As soon as you wake up, the first thing you most likely do is look at your phone notifications.
In fact, a study by IDC Research found that 4 out of 5 mobile users check their phones within the first 15 minutes of waking up.
As mobile users grow, businesses put more focus and importance on providing mobile-friendly services.
Push notification marketing is one way that brands communicate with their audience and provide a well-rounded customer experience.
What is a push notification?
To simplify, push notifications are timely, personal, and actionable mobile notifications that you can use to stay connected with your customers.
With push notifications, you can promote your products and services, connect using real-time information or offers, re-engage with dormant users, and build your brand trust and reputation.
They are extremely strategic for any business type and status — whether you’re still starting an online store or you have an already established one.
However, mobile push notifications become a disruption when you don’t know how to use it effectively.
Sending too much at the wrong times makes it inconvenient and annoying for your users.
Moreover, providing irrelevant and impersonal notifications will come off as you don’t know and care about your customers.
In the long run, this hurts your brand trust and reputation and affects your sales.
To prevent this, use best practices and tried-and-tested strategies so you can maximize the benefits of push notifications and retain your customers and target audience.
Examples of effective push notification strategies
We gathered effective strategies that you can easily and immediately apply to your push notifications.
1. Feature targeted content
Personalizing your push notifications goes beyond mentioning your user’s first name. At its core, personalization means offering targeted content to your users.
Use your user’s data from your app to provide content based on their interest.
For example, Netflix relies on user data to send notifications on upcoming shows the user might like.
You can also use robust sentiment analysis tools to understand your customers’ feelings, opinions, interests, and attitudes toward your brand, niche, and products. Use the insights you get from the tools to choose which notifications to send.
So don’t just send the same content to all your users. Segment each user based on their interests, sentiments, demographics, or purchase history, and provide content that’s relevant for each segment.
In turn, you will see more open rates and higher retention rates.
2. Send location-based notifications
Sending alerts based on a user’s location is another way brands further target and personalize push notifications.
There are two ways to do this:
- Location-based push notifications
Send notifications based on the general area where a user lives. It lets you target per city, region, or country.
- Geo-triggered push notifications
Send notifications when a user enters a specific location in real-time (if they opted to share their location).
For example, whenever app users are nearby a store, Sephora sends a push notification to offer a free service.
In turn, it gives users an incentive to visit the nearby store and increase the chances of making a purchase.
3. Promote urgency
An evergreen marketing tip is to create a sense of urgency.
For example, brands often use push notifications to recover abandoned carts. Reminding the user that they forgot something in your cart will make them check the item and increase the chances of buying the item.
Additionally, you can use push notifications to remind users of expiring deals or rewards.
Ritual leverages this by coordinating their push notifications with their email marketing strategy. When an email offer is about to end, the brand sends app users a reminder about the limited offer.
In turn, it provides a seamless customer experience for its users. However, collecting the right data and sending notifications to the right people is crucial to make this strategy successful.
4. Leverage your user’s device
Keep in mind that notifications show differently depending on the device. In turn, this affects how your users will see and interact with your notifications.
In fact, Android tops iOS when it comes to a push notification’s click-through rate. To be exact, a study found that Android has a 13.6% click-through rate, while Apple has a 4.1% click-through rate.
That’s because notifications disappear when iOS devices are unlocked, while Android devices retain notifications after being unlocked.
Notice how there’s also a difference with how notifications appear between the different Apple phone models.
If your analytics tools, such as marketing attribution software, can identify your user’s device, use this data to offer a rich push notification experience.
5. Use rich media
Rich media push notifications enable you to add images, GIFS, videos, audio, and customize your CTA.
The enhanced experience catches your users’ attention and allows them to interact with your content better.
Moreover, simply adding an image to your push notifications increases conversions by 57%.
For example, TGI Fridays includes this appealing image to support their Mother’s Day push notification campaign.
Additionally, the image already gives important details without having to read the text and makes the user want to click the notification to know more.
Adding media to your push notifications allows you to play around with your campaigns more and offer the most effective and valuable content for your users.
To help you create unique digital marketing content for your push notifications, leverage easy-to-use content management tools.
This software lets you produce stunning designs without coding, store and organize them, and automate tasks in the entire creation process.
If you’re working with a team, content management systems simplify your collaboration, so you don’t duplicate your push notifications, send unapproved designs, etc.
Not a lot of brands use push notifications with rich media and diverse content, so this technique is a good way to get ahead of your competitors.
6. Offer real-time information
Enhance your customer experience by providing real-time advice or support to your users.
Brands in the travel industry are particularly good at using push notifications.
For example, Delta Airlines send push notifications to inform passengers about delayed flights, change in their boarding information, the last call for check-in, and more.
Delivery apps also use push notifications to help customers keep track of their orders.
Push notifications work effectively as well for social media. If you have a Facebook business account, you can instantly notify users of content about your new product releases, sale, discounts, etc.
If you’re worried that you still have a small following and only a few customers to notify, consider buying, say, Instagram accounts with numerous followers already. You can do so from safe marketplaces such as Social Tradia and transact securely and anonymously. By buying popular Instagram accounts, you can immediately reach and notify thousands of potential buyers with organic and sponsored posts.
Ultimately, push notifications help brands stay in touch with customers, making sure they provide relevant help and better customer experience.
7. Re-engage your users
Even your most loyal customers will stop engaging at some point.
Abandoned cart push notifications are a popular strategy to remind your customers to come back and buy on your store again.
Aside from this, use push notifications to re-engage customers by asking for feedback on your product or service.
The best time to ask for feedback is after sending your customers’ orders (as in the example above) or a support conversation. You can integrate these techniques with an automated customer service software to streamline the process and minimize manual tasks.
Additionally, re-engage your users by giving them a reason to come back such as new features, new deals, etc.
Extra tip: If you build a progressive web app and optimize for mobile-first indexing, push notifications become a native feature, enabling you to re-engage buyers faster.
Security reminders for ongoing mobile push marketing campaign
As a marketer, you want to ensure your push notification campaigns go smoothly over a considerable period so you can continuously track your performance and improve accordingly for greater engagement and sales.
Unfortunately, if you’re not careful, you can encounter cybersecurity problems, one of the worst marketing campaign disruptions and killers. Hacks, ransomware, and other attacks can ruin your customer relationships, manipulate your campaigns, and steal your profit — even without your knowing.
For example, if hackers successfully infiltrated your mobile app, they can exploit your mobile push notifications, sending links to malware-infected sites and deceiving recipients into clicking them.
This malware can then give criminals illegal access to thousands of customer files, data, and devices, making bad money out of it.
Prevent this from happening by implementing robust cybersecurity practices. These include encrypting your code and app communications, correct logging methods, using run-time application self-protection (RASP) tools, etc.
Frequently back up your code, data, messages, updates, and other app information. For example, if you used Microsoft Azure DevOps to build your app, execute automated Azure DevOps backups. This streamlines your backup processes so you can focus on your marketing tasks.
Discuss these matters with your app developer and marketing and IT teams, ensuring everyone is on the same page. Train your staff on security practices and coordinate with each other should you notice anything potentially harmful to your push notification marketing campaigns.
Improve your user experience.
Overall, push notifications offer several ways and benefits to reach out and stay connected to your target audience.
However, rather than using it as a marketing tactic, think of push notifications as a way to improve your user experience (which is why I included some security reminders, to ensure you don’t ruin your customers’ experience or, worse, harm them with your store’s hacked mobile push notifications).
Moreover, integrating your push notifications with your other marketing campaigns allow you to create a seamless omnichannel experience for your users.