4 Ways Consumers Communicate with You Through Mobile

Let’s face it: there’s a lot of noise in the marketing world, on both sides of the equation. On the consumer side, brands throw a lot of marketing messages at shoppers. On the marketer side, it becomes challenging to know which consumer signals are worth interpreting, and then understanding what those signals mean as they relate to the bigger marketing strategy can be all-consuming.

Nowhere is that more challenging than with mobile. Most smartphone owners use just five apps regularly, and to be in the “in crowd,” you’ve got to work harder than you ever have to make the VIP list. Mobile marketing, too, is fraught with consumer signals, and not all of them are relevant to marketers.

Given how challenging understanding these mobile engagement signals can be, let’s look at some key performance indicators that can help marketers better understand what consumers want.

Engagement from Other Media Channels to Mobile Campaigns

It’s important to note: engagement signals for mobile don’t just happen within the mobile app or mobile device. If you’re successfully marketing your mobile campaigns on other channels like social media, ads, email, and your blog, you should be able to assess what engagement is there.

  • How many clicks to your mobile app site are you getting?
  • How many shares or likes?
  • What’s your PPC return on investment?
  • How many people are opening your mobile-related emails?

While we don’t yet have the sophistication to look at app downloads and determine what channels they came from, we can at least measure from the other end. If your pay-per-click campaign to drive app downloads is getting a fair number of clicks (and then you can correlate a bump up in app downloads), you can consider it a success. If your Facebook post amping up your new mobile-only trivia contest is getting spread like wildfire, see if entries into the contest are corresponding to that.

Measure Loyalty Rewards Participants

If you use mobile to drive membership to your loyalty rewards program, pay attention to how members are participating in the program, and make sure it’s easy to do so.

If they need to present their app’s barcode at checkout, measure what percent of transactions in a given day are doing so. If they are given special member-only coupons, how many are being redeemed? Even looking at which offers more people are taking advantage of gives you valuable data to shape future offers. Those less-popular offers, like 5% off, can be thrown out in favor of high-value offers (like 25% off) that are more likely to be redeemed and to drive sales.

Number of Responses to Push Notifications

Push notifications provide a significant opportunity to continue to engage mobile users over time. In fact, 65% of mobile users who enable push notifications return to an app within 30 days of downloading it. The key is paying attention to what notifications they respond to.

You may find that you have a much lower response rate to notifications announcing a sale for in-app purchases, but that your mobile game’s notification that “Your lives are restored! Time to play” gets major response from users. You can then play around with announcing in-app sales once they get into the app.

Ultimately the pushes need to be personalized and relevant. They’re not tiny advertisements; they’re the opportunity to continually engage with users. It’s imperative that you continually pay attention to the signals your consumers are sending you with regards to notification interaction and modify your strategy accordingly. Whatever you do, do something: according to the Good Push Index, 70% of an app’s users will defect after 30 days if the brand does nothing to engage with them.

How Frequently, How Long, and When an App is Used

Another useful signal in terms of mobile engagement is how consumers use your app. There are three primary signals you need to pay attention to:

  1. Frequency: is your app so indispensable that they’re using it daily or weekly?
  2. Length: the longer a user is in your app, the more you’ve hooked her.
  3. Time: understanding what time of day users open your app tells you prime push notification opportunities.

The signals are there, if you’re willing to pay attention to them and act in a manner that will help you better align your marketing efforts with what consumers want. Mobile marketing is an integral part of the consumer journey, and one that you need to pay close attention to. While we have much more experience assessing consumer signals through social media, email, and website visits, mobile is still a relatively new frontier, and we need to monitor, react, then tweak our strategy accordingly.