Let’s face it, we all make mistakes. Let he who has never send a poorly-timed push message cast the first stone!

Mistakes and missteps are part of life – especially in the relatively new field of mobile marketing, where, to steal a line from the musical Hamilton , “every action’s an act of creation.”

Learning from our errors is how we grow and thrive, which is why today we’re highlighting five common mistakes we see mobile marketers making (don’t worry, we’ll show you how to fix those mistakes as well)!


Have you ever been guilty of one of these mobile faux pas?

1. They Send Broadcast Messages

Believe it or not, many apps are still sending broadcast messages in 2017! With the vast amounts of user data at your disposal, there are no excuses for continuing this outdated practice.


How to Fix This: Segment audiences and personalize your push and in-app messages!

Just like the failure of one-size-fits-all clothing, broadcast messages send out the same generic template message to your entire audience. Marketers can do so much better! Today, apps have access to a wealth of information about their users, from simple stats like a user’s name and age, to more advanced data like purchase history and the user’s last app launch.

Use this great info to customize personalized push notifications and in-app messages that speak to your users as individuals, rather than the masses, resulting in more engagement and higher conversion rates [not sure if you have a stat for this – I saw a stat in the mobile marketing 2017 guide but you probably would rather link to a blog post, right? ].

2. They Don’t Track Their Best Acquisition Sources

Most mobile marketers are investing big money to increase app installs. These installs can be driven by any number of sources – Facebook, the App Store, or 3rd party app networks, among others.

At first glance, it’s easy to see where the most installs are coming from. However, it’s also important to consider whether or not various app acquisition sources are driving valuable users – as in, users who don’t install your app after a day or two.

How to Fix This: Don’t obsess with the download metric – study which sources provide the highest LTV app users.

Hold your app acquisition sources to a higher standard. App downloads are great, but the value of those new app users is much more important.

Which users are most likely to convert? Which are most engaged with your app? Many would argue that a smaller, more active audience is much more valuable than a large audience that churns quickly. Measure all the data to see which app acquisition sources are worth investing into!

3. They’re Not Working Enough to Combat Churn

Churn is scary – really scary! In fact, our data shows that 80% of app users churn after 3 months!

However, too many mobile marketers simply accept defeat and throw up a white flag in the face of churn, even when there are actions that can be taken to combat churn and increase retention.

How to Fix This: Track users and implement predictive app marketing.

Predictive app marketing is a true-life saver when it comes to fighting the battle against churn. With predictive marketing, you can track the behavior of churners vs converters over a span of time. This data can then be used to predict which new users are likely to churn, allowing you to encourage certain activities that may steer users away from app abandonment.

For example, predictive app marketing may reveal that users who complete their profile in your social app within the first week of installing are 20% less likely to churn. What do you do with that info? Send out push messages to new users, encouraging them to fill out their profile!

Start implementing predictive app marketing to better understand your users, discover your most valuable app actions, and stick it to the churn!

4. They Aren’t A/B Testing

Testing isn’t just for high schoolers taking the SATs – tracking and testing various elements of your app is what helps you decipher what’s working and what’s not. However, some apps don’t bother to implement A/B testing (maybe they think it’s too complicated, although in many cases it’s quite simple).

Failing to A/B test is basically a guarantee that your marketing efforts aren’t as successful as they could be. If you’re not measuring and testing, you’re flying blind!

ab testing.gif

How to Fix This: Use control groups and experiment with messaging and other elements.

A/B testing doesn’t have to be complicated – you can test something as simple as the wording of a push message, or the color of a button in your app. Apps are often simple, streamline interfaces (when compared to a traditional website), which means that even a very small change can have a huge impact.

Use a control group to ground your test, and then have at it! Even just for messaging, the variables are endless. You can test:

  • Wording
  • Emojis
  • Punctuation
  • Timing
  • Frequency

Once you begin testing, you’ll see what resonates with your audience and what doesn’t. In some cases, structures you assumed were working well will actually prove to be lackluster. However, you’ll never know if you don’t test!

5. They Don’t Use Rich Push Messages

We live in an age of visual stimuli, in which users prefer image-heavy memes and infographics over lengthy text-based essays. Just as incorporating emojis into messaging can often provide app users with an immediate visual, visceral response (smiley emoji = happy), rich push promises to provide similar success.

While Android has already had the option to send rich, image-based push messages, only with the advent of iOS10 has iPhone offered the same capabilities. Now, apps can send rich push notifications that feature an image, gif, or even a video!


Mobile marketers should be jumping at the chance to send rich push messages to users, but some are fearful of the new and unknown.

How to Fix This: Experiment with rich push for increased engagement.

Rich push messages will likely become huge this year – we’ve already seen a tremendous increase in video content over the past few years, and rich pins will be sure to benefit from the modern visually-oriented user.

Don’t wait until users have become over-saturated and desensitized! Start implementing rich pins now – while it’s too soon to back our beliefs with data, we bet you’ll see some pretty remarkable engagement metrics with rich pins.

What mistakes have you seen your fellow mobile app marketers make? Share your thoughts in the comments!