How to do direct marketing on mobile apps

Today, brands have to adapt their “usual” strategies to mobile, including direct marketing. Mobile apps increase user interaction with the brand and provide a personalized experience, which makes them a good channel to engage directly with users.

Types of direct marketing messages in apps

1. Push notifications

Pushes are messages that appear on the user’s mobile device at any time, similar to SMS and mobile alerts. They are only received by users who have installed the application in question.

Push messages can be in text format (title + message) or include an image. Clicking on the message takes the user to the app’s home page or a specific URL.

2. In-app Messages 

In-app messages appear only while a user is logged into the application. They can appear as full-screen pop-up windows or as smaller overlays.

As with push notifications, the message can be text-only or include an image. We can also combine push notifications to make the user open the application with in-app messages within it.

3. Inbox within the application (Message Center)

Both push notifications and in-app messages are temporary; if the user does not see them or discards them, they can no longer access them. If we want the user to access the message later, we can create a Message Center or inbox within the application.

These types of messages can have two different formats:

  • Title, short text and campaign image are seen in the inbox.
  • HTML (similar a un email).

The messages are stored in Message Center permanently so that the user can access them whenever he wants. If we prefer, we can also set an expiration date so that they are automatically deleted.

Email versus messages in mobile apps

Direct marketing in mobile applications can be a complementary channel to email so that within the same customer journey, we send both traditional emails and messages in mobile apps. When setting up this, we have to take into account some key differences between emails and messages in apps:

  • The email to send messages much more extensive  and more likely to insert audiovisual and interactive content.
  • Emails and applications Message Center communications are long-lived messages, which remain in the user’s inbox. Instead, push notifications and in-app messages disappear after being seen only once .

The email subscription process requires the user to write their email and accept the legal conditions. To subscribe to push notifications, you only have to click once or twice on a permission message without giving your personal information.

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