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Creating an Effective Engagement Strategy for Your Mobile App Users

December 12, 2013BySriram Krishnan

We launched mobile app ads for engagement and conversion in October to help mobile app marketers and developers not only grow their apps, but keep users active within them. We wanted to share some early success stories and explain how developers are using Facebook’s mobile app ads and push notifications with Parse to effectively engage existing app users.

Mobile App Ads Success Stories

YPlan, a mobile app that offers a carefully curated shortlist of the best events in town every night, started using mobile app ads to encourage their existing users to come back to their app and book new ticket deals. They saw immediate success with a 20% increase in paid bookings, and 215% ROI for their mobile app ad spend.

“Facebook's new engagement with mobile app ads is providing a unique channel for YPlan to interact with our customers," said Rytis Vitkauskas, the CEO of YPlan. "The impact on the business has been strong. With results like this after just one month, we see this channel contributing to our overall CRM strategy in the long term.”

Movile, a mobile entertainment provider in Latin America, used mobile app ads to bring existing users back to their Play Kids app. In fact, they found that 16% of their premium subscriptions on iOS were directly driven by their engagement campaign with Facebook. Even better, they realized a 60% lower cost per app purchase with Facebook when compared to other channels.

Eduardo L. Henrique, Co–Founder & Head of U.S. Operations for Movile, notes: "Our team have been doing push notifications and also in-app pop-ups to drive conversions to premium but the segmentation that the Facebook platform provides is much more powerful than everything I see in the market to re-engage users and convert them to paid users.”

Wait, But What About Push?

Movile and YPlan both represent two developers that tested various engagement channels to find which worked best for them. In fact, one common question we hear from developers is how our mobile app ads compare to push notifications. Each method has its strengths and can be highly effective when used in the appropriate scenario.

Due to their immediate, attention-grabbing nature, push notifications should be reserved for highly relevant messages that are time- or location-sensitive or that are related to the app’s functionality. Parse offers automated segmentation, geolocational push, and time-sensitive release, so your push strategy is more effective. Further, with Parse Analytics, you can track the effectiveness of your push campaigns easily, and use customizable options to drill down into how your users are engaging with your push content.

Facebook's mobile app ads are better for longer engagement or retention campaigns. Since they appear in News Feed alongside organic content, you can show them more frequently, matching user expectations. In addition, you can also show a beautiful, compelling image, text copy, and any of seven different customized calls to action. If you want deep measurement, use app events for iOS or for Android, and see downstream actions taken as a result of your engagement campaigns – for instance, how many purchases resulted from your campaign.

Thinking About Best Use Cases

Below, we outlined some of the best use cases for push notifications versus mobile app ads to help you think about your user engagement strategy.

Creating an effective engagement strategy for your mobile app depends on your goals and needs. Push notifications and mobile app ads are two engagement channels that can serve different goals, but act complimentary as you interact with your users.

For more resources, please see our pages on mobile app ads for engagement and conversion, Parse Push, our YPlan case study, and some tips we put together on how to drive installs in the post holiday season.