With the right push notification marketing strategy, push messaging can be the most effective marketing tool in your arsenal. Learn how to develop a rock solid strategy.
According to a survey by Responsys:
“Open rates for push notifications are 50% higher than email and click rates are twice as high.”
There has been a lot of focus on mobile and app use of push notifications. In fact, many people don’t even realize web push notifications are available. They are – and they are a big deal! Push notifications aren’t solely for mobile… Web push notifications are kicking email’s butt too!
Even though mobile Internet usage has marginally surpassed desktop Internet usage for the first time in history… Desktop Internet usage is very far from dead.
Web push notifications are still a very useful and important marketing strategy. Consider these statistics:
“48.7% of Internet visits [worldwide] come from desktop devices.”
With 48.7% of your potential users browsing the Internet on desktop and laptops – using web push notifications should be an indispensable part of your marketing strategy.
Developing Your Push Notification Strategy
Your push notification strategy needs to do 4 essential things:
- Get users on board
- Delight your users
- Improve your marketing results (and/or drive sales)
- Keep your users on board
In this article, you will learn seven key areas of focus for developing your push notification marketing strategy. We will cover how to capture users; when, why and how to send messages; what constitutes an effective message; advanced messaging strategies such as: segmenting and prioritizing; retaining your users.
Anatomy of a Push Notification
Here are seven steps for creating a successful push notification marketing strategy.
1. Obtain the Opt-in
The first step in your strategy is getting the opt-in. There is nothing more important than this. If you do not gain opt-ins – it’s game over. Therefore, you need to create a strong hook. Here’s a way to do that…
On iOS, you cannot customize the official opt-in message. However, you can create your own splash screen. This is where you can determine your users interest, before asking for the often. This is called a “pre-permission” screen.
Showing users a “pre-permission” splash page before the official opt-in message is an effective way to entice users and explain the benefits of an opt-in. Your opt-in should never be mandatory.
Here is an example:
Splash Pre-Permission Screen:
The strategy of your “pre-permission” splash screen is to deliver a message that your user will find irresistible. This requires showing the message at the perfect opportunity. This may be on a specific webpage or screen within your app. To do this, look for a point at which you have the user’s interest and can offer them additional benefits.
Once you have the user on your “pre-permission” screen, the routing strategy is simple. If a user clicks “yes” on your splash page, direct them to the official opt in page. If the user clicks “no” – it’s only a temporary setback. You can prompt them with the page again at a later time after they have spent more time on your site or in your app. (of course you want to do this sparingly, and not drive them away completely)
Alternately, you can prompt them from other pages or locations with a different splash screen and beneficial message that was optimized for those landing points.
The takeaway is: optimizing a “pre-permission” splash screen with an enticing message is your best opportunity to gain the opt-in.
2. Outline Your Strategy
Your push notification strategy must mirror your marketing goals. Ask these questions:
What are the specific goals your push notification marketing needs to achieve?
Here are just a few of the possible push notification goals:
- To drive sales
- To encourage newsletter sign-ups
- To promote a free download
- To “upsell” items or add-ons
- To encourage referrals
- To remind users that a registration or trial period is about to expire.
What are the push notification trigger points that occur in your user’s experience?
What activities will users be taking on your site or app that indicate the best times to send a push message?
Push notification triggers could include:
- Viewing an important piece of content
- Signing up for a newsletter or mailing list
- Signing up for a free course or download
- Registration, trial-period or subscription about to expire
- Other activity
Figure out the user behaviors you are looking for and design your push notification messages to occur upon these events. This also requires analyzing and understanding your customer journeys.
Craft your messaging to fit each situation in which they are triggered. Make each message unique. Your messages should enhance user experience. Thus, your messages should focus on the benefit to the user. When you do this, your user will welcome your push notifications.
Now that you have an understanding of matching your messages to events, there is another level of your strategy you need to consider. You may find it beneficial or even a requirement to segment your users into different groups.
Depending on your business and how your users interact, your users may be on different levels, some more active than others, and at various points of the sales cycle. If so, different groups will require different messages. Getting the right message to the right user is the way to get the best results. This is part of personalization, which we will cover next.
3. Personalize Your Messages
Effective the push notification marketing is all about creating a good user experience. It requires the right message, at the right time to the right user.
We’ve already discussed grouping in segmenting your users. When you group your users, you need to think about their mindset and needs. The better you can speak to them and their wants, the better experience you can provide.
Your push notifications will be triggered by events, behaviors, user profiles and geolocation. Therefore, your messaging needs to be personalized according to those factors.
Some tips for personalizing your messages:
- Insert the user’s name into your message.
- Include a recap of the user’s last activity – then guide them towards what’s next.
- Allow users to set preferences and then make recommendations based on those preferences at the appropriate time.
- If you sell merchandise, allow users to create wish lists and notify them when saved items are on sale or reward them with a discount.
- Detect the user’s location and send location-based messages that are appropriate and helpful.
- Based on your user’s current or recent activity, keep your user posted when it’s important to do so.
- Reward your user for current or recent activity.
- Remind users where they left off when it’s helpful to do so.
For further study, check out this information on what type of messages users like to receive.
Allow Users to Customize
Allowing users to set preferences such as: delete, when to receive messages and what types of messages to receive, is one way to limit opt-outs. Not only that, it often allows you to send messages whenever necessary without annoying your users.
It should also be noted that customization also includes making it easy for your users to opt-in or opt-out of push notifications.
4. Customer Journeys
Effective personalization requires that you understand your customers. You have to ascertain their needs and wants. It also helps if you understand their collective personalities and values. The best way to acquire the necessary information is to map out your customer journeys.
A simple way to look at your users is to group them into these four basic stages of usage:
- Active: These are users who engage on a regular basis with your website, push notifications, app, or emails.
- Hyper-active: these are your most loyal users. They actively engage at a rate above your average user.
- Declining: Users activity has decreased. Response to messaging has declined.
- Inactive: user is no longer engaging, visiting your website, or responding.
On their journey, your customers may or may not pass through all of these stages. Your aim is to identify what stage of the journey your customer is on and craft your personalization and messaging accordingly.
Analyzing the Customer Journey
Studying the patterns your customers take with them the stages will help you understand the overall customer journey as it relates to your business.
You can analyze the trends over time your users display as a way to create segments and content pathways. These trends will assist you in understanding different customer life cycles.
By recognizing what lifecycle a customer is following, you can guide that customer with your messaging onto a preferred content pathway.
For example, an user is on a different course than a declining user. When you observe a user on a declining course, you can move them towards a “re-engagement pathway” before their current cycle leads them into becoming an interactive user.
Using Scoring to Personalize Messages
Scoring is an additional method of personalization. Assign scores to certain behaviors. Next, analyze and segment your customers based upon scores. Then, you can use certain scores to trigger specific notifications.
Coming Up Next…
In part two, we will cover these topics for your push notification marketing strategy: Timing your messages; Content strategy; Prioritizing messages and message frequency; Retention strategy; Tracking and analyzing the performance of your push notification marketing.
After completing part two, you’ll be ready to develop and unleash your own effective push notification marketing strategy.
Introducing ReachMobi Web Push Notifications
Bring your customers back to your site with ReachMobi Web Push Notifications!
The media has already proclaimed that push notifications are the single most effective way to not only reach your users, but to drive them back to your website as well. Send push notifications whether users are on your website or other websites.
Already running push notifications? Simple RSS feed implementation works seamlessly with your current push partner.
It couldn’t be easier.