How to Use Push for Customer Re‑engagement
Re-engaging is what builds customer loyalty.
Winning a customer is easier than keeping a customer, if you don’t regularly re-engage with them. Web-based push notifications, in particular, are a useful way to stay in touch with your most interested and engaged customers. Here’s how to keep a customer once they buy from you, no matter what kind of customer they are.
What Do You Know?
Any relationship is founded on knowledge, and re-engaging with customers starts by asking what you know about them. Even a customer who’s made just one purchase can tell you quite a bit about themselves. Take what they’ve bought, for example; if you’re selling cloud services, and they buy a business subscription, you can safely assume they’re interested in business-level products. If they paid for it with a company card, it might be enterprise-level products.
Of course, you should be careful how much you infer from the information you’re given. Beyond a certain point, you’re ignoring what makes a customer unique. But a little thought goes a long way.
Why Did They Opt-In?
Browser-based notifications are particularly useful for re-engagement because they’re opt-in, and tied to the browser, not the platform. When a customer clicks “allow,” they’re informing you they want to hear from you regularly. So take a moment to consider the value proposition of opting in. Did you promise them VIP material, exclusive sales, or quick updates on new products? Why they opted in is not just a guide for what you should push out now, but a look into what they’re most interested in.
Brick and mortar or entirely online, it’s re-engagement that keeps customers coming through the doors.
What Else Might Interest Them?
Affiliate and third-party marketing is another approach to re-engagement, especially in industries where new products and services need time to be carefully designed, or where you have to be judicious in what you share with external parties. A good example is a car dealership. If a private consumer buys a car, they likely aren’t going to want to buy a new one a month later. But it’s safe to assume they have at least some interest in everything that goes with it, from insuring their car to fueling it to replacing parts to, at some point, trading it in and buying a new one. Affiliates and third parties you work with can engage with customers while offering useful services in their own right.
What Do They Click?
Another vital aspect of push notifications is that they offer a rich channel of data to analyze. What do various segments click among the notifications you push out? How long do they stay on the links you send? What do they do before and after they click on that link? Again, every customer is unique beyond a certain point, but, for example, if you push out word of a sale on aftermarket car parts, and a certain subset of your customers not only click, but also buy a specific part, you’ll need tools in place to spot this, and to drill deeper.
Push notifications offer a simple way to keep the interest of your most engaged, and most curious, customers. To learn more about the power of push, sign up for a live demo.
How To Target Discounts
Who doesn’t love a deal?
Everybody loves a deal or, at least, that’s how the traditional thinking in marketing goes. And it’s true, to a point, but there’s an unspoken addition to that statement. Everybody loves a deal on something they can actually use. That’s a bit trickier, but fortunately, it’s never been easier to pull off, and targeted discounts are perfect for browser-based push notifications.
What Are You Selling?
Before you push out any discount, of course, you should follow the best practices. To wit:
- A coupon or discount shouldn’t compromise profits.
- It should be substantial in some way; for example, 5% of $5000 is a lot more money that 10% of $50.
- Ideally, there should be a dollar amount tied to it.
- It should encourage a new behavior, like trying out a new product or buying from a new company.
In other words, don’t make up a discount and push it out. Design something that makes sense and will have genuine value to your customers.
What Are Your Segments?
The next question to explore is which segments value which products. A grocery store promoting a sale, for example, might send out a deal on a steak to a customer who tends towards the carnivorous, while a vegetarian would get a good price per pound on beans highlighted. A general sale is, well, general. Push notifications thrive on specificity and ideas, so while your customers can have both the beef and the beans, if they want them, it’s about getting them in the door in the first place.
It’s a great price. But do they want it?
What Have They Bought?
Another important aspect of targeting discounts is looking at past purchasing behavior. Customers who fairly consistently and regularly buy a product are easy enough to anticipate, but it’s also worth looking at customers who are a little more unusual. Sometimes there are interesting behaviors in the buying patterns, and it’s worth trying to get into the head of each segment a little bit and determine what makes the most sense to them, as a customer, to buy.
Do They Need Another?
That said, there is one pitfall for targeting discounts, and it’s one everybody’s run into, particularly with heavily automated discount targeting systems like those at Amazon. You make a big, expensive purchase, like a car, a phone, or a game console, and the robot asks you if you’d like to buy a second one. This is, of course, just silly and your customer will have a laugh, and while it’s embarrassing, it’s a minor missed opportunity.
But it can get much worse; ask anybody who’s had an embarrassing malady at the drug store, and has to quickly tuck a long sheet of coupons for treatments for that embarrassing malady in their bag or pocket. That is a bit more than just a missed opportunity, and your customer is going to remember it for far longer than you probably want. So, especially when automating, make sure that the recommendations are logical and tasteful; it’s a small touch that yields big dividends.
Ready to see what happens when smart personalization meets the urgency of browser-based push notifications? Get a free trial of Pushnami!
Give Your Customers Something With Push
Even a small gift is appreciated.
There’s a number on our phones we always dread seeing. It might be a business acquaintance, relative, or friend, but no matter what, the conversation always comes around to how they want something from you. And, just like you let that number go to voicemail, your push notifications can feel the same way to your customers. How do you make sure they pay attention? By flipping the equation, and ensuring you give them something instead.
We use “give” in a loose sense, here. We’re not saying you should bribe people to open your push notifications. If nothing else, that’s counterintuitive. What we mean is that your customer should get something out of the message.
One of the most dangerous problems in marketing is impersonal marketing. Nobody wants to be seen as a unit to be squeezed for profit, and yet there’s always marketing does almost precisely this. At best, it means you fade into the noise that surrounds all our lives. At worst, it’s actively alienating to otherwise loyal customers. You don’t care about them, so why should they care about you?
“Giving” in this context doesn’t necessarily involve some sort of financial or monetary incentive, like a coupon, although it can. For example, if you notice customers consistently buy products in a certain category or have expressed interest in a certain aspect of your industry, you might push them a podcast, video or blog post on that topic. It raises awareness of your company, true, but from your customer’s perspective, you’ve passed on something potentially useful and it shows you’re paying attention. Even if they don’t click, they’ll notice and appreciate the effort.
Who doesn’t like a gift?
How To Give
The first, and most important, question to ask is how this push notification potentially makes your customer’s life a little easier. Does it tell them about a new feature? Does it save them money? Does it save them a little time? You don’t have to move mountains here, but remember that browser-based push notifications are for your most loyal and engaged customers. You know these people well, and while no push notification can work miracles, small actions add up to big returns.
Equally important is to ask what your customers value. They tell you this, in ways big and small, every time they interact with you, through what they buy, what they click on, what they email to you. Over time, you should segment them as much by what engages them as what they purchase or interact with. The more understanding you have of value for them, the stronger your relationship will be.
Finally, understand that you’re not going to hit the mark every single time. If marketing were that good, we’d never have to worry about conversion rates. This is a process you’ll refine over time as you gather more data on your customer and develop a better understanding of them.
When you focus on understanding your customers, good things happen for your business. To see how push can help, sign up for a live demo of Pushnami!
How Push Can Promote Your Salon
Marketing your salon can be as relaxing as a warm shampoo.
Marketing your salon can be a job itself. With so many places to get a haircut, a blowout, or simply pampered a little bit to relax, salons need to be on top of every marketing technique. Browser-based push notifications, in particular, can help salons keep loyal customers and mint new ones. Here are just a few ways push notifications can help your salon.
Chairs need to be filled, and that makes forgotten appointments a particular problem for salons. Fortunately, an effective reminder system lives right in your browser and goes anywhere your customers are. Automating appointment reminders to be sent out via push, with a link to reschedule if necessary, will keep your stylists busy, and keep your customers happy, and can easily be tied to your online reservation system. You can also automate reminders for everything from color touch-ups to makeup tests, so if, say, customers get a little busy and forget to book an appointment online, the reminders will prompt them to get that touch-up.
Send Referral Links
Even the most advanced technology is second to that most powerful of marketing tools: word of mouth. But technology can help word of mouth move along by letting you send out referral links to loyal customers who want to spread the word. You can tie this to finished appointments, to praise on social media, or even offer a small reward to your customers for letting friends know that they’re a big fan of your salon. This is also handy if a customer has agreed to be featured on your social media channels; you can use push to send out the link, and cross marketing channels with ease.
Let push bring in customers so that you can cut their hair.
Offer Birthday Cuts
A nice touch, especially for customers who need to be prompted to take some time for themselves, is to send out a birthday message with a discount. Especially during busy weekdays and times where customers feel like they need a moment to breathe, a coupon arriving on their birthday can be a thoughtful gesture.
Send Out Video
Another useful aspect of push is to promote your video content or to help customers get the most out of their new haircut or their new products. If you’re creating videos to explain how something works, push it out to customers who have signed up—especially if it’s a product with a schedule, such as something that needs to be worked into the hair the next day.
And then, of course, there’s the reliable strategy of offering discounts and flash sales. However, if you plan to do this, make sure that the flash sales and other deals are exclusive to a VIP list, namely those who have signed up to receive push notifications in the first place. This not only helps customers feel special, but it also bolsters word of mouth and creates an incentive for casual visitors to start booking regular appointments.
There’s much more you can do with push notifications, depending on your salon and your clientele. But this should demonstrate the versatility that push notifications offer for your salon. Want to see it in action? Get a free trial of Pushnami!
Should You Push Out A Flash Sale?
Sudden sales can be a hit. But only if done right.
Everyone loves a surprise, and in recent years, the flash sale has become one of the most popular types of surprises. Flash sales, which last a very short period of time, usually a day or even a few hours, are incredibly popular with customers, and they’re often driven by browser-based push notifications. So, should you consider one, and how should you market it?
Flash Sales: Pros And Cons
You’ve likely seen flash sales in play elsewhere on the internet, and if it appears they’re a lot of work to set up, well, they certainly can be. Flash sales hinge on speed: They arrive out of nowhere, they offer steep price cuts your audience isn’t expecting, and then they disappear just as quickly, leaving you to turn around what will hopefully be a large number of orders. They can also be dependent on quantity, using the “doorbuster” model of shopping. Done right, they draw attention, bring in customers you otherwise wouldn’t be working with, and can sell a lot of stock in a short run of time.
The obvious drawback to a flash sale, at least for some, is that you have to make the prices enticing enough to be worth it. It’s not uncommon for flash sales to offer cuts as high as 50% or even more. Much depends on how your industry runs sales and what the ultimate payoff is for you; if, for example, this is your last-ditch effort to clear out some stock before you take a steeper loss on it, then a flash sale makes sense.
Another problem is they tend to draw bargain hunters who aren’t necessarily going to become loyal customers. Often a key argument against these sales is those self-same bargain hunters, who pick over the racks, take their discount and vanish. Finally, there’s the question of getting the word out; because of its speedy nature, flash sales set up a problem of being there and gone for loyal customers and casual browsers slow on the draw.
Ready for a rapid sale?
Push And Flash Sales
While push can’t figure out your pricing for you, it can solve a few other concerns and help ensure a flash sale is a hit. To start with, you should have a push VIP list for your flash sales. Your best customers are the first to learn about the sale via push notification and perhaps get a few extra hours to pick their favorites before buying if there are limited quantities.
Secondly, the push notification should be the “key” into the flash sale. The link they click should take them to the sale, and preferably have some copy up top explaining the time limit, and if you want, inviting them to share the link on social media. Your customers will feel like gatekeepers, and this will keep the mercenary shoppers to a minimum.
Finally, limit flash sales to an occasional phenomenon. If customers know a price cut will inevitably appear in their notifications, they’re not going to be interested in the full price. Time it to when you know they’re interested and a deal is most likely to boost conversion rates.
Ready to see the power of flash sales and push paired together? Get a free trial of Pushnami!
Why Push Offers Should Be Exclusive
Everyone wants to be a member.
We all want to feel like we’re part of the cool group. It’s a feeling that starts almost as soon as we begin socializing and never quite goes away. And it’s also a feeling that you can use to build customer loyalty by creating an in-group of your very own: namely, a push notification list that shares exclusive offers.
Exclusive For You
Exclusivity is nothing new as a marketing concept, of course. Just look at your keyring and count up the loyalty cards you scan at drugstores and supermarkets. But what stands out about push notifications, particularly browser-based push notifications, is that they allow customers to opt into that exclusive group. In fact, that exclusivity can extend well beyond deciding to accept notifications, and into great deals for the things they buy. While there’s nothing wrong with promoting a sale across multiple channels, with push you have a rare opportunity to do something unique. One of the advantages of browser-based push is that your most loyal customers opt-in first, and since you have data on what they buy and what they like, you can use that to create segments and aim coupons and deals squarely at that segment.
Let’s say, for example, you run a clothing company and you have a segment of your VIP list that loves coats of all kinds. Instead of pushing a store-wide, or even a list-wide, sale, you can push coat sales directly to them. The value, for them, is they get better deals on the things they want to buy from you. But on a subconscious level, what you’re also offering is a chance to be heard, to be catered to, to have their input considered. You’re not just calling them a very important person, you’re showing them that you believe that by finding exactly the deals they’d like most and delivering those offers directly to them.
Build a VIP room, anywhere in the world.
The VIP Room
The best part is you don’t even have to announce that you’re doing this. Instead, you should look at your segments and ask yourself what they’re most interested in, and then start sharing deals you can only get via push notifications. Make sure to be clear that they can only get the deal from the push notification, lest they try to shop via another channel. Present it as a reward for opting in, or for being a great customer.
This does much more than drive sales, although you can expect that to happen as your customers feel more important. It also spreads the word, increasing opt-ins and reducing opt-outs. While there’s no bulletproof way to get opt-outs down to 0%, customers often leave because they feel like they’ve been shoved into a digital paddock. But when they see custom deals, when they see messages that are personalized beyond their name, they feel, well, like a very important person.
VIP deals not only reinforce that opting in is a net positive, they help cement customer loyalty and help you sell products. If you’re ready to see the power of a VIP list in action, get a free trial of Pushnami!
Push Notifications And Your Media Business
It’s not just the airwaves you should command.
TV and radio often have to deal with the label of “legacy media.” But the reality is often more complex than just airwaves versus WiFi. When every radio station puts out Spotify playlists and every TV station is on YouTube, often broadcasters and media companies are in a unique place to use “new media” to maximum advantage. And browser-based push notifications can be core to that strategy.
To start, push notifications can help you raise the profile of your promotions and events. Even something as simple as letting your fans sign up to get alerts for when you’re adding new songs to the rotation, or to alert them when you’re running a block of songs or changing the time slots of popular shows, can be useful. Whether you’re selling tickets to a festival, setting up a marathon of a classic TV show, or simply introducing a new on-air personality, push notifications complement your strategy.
Tie Into Social Media
Social media is a useful marketing channel for media stations, but it’s also one that can be difficult to be seen on. Even viral posts quickly get washed under by the constant churn of timelines and updates. Push notifications are useful for drawing attention to your social media posts or focusing fan attention on a particular type. For example, TV stations hoping to encourage fans to view them on a new video platform, or to come to their site directly, might push out video links to that site. Of course, it’s worth remembering social media platforms have notifications of their own, so look into methods of sorting out those getting social notifications from those who want browser-based push.
There’s more than one place to get your content out there.
Augment News Coverage
One of the more surprising ways push notifications are handy is that they allow newshounds in your area to opt-in and get news pushed straight to their browsers in one of the most direct feeds. You can even configure different options for different types of coverage. Local sports fans, local politics, and more can easily be set up to be pushed out as new clips and streams are uploaded to your social media channels or apps. It can increase viewership, of course, but it’s also handy to ensure you’re kept in mind as a news source in general. If you’re first with the news, that helps draw attention.
What Else Drives Value?
Beyond that, it’s worth asking yourself what your fans value the most from you. What’s great about browser-based push is that it offers one crisp, immediate action that your fans can engage in. So what do they most want from you? To know what the top headlines are every day? To know the setlist of each show from your station? Alerts about changes to tonight’s lineup? A heads-up that a new episode of their favorite show is arriving tonight?
Push is only limited by what your fans are interested in, and what you can most vividly communicate. So ask yourself what they’re most interested in, and you’ll find push helps you get the message out. If you’re ready to see how browser-based push notifications can turn casual viewers into loyal fans, get a free trial of Pushnami!
When To Give Something Away
Is a free gift worth giving?
Everybody likes “free,” right? Who doesn’t want to get something for nothing? That’s been the logic behind the marketing strategy of the free giveaway since there have been things to give away. But we’ve all had the experience of getting something for free and finding it disappointing. So, when looking for customers to opt-in, should you look at giving something away for free?
Is It Viable?
The next question to take on is whether it’s fiscally viable. Many giveaways for opt-ins on browser-based push notifications are digital, of course. Usually, those who opt-in get a coupon for a certain amount off their purchase, or some sort of free download, like an ebook. But none of those options are cheap just because you don’t have to pay to ship them. Let’s say you put up a coupon and there’s a big run on your opt-ins, with everyone using the coupon. Are you taking a fiscal hit in that scenario? The same is true of a free album, or an ebook, or a movie. You have to pay to get it made, so will the cost be worth the reward?
Does It Offer Value?
The next point to consider is what value it offers to your audience. Say, for example, you’re offering a coupon. You can set the percentage to anything you want, but there’s a threshold. You’re going to get more takers at 20% off than you are at 5% off. Similarly, there’s only value to something like an ebook if it’s well-written, relevant and, if necessary, regularly updated. Businesses who are looking at digital marketing have little use for a treatise of the usefulness of direct mail. If the item has value in of itself, then it’s worth giving away.
Everybody loves gifts… but can they use them?
Does the Value Align?
Then there’s the question of the value your push notifications offer. If you’re using them exclusively to run discount promotions, for example, then your giveaway needs to align with that. This is for both you and your customers. A giveaway with little appeal to your target audience isn’t going to be very effective, but those who do opt-in will be disappointed with what you’re pushing out and may decide to opt-out.
For you, the problem goes beyond the opt-out. You’ll have spent on a giveaway that doesn’t appeal, a problem in of itself, but you’ll also set your campaign back as you work to align this aspect of it with your goals and bring in the audience you need.
Does It Work?
Finally, there’s an important metric to track, namely, the conversion rates on your free gift. People may opt-in for the free gift, but do they collect it? Do they bother using it at all? This is important not just to get a sense if there’s a value for you, but also to get a sense of what your audience is interested in. Additionally, it can guide you as to future conversion rates; if a free gift has so-so conversion rates, but a big sale or a new entry in your blog sees a spike in rates from the same audience, that’s a hint that the gift doesn’t matter, and that you might want to shift your value proposition. Want to see the power of free in action? Get a free trial of Pushnami!
Should You Push A ‘Blind’ Offer?
Going in cold is scary. But will it work?
“But why aren’t we pushing this offer to everybody?” Marketing departments and small businesses will often question the value of marketing segments, especially with deals that seemingly appeal across the board. And, in truth, it’s worth asking if something is worth a global push, sometimes called a ‘blind’ offer, to your entire list—sometimes. We can lose the forest looking at trees. So, should you push globally? And what’re the best practices if you do?
Going In Blind
‘Blind’ offers, so named because they ignore the details of your customer base, used to be a fairly common tactic. In fact, direct mail is still built on this idea. Direct mail marketers will send thousands or even millions of pieces of mail in hopes of getting a response rate of 1% or even less.
It only fell out of favor in recent years because it was designed for an era where we didn’t have the data tools to more narrowly target customers. Until the advent of Google Analytics and complex software that evaluates reactions to everything, customers were mostly only known by one factor: Showing interest in a business. Once businesses could better understand their customers, global pitches fell out of favor.
That doesn’t mean they’re necessarily bad, however. Keep in mind also that technology allows you to create sub-campaigns, so pushing out a global message can just be the start of a larger push. You’ll see global pushes for brand realignments, big world-spanning campaigns, and broad-appeal products. But does that mean it’s right for you?
The main point you’ll need to stick with is what your promised value is to each of your segments. In some cases, you may be working in such a niche industry or with such a small number of clients, every push is effectively global, after all. Nobody is going to angrily opt out because you sent them a coupon. But if you’ve got a large list of customers who have opted in, your value propositions are designed to appeal to a number of narrow silos within your customer base, it may be difficult to justify ignoring all that you’ve learned for the sake of one campaign.
The cold call can return, in push form, but should it?
Best Practices For Blind Offers
- Keep an eye on frequency, especially if you’ve got weekly or daily campaigns already running. Remember blind offers should be used sparingly. Ideally, they’ll be deployed at launches of new campaigns that will touch every segment or when there’s major news about your company.
- Before going for any blind offer, ask yourself sincerely if you can fit the value proposition of your many segments under the same umbrella. If you have to omit even a substantial minority of your segments, it simply may not be worth it.
- Blind push pairs best with substantial sub-campaigns aimed at your segments. For example, you might announce a new product to your entire list, and then follow up with use cases for each of your segments.
- Don’t overthink things. Coupons, big company news, and other things that are of primary interest to any customer who’s opted into your notifications, for any reason, can be given a ‘blind’ push.
Ready to see how push notifications can build customer loyalty and sales? Get a free trial of Pushnami!
Why You Should Ask Every Customer To Sign Up For Push Notifications
Always ask, always.
One of the best aspects of browser-based push notifications is that they’re opt-in. As a result, you get a list of your most dedicated, most engaged customers to interact within a powerful marketing channel unlike any other. But many of those new to notifications find themselves wondering just who they should ask. The answer is everyone.
You Miss The Shots You Don’t Take
To be clear, not everyone who visits your site, and not even everyone who buys from your site regularly, is going to opt into getting browser-based notifications. There can be all sorts of reasons for this, ranging from a personal policy of never opting in to just that they’re satisfied with how your relationship as customer and business operates now, and they see no need to change it.
At the same time, many businesses are worried about seeming too aggressive in their sales tactics. Are we emailing customers too much? Is our social media presence a little too self-promotional? Does our brand feel organic and friendly, or is it forced and awkward? Everyone dreads getting the red S, for “spam,” burned onto their marketing presence, especially in an environment where even a minor misreading of the room can get a business buried on social media.
All this can add up to a strategy to limit where you ask customers to opt into your push notifications, and sometimes, this strategy does make sense depending on how you implement them. If you’re installing push notifications strictly so your users have a useful tool for tracking packages or to get a reminder to renew their subscriptions, and that’s all you’re interested in using them for, that’s a great way to add value and build customer loyalty. But you also miss the shots you don’t take.
Everyone can get to yes.
Leave A Door Open
It’s worth remembering that people hate spam and loud marketing pushes because they’re impersonal and in some cases almost abusive. We’ve all felt the discomfort of high-pressure sales tactics laid on us by a salesperson who views us as another hash mark under his or her name, and we all, reasonably, don’t want our customers to feel they’ve been put in the same position.
But think through the value for your customers. What do you want to do? Create a “VIP list” to give them first access to sales? Ensure that they’re the first to know about new products? Offer seasonal coupons and other values to your most engaged, most loyal customer base? Or, put another way, think of this as a transaction where your customer is paying you a small amount of their valuable time and attention. What are you offering in return?
Being able to answer this question lets you open the door to asking for the opt-in, every time. It’s not rude or aggressive to ask for a moment of somebody’s time, as long as you respect their time and don’t abuse the privilege. At root, if you’re looking to offer browser-based push notifications, you’re looking to offer value, not pushing your customers around. Ready to see the incredible power of offering value? Get a free trial of Pushnami!