October 10, 2018
The State (and Future) of Digital Marketplaces
The mobile marketer is a relatively new role in the world of marketing, and frequently your responsibilities also span other types of marketing communications, such as email or social media. You wear many hats and need an efficient and effective way to determine every day whether your mobile messaging campaigns are bringing value and driving revenue to your business.
In this installment of the Mobile Engagement Crash Course, we’ll talk about the metrics to watch on a day-to-day basis and how they can help you improve and automate your mobile messaging strategy. When you come into work in the morning, these are the metrics you should be paying attention to. These metrics serve as springboards for insights into your users and future campaigns:
In the realm of push marketing, the engagement rate can be thought of analogously as the click-through rate—the percentage of people who chose to engage with your app after receiving a push. It’s not easy to get people to engage after receiving a push notification. Seeing a high engagement rate means that your message resonated with your users, sparked their interest, and prompted them to check out your app. With the data that you have collected about your mobile users, a high engagement rate indicates that you were able to leverage that information to send relevant, contextual messages. Here are the factors that may have contributed to your success:
Timing – You understood the user well enough to catch him at the time of day when he was receptive to receiving a message from you and was most likely to engage. In another scenario, you sent a message at the right time after the user took an action to get them to continue engaging.
Copy – Your message copy was clear, clever, concise, and compelling—delighting users who saw it and inspiring them to engage with your app. You understood your audience and spoke to them in a way that they could relate to.
Personalization – You added just enough customization to your message to make users feel special, referring to them by name or mentioning a personal preference. Users felt that the message was meant for them, rather than thousands of other customers.
Segmentation – By targeting a group of users based on past behavior, preferences, or demographics, you were able to speak relevantly to their interests and actions.
Once you identify the factors that made your message successful—or unsuccessful—you can use, or avoid, the same tactics in messaging campaigns going forward.
Another important metric is the conversion rate, which measures whether users were driven to take a specific action, usually one that leads to immediate revenue for the brand or higher customer lifetime value. Once again, timing, copy, personalization, and segmentation can all contribute to a good conversion rate as they help deliver relevant, contextual messages that ask users to take actions that would interest them. Even more important though, is where you drive your users post-engagement. Are you deep-linking to a part of your app that is highly relevant to the message you sent? Or is the action you’re seeking disjointed from the message the user received?
Conversion rate is intimately tied to engagement rate, as the proportion of users who engage and then convert is a good indication of whether your push notification provided relevant messaging that guides users toward the goal. If users engage without converting, your messaging may be misleading rather than helpful.
For every potential reward to a mobile messaging campaign, such as an engagement or conversion rate improvement, there are also risks. It’s important to respect users on mobile and protect their user experience. Uninstalls and opt-outs show you when you have become too pushy with push, which could be the result of many factors. Was the push sent at a time when users were busy? Was there too much personalization too soon after users started using the app? Were you too direct in issuing a call to action in the copy of the message?
Opt-outs indicate that users no longer want to hear from your brand, but they still find some value in it. Uninstalls means users no longer want to be your customer. For the mobile marketer, it’s important to react quickly to opt-outs and uninstalls, either by identifying and correcting the aspect of the campaign that’s causing negative reactions or stopping the campaign altogether.
The final metric that mobile marketers should monitor is the overall retention rate of users, which is the metric that ultimately your boss and your boss’s boss will care about. This is truly the indication of ROI for your campaigns. The more users you’ve retained over time, the more your mobile app can contribute to the bottom line. There is no standard retention rate that’s considered healthy—it depends on your unique app and your industry. By using a global control group, you can track the difference in retention rates between users who have received your program of messages and users who have not.
Day-to-day metrics play a critical role in informing you of the real-time success of your campaigns and helping you iterate your tactics going forward. Mobile marketers who want to run a high number of campaigns at one time need to keep their fingers on the pulse of these key metrics and leverage them to determine what their next steps should be. In the next lesson, we’ll talk about the levers you can pull to react to the results of your campaigns and optimize your strategy for high engagement and return.