Conversion is a crucial point of mobile app marketing. Unfortunately, many mobile advertisers run into difficulties converting users during their campaigns. In part 1, our partner Apsalar explained the four different types of conversion problem funnels. These problem funnels can vary depending on different campaigns. Now, it's time to discuss how advertisers can fix these problem funnels.
Better use of customer marketing data is driving better results across marketing and mobile specifically, but its use is less developed in the mobile app marketing space simply because app data are harder to collect. As you likely know, we cannot use third party cookies for mobile app data collection, so app marketers must rely on mobile app tracking companies like ours to collect that data using SDKs that they embed in their apps. These mobile app SDKs actually provide data that are far more accurate than third party cookies do for the PC and mobile web.
Every mobile app tracking and attribution platform provides insight on the relative effectiveness of marketing channels. But Apsalar focused much development efforts creating a platform that develops specific anonymous profiles for app users, enabling us to associate all the actions they take in an app with an individual user. These profiles are the foundation of a series of use cases we would like to review here, which provide tangible ways to improve mobile application user flow and conversion.
7 Use Cases
What we’d like to discuss with you here are seven use cases in which we apply mobile app user segmentation and targeted marketing to fix the conversion funnels of leading apps worldwide.
- Basic Mobile Retargeting
- Cross-Device Retargeting
- Activation of users that abandon shopping carts
- Lapsed user/customer reactivation
- App cross-marketing
- Powering engagement vehicles for a variety of purposes
- Precision lookalike profiling and targeting
Basic Mobile App Retargeting
As mentioned earlier, Apsalar mobile app tracking develops rich customer profiles based upon the action people take, or don’t take. So imagine your entire pool of mobile app users. Some have taken a conversion action like made a purchase. Some have done so multiple times. But most probably haven’t converted yet. Basic mobile retargeting refers to segmenting large groups – like nonbuyers, and delivering targeted marketing to them to get them to take that conversion step. Such creative might be a reminder or an offer targeted specifically to that type of user. We identify the people who have never purchased, and enable media companies to deliver ads only to those individuals. We make it possible to do that targeting across all of your app users, not just those that were delivered by one media partner, and we ensure your data stay under your total control. Controlling your data is absolutely critical here, and you need to ensure that the folks you work with give you the sort of granular data controls you need to do so.
Apsalar work with several cross-device matching companies to connect people’s PC web and mobile web actions with those same profiles. So we can understand each customer on a variety of levels and then segment our pool of users in order to deliver more specific or targeted messaging. That means we can look at traits that may have been expressed on the web versus in-app for targeting.
So, to return to our “never purchased” example, you could target people who haven’t purchased on a site or in app, and reach them on multiple devices with your specific offer. So what can you expect from such forms of basic retargeting? Well, we’ve seen, and third party data sources corroborate that response rates vary by category, target, time since engagement. But 3-18X higher CTR are not at all uncommon. These tactics are extremely effective to drive app relaunches/re-engagement (versus purchases.) Cross-device retargeting is best for re-engagement, IAPs, and goods available primarily/only through the app. Where you have a combination of a strong ecommerce and a strong mcommerce business, cross-device attribution is valuable
Cart Abandon Reactivation
Is there a more frustrating mobile application user behavior for app marketers than cart abandons? Is there a bigger potential incremental growth opportunity than getting these “almost closed” app users to complete a purchase? It’s hard to imagine one. Targeting app user cart abandons is also retargeting, but the segment is obviously much smaller. The basic retargeting might be for half your audience while cart abandons are just a sliver.
Lapsed Users and Customers
Let’s move on to how we reactivate lapsed users and customers. This tactics is good to improve lower level metrics and drive revenue to invest in top of the funnel. As I am sure you are aware, many apps lose 80% of users in month one, and on the purchase side the data are even more compelling. The cost of a second purchase tends to be 80-90% less than the cost of a first purchase, so reactivating people is obviously a big potential opportunity! Yet most mcommerce businesses fail to get a second purchase from 90+% of their customers. Time is not your friend, here, meaning that the longer someone is lapsed, the harder it is to bring them back to the fold.
Apsalar use a trigger to identify lapsed users/customers. N number of days without an app launch or purchase. What’s the right number of days for your trigger? It depends a great deal on your category, purchase cycle, the value of a user/customer, and the core metrics of app engagement. Remember:
- Some didn’t like app and will never return, no matter how much you spend. You need to identify that inflection point of profitability.
- Some users will require multiple paid launch events in order to become regular users.
- Try different frequencies and time lapse periods to determine what’s right for your business.
- And optimize to your KPIs, not surrogate metrics.
So let’s move on to the next tactic – cross-selling an app to the users of another of your apps.
Related app users a natural new user/customer base. First, the cost to acquire them for the second app will likely be much lower. Second, the strong customer profiles that you have for the first app will help you segment users to identify ideal targets for your new app. You’ll be able to do so by examining:
- App usage patterns
- Propensity to make in-app purchases
You can see how any of these factors can help you identify the right people to target, and even what you might want to say to them.
A couple of things to consider as you explore cross-selling a new app to users of an app you have already launched. In our interviews with some marketers, we heard that sometimes there is territoriality between the marketing teams for different apps. Really try and break this down. The reality is that your apps should be different enough to mitigate concerns about cannibalization. In addition, explore ways to get creative in messaging to attract cross-users. While these users of one app are likely a good prospect base for another, you need to unlock your teams’ creativity in order to make the best use of resources and drive the highest response rates.
Powering Engagement Vehicles
Brands need to leverage ALL communication vehicles in order to maximize the success of your apps. Ads are a part of that communication, but you should leverage everything in your purview, not least because many of these tactics cost little or nothing to use. We're talking about push notifications, email, app message centers, your app’s offer center, as well as a variety of ad platforms.
Apsalar manages this process seamlessly for both “batch” and “triggered” ids. We’ve actually integrated with lots of mobile app service providers so that you can use Apsalar to control your data and deliver the right IDs and insights to virtually any leading marketing partner. That includes the key players in:
- Marketing Automation Platforms
- Push Notification Platforms
- Mobile, Omni-Channel CRM
- Message Centers
- Email DBs
- Site Personalization Tools
- Tag Managers
So you can deliver precisely targeted push notifications to support an initiative like activating a cart abandon, or virtually any other action you are trying to drive.
Precision Lookalike Modeling and Targeting
Lookalike modeling is an incredibly powerful tool for mobile app customer prospecting. The core concept is to carefully examine your existing users in order to identify the characteristics that make someone likely to download your app. You can then provide those targeting specs to your media partners so they can focus your spend on the most likely responders.
Many app media companies already employ lookalike modeling on your behalf. It’s a key way that they optimize your programs. But they can only do this using the data from individuals that THEY drove to install your offering. As the app publisher, you have the opportunity to use the Apsalar app tracking platform to collect data on ALL of your users for precision lookalike modeling. In addition, you can provide your customer base to publishers for what we call “blacklisting” – which is when a mobile app media company takes care to never advertising your app to an existing users.
7 Use Cases
So that about covers the 7 ways you can help drive extraordinary marketing results and really work to fix your funnel. As I mentioned at the beginning, the key here across all of these tactics and strategies is creating a superior customer understanding by gaining real individual level user and customer insight. That’s why Apsalar has a broader mission than some other mobile app attribution and tracking companies – to not only provide insight into marketing partner effectiveness but also to provide really rich customer profiles – and through them insights – that you can leverage for target marketing.
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