Push messages – pushing your app users in the direction you want
Personalising an app with push messages – alternatively referred to as push notifications – could prove a lucrative move for your business. In no uncertain terms, by giving an app you’ve launched push message functionality, you could add a powerful instrument to your marketing arsenal, enabling you to inform loyal customers about promotions, special offers and breaking news.
But isn’t this effectively the same thing as sending a customer an alert via email or text message? It’s similar certainly, but there’s a big difference. As push messages are fully visible on a smartphone screen, it means the customer will see them immediately they check their device. So, unlike an email or text, a push message ensures you can let them know what’s going on without depending on them checking their email inbox or text message inbox. And, bear in mind, recent research suggests users check their smartphones up to as many as 150 times a day.
This makes push messages an tool to inform someone – or remind them – a concert or a one-off promotional event is about to start in, say, one hour’s time or even 15 minutes’ time. As you can control the time at which you send the message, it’s the perfect way to contact specific smartphone users about specific occasions you’d like them engaged in.
Psychologically speaking, the benefit push messages provide is that, in creating a sense of urgency on the part of the customer to open your app and check what’s going on, they make sure after it’s been downloaded by the customer, the app maintains a role in their everyday life, inviting them to continuously engage with your brand. In marketing-speak, push messages can significantly contribute to the preservation of your relationship with your customer because you’re making sure the conversation keeps going.
This may sound great in theory, but there’s strong evidence that in practice push messages really work in maintaining customer interest in your app – and by extension your brand and business. Recent research by mobile start-up company Urban Airship demonstrated that daily app usage increases by up to 540 percent thanks to the use of push messages.
One word of warning, though: if you choose to add push messages to your app’s functionality, be careful you don’t overdo it. As a form of micro marketing, they can be a useful tool, but only when used effectively; that is, beware of inundating and annoying customers with too many notifications. Push messages are clearly effective, yet when employed relatively sparingly. Sending a push message to someone can make them feel valued because it gives them the impression they’re important to the sender – you want to reap the benefits that brings.