Use This Simple Push Notification Strategy in Your Mobile Marketing to Keep Your Readers Hooked

Lisa Scheiblhofer
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When it comes to mobile marketing, push notifications are an underhyped strategy. But why? Probably because with mobile push notifications it’s quite tough to find a balance. If you use too few, it won’t help you at all. But if you send them out too often, it’s annoying for the user.

That’s why today, I want to share a simple strategy that makes your mobile marketing life much easier. From now on you’ll be able to use push notifications effectively and with ease. I will get to it in a minute. But before that, let’s have a quick look at why you absolutely want to use push notifications.

Already in 2016, more people used the internet on their phone—instead of a desktop computer. That’s why it’s now easier than ever to reach your audience through mobile marketing.

“It’s hard to over-hype the power of mobile push notifications. For the first time in human history, you can tap almost two billion people on the shoulder.”—Ariel Seidman, CEO of Hivemapper

Push notifications in mobile marketing have so much potential to engage and re-engage your users. They are so important for user retention. Most people download an app, open it once and never come back to it. A simple push notification can remínd them that your app exists.

The big goal of mobile push notifications is to get them to open up the app more frequently. But there’s more. Push notifications can also be part of a smooth user experience. It can remind the user that they have to act on something or it can give them important updates.

Let’s take a closer look at how to use push notifications in mobile marketing to keep your readers hooked.

Mobile Marketing 101

According to a study by Localytics, 52% of users have push notifications enabled on their smartphones. Sounds promising, right? Still, there’s one thing you have to be aware of.

Mobile marketing works differently, depending on if they use Android or iOS. If a person uses an Android device, they subscribe to any push notification by default. And Android allows them to unsubscribe manually anytime.

But on iOS, you have to ask every user for permission. Only if they accept can you send them push notifications. That’s why about 43.9% of iOS users opt-in for push notification. For Android users, we're talking about 91.1%.

So, you can expect to generally reach a broader audience of Android users. But iOS users trust your brand even more. After all, they allowed you to send them notifications. It’s an indicator that they want to hear more from you.

Now let’s get into the strategy and the first thing you need.

The Anatomy of a Push Notification

To create a winning notification, you want to know how it’s built. Push notifications are short. Usually, they have a title, one or two sentences, and an icon.

Each part has a certain purpose. The icon represents your brand so that the user knows which app it’s from. The title and the text are where the real meat’s at. They have to be short and hard-hitting. In the copy, tell people what to do. Why should they open up the app RIGHT NOW?

Now if you follow this anatomy, you’ll create generic push notifications that work quite okay. But you can step up your game. According to a study by Leanplum, you can 4x the open rate of your push notifications. How so? Simply by personalizing the content. What could that look like?

Segment Your Audience

Want to maximize the power of your mobile marketing? Segment your audience and send individualized push notifications. And the numbers speak for themselves. When it comes to generic notifications, about 15% of the users who click on it convert. For segmented notifications, according to Localytic, it’s a stunning 54%.

Now, how do you segment your audience? The fastest and safest way is by tracking your audience's behavior. Let me give you an example. Maybe you have a very active user. They open up the app every day. But one day they suddenly stop. Then, there’s another user who hardly ever uses the app at all.

Right here is the thing you have to understand: these two users show very different behavior. So it wouldn’t make much sense to send them the same generic push notification. Instead, you segment according to their behavior and use notifications that fit their situation.

For the first user—the one who suddenly stopped using your service—it might be enough to tell them that you missed them. They were loyal to begin with, so it could be a bit easier to reactivate them. For the second user who wasn’t much engaged in the first place, you maybe need a more benefit-driven CTA. Either way, you don’t want to send them the same thing.

Segmentation isn’t the only thing you want to consider.

Push Notification Etiquette

Now to play the mobile marketing game strategically and effectively, here are some things you want to pay attention to.

Think about the timing when you send out notifications. Brands made this mistake in the past. They sent out notifications in the middle of the night. Not very effective, as most users are asleep. Make sure the sending time fits with the target group.

“A great mobile push notification is three things: timely, personal and actionable.” – Noah Weiss of Slack.

Push notifications in mobile marketing work because the user already trusts you. They trust you enough to download your app, for example. Don’t abuse the trust by spamming them with irrelevant notifications.

Make sure the notification is actually valuable to your audience. And of course, never send out anything offensive or be too intrusive. Now let me show you some winning strategies you can use right away.

Evergreen Mobile Marketing

Nearly 90% of all apps get downloaded and opened only once. Only 16% of users try out an app more than twice. That means there’s a lot of unused potential in mobile marketing. Push notifications might help.

There are some types of push notifications that are proven to work. Use them in your strategy right away to create some results. What do they look like?

Limited-time offers: These work well if you don’t abuse them. There has to be a good reason why it’s a limited time offer. And you can’t repeat the offer every week. It will lose credibility if you use it too often.

Tell them you miss them: Push notifications like this work well for a loyal audience. Everyone likes to be appreciated.

Left in cart: This works extremely well for eCommerce stores. If a user leaves an item in their cart but never checks out, send them a reminder that it’s still there. They might buy.

How Much Is Too Much?

Push notifications in mobile marketing are a game of balance. You have to find that “sweet spot”. But let’s talk numbers. How many should you send out?

Research shows that 37% of users disable the notifications after they receive two to five messages per week. And 33% would stop using an app COMPLETELY if they got six or ten notifications a week.

So while it depends on your audience, you might want to stick to one or two notifications a week. Make sure they are segmented and relevant for maximum results.


Push notifications in mobile marketing are all about balance. Don’t overuse but also don’t underhype them. The copy has to be on point as it’s very short. For a winning strategy, use notifications which are valuable and give the user a good experience. You’ll get the best results if your audience is segmented and the notification is individualized.

Do you want to take your push notifications to the next level? All our copywriters are dedicated to your success. And they are also marketing specialists. Get in touch today.

Lisa Scheiblhofer

Lisa Scheiblhofer believes that the most important part about copywriting is human emotion and connection. Because of this, she focuses on making your message speak to the heart of your audience.

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