Marketing automation company Kahuna recently released its second annual “Mobile Marketing Index,” which reveals the importance of omnichannel integration in this day and age of mobile—with customers more and more relying on mobile devices for communication methods as push notifications, in-app messaging, email, etc.
The report—which analyzed opt-in and retention rates for apps across 15 different verticals from Q3 2015 Kahuna data—shows that more than 70% of customers of mobile-centric brands open their email on mobile devices. Since this is the case, the report says, marketers should test email content rigorously to see how it shows up on different mobile devices and leverage cross-channel data to get a better idea for their email campaigns.
The report also says that emails sent to Android devices have a higher click-to-open rate than those sent to gadgets with iOS.
“While other benchmarks are finding that roughly half of all consumers are already opening their email first on mobile devices, the numbers become even more dramatic for customers of mobile-focused brands,” said Adam Marchick, CEO and cofounder of Kahuna, in a press release. “Because mobile-first is quickly becoming a trend for marketers, it behooves them to watch these and other usage patterns.”
Opt-ins and how to secure them
Push notification opt-in held steady. Opt-in rates across iOS and Android jumped slightly from 62 to 64% since the last report. The latter boasts a much higher opt-in rate, but, the report says, permission changes associated with Android Marshmallow should make marketers pay heed to this metric.
While there are some variances between verticals, marketers can employ the following strategies to boost opt-in rates:
Make expectations clear and convey the value of messaging. Be upfront with customers about how you’ll use push messaging to interact with them. Giving customers a better sense of what they’re signing up for will make opting in an easy decision.
Know when to make the ask, and when not to. Marketers have the luxury of being able to track everything customers are doing on their apps. Testing a variety of interstitial, in addition to prompt triggers, will give marketers insight into what combo of controllable variables garners the best response.
Use other channels to benefit yourself. In today’s hyper-connected world, marketers have the benefit of using other channels—e.g., email and in-app messaging—to drive home the importance of opting-in to push.
Highlight message preference settings and make it easy to toggle them on and off. Give customers the power to manage the messages they receive; after all, it does nobody any favors to send messages via a channel the customer doesn’t like. Plus, knowing they have the ability to turn messaging off at any point will make customers more apt to opt in in the first place.
Compelling messaging has a material impact on churn rates and uninstalls. The report shows that intelligent communication can increase 90-day retention by as much as five times in certain categories. Each category experienced churn reduction across 30-, 60-, and 90-day periods as a result of messaging. The data also shows that, in certain cases, users were actually less likely to uninstall an app if they had received a message within at least 30 days.
Ad block at your own peril
Ad blocking will likely raise the acquisition costs. Brands must rely on owned communication channels like push notifications, in-app messages, and email to maximize retention. The research shows that personalized communication increases 90-day retention rates by upwards of 185%.
“Recent consumer adoption of ad-blocking tools are encouraging more brands to look closely at their owned communication channels,” said Douglas Roberge, strategic services consultant at Kahuna and author of the report, in a press release. “While it is doubtful that there will be an adpocalypse—the radical deconstruction of the advertising industry—a long-term trend that brands can bet on is expansion of owned communications. With our quarterly benchmark, we hope to track that development in detail as it happens.”