Love After Download: 5 Ways to Keep Them Coming Back

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So they downloaded your app. Huge win—but now what? To forge an authentic relationship with new customers, they must interact with—and continue using—your app, particularly in the first 30 days. The first month is critical because the majority of apps lose 90% of new customers during this time, so there’s no more critical time to encourage engagement. After all, you can’t share all of the powerful things that your app can do if they don’t know how to use it (or worse: uninstalled you).

What’s the key to piquing your customers’ interest from the moment your app enters their lives? “Provide your customers with valuable, actionable information to create a more engaging everyday experience for customers to share with your brand,” advises Marissa Aydlett, Appboy’s vice president of marketing. “If you start off on the right foot, you can develop a long-term relationship with your customers. Inspire them to interact–keep taking action–and you’ll see an increase in retention uplift of 130% in the first 60 days.”

DON’T: Miss your window

Send your welcome email immediately after download. Your new customer is engaged right this second, and they’ve triggered the relationship by downloading. Now, it’s your move: show them exactly why they should get to know you better.

Use deliberate language in your email to show off your brand personality and clearly define the first action your users should take. Should they update their user profile? Use a feature within the app? Concentrate on that one specific action in the welcome email and use subsequent emails to focus on additional actions.

DO: Make them feel one-of-a-kind

Personalized messages increase conversions by 27%. Leverage data you have about your customers to tailor helpful messaging for them. Whether it’s including their first name or a response to an action they’ve taken in-app, use this data to make your customers feel like the app—and all corresponding messaging—were created specifically for them.

DO: Be proactive with push messaging

Your users need to easily—and quickly—discover what’s interesting, unique, and helpful about your app before they lose interest. But first, they must actually interact with it. Use push notifications to keep your app top of mind and get new users to make a habit of using it. Keep these push notifications under 25 characters and target them based on customer behavior or preferences. Also, use actionable language with a sense of urgency to encourage immediate use of the app. For example, a key time for a push notification is when announcing an app update or a flash sale within the app.

Sending a push notification of this nature to new customers during their first week using the app increased retention by 71% during the first two months. Get your users in the app and make the benefits of using it undeniable, and they’ll be more likely to stick around and become loyal, lifelong customers.

DO: Give customers a clear roadmap

While you know why your app is great and why each feature is beneficial, your customers don’t. That’s why onboarding, or walkthroughs, are essential—particularly if your app requires gestures that aren’t already intuitive to yield certain results. Use in-app messaging to guide them through using your app for the first time. Point out valuable tools and provide them with helpful tips. However, don’t overdo it. Avoid including too many messages within a short timeframe, and make it easy for users to hide the message and get back to interacting the app (which is the goal).

DON’T: ‘Set it and forget it’

Your customers and their behaviors are constantly evolving—and so should your strategies to get them to continuously interact with your app. Monitor the results across channels to see what’s working and what’s not. And, regularly A/B test your campaigns so you can continuously improve your engagement and conversions.

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