Spammy websites gave pop-ups a bad name. Shame on them. But from the ashes of the Internet’s banner ads, a mobile phoenix has risen.
With the advent of the smartphone, pop-ups have entered a bright new era. Gone are the days of wanting to punch your computer screen because a billion flashy ads ambushed you. Welcome to the age of compelling in-app messages that prompt clicks, conversions, and customer cheer because of how delightfully relevant they are.
So, what makes in-app messages the golden child of the pop-up family? For starters, they have more context because they appear as a result of a person’s in-app behavior (vs. just triggering when someone lands on a homepage). In-app messages are also better designed and convey brand authenticity. A web banner ad can be distracting and annoying, whereas in-app messages are a native part of your app and they contain inherently valuable information to help mobile users.
If you couldn’t tell already, here at Localytics, we’re big believers in the power of in-app messaging (because we’ve seen the data to prove it!). We’ve also written about this pillar of mobile marketing extensively here and even published a few eBooks on the subject.
But in this post, we’re going to take a more bite-size approach and highlight the top three tactical things you can do right now to increase the firepower of your in-app messages. These tactics transcend verticals and can be applied to a variety of in-app use cases.
In marketing, humor is one of the best ways to make your brand seem more human and less robotic. Nothing against robots, but people like to do business with other people who are relatable, down-to-earth, and funny. As a result, mix a light-hearted joke or two into your in-app creative to elicit a chuckle and a click. Or, write your in-app messages with a casual tone using conversational language to help your app channel empathy. For example, look at how HubSpot and Wanelo use humor to build a human connection with their mobile users (and seem less like apathetic software).
We’re living in an attention-deficit era. Marketers have a few meager seconds to make a statement before – squirrel! Sorry, what was I saying?
Oh yes, marketers need to communicate a message and do it fast because people get distracted easily. When it comes to mobile, it’s even harder to make marketing stick. That’s why you should use different fonts and/or font sizes to make the most important part of your in-app message stand out.
When people look at your in-app message, what is the first thing you want them to notice? Make this big. And if they only stared at your creative for three seconds before hitting the “x” to close, what would they remember? Make these words different from the rest. For example, Free People uses varying colors, typefaces, and font sizes and to make their offer pop right away.
There is no cardinal rule that says in-app messages can only contain one call-to-action (CTA). Secondary CTAs can provide an extra conversion opportunity for users who aren’t interested in what the primary CTA offers (as long as you add them in a clutter-free way).
Take a look at Living Social’s in-app message below, which gives me a whopping four ways to convert. First, I can copy the promo code in a frictionless way and then go on my merry way to buy a few things from GUESS. But what if I don’t like this store? And what if I know someone else who does? Living Social solves for this by giving app users sharing options (A.K.A. social CTAs) to pass on the coupon to others who might also care about this deal. This exponentially increases the percentage of people who will convert.
In-app messaging is an incredibly effective marketing tool that can help you build relationships with your active app users. As with everything, there’s a bad, good, and great way to do it. Having an in-app messaging plan will ensure you’re part of the good group. But enhancing those larger strategies with smaller, smart tactics will make your mobile marketing even better.
Someone wise once said, “Sometimes it’s the little things that make all the difference.”
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