Lost in Mobile Space: How to Avoid an App Marketer’s Worst Nightmare

Did you know that the average smartphone user has 26 apps installed on their mobile device? Did you also know that the average attention span of the modern consumer fell to 8 seconds in 2013?

Even if you weren’t familiar with the actual numbers, these are the realities you’ve probably been battling as you work to prevent your app from drifting out of mind and into the mobile abyss – where apps we once loved (cough Draw Something) now reside, lonely and neglected. But before you panic, rest assured that there are things you can do make sure your app doesn’t get lost in space.

Lost in mobile space blog featured image


What Exactly is the Mobile Space?

When it comes to the mobile galaxy, there are two worlds we care about most: the app store, where the app can be downloaded and the device, where the downloaded app dwells.

Thankfully, tech giants like Apple are orchestrating massive overhauls of their app stores to ensure well-designed apps organically rise to prominence thereby allowing app developers to focus on creating inherently useful, fun, or unique apps to gain traction. However despite this great turn of events, apps still struggle to engage users after being downloaded because there is too much competition for user attention.

To better illustrate the vastness of mobile space, think about your app like a spaceship (just hear me out on this!). The app store is similar to NASA in that it serves as a home base for your app. NASA employees are like your app users, they pick which spaceship to launch (which app to download), and then communicate with it regularly (use your app often) as long as it remains on their radar.

And as app stores evolve to better market and support truly great apps, the challenge remains: How can you ensure users continually interact with your app?


Using Push Notifications to Send an Eye-catching SOS from Mobile Space

After your app has been installed, there will be many times when people aren’t actively using it. In other words, your app will live as an icon on a person’s smartphone and it may not be visible often until someone swipes or scrolls. So, how do you send an attention-grabbing signal to your users? The answer lies in push notifications. These are short messages that are delivered to your user’s home screen and they are designed to bring attention and eyeballs back to your app.

But not all push notifications succeed in re-engaging the user. If you employ a push messaging strategy that is loud, incomprehensible, and intrusive – your users will not hear you. The key is to deliver a lightweight and relevant communication that doesn’t cause too much friction between your app and the app user.


3 Critical Components of Push Messages that Successfully Get Spotted

#1. Deliver Valuable Communication

The core concept behind push notifications is to say something useful to your app user, or say nothing at all. Mobile marketers need to construct their push messages so they provide value and act as a natural extension of your app. If your app is floating around in mobile space, the best way to get ground control’s attention is to speak the same language. In other words, send clear push messages and keep your audience in mind so you don’t end up alienating anybody.

#2. Choose the Right Time

There’s a right time for everything. The best way to get your SOS noticed is to strategically send it when users are most likely to pay attention. Mobile marketers should send push messages that elicit responses and drive traffic back to your app. Therefore, you need to be careful not to spam or blast too fast.

Think about your app like a spaceship again. You want to ensure your message gets delivered to the NASA employee (app user) while they are at work because that is when your message will be most relevant. Remember, proper timing can be the difference between a well-received, action-eliciting message versus a push message that runs into an unanswered dial tone.

#3. Don’t Broadcast, Target Specific Segments

The future of mobile is personalization. Gone are the days of lumping people into giant homogenous groups and bombarding them with overly general messages. If you adopt this behavior in your push marketing strategy, no one will care about what you’re saying. To connect with your users, you need to understand and cater to their differences.

Every single NASA employee (app user) does not need to receive every single communication (push message) – you have to target your communication to the correct person(s). Therefore, make sure you send customized notifications with unique offers that your various user segments will find interesting.


Your App’s Mission is to Orbit Your User

The most successful mobile apps revolve around the people who use them. When your app gets downloaded onto a mobile device, it starts to compete for attention in a world with an attention deficit. However, mobile marketers can use push messages to send clear, well-timed, and properly targeted communications to regularly touch base with their app users and avoid getting forgotten and lost in mobile space.


Crafting Perfect Push Messages That Pull People in

Now that we’ve covered the critical components of good push messages, it’s time to fine-tune and make your app marketing even better. Why make something “good enough” when you can make it great? Why settle for modest wins when you can achieve stellar app success?

To help you get there, Localytics is running a free live webinar where we will divulge all the best practices of top-performing push messaging campaigns and give you immediate action steps to take. Just click the button below to sign up and get the inside scoop!

Free On-Demand Webinar on Do's & Don'ts of Push and In-App Messaging by Localytics