Marketers and websites. It’s a love story that has lasted for over a decade. In this time period, digital marketers have developed extensive expertise in web marketing technologies such as marketing automation, content management systems and analytics in order to achieve their ultimate goal – to delight visitors and get higher conversions. This goal, however, is not unique to web marketers – mobile marketers, like you and me, must also achieve it.
At the end of the day, your app users are also your site visitors (not to mention your brick-and-mortar shoppers, as well). There’s no telling how your customers will choose to take advantage of your services at any given moment, but app users deserve a digital journey that is no less personalized, contextual and well-tested than in other channels.
Let’s explore four practices that are the bread and butter of digital marketers and explain how they can (and should) be applied in apps.
There are many best practices in regards to web forms, but let’s focus on only a few. First and foremost, forms on the web should be short. Next, the location of the form is key. The order of the fields is also crucial.
These factors are important for you to take into account within your app, as well. The real estate is much more ‘expensive’ within an app, and you have even fewer moments to grab your user’s attention than on desktop. If the form in your mobile app cannot be short, it better be displayed in just a few steps. It’s also critical to ask users only for the data that is most essential for them to move forward in your app.
In mobile, timing and relevancy are everything. You have to make sure the form is relevant to the user’s interest and is displayed at the right time in order to increase the chances that it will be submitted. The best time to ask for personal details is typically when you want visitors to become registered users.
For instance, in the example below, users are invited to register to win their dream high heel shoes:
This retail app is offering a user to register with their email address to enhance their external app communication while offering added value related to the user’s’ interests.
You’ve probably sent emails with surveys to check on customer feedback and satisfaction, right? Or perhaps you asked users for feedback via a banner on your site. In any case, you wanted to know if your customers were happy with your services and if they enjoyed their experience with your company.
Whether it’s feedback on app feature or functionality, it’s best to ask as soon as your users have finished using it. For instance, a hotel app should ask its guests if they enjoyed their stay right after checking out. That way the experience is still fresh in their minds.
On the other hand, if you simply have a general picture of how much they like your app, then it’s best to experiment with in-app location and timing for different segments in order to figure out when and where users are the most responsive.
Surveys are a great way to have a two-sided conversation with your users. Make sure you do this by being careful to not just collect data, but also to respond to the feedback you receive appropriately.
Display an in-app survey to a user at the right mobile moment. Then respond accordingly to each type of feedback.
In websites, there are two main types of videos. The first is used to introduce users to the brand or strengthen their connection to it. Another type helps to introduce users to a product or explain how it works.
As you’re probably already aware, the most recent statistics prove that millennials prefer consuming videos in mobile apps, so there is no reason not to make use of explainer videos (and other types of video) in the right context for the audience that craves it.
For example, a banking app can leverage videos to introduce its customers to a new online service they provide:
Let users consume your offering in an appealing way. Monitor the stats for recommended video duration to improve your message to various segments.
On the web, landing pages are designed to have minimal distraction and maximum context to drive optimal conversion. On mobile, apps should adopt a similar practice when sending people back into the app via push notification.
A push notification is an external message with appealing content that motivates users to return back to the app.
A common, but unsuccessful, practice is to send users a push notification that directs them to the app ‘homepage’ for them to find their own way to the relevant content. A better practice is to use deep links, but then there are also technical limitations. Ideally, any push notification should send the user to either the most relevant app screen, or even better, to a dedicated landing page that has been created to support the message you sent.
In the example below, users are sent to the relevant screen with a push notification to learn more about vegan offers:
Drive users to a dedicated in-app landing page in order to filter out irrelevant content and focus on the new offer
Personalized and contextual offers = Added value
Looking at these best practices, the common denominator is the opportunity to provide users value with personalized and contextual offers, relating to what the users are doing in real time in your app. That is a huge advantage that mobile has over any other channel.
App users have high expectations because they assume that you, as an app owner, know quite a bit about their demographics and interests – and they expect you to act upon it. Ironically, this is not how things are working for many big brands across various verticals. Mobile apps are inherently rigid, and the long development cycles coupled with the app-store approval process are stopping many marketing initiatives in their tracks.