The concept of the mobile app as a marketing tool is no longer new. There are written and unwritten rules, and there is also statistical data to see how consumers perceive this role of a mobile app.
First and foremost, the mobile app is your constant presence close to your potential customers. People take their mobile phones everywhere, even when they go out for lunch. And the role of smartphones is evolving: for individuals into entertainment and media centers, for professionals in portable computers for work in transit or from a remote location.
Thus, through their dedicated apps, companies can now reach potential customers through a device which they are already using for business, shopping, and communication with their favorite brands.
So, what can you do to integrate your mobile app into your marketing strategy?
1. Push Notifications – Send Them at the Right Moment
A study conducted by Leanplum – a mobile marketing automation platform – on 671 million push notifications sent in 2015 revealed a worrying trend: over 63% of companies send their messages at the wrong time.
The number one problem identified in the study was, surprisingly, not taking time zones into account. The second: not sending the notifications in the time interval when users are most likely to interact with them.
It is easy to avoid these mistakes and make the most of push notifications – which are proven to be more effective than emails or browser notifications. Use the analytics data you have available and discover the time frames when your target audience engages with your app. In this way, you can deliver your push notifications at the right moment to maximize their potential of being opened and read.
2. Make Your App Discoverable
Your mobile app is a valuable digital property, just like your website. Since you are working hard to promote your website and make it visible through SEO, social media and AdWords, why would you not include your app in these efforts?
For that matter, did you know that 25% of users discover apps through searches? This means that, without proper promotion, you may be losing 1 in 4 potential new users. A proper mobile app promotion strategy includes:
- Pre-launch campaign on social media through special landing pages, and even by inviting your existing email subscribers to test the beta version and give feedback;
- Launching date: live social media events, polls, inviting your followers to share videos of using the app and post their impression;
- App stores optimization: search for relevant keywords to include in your app description, as well as for a short and memorable app name;
- Post-launch campaign: continue to promote your app through your website and social media channels (Facebook offers a customizable call to action button which can land users on the app download page).
3. Use App Updates to Promote Your Business
When you release major app updates, you can use this opportunity to tell your customers about special discounts coming up, new product releases or new sections of your app which were included to better serve them.
Large app updates should always revolve around adding new functionalities, either in response to your users’ feedback or as a way of increasing the value of your app. Just like the launch of the app, major updates should be promoted through an integrated email-website-social media campaign. You can also attract new users to the app by offering discount coupons for new installs of the updated app.
4. Integrate Your App in Other Marketing Efforts
Since the smartphone has become the number one device for browsing the internet, it has never been easier to integrate your mobile app into your online marketing strategy. For instance, you should always include links to the app stores in your email newsletter headers and even in the email signatures of all your employees.
The mobile app can also be used to send reminders for sales campaigns, online contests, events you are hosting, and also as a simple tool for confirming participation in these contests or events.
5. Track and Make Use Of Mobile Traffic Analytics
There is a lot to be learned from the data concerning how and when your customers interact with your app. It helps your organization understand how they prefer to communicate with you, to do their shopping. In addition, when using in pair with website analytics, app data can help you identify stagnant customers, as well as new customers with the potential of becoming loyal brand ambassadors.
The information you collect from your mobile app will determine how to shape your marketing and remarketing strategies, by targeting the right users at the right moment and on the right device. In this way, you will maximize your customers’ lifetime value, fine tuning the calculations of your customer acquisition cost and segment your clients in a more efficient manner.
Your mobile app can be more valuable to your business than you could have imagined. By combining the right promotion and app development strategies, it can complement your website in terms of lead generation and conversion.