How to amplify your customer loyalty program using a mobile app?
The mobile phenomenon is very real and very much here. With this in mind, we look at the prevalence of mobile apps and their consequence on customer loyalty. Mobile app uptake is continuing to grow with each year seeing an increase. Mobile marketing is becoming essential for brands with 70% saying the channel was a critical enabler of products and services.
Focusing on loyalty, mobile apps cover a multitude of key elements vital to customer engagement and are worth investigating for your brand.
Mobile apps and Loyalty
Studies show Loyalty efforts are the most popular type of mobile campaign and prove quite successful for businesses. Mobile App loyalty can offer a seamless loyalty experience, tailored rewards, personalisation, frictionless payment and overall increase engagement and the customers’ experience with a brand.
Customers continue to dictate to brands their expectations and are willing to give personal information to brands in order to achieve these expectations.
Due to the growing use of smartphones and the availability of data and wifi, consumers are constantly connected.
Don’t know the capital of Switzerland? We google it, using our phones (The answer is Bern to save you from googling this time). Don’t know where the store is? We google it, using our phones. This constant access to information has lead consumers to expect immediate acknowledgement for their actions.
In addition to being convenient and responsive to consumers’ expectations. Mobile and cloud-based apps allow brands to gather customer data and use insights based on customer behaviour, this enables brands to effectively reward their customers. With that said, it makes sense why mobile loyalty apps are proving to be an integral part of customer loyalty. Brands like Starbucks and Amazon.com have embraced mobile apps for loyalty and have seen dramatic results in take-up.
Over 1 million Starbucks customers are registered on the “My Starbucks” app. This has been a great attribute to Starbucks loyalty program success. Starbucks have seen an increase in customer engagement and customer retention since they added a rewards-based loyalty program and app.
So how do mobile apps increase engagement?
Mobile apps and engagement.
According to research conducted by Localytics, app users who opened a push notification have 53% more monthly sessions compared to users who have not engaged with push notifications. Brands that utilize push notifications through their apps see a higher engagement rate with the app.
Why? Using push notifications allows brands to intensify their personalisation with individual customers. Push notifications take into account users actions within the app and react accordingly, based on the brand’s customer data.
In-app messaging enables brands to communicate directly with users through the app. Research by Localytics saw a 21% increase in monthly app users compared to those that didn’t take advantage of the in-app messaging functionality.
Similar to push notifications, brands should use in-app messaging to personalise interactions with users, set up reactionary messages to events and further segment users by preferences. While app engagement is varied across different sectors personalisation within mobile apps have a significant impact on customer engagement and in turn retention.
Strategy: Research your competitors and your target audiences, devise a comprehensive strategy for the first 3 to 6 months of launching your app. Revise and continue to tailor your strategy to best suit your business objective and customer needs.
Awareness: Promote your new program, offer incentives for customers to download the app. Dedicate the proper resources to ensure a strong launch.
In-app engagement: Make use of in-app engagement to encourage customers to use the app and interact with your brand.
Segmentation: The more customer data you gather the more you learn about your customer’s behaviours, interests and hobbies, use these insights to strengthen communications and product and service offerings.
While we can’t ignore the fact that 43% of respondents weren’t interested in redeeming points via mobile reward program apps. Mobile apps are best suited to mid-sized markets or established brands in order to get the greatest return on investment. Mobile app development and ongoing support can be expensive, especially at the initial stages, so the research and strategy mentioned above are very important.