Stop Pushing (Notifications)! First, Gather Data.

Bruno Bin

Get to know your app users first

You read it right. If you have no idea who’s on the other end of the line, stop sending push notifications. It won’t work. Instead, take the time (and use the right technologies) to gather all the data you need to truly understand who you’re talking to. Would YOU listen to a stranger?

A lot of brands have already realized the power of mobile marketing and taken steps towards making it a part of their overall marketing strategy by, for example, investing in developing their own app.

While that’s a great first step, most brands are still operating their apps completely in the dark, which can cause more harm than good. What I mean by that is, often, their apps allow them to send push notifications to app users but only to their whole database, lacking any kind of intelligent segmentation.

To make matters worse, many of these brands are also using push notifications as their main strategy to drive app engagement, meaning that’s how they try to get users to open and interact with their apps. According to a research by Yahoo Aviate conducted earlier this year, the average Android user has 95 apps installed on their phones and that number is only going up. What that means for your brand is you’re competing with about 94 other apps for the attention of your user and if all you do is disrupt their day with generic messages, you’ll most likely watch your app users quickly opt-out from push notifications.

The answer lies in getting to know your app users first, their preferences and behaviours so that you can segment them into relevant groups to which you tailor personalized push notifications. Sounds easy right? Once you start adding value and being relevant with each of your push notifications, engagement rises and users start to create a sense of loyalty to your brand because you, different than everybody else, cares and recognises them as individuals, with their own traits and characteristics.

To do so, you need a mobile marketing platform. That’s right, instead of getting your developers (or your agency) to custom code a push notification system for your app, you’re better off choosing a mobile marketing vendor. Why?

  1. Apple, Google (etc) are constantly releasing new features and updates to their systems. A mobile marketing vendor will not only take care of that but will also make sure you can take advantage of the latest technologies without having to continuously spend money on development hours or worry about system failures.

  2. It allows you to do much more than a push notification. In fact, the push notification is the least of your worries and the last step in any mobile marketing campaign. It’s purely executional. A lot more important is your strategy; being able to consider location and behaviour data to push with the right message at the right time.

With the risk of sounding redundant, I’ll repeat. Before you start reaching out and engaging app users it’s important that you capture data first. That means relevant location, demographics and behaviour information which you can use to start learning about your app users. As soon as you install your mobile marketing platform of choice, let it run for a little bit. Gather data. Learn. Only then, once you understand who your users are (and with the help of a smart marketer) you are ready to start reaching app users with strategic mobile marketing campaigns.