The strangest year in recent history caused incredible shifts in consumer behavior, most significantly between consumers and their phones. According to eMarketer, US adults added an entire hour to their daily digital time. Projections show that this increase will not decline post-pandemic, signaling that by 2022 total daily digital time per individual will surpass 8 hours a day. While there are high hopes for returning to normalcy in 2021, we can expect more screen time to become a part of our new normal.
Today, people are checking their phones more frequently, and staying engaged on them longer. Per eMarketer and Airship, 60% of smartphone users increased their screen-time amid the pandemic as a means to stay more connected. Mobile app audiences grew by 31% YOY in 2020–up from 16% in 2019–suggesting that people are open to new app experiences and new forms of mobile messaging. Given these trends, 90% of B2C brands are expected to own a mobile app by the end of 2021.
There are now unique opportunities for marketers interested in navigating the mobile frontier. For brands that want to exceed consumers’ newly heightened expectations, engaging, 1:1 mobile marketing is the future. Consumers expect relevant, stimulating, and cohesive mobile experiences that create a fluid customer journey. With the right strategy and technology, marketers can utilize mobile push and in-app notifications to maximize mobile moments by anticipating their consumer’s needs.
Maximize Mobile Moments through Notifications
It’s 2021 and consumers now have a new perception of their mobile devices. Over the past 12 months, we’ve seen a drastic change of heart when it comes to consumer’s willingness to share information with brands. Veering away from historical trends of hesitancy in sharing real-time data–location, preferences, and behavior, et cetera–people now readily raise their hands to share more information if the tradeoff is a better shopping experience.
Notifications, in particular, are defining the new power of mobile. Higher mobile adoption has driven notification opt-ins and open-rates, and consumers are now open to receiving and engaging with direct messages from brands. Americans check their phones 96 times a day, or once every 10 minutes, according to new research by Asurion. With that in mind, marketers are focusing on notifications, as they almost guarantee visibility every time a customer unlocks their smartphone. But as more businesses adopt a mobile-first approach, brands will need to prioritize dynamic, personalized notifications to differentiate themselves from more lock screen noise.
The Future of Notifications is Visual
What if notifications could be worth a thousand words? For some brands, they are. Data visualization allows brands to create custom imagery that tells a personalized story.
We’ve seen this evolution in traditional digital channels before. From emails to websites, compelling visuals simply tell a better story. Richer visual representations of the consumer/brand relationship are what builds meaningful connections. It’s no surprise that images make an impact. In fact, studies have found that the mind can process them 60,000 times faster than text, and 90% of the information transmitted to the brain is visual.
Brands now utilize images in mobile notifications to meet customer expectations at the exact moment of engagement. Visuals allow consumers to process, recognize, and associate mobile messages along the customer journey more quickly, building more meaningful connections with a brand. In fact, according to Airship, push notifications with an embedded image can generate as much as a 56% higher direct open rate on average than notifications without images.
Personalize Push and In-App for Deepened Customer Value
Now, marketers are dreaming bigger, and streamlining existing personalization strategies to mobile has become the missing piece in unifying digital channels. However, when it comes to brands carrying out mobile personalization, marketers have been slow to adopt. Currently, only 53% of marketers today even utilize personalized push notifications, despite 66% of mobile transactions occurring within in-app experiences.
As receptivity to apps, notification opt-ins, and m-commerce increases rapidly, they come together to heighten customer expectations for personalized experiences. New expectations have caused marketers to take a step back and evaluate their mobile data. In a study by Blueshift, 51% of marketers note that siloed data is difficult to access and hinders mobile personalization. With that in mind, 68% of marketers note that leveraging customer data to improve customer experience is a top priority.
Mobile personalization doesn’t have to be a struggle. It all comes down to how marketers connect the dots across their tech and data. For brands already using a mobile engagement platform, marketers can utilize APIs to tap into existing data points and create 1:1 images embedded that enhance their notifications. Based on personalized customer data and real-time behavior, dynamic imagery creates meaningful mobile experiences that motivate consumers. Dynamic, personalized visuals will ultimately establish a competitive advantage in the long run as customers continue to expect unified, 1:1 experiences across all channels in the customer journey.
Want to learn more about personalizing customer experiences across mobile and email? Register for our webinar with Airship here.