.

During the next 5-10 years, the most successful companies will be heavily focused on customer loyalty and retention rather than seeking out new audiences,  paving their way to sustainability, profitability and long-term success:

Why user engagement is important

App success is something we need to plan for. At the time of publishing, the average uninstall rate for an app stands at 28% after just 30 days, and one out of every four apps is used just once during the first 6 months .

And the others? They’ve all got something that The Uninstalled lack – a robust, long-term mobile user engagement strategy that ensures their existing audience keeps coming back for more:

  • Selling to an existing customer has a success rate of between 60-70%, compared with a paltry 5-20% success rate of selling to a new customer.
  • 44% of businesses say their focus is on acquisition, with just 18% looking at retention.
  • And the big one – increasing customer retention by just 5% can boost profits by between 25 and 95% (Forbes)

Over two-thirds of enterprises compete on customer experience, and for good reason. Even dedicated brand advocates will ditch their relationship with a brand after a run of less-than-optimum mobile experiences, with almost one in three saying goodbye for good after just one wrong move:

  • Companies with a mindset focused on customer experience enjoy revenues 4-8% higher than those who don’t

How to start measuring mobile user engagement

We’ve all worked with teams that have a habit of focusing on vanity metrics that provide little insight into app performance without the context to back them up.

Measuring and understanding engagement-specific KPIs, on the other hand, means you’ll be armed with data-driven insights that will, over time, show you what’s working, what’s not, and most importantly, where it needs to improve. Here are the ones that matter most (IOHO):

1.     Sign-ups

The users who sign up or register to use your app, sign-ups metrics will tell you how many have committed to using your service, and who are (in theory) ripe for retention. If the numbers aren’t coming up to scratch, you’ll need to find the reason.

2.     Active users

The number of users actually using your app, measuring active users is critical for providing you with a basic grasp of your app’s growth trajectory; a healthy app will have a higher number of active users than new users, indicating stickiness and, by default, an effective engagement strategy.

3.     Conversions

If your app includes actionable features – sign-up; form-submissions; transactions etc – you’ll want to measure the number of users completing these actions and meeting the pre-defined ‘goal’ targets.  You’ll end up with a ‘conversion rate’ – the percentage of app users that meet your goals. By measuring this metric, you’ll get a good idea of how robust your funnel is, what’s working, where it might not be measuring up and where you need to look to smooth things out.

4.     Event tracking

From registration to putting an item in a shopping cart, to submitting card details, tracking metrics around events will provide you with insights into how users behave in your app,  underpinning your mobile (and other) marketing strategies (which should, long term, lift your acquisition and retention rates).

5.     Daily app launches

If your analytics are telling you that your app is at peak use on a Saturday morning, your marketing team can take full advantage by, say, running a giveaway event, offering discounts or pushing ‘refer a friend’ offers. On the other hand, engaging users when they’re less likely to be using your app (push notifications, anyone?) is just as worthy of strategic action.

6.     Session duration

Measuring session duration provides a baseline for mobile user engagement. Along with your app’s objectives – and therefore what you expect of your users – you’ll discover whether or not users are actually staying in the app long enough for them to meet these objectives.  Crucial for effectively tracking and fine-tuning session length.

7.     Session intervals

Once a day? 3 times a week? Only on your birthday? The more users are in your app, the more engaged they are. When your app’s average session interval drops, it means you’re doing ok, but if it starts to creep up, it’s an opportunity to improve on anything from your push-notifications to in-app stickiness, to your UX and CX.

8.     Retention rate

Probably the most significant metric you’ll be looking at when it comes to engagement, retention rate data will show you the number of users that return – or continue to use your app – post-install and within a certain number of days. Going to press, a 2% retention rate over 90 days is about average. You’ll want to be looking at these figures often – they’ll show you what’s working and what’s not – and help you build the most effective retention strategy going forward.
RETENTION RATE

 

9.     Churn

The average churn rate for an app is around 80% over 90 days – but this does differ greatly across different app types, and is more significant when it’s your most loyal and active users who disappear. Analytics will tell you how frequently users churn, who they are, and provide you with the intel to prevent it happening in the future.
CHURN RATE

 

How to engage your audience like your business depended on it

What does improving app engagement actually look like? Here’s our top five for starters (and if you’re really interested in the rest, why not hit us up and ask?)

1.     Pre-app Prep

The makings of a successful app start way before potential users even get to the download part. In short, that means ensuring your app store listing (and landing pages if you have them) is written in a way that engages your audience where it counts – aka, the ‘Install’ button. Here are some questions you’ll want to answer as standard:

  • Why should users want to download your app?
  • What problem are you solving for them?
  • What benefits does your app offer?
  • What parts does it reach that other apps simply can’t?
  • How will you deliver all these compelling reasons your app’s better than everyone else’s – video? Screenshots? Which ones?
aso ranking

App Store ranking factors

 

2.     Kick-ass Onboarding

The first time your customer meets you, it pays to make it count – a great onboarding process has the potential to increase app engagement by up to 400%:

  • Minimise user effort and friction
  • Make your audience feel (particularly around data and privacy)
  • Help users understand what your app’s about. Being able to quickly demonstrate your product or service in a way that hooks from the get-go will stand your app in good stead.
  • Highlight your app’s most significant features and demonstrate how they should be used.
  • Use in-app progress monitoring so users know they’re not going to be spending the next hour doing something that will only take a minute.

3.     Gamification

Gamification could look like presenting users with challenges that could earn them rewards. Others might look at encouraging competition between app users.  Whatever you decide on, Successful gamification can do wonders for engagement figures, with some touting an engagement improvement of over a third on the back of successful app gamification.

4.     Push!

"2 for 1 subs" push notifications on phoneExecuted well, CTRs on push notifications can be as high as 40%. On the other hand, when push goes rogue – too many, too irrelevant or not often enough  – it can go horribly wrong, with an uninstall average of nearly 30%.

What does ‘right’ look like? Ask for opt-in, make it personal and make it actionable.

 

5.     Deep Linking

Deep linking allows users to link directly to your mobile app – think of it like linking from one webpage to another. Seems fairly innocuous, right? But being able to link from a webpage to a screen in a mobile app has a number of benefits, not least a seamless CX,

In one study by SmartInsights, users who were sent deep links demonstrated twice the activation rate and visited the app twice as often as those who didn’t receive them.

This relatively minor tweak to a mobile app strategy can account for a near 70% jump in conversions.

deferred deep links graphic

Flow of deferred deep links for new or exisiting app users

 

Conclusion

Businesses that can meet customer needs and deliver an outstanding CX will shine over the coming years. Downloads are just the beginning of an app’s journey, but driving engagement through an exceptional CX is – and will continue to be – the key element of every successful app. Forging meaningful, valuable connections with users means that you’ll be in a strong position to nurture brand loyalty – and give your app a good chance of success in an increasingly uncertain world.

To find out more about how Kumulos can help your business outrun the competition and stay relevant, talk to us. Or if you are interested in trying the platform for yourself why not sign up for your free trial?

Mobile Technology Trends – Looking Forward to 2021 and a Post-Covid-19 World

mobile user wearing mask

During 2020, mobile technology has proven essential to multiple business sectors. The benefits of mobile devices have been elevated with the challenges of COVID-19. We have relied on them for both convenience and safety. They have ensured we reduced contact within retail and hospitality settings by allowing payments to be processed and adhering to contact tracing guidelines easily and effectively, as well as this when bricks and mortar retail or dine-in has been unavailable, we’ve relied on mobiles for online ordering of goods and services.

Many sectors have been impacted by COVID-19 and relied on mobile technology to ensure they retain customers and continue to offer differentiation and value. Therefore, with vaccinations beginning to get underway, let us look forward to the role of mobile technology in a post-Covid world.

Quick Serve Restaurants

As restaurants have been subject to dine-in restrictions throughout the last year, mobile is becoming more important than ever. Mobile ordering has become the norm, offering diners the ability to order and pay via an app – ensuring that the process is “zero touch” and minimising interaction with servers to ensure COVID-19 guidelines are being adhered to.

This has offered a range of benefits to restaurants including:

  • Ability to optimise menus.
  • Ability to adhere to contact tracing guidelines easily, removing the need for additional paperwork and server time.
  • Customers feel safer as they are using their device to order and pay.
  • Offer diners the ability to check previous orders and reorder and restaurants to use this data to upsell and provide special offers to customers based on previous preferences. Lumina Research suggests up to 60% of diners would welcome targeted special offers sent to their mobile device.
  • Speeds up the turnaround of tables by 12-17 mins, when restaurants have restricted headcount, the quick turnaround ensures restaurants can maximise revenue.

Cris Jucan, CEO of Tacit explained, “Last year Tacit saw many restaurants transform operations overnight to online and mobile ordering to remain open and provide a safe way for their customers to order. We expect this change to continue well into 2021 with more QSRs investing in mobile ordering technology to allow for flexibility in their operations, provide convenient ways to order food, and improve their ability to compete. 

Beyond the power of online and mobile ordering to attract new customers and increase average order size, the return on investment for those operators willing to invest in digital ordering is undeniable.”

COVID-19 has encouraged restaurants to adopt new technology, driven by safety and increased efficiency for their customers. By adopting their app, restaurants have another marketing channel for their customers and this trend will continue through 2021 and may be the “new normal”. From sushi trains to iPad ordering at tables – mobile phones have become the next new wave in interacting with Quick Serve Restaurants.

app use in restaurant

 

Retail

Mobile apps have always been an essential part of retailers marketing strategy, but with restrictions on store openings, mobile apps have become an integral part of a retailers marketing strategy with Forrester reporting 53% of customers buying directly from a retailers mobile app. Apps have also helped retailers match their online strategy with their in-store offering. Additional functionality has been added to many apps as a response to COVID-19, this ensures:

  • Increasing loyalty to customers by sending targeted special offers.
  • Offering functionality such as virtual queuing for store entry when numbers have been restricted, improving the customer’s in-store experience.
  • Enabling payments via the app, ensuring that zero touch measures are in place for safety.

As customers have moved to apps and interacting with retailers’ apps more frequently, this has enabled retailers to get to know their customer more and focus on targeted, push based advertising. In 2021, there will be a trend to move towards analytics and Artificial Intelligence, attempting to accurately anticipate a customer’s needs and send them relevant offers, at the right time, to increase the possibility of conversion.

contactless payment

 

Health and Lifestyle

One of the winners through COVID-19 has been health and lifestyle apps. People cannot rush to renew their gym memberships as has become traditional in January, so mobile apps and services have become a convenient, safe and cost-effective way to exercise and maintain a healthy lifestyle into the New Year and beyond. So with traditional health and exercise routines changing, what’s next for mobile apps in the health and lifestyle market?

Health and fitness will continue to be important throughout 2021, particularly a mobile first approach. Consumers have a renewed focus on wellbeing to reduce the potential impact of COVID-19. Wellness apps have also seen a sharp increase in popularity. With furlough, increased working from home and e-learning for school children, lifestyles and family life have changed dramatically through 2020 and this trend is set to continue.

This graph shows the time at which users are active on an exercise app. This clearly shows covid has had an effect on the times at which people are active.

Travel and Hospitality

With international and national travel restrictions in place, travel and hospitality has felt the biggest impact from COVID-19. As vaccinations begin, there is renewed hope that travel will begin to resume but the main challenge facing travel is how do travellers keep up with the ever-changing conditions? Mobile has continued to play a key part in keeping travellers informed.

The IATA (International Air Transport Association) are helping to drive innovation by offering a CommonPass app with many of the world’s top airlines already signed up, including Lufthansa, Virgin Atlantic and United Airlines. The app will enable travellers to enter their vaccination information and ensure they adhere to any entry requirements for their country of travel, acting as a COVID-19 Passport for travellers.

It’s essential that with unpredictable conditions, travel providers make it as easy as possible for customers to change their plans. Proactive and informative notifications will help customers stay informed and improve their experience.

Hotels have made significant changes in their operating practices to ensure customer safety. One key focus has been to decrease the number of physical touch points within a hotel and mobile has played a significant role by:

  • Enabling check-in via a customer’s device: This has been an opportunity for face-to-face engagement and opportunity to upsell services such as breakfast, therefore hotels should ensure these offers are relevant and easy to adopt for their customers to ensure they don’t lose the ability to upsell.
  • Room entry via mobile phones to eliminate the need for room keys
  • Ordering room service straight from a mobile device to reduce the need for paper copies of menus and touching high traffic devices in the room i.e. telephone.

These changes may seem restrictive but they also have the upside of customers engaging with the hotel brand through their mobile – ensuring hotels know their customers and can use this data for marketing and building loyalty with their customer. Dwayne Pascal, CTO at Criton agreed,

“With COVID-19, we saw the acceleration of market trends giving more control to the guest about their experience and the importance of mobile as a vital communication point.  Mobile apps have ensured guests feel safe and comfortable with changing guidelines and we’ve seen a huge increase in the ‘contactless guest journey’.  Mobile technology is also giving hoteliers the ability to quickly adapt their offerings and retain precious revenue channels through features like online food ordering and remote check-in.  Hoteliers can use channels like push notifications and in-app offers to drive increased demand and clients have been astounded at the take-up they’ve achieved through their mobile app.  With such clear benefits to guests and increased flexibility for operators, we see the trend towards greater mobile adoption continuing to increase in the months and years ahead.”

As restrictions begin to lift, leisure travel will begin to increase, recent reports show a surge in travellers over 50 beginning to book travel as their confidence in vaccination rise. Mobile will remain an essential communication tool for travellers to inform them of any changes and ensure their safety.

The costs of businesses adapting to COVID-19 and the “new normal” have been extensive, but it has also accelerated technology and business plans that were already in place. Building brand loyalty via mobile apps and capturing the customer within the app has been a common theme, enabling brands to upsell and really consider their customer engagement. There will be many unknowns in the coming weeks and months but the technology industry has shown its ability to adapt quickly, to work with sectors to ensure that their mobile business will be sustainable, even in uncertain times.

Push Notifications Best Practices – A Kumulos Guide

person using mobile phone

There are many frustrations thrown up by daily life – the bad hair day, the 6 o’clock news, trailing loo-roll around on the sole of your shoe … but few are as irritating as these messages …

You know the ones. Your phone buzzes, someone wants your attention – your mother, the dogwalker, perhaps your parole officer (just kidding!) – but you’ve been here before, and it turns out to be just another irritating push message from a company you’ve likely not heard from for months (maybe years!), offering you something that, to be honest, you’re just not that into. It’s an all too common rookie mistake – by someone who has obviously not heard of ‘intelligent targeting’. This should be at the heart of every savvy marketing team’s push strategy, and for good reason – it has the potential to boost retention rates by almost 40%, and rid recipients of the compulsion to delete your app faster than you can say, “Baby, please don’t go.”

What to do? With the average US smartphone user privy to 46 push messages every day, it makes sense to ensure that those you’re sending out are one of the 46 we actually pay attention to, particularly when over 60% of 18 to 34 years often or always opt-in to receive push messages (54% across the board). Reader – the opportunity to build long-term customer relationships and high lifetime value is there for your taking!

3 Key benefits of an Effective Push Strategy 

Knowing why you should be sending the perfect push isn’t on its own going to help you when it comes to formulating that effective, results-driving push strategy you want to implement. You need to know exactly what you want to achieve with your push campaigns, which will in turn lay the groundwork for gauging their effectiveness.

1. Reach the right people in the right place and at the right time. 

Location-based and geo-triggered campaigns are one of the most effective ways to reach your audience with the perfect personalized message – one that adds real value and not irritation. Want to catch attention with a personalized offer when your customer’s near a physical outlet? Check. What about providing customers in a specific location with relevant information tied to a valuable offer, “It’s gonna be hot in Honolulu this weekend – grab your BBQ must-haves in-store with this code that’ll give you a cool 20% discount!” 

2. Encourage user engagement

When it comes to marketing, there’s nothing quite like a healthy hyper-engaged user-base to boost the bottom line. And with the right strategy, push notifications can engage your audience in meaningful non-intrusive ways that provide real value, elevate loyalty, and boost retention. 

3. And boost conversions

Effective, successful marketing messages are key to boosting these conversion figures that your boss is so keen to see first thing every Monday morning. From triggering an instant purchase via a single click to completing abandoned purchases, boosting conversions nearly always depends upon the ability to successfully engage your customers through push to take the desired action. Get it right, and both you and your customers can look forward to a long and happy relationship.

Great! We’ve covered the why and the what – now its time for the how. The following Push Notifications best practices might seem obvious and simple, but they will help you reach the results you’re looking for.

5 Push Notifications Best Practices

1. Always add value

At the Top of the Push Notification Pops this month is non-mover ‘Add Value” – and here it stays, ad infinitum because if there’s one element that must underpin every push campaign your team crafts, it’s the ability to add value to your user’s life in some way. Failing to do so often does more harm than good (you know the ones … the annual ‘We’re updating our terms/Submit your electricity reading/Get free postage on orders over £500” messages … the ones that suck the living joy out of anyone’s day and are guaranteed to have your audience scrambling for their notification settings in the hope of never having to hear from you again.  

Here’s the thing – if you send a notification, there simply must be something in it for your audience. A limited-time discount for leaving feedback? Check. The opportunity to try out your new product before anyone else does (always a great engager for QSRs)? I’ll take it! Saying thank you for their recent participation in your survey – with a link to results and a free download of the report? Now you’re talkin’. Submitting that electricity reading in return for the chance to win a year’s free supply? Steady on! See where we’re going with this? How can your brand offer value in your next push campaign? Count the ways – then build your plan!

Just before you send though, make sure you use deep links to give  your users a seamless experience when they click on your push notification to open your app with the right offer, content or page shown. Having put so much thought into how to add value with your push campaign, it would be a shame to now fall at the final hurdle and just open the home screen of your app, leaving your users scratching their heads and wondering why the good stuff vanished!   

(This best practice actually transcends whatever channels you are using to engage your mobile audience – Email, SMS, even QR Codes – always use Deferred Deep Links to take the user to the right content in your app.)   

2. Time it right

Straight in at number two, timing. Timing is everything – a cliche, but even cliches have a place in your mobile marketing strategy. There are usually three key push delivery options – those that need to go immediately (for example, a discount code when customers are near your store, or a flight update for travelers); timezones, and intelligent delivery.

"2 for 1 subs" push notifications on phoneGet your timing right – a limited-time-only offer for those jeans when your customer is near your physical outlet; an invitation to feed back on a recent food delivery in return for a discount for your next one; or the chance to win a free meal when I’m already engaged with your app – and your customers and your business will reap the rewards: intelligent send times can increase engagement by 40%. But get it wrong – a middle-of-the-night time-sensitive discount offer, or Saturday evening survey-requests with no incentive –  and you’ll irritate your audience and trash their trust in the process.

Depending on your business, but not forgetting we live in an increasingly small world, the likelihood is that your userbase will be spread across different timezones. You’ll need to take this into account to ensure you’re reaching your audience at the optimum time – wherever they happen to be in the world.

These same users might also fall into a bunch of sub-groups that will affect the timing of your push messages. As a middle-aged grump who lives in the middle of nowhere, I probably won’t thank you for that pizza voucher at 10pm on a Saturday night – but I can almost guarantee that my city-living 21-year-old niece wouldn’t need much persuasion. Similarly, there’s little point in sending out a cinema discount code for Friday night when I’m miles away on the other side of town. 

The key to success? Intelligent delivery. 

Intelligent Delivery is really all about personalizing push campaigns using customer data. Using predictive technology and algorithms that work with a user’s historical and real-time app activity, platforms that offer intelligent delivery are a marketing team’s dream, enabling the automated scheduling of messages to push at the time that a particular user is most likely to engage with it. The reason intelligent delivery is such a big hit with mobile marketers is it works – taking the guesswork out of campaign planning and leaving it to technology to look for the best ways to optimize engagement, retention – and results. Onboarding new customers? Re-engaging lost ones? Advising on flight changes? Promoting new products? They’ll all need a different timing strategy – and intelligent delivery can figure it out for you.  

3. … and make it relevant!

Personalizing the content of your push notifications can lead to a 9% increase in open rates. Pretty good, right! However, before you go asking your dev team to prompt every user for their favourite pet name and salutation, there is more to personalization – we’re talking about behaviour-based audience segmentation and targeting. Behavior-based push notifications can deliver a 400% increase in open rates (that’s four hundred percent)! Now we’re  onto something!

A single intelligently targeted push notification based on real-time customer intel is always going to provide your audience with way more value than the spray and pray approach – one that almost always does more harm to your brand than good. Bottom line? If you’re finding your engagement or retention rates are dropping, or worse, they simply never got to where you need them to be in the first place, there’s a good chance that the messages you’re sending to your audience simply aren’t relevant – and you could end up struggling to re-engage their attention.


Relevant messaging is a fine art, but using data to perfect that art is key. Using data-driven insights, you’ll be able to avoid the guesswork that results in the spam-type messaging that turns your audience off, and start focusing on crafting engaging, relevant push campaigns that your users love – and want to share. Intelligent targeting has the potential to amplify engagement by 300% – try dropping that bomb at the Monday morning meeting! Time-sensitive offers on these jeans I put on my wishlist yesterday; an update on that news story I’m following on Reddit; a reminder that my pizza is on its way and will be at my door in 15 minutes – all valuable, useful, and relevant … and unlikely to send me straight to the block button. 

4. Use rich media

Rich, engaging push notifications that allow users to interact without having to open the app? Count me in! In 2020, we’re all visual creatures – you’ve only got to look at our obsession with Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, and just about any other rich media platform, you can think of. Rich formats have the potential to skyrocket engagement rates by a whopping 25% – so, if you’re not already using rich media across your push campaigns, it’s time to get started!

Rich push notifications are messages that can include images, emojis, video, URLs, deep-links, audio, and gifs, and which often include interactive elements that can take users to content that sits either inside – or outside – your app. They work so darned well because they offer engagement opportunities that go way beyond a standard text link, providing an enriched CX,  hyper-personalized messaging, and an outstanding brand experience – and that’s just for starters.

5. And don’t forget to test, test, test!

All your hard work adding value, nailing timing, going postal on rich media and making sure each message that reaches every one of your users is relevant doesn’t mean you can kick back and assume your work is done. As any good marketer knows, unless you build testing into your mobile strategy, you could end up falling behind.

A/B testing allows you to test users’ responses to the messages you’re sending out – with the purpose of providing you with the intel to make any necessary adjustments as you go. Accurate, intelligence-driven A/B testing can reveal a lot about your audience, allowing you to fine-tune your push notification strategy for optimum results. That buy-one-get-one-free offer might be going down a storm with one segment of your users – but could the use of a different image garner even better results?  What about your message opener? Asking a question instead of presenting your offer straight off the bat might be what’s stalling your engagement rate – and there’s only one way to find out! 

Push notifications are a great way to reach with and connect to your audience – but they’re also a super-fast way to lose your fans if you’re not working with the insights and best practices that will give you the best chance of success. 

Timely, relevant, and valuable, finding the right balance between engaging and spamming is an art – one that can be mastered! The Push Notifications best practices we’ve included here will help you get started – if you’d like more inspiration, dive into these articles, and start planning! 

Still not completely sure just how to go about building effective push campaigns that will increase retention and drive up engagement? No problem! Contact us for your free demo and we’ll be happy to show you how!

Messaging Options for Apps – How to Use Them Effectively

notifications on phone

For mobile apps, messaging is the most essential marketing tool at your disposal. Messaging is your direct contact point with your app users. Push notifications have always been the most effective way to gain interest in your app personal messages that entice the user to open your app.

Without regularly communicating relevant information to your app users, it’s difficult for apps to build a relationship with users and keep them active, using messaging allows apps to captivate users early, target lapsed users and continue to communicate throughout the lifecycle of the app.

It’s important to establish the needs and wants of your audience and establish what it is they are looking for from your app. The more accurately you can target your messaging campaigns, the more chance there is of keeping your users engaged and reducing users deleting your app.

We will look at the two main types of messaging options that you can use with Mobile apps.

  • Push Notifications
  • In-App Messages

But first let’s cover the common characteristics that you should always look for when selecting a quality messaging provider.

Key Features to Look for in App Messaging Platforms

Before deciding on your messaging strategy it’s vital to know what tools you can make use of that can benefit the way in which we send messages. Establish which of these would be beneficial to your business and be sure to find a provider who can offer the services you need.

The key features to look for in Mobile messaging platforms include:

Rich, Interactive Messages

Adding rich images or interactive buttons increase the likelihood of a user engaging with your message. The message contained within a notification is equally as important but when paired with branding, imagery, and the ability to interact with the message this turns notifications into a far more effective marketing tool.

Segmentation & Channels

Not all of your messaging is going to be relevant to all of your users. Segment your audience in ways that make it easier to send certain messages to a certain group of users. This allows you to retarget users with promotions. Create more relevant audiences to fit each type of messages you send. Good systems will allow you to use Analytics events within the app to understand what the user is doing and then send messages based on this behavior or lack of behavior that may indicate they are losing interest in the app and could be about to delete your app.

Automations

Sometimes called Mechanical Messages this lets you build a set of rules that when met will automatically trigger messages to be sent to the user. The messaging provider you pick should let you easily set and edit these rules within a web portal, to save the cost and time delay of having these manually programmed each time.

They will let you watch for certain activities, or lack of activities of the user and then trigger one or ideally a series of messages. Typical usage is when someone first downloads the app and is going through the onboarding process, then send a series of notifications designed to encourage them to complete. And if the user stalls through onboarding send notifications to get them back on track.

Another common usage is when someone hasn’t been in your app for a time, send a series of time-delayed notifications to re-engage and reinvigorate the user to keep them active.

Integrations with Rich Analytics Data

Good messaging platforms will come with rich, highly visual and easy to use analytics. It’s important when selecting a messaging platform to equally consider the power of analytics that comes pre-integrated. This is important as it allows you to use these events tracked by the analytics service to trigger messages. This means you can easily action the insights that your analytics service tells you to provide timely, informed and relevant messages based on the actual behavior and interest cues from the user.

For example, they have looked at one of the items in your product catalog but not made a purchase, you can then trigger a series of re-marketing messages to that user reminding them of your product and reinforce their purchase interest.

Kumulos messaging dash

 

Geolocation Targeting

Targeting users with geofencing and beacons allow you to only target users that enter a physical location you have defined. This is done through either GPS of the smartphone in the case of Geofences or Bluetooth in the case of beacons. It allows you to send messages to the user based on their physical location i.e. restaurants and clothes stores. This allows you to know that your messages are being sent in the exact place and moment your users could be most receptive to hearing from you.

Geofencing map

 

Confirmed Delivery 

Confirmed delivery is a feature that should be available from all good messaging platforms. They enable you to better evaluate the effectiveness of the campaign. Using services that don’t have this feature means you aren’t seeing the whole story. If only 30% of your users opened the message you could be disappointed by the results. But if not all who you intended to receive the message actually received it, then this could be masking the actual effectiveness of the message.

Intelligent Delivery

Intelligent delivery can be used to perfect the timing of notification based on the historic usage patterns of the user. This means that the message is delivered at the time of day that they are most likely to be using your app. It’s possible for app marketing platforms to intelligently work out when is the best time to target each individual user that is most likely to lead to an interaction. Users also have the power in their hands by being able to inform you of their preferred delivery options and specify when they want to hear from you.

Deep Linking and Deferred Deep Links

To make actions from your messages really effective you need a message platform that will let you link directly to the relevant page in your mobile app. That’s called Deep Links.

Deferred Deep Links allow you to send messages from one mobile app user to another. If the person receiving the link doesn’t have the app on their smartphone then the clever link will detect this and redirect the person to the app store to download the app. Once the app download is complete it will remember the section of the app that the original link was taking you to in the mobile app and take the user there.

deferred deep links graphic

 

Ability to contain external links to web content

For some apps it’s important to be able to direct the user to content hosted on a mobile responsive web page rather than having to have all your content stored in the app itself. This gives you much greater flexibility. For example, you can easily change the content on the web page, avoiding having to post an update to the app to change the information. So, it’s important that you pick a Messaging Provider that allows you to easily imbed URL web links for the user to click on.

What are Push Notifications?

The most common way to message app users is of course Push Notifications. The purpose of the following is to show you that there are a number of other options open to you. And to show you why it’s important to use the full arsenal of messaging options to fully engage with your users. These are messages that can be sent to a mobile device even if the app is closed. It will alert the user to the fact that they have a new message and good push notification services will let you include along with text, images, emojis, deep links, links to websites and action buttons to allow users to interact with the message.

With push notifications you can target users when they aren’t active with personalized and relevant messages that bring them back to your app. There are many features at your disposal when trying to create brilliant messaging campaigns, these can make your messages more than 50% more likely to be opened than a basic push message.

Where do Push Notifications work best?

Push Notifications are great to bring users back into your app. To alert them to new information in your app or something that you believe they’d be interested in finding out. They can appear even if the app isn’t open on the smartphone so are a very effective way to re-engage users that aren’t frequent users of your app.

What are In-App Messages?

As their name suggests In-App messages only appear to the user when they are actually in your app. They can be programed to appear immediately and the message pop up over the screen the user is currently on, or can be programmed to appear the next time the user enters the app.

What are the advantages of In-App Messages?

With In-App messages you have complete freedom on the design of the message. With push notifications this is heavily controlled by the operating system of the smartphone.  In-app messaging lets you create a fully custom design and include branding, images, action buttons and videos to engage users and encourage users to interact.

Another big advantage of In-App messages is the fact that you do not have to expressly ask permission from the app user to send them messages. That said, it is increasingly good practice to ask users to opt in for any form of communication, especially if they are designed to sell to the user. So you should go with a Message Provider that gives you the option to ask users whether they want Push Notifications and/or In App Messages, so you are future-proofing against future changes in legislation.

In App Messages can appear immediately, if the person is currently in the app it will pop up in front of their current screen. Similar to Push Notifications it can be set to appear at a predetermined day and time. In all cases it will interrupt the user when they are in the app.

Alternatively, you can set messages to appear the next time they enter the app. So, it doesn’t interrupt them with their current session

You also have the option for the message to only appear in the inbox in the mobile app. In this case no message pops up on the phone, but the app can be set up to show that there are unread messages in the app inbox to draw them in to view the message

Where do In App Messages Work Best?

They work best to inform and engage regular users of your app. They can be used to tell users about new features in the app or special promotions as they enter the app. Or important information that you know they would want to know. And of course, you can use all the important key features that we detailed earlier, so you can make them highly targeted and relevant.

Because you can completely control the design of the message they can be designed to look like they are part of the app itself and not a messaging add-on. You can create messages that look like pages of the app that are effective extensions to the content of the app itself avoiding the need to post an update of the app and easily. For example, changes to flight information or train arrival times.

Best of both Worlds

Most good Messaging platforms let you pair push notification campaigns with in-app messaging. This means you can “tickle” the user and re-engage those who aren’t currently in your app to alert them to an important new message. And use the rich media possibilities of an In App message and its “on brand” design to deliver high impact communications that maximize the possibility of goal conversion.

Creating Brilliant Messaging Campaigns

Having great technology at your disposal is one thing. But how you put this to good use is another. We have seen many, many mobile app marketers that have the best technology in place but aren’t delivering the results they expect. The temptation is to blame the tools. And while that could be part of the problem (set up too complex or toolset difficult to use) very often it’s how the technology is applied that’s largely at fault. So, once you’ve established what features you need from a vendor to target your audience, the focus shifts to the message itself. Marketing an app is easier with the right tools but without creating an effective message the efforts are futile.

Appearance

As we have said the style elements of a push notification are controlled by the OS of the device the message is sent to. For this reason, it’s important to make use of the stylistic factors you can control. Images and interactive buttons can be added to make messaging more aesthetically pleasing and conversion driven. This not only helps your message stand out from others but encourages conversion more than plain text notifications. Emoji’s can also be added to brighten the text within your notification and convey the emotion or tone intended by your message.

Adding up to 3 buttons as a deep link within your notification can give the user options of which they prefer and allows you to direct them to the exact page of your app you want to depending on which they click. This can be conversion driven in terms of directing to a page with an item on offer in the user’s basket.

In-app messages aren’t dictated by the OS of the user device and offer more options to customize. Use brand colors, fonts, videos, images, or work from templates provided by your messaging provider.

Knowing why to send a message

The frequency of how often you send notifications to a user can have a large effect on how users interact. For some apps, 1 a day or less is the preferred amount, ideally 3-4 times a week is adequate. It’s important to know that the message you are sending is of value to your user.

Valuable messaging typically falls into one of these categories:

  •  Retargeting funnel drop-off – Reminding a user of a conversion that they never completed in the later stages, such as adding an item to their basket without finalizing the purchase.
  • Onboarding – Making sure that new downloads fully configure and set up your app with prompts when users delay a step in the onboarding process.
  • Important Information – Company updates and changes to your app, trending news and relevant stories
  • Location specific – Using a geofence or beacon, a user enters an area within proximity of your location, and you want to target them with an offer to entice them to your store
  • Time-limited – Give users a sense of urgency with a promotion that is one-day only. This encourages users with the ‘do it later’ attitude to do it now instead

Use data gathered on what your users are using your app for, what is popular and what are they crying out for. This understanding should translate into the types of messaging you send.

Reaching the Right Audience

Messaging needs to be personal and relevant to individual users. Segmentation and channelling allow you to group users based on demographics and in-app behaviors that create smaller groups that allow you to create more defined campaigns rather than broadcast messaging.

An offer on a pepperoni pizza would absolutely encourage conversions in users that have purchased one in your app before. Receiving notifications like these from your app when you’ve only ever bought vegetarian options can be off-putting and may cause an unsubscribe.

This is why a good push notification provider allows you to create segments and channels that better define your users into relevant groups for targeting. You can set-up these campaigns to allow the platform to automate the sending of these messages based on a time-trigger, such as intelligent delivery or a location trigger such as when a user enters a geo-fence.

This is how you can send personal, relevant messaging at exactly the right place and time. Couple this with rich images, branding and interactive buttons that link to the specific deal you’ve chosen and let the platform automate the sending of the message then these conditions are met and you’re on your way to making the most out of the most effective marketing tool for apps.

Creating Your Strategy

For any app, in any industry it’s important to have a strategy that can be used to establish and evaluate messaging campaigns and improve each time.

  • Think ‘Why?’ – What is the purpose of the message in this campaign, think of your end goal and establish a message that best fits
  • Establish your audience – Segment and channel you campaign to send to only the relevant users
  • Create an aesthetically pleasing message with conversion driven relevant content
  • Time your notifications or set-up automations to send them on your behalf at the optimal moment
  •  Evaluate your campaigns success- Campaign analytics can show you user and campaign to evaluate success and constantly improve

 

Summary

Brands that utilize all the available tools in messaging marketing will engage users from the first point of contact, throughout the life cycle of the app.

Using all the available features to reach the exact users, at the right place and time with personal messaging will not only encourage engagement and conversion, but also boost the user retention rate of apps. This is not only valuable practice short-term by encouraging conversion but long-term by keeping users engaged and encouraging future re-engagement.

Using the right message medium for example, in-app messaging in combination with push notifications in multi-channel campaigns, allows interactions with users whether they are active or not and keeps all bases covered.

Start making use of all the features available to boost your messaging campaigns and start retaining your users long term with a messaging strategy customized to your app and users.

About Kumulos

At Kumulos we offer a purpose-built Mobile User Engagement platform with industry leading messaging features such as rich, interactive push notifications, in-app messaging, web push notifications and integrated analytics. With Kumulos you can build intelligent, informed, powerful automatically triggered messages. Our focus is to help you retain app users through engagement by allowing you to target the right user, at exactly the right place and time that they are able to interact with you.

Operate all aspects of your user engagement strategy from creating messages, managing your audience to evaluating your campaign using analytics in one place – the Kumulos Mobile Marketing Hub.

Our Messaging feature allows you to send rich, interactive push notifications & in-app messages with imagery, video and action buttons that increase your chances of user engagement. Combine these with location targeting to send personalized, highly relevant, engaging messaging to the user in exactly the right location and strive for better results from your user engagement strategy.

If you’d like to try Kumulos for yourself, we would like to offer you a free demo of our platform where we can show you all of these features and more. Book your demo here and start seeing better results from your app with all the tools you need to engage users.

The 5 Things You Need to Know to Get the Most Out of Deferred Deep Linking

woman using iphone

To get the best out of Deferred Deep Linking in your marketing campaigns it’s important to set clear business goals and then use the technology effectively. In this article we cover the 5 big things you need to consider to maximize this powerful marketing tool.

1. The Difference – Deep Links vs Deferred Deep Linking

What’s the difference? If you have experience marketing an app then I’m sure you’re familiar with Deep Links. Deep Links allow you to direct app users to a specific promotion or new piece of content within our app with one tap. This is usually done through the sending of a mobile push notification or in app message that when clicked takes the user to the specified content.

This allows you to offer targeted deals to your existing app users. Think of these as internal links shared with existing users. What’s more conversion friendly? If you want to sell a pair of shoes that your user has in their basket half price in your sale. Marketing the offer through a push notification, engaging the user and leading them to your app homepage – where they then have to find the shoes, apply the offer code, go to basket etc. Or the user clicks the notification where they are taken directly to their basket, shoes at the ready, 50% off applied. Then all they have to do is pay. It doesn’t take a genius to see that the more convenient option is going to outperform its undefined rival every time.

Deferred Deep Linking on the other hand is a link you can use external to your mobile app and send to people that may not have your app already installed. These have all the conversion friendly benefits we just spoke about, and more. Deferred Deep Linking broadens your horizons and allows you to reach out to users with compelling offers across many digital channels. This lets you offer specific promotions in places outside the app and then with a Deferred Deep Link take the person directly to the specific offer in the app. So, for example, send an email, a banner ad on a website, social media post or build referral schemes with product advocates to acquire new app downloads and motivated users.

This is where the magic comes in, if they click on the link on their mobile device and they don’t have your app installed on their phone, it takes them to the app store to download the app and then onto the correct destination page in your mobile app.  If they already have the app installed it opens and takes them directly to the relevant section of the app. It’s a perfect tool to acquire new users for your app AND re-engage existing app users.

deferre3d deep linking graphic2. How to Acquire High Quality New App Users

Deferred Deep Linking is a great tool to acquire new app users if you put it to good use. They let you run promotions across multiple digital media outlets – website, social media, email to target people who don’t yet have your app installed… then when they click from their mobile device the Deferred Deep Link system will know they don’t already have the app installed and take them to the relevant Appstore of the device to download the app.

Because you have caught their attention with a compelling offer, they will be much more likely to be highly motivated new users, interested in what you offer.

So, what is best practice at using Deferred Deep Linking in off-app promotions to convert high quality new users?

It works best by offering specific calls to action so it’s easy to engage with the promotion.

  • Book a discounted weekend break with Booking.com. Present the offer in the advert to catch attention and when they click, take them directly to the details of the offer in the appropriate section of the mobile app.
  • Telephone booking for a Taxi or order carry-out food, send a follow up SMS message with a deferred deep link encouraging them to use the app next time.
  • Email to customers telling them of a special offer or new feature available through your mobile app. Use this to capture new users and re-engage users who may not have been in your app for a while.

3. Win-back Lapsed Users

You can use Deferred Deep Linking to very effectively win-back lapsed users. These may be people who have used your app in the past but just aren’t responding to any Push Notifications campaigns. Possibly because they have off-loaded your app from their phone.

If they follow your social media channels or you have collected their email or cell number as part of their past onboarding, then you can use these to send offers to bring them back. And the beauty of Deferred Deep Linking is that it works regardless of whether they have deleted your app from their phone or just haven’t opened the app for a while. So, you capture both lapsed and gone-away users.

Another important advantage is that it also lets you target users that have previously opted out to receive push notifications. You can entice them back to your app with an attractive promotion.

4. You Can Get Personal… and Customers Love Personal

Personalizing marketing is one of the oldest tricks in the book. But with Deferred Deep Linking it goes one stage further. It lets you make the overall experience smooth and seamless.

With Deferred Deep Linking you can create highly personal links for each person you are targeting. The link can contain information about the person, so when they reach the app this information can be passed automatically into the app. For example, apply a pre-set discount to the shopping cart or pre-populating onboarding screens to make first set-up quick and easy.

The more you can do to make the user journey smooth and seamless the more users will convert.

5. Attributing Download and Conversion Sources

Knowing (for sure) where your downloads or purchase conversions are coming from is gold-dust for marketers. Understanding which media sources are generating the highest value customers means you know where to effectively channel marketing investment. Deferred Deep Linking can help with this also, you can pass information through the link that will then be associated with the customer when they install. This can contain the media source or even which specific promotion led the customer to download your app.  Being able to study your most valuable customers and understand which messages or media sources deliver your most engaged users means you know what campaigns are working best, and where to double down. It also allows you to very accurately calculate your Customer Acquisition Costs (CAC). Comparing this with the lifetime value of your customer (the total of what they pay you for as long as they are a customer) means you can calculate how much you can afford to pay to acquire new customers.

Some Final Thoughts

Here’s some additional things to think about when utilizing deferred deep linking:

  • 70% of emails are opened on mobile and using deferred deep linking is a great channel to drive mobile app use.
  • SMS has the highest percentage of opens for any type of messaging communication on mobile at 98%
  • Social media platforms can make it more difficult for marketers to use deep links, while this is a great tool to hit your audience, platforms like Facebook insist on opening a window within the Facebook platform rather than in an external browser. This can make it trickier for deep links to understand what’s happening but it’s not impossible with the right link and provider.
  • Websites are great ways to acquire new mobile app users. These could be simple landing pages heavily optimized in key search terms that relate closely to your target audience or bigger more functionally rich sites that your customers will typically visit first to find out more about what you do. A great way to encourage website users into your mobile app is to include a simple form asking for their phone number with a Deferred Deep Link in the SMS you send them. It then makes it easy to take them directly to the offer in your app, or first through the app store if they don’t have your app installed yet.

What We Can Do For You

Kumulos is one of the worlds leading Mobile Marketing Engagement platforms. We help you acquire, activate, engage and retain your valuable mobile app users for longer. Specifically, our Deferred Deep Link feature helps you user a broad range of marketing channels to engage your target audience. It also helps you effectively re-engage lapsed users or those who aren’t opted in for push notifications.

Kumulos provides enterprises with a single pane of glass to drive more app downloads, consistently engage and retain your mobile app users for longer, delivering greater mobile app success.

To see how we could help your business grow and deliver more from your mobile app, ask for a free no obligation demo or set up a free 30 day full system trial.