Call it the proximity principle or the law of attraction: People tend to form strong bonds with the people—and the things—that are closest to them.
That’s why mobile has always represented such an incredible opportunity for marketers: Your customers are already strongly attached to the devices they’re carrying in their bags, pockets, and hands—and by association, they have the potential to feel serious love for your brand.
“Your messaging can reach and impact people during their most personal, everyday moments—as they’re reaching for their phone right after walking up, or relaxing with their iPad after work,” says Mark Ghermezian, Appboy’s co-founder and CEO. “And because of that level of intimacy, it’s even more critical that your messaging feel authentic and personalized.”
In other words, your outreach needs to connect emotionally. So how can you achieve that through a medium that’s so distinctly, well, digital? Ask yourself these three things about your messaging before pushing your next campaign live.
Does it feel personalized?
Yes, at the end of the day, you have something to sell—but it definitely shouldn’t feel that way what when customers interact with you on their mobile devices. “Your messaging should feel less like a call to action, and more like the start of a conversation,” adds Ghermezian.
You can safely assume your customers are being bombarded by marketing messaging in every traditional and digital channel possible—and they’re definitely becoming cynical to top-down scattershot messaging. Earning their engagement means taking a customer-centric view with more personalized messaging that adds value to their daily lives.
The key is to take what you’ve learned about that customer via your mobile CRM to deliver content that’s genuinely beneficial to them. For instance, if you know that your customer has been searching for a new blender, you could email her a graphic that that highlights the top three features to look for in a new appliance, or a series of smoothie and soup recipes. A few days later, follow up with a promo code for the blender, paired with personalized language gleaned from her customer profile.
Am I engaging their senses?
For now, your customers can’t taste or smell your marketing messages (and that’s probably a good thing). You can, however, elicit a greater emotional response through your appeals by striking the right balance of visual and auditory stimulation. That’s why videos—with their moving images and varying sounds—excite viewers far more than a static banner ad.
Mobile devices have yet another sensory leg-up on other marketing channels in that they offer the opportunity to interact with the user through haptic touch (vibrations).
Users are actually conditioned to respond from cues on their devices such as sounds and sensations (which is why you can’t help grabbing your phone when you feel it vibrate or hear it ding during a meeting).
When used judiciously, elements such as haptic vibration or a notification ding with your mobile messaging allows you to tap into an existing conditioned emotional response that will be associated with your marketing communications. Just don’t overdo it: Users first emotional response will be to dump you, fast.
Have I truly tested this message?
Even if you’re the mobile marketing whisperer, and you totally “get” what your customers want, it’s still important to ask them. You can do this indirectly through multivariate testing, which can examine a variety of factors that go into your marketing campaigns—all at the same time.
In addition to testing more traditional factors, such as delivery times and subject lines, multivariate testing allows you to experiment with emotionally driven variants, such as the tone and style of the text (quirky vs. insidery), placement of images and the use of haptic vibration. For instance you, may want to see if the now-standard, “We miss you, we want you, please come back” language is still effective in converting lapsed users to active ones—and the kinds of incentives that might actually get them to return. Rather than sending yet another coupon code, you could try providing early access to a private sale, or bonus points in their loyalty account.
We all want to squeeze more ROI from our marketing efforts—but increasing that bottom line is ultimately tied to how well we can create create connections that enhance the customer experience. Take an authentic, personalized approach, and your messages have a much better chance of making a real impact.