Brands Are Learning How to Master Push Notifications Like Publishers

Push notifications are a new way to reach customers and brands are taking note. Here’s how they are seizing this unique marketing opportunity.

Push Notifications Demand Attention

Branded apps are providing marketers with a new and unique way to get in touch with their following and customers. This is because, in the modern world, the morning routine of most people is more connected than it has ever been before. 50% of smartphone users wake up and take a look at their phone before they do anything else.

They often see a screen full of push notifications.  These notifications often include:

  • Breaking news
  • Facebook notifications
  • Instagram notifications
  • Text message alerts
  • Messages from brands

Publishers Did It First

Publishers and social platforms, including the New York Times, Twitter, and the Washington Post have been expertly using push notifications for quite some time. They often even have specific teams whose job it is to create them. These messages are short and effective breaking news messages. The millions of users who have downloaded their app get sent these push notifications.

Here is an example of a branded push notification.

push notifications

Brands are starting to leverage the power of push notifications for their benefit.

Push Notifications Get Results

Research by IBM indicates that brands wildly increased their push notifications over Thanksgiving and Black Friday weekend. Push notifications increased 128% year-over-year. In contrast, email and SMS marketing only rose 7%. Data from Branding Brand and Leanplum illustrates why brands are starting to focus more on push notifications. Marketers sent out nearly 3 times as many push notifications on Black Friday to push sales alerts.

The consumers they messaged interacted with these notifications 2.6 more than usual push notifications.

How The Brand Chubbies Does It

push notifications

The retailer Chubbies sells men’s short-shorts and apparel. They have their own strategy when it comes to harnessing the power of their push notifications and app. They restructured their app to show exclusive merchandise first. These can include a discounted outlet of products or enticing shipping deals.

However, their push notifications are not focused only on gaining sales and conversions. They put in more work than you know.  A team of 8 people works together on this copy.

This team includes:

  • Writers
  • Merchandisers
  • Email Marketers
  • Designers

They generate and manage short, sweet, and engaging copy. What they send out is meant to entice users to open the app. Chubbies truly make push notifications a priority.

Their visual designer spends roughly a third of their time on push notifications. The brand’s head of email marketing spends about a quarter of their time on them as well.

Go Beyond Sales

While sales are the ultimate goal of advertising, a modern marketer must be clever about it. They need to build the kind of brand-customer relationship that inspires sales.

While digital advertising has a lackluster reputation across the internet, new data suggests that it’s not ads themselves that people dislike. Bad ads are what people have problems with.

In fact, according to a HubSpot study. 83% of people agree with the statement “Not all ads are bad, but I want to filter out the really obnoxious ones.”

Overall, people do not respond well to sales copy that feels intrusive or impossible to believe. Aggressive and unprofessional ads can also alienate consumers.

People especially dislike feeling like they are being tracked by retargeted ads. Chubbies co-founder Tom Montgomery explains his brand’s more low-key strategy to push notifications.

“Sure, we can use them to drive a product, a promotion, a sale or something like that, but more often than not, we find great engagement with just funny one-liners like the notion of a tweet in push form.”

Push notifications don’t always even have to strictly feel like ads.

The Power of Positive Interaction

Ultimately, people do not mind, and even embrace branded content that is positive and engaging. Push notifications provide brands with an opportunity to interact with customers in a new way.

They can even help customers associate positive feelings with a brand. Notifications can also do wonders to helps brands stand out during the madness of the holiday season.

Email inboxes get overstuffed with holiday promotions from brands during the holidays. While your brand’s emails might be lost in a sea of other branded marketing emails, your push notifications will not.

Google sorts branded emails into a promotional tab.

This means that they sometimes go unnoticed by consumers. Push notifications, however, are prominently displayed on smartphones. This means that people can interact with your brand quickly and directly.

“We think of it like an email channel but a little more fleeting—typically on email you’ll have a few hours to see clicks, engagement and revenue coming in,” Says Montgomery. “With push, you’ll typically see it coming in the hour or two after the push because a phone is just a faster interaction.”

Get Personal

Brands with generic mass-market strategies are struggling, while those that embrace personalization are succeeding.

SEE ALSO: Personalized Content Marketing

For example, the brand 1-800-Flowers uses the data collected about what people look at on their app. They also look at how often users open it. This data is used to segment and personalize their users’ experience on the app. It also informs what notifications they receive.

They can even access user contacts and see if they have and ApplePay set up. When customers use ApplePay their checkout page is restructured to show ApplePay at the top.

Rather than sending out generic push notifications, use personalization strategies to send relevant content to your app users when appropriate.

Brands Are Using Push Notifications More Than Ever

In 2016, mobile internet usage overtook desktop for the first time. People loaded more websites on smartphones, tablets, and other mobile handheld devices than on desktops for the first time. The popularity of mobile devices is undeniable. In fact, 80% of internet users own smartphones.

Ignoring mobile advertising is a mistake.

This means that your marketing strategy must involve and cater to mobile users. If you do not market to mobile users you are missing out on massive marketing opportunities.

Harnessing mobile marketing strategies generates sales. Push notifications are key to mobile marketing. You can use push notifications in the following ways:

  • Direct users to your social media channels
  • Promote products and services
  • Make app users aware of special offers
  • Build trust be delivering content of value
  • Engage users
  • Restore abandoned carts on e-commerce apps

If someone has already downloaded your app they are definitely interested in your brand, products, or services. Due to this, they will be more open to receiving communication from you.

App users will be more likely to interact and engage with you than other potential customers might be. As long as you do not overdo it, of course.  Those who download your app will probably be happy to receive push notifications from you. Notifications should be positive, deliver value, and let them know about promotions, sales, or other deals.

What do you think makes push notifications engaging? Comment below…


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