As a mobile app maker, if this hasn’t popped up in your mind from time to time, it really should:
Am I doing everything in the book to keep my customers engaged and happy while leaving them with a positive and memorable experience?
Even if it appears my customers are generally happy, how do I know for sure I’m headed in the right direction? Could there be a chance some customers might have walked off with a negative experience? How do I make things right, in such a scenario?
What makes customers tick? How do you measure your customer’s ‘appiness’ and satisfaction levels? Jump on board as we take an in-depth look at some of today’s best tried-and-true practices to keep customers appeased.
In addition, we’ll also be discussing effective ways of gauging your success rate, towards the bottom half of this article.
1. Always Have A Ready Ear
In a two-way dialogue with customers, it really is important to not just listen but listen ‘actively’. If you’re thinking about what to say, while the customer is posing questions or explaining what improvements they want to see, you’re not truly listening.
Pay close attention, and make notes of the changes that need to be made in your mobile business and marketing strategy in order to better accommodate customers. Make frequent follow-ups with your subordinates and make sure everybody comes through.
Some of the best ways of acquiring uncluttered feedback for an app developer/ marketer are:
Web forms and emails
Study negative comments and respond on the App Store page
Without a doubt, the power of social media gives you the ultimate medium for listening to customers. You’ll find plenty of feedback on channels like Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook. The real challenge (and profit) is how you can monitor it in a constructive way and use that information meaningfully.
How can you do this effectively? Use a tool like Mention to keep a check on your social media mentions. You can select what mentions you wish to track; for example if your mobile app is called Social Green, you’re going to track mentions of “Social Green” or even “Green apps”.
Mention notifies you every time the selected keywords are used or mentioned on popular social media channels or web pages. You can then proactively react to customer feedback and engage with them at the same time to resolve issues or address their questions and concerns. In a way, you are indirectly acquiring feedback.
2. A Customer Is Also A High-Value Partner
Like I said, effective dialogue with your customers is always a two-way street. Take their feedback seriously and as long as the requests sound reasonable, take appropriate action. Let your customer know how valuable their feedback is and that your business treats them as a valued partner.
For example, make it a habit to check these on a regular basis:
The comments users leave on your app store page; study them, get back to as many users as you can on a day to day basis.
Check your social media accounts; people usually leave comments by the dozens on Twitter each time they have a negative experience with an app, so you might want to check that first
The “support” email address you’ve left on your app store page needs to be checked on a frequent basis if not every day; reply to as many users as you can.
Users might also get in touch with you through your website Contact Form; you need to keep a close eye on that and be prompt with replies.
Here’s what Business Journal is doing to acquire customer feedback for their app, on a regular basis:
After using the app for three days, users are prompted with a dialog box which asks whether their experience has been a positive or negative one. If it’s positive, users are asked to leave a review; if it’s negative, they’re asked to get in touch with the developer. Users also have the option to dismiss feedback if they wish.
Looking for more inspiration? Check out Buffer app’s monthly “Happiness Report”. As you’re probably aware, Buffer app helps individuals and businesses manage their schedule for sharing and getting engagement – the best times to do it, that is. Also check out their blog, which has plenty of content on achieving customer happiness.
3. The Value Of Genuine Interaction
The happiest customers are those who get resolutions to issues in a timely manner, and what’s more, they are highly likely to share that positive experience with their friends and contacts. Never underestimate the power of ‘word of mouth’.
Every time you get to speak with customers on social media, make it a habit to present yourself as someone genuinely representing the mobile app; after all, you need to be armed with all the right information when customers have questions and concerns. Use customers’ first names when directly communicating and introduce yourself with just your first name right at the start of the conversation.
How exactly do you boost interaction with mobile customers? Asking yourself these questions is a good start:
How can I use social media-powered campaigns to further leverage exposure to new customers?
Is my website completely mobile-optimized? Does it display well on all devices? Are customers finding it difficult to locate contact information on my social or internet pages through multiple devices?
How can I take full advantage of my customer’s native device features to boost interactivity and usability? Test your app on every Android device if it’s an Android exclusive app. For example, the app should display as good on a Samsung S5 as it does on an LG G3.
In a bid to push customer engagement across their social media accounts, Starbucks made it a regular practice to welcome positive feedback as well as criticism. They also started an account “@MyStarBuckIdea” where customers could put forward suggestions on how to improve their Starbucks experience.
4. Be Transparent, Always
If you’re business practice or model isn’t transparent in this digital age, you’re on the losing end. Without complete transparency, you cannot build trust, satisfaction or a high degree of personalization with your customers.
For example, let’s say your customers want to purchase an app upgrade. You ask them to provide credit card information, telling them they will “eventually” get what they’ve paid for – this is a classic example of what we’d call a non-transparent approach.
Instead, tell them exactly how they can purchase and install it, how it adds functionality to the app, what can they do in case of any questions and/or concerns etc.
Being transparent means:
– You really have nothing to hide
– You welcome feedback
– You’re open to conversations any time
5. Reward Loyalty
Fact: People love getting rewards; it encourages certain user behavior, in this case, having the motivations to share your app with their friends and acquaintances. Why not reward them every time one of their friends starts using the app? This can be done through ‘in-app referrals’. AppVirality has been helping app developers by creating ‘UBER like’ unique referral campaigns for them, without having to code!
As an app marketer you may choose to offer some of these incentives when they sign up. How do you reward loyalty? You could offer discounts on select apps, free services after they upgrade or make in-app purchases. You see, these simple acts demonstrate your willingness to give the gift of reciprocation.
Rewards are an excellent way of providing your mobile customer with a warm sense of appreciation.
6. Your Mobile Customer Is Smart – Build Trust
To survive in this industry and outpace competitors, trust is everything. Customers today are smart and well-fed with the latest information; their research is up to date. There’s so much advertising going on not just through mobile, but also email and social media. Consumers are quick to identify misleading advertising and spam.
For instance, don’t create so much hype in an upcoming app teaser that it fails to live up to it.
Make sure your advertisements do not have any negative connotations linked to them. Your mobile brand ought to exemplify reliability and brilliance. You need to get your customer to identify your brand with dependability, quality and forward thinking. Believe me, if you even “accidentally” manage to fool your customers in any way, they’ll probably never return. Scorned customers usually don’t.
There’s nothing that turns off users more than having to navigate around an app with spammy ads. That shouldn’t stop you from giving your customers what they want; moderation is key and here’s how Taco Bell enjoyed even more mobile success with their ad campaign:
By giving special offers through an ad campaign, Taco Bell’s “Happy Hour” mobile drive won over many users. The ad was about a $1 drink specialty made available between 2 and 5 pm. A variety of ways were included to keep the user engaged with participating in that offer. The ad presented the user with two options:
Ask Taco Bell to remind you when Happy Hour starts (you could add it to your calendar app)every time you’re close to a Taco Bell place.
Share the information with a buddy; you’d send them a funny or interesting-looking GIF
Simple on the surface, wouldn’t you say? This gave rise to several ways a customer could stay engaged with the offer. The fast-food audience generally loves responding to “Happy Hour” type of deals. Taco Bell managed to create functionality which revolved around convenience – reminder activation when near a Taco Bell restaurant. Not to mention the addition “cool” bonuses such as inviting friends through a funny GIF.
The ad campaign was somewhat unassuming, but highly effective nevertheless.
Think your job’s done? We’re just getting warmed up!
Great customer service is one way of keeping your your users at their happiest. So from a customer service standpoint, here are a few ways of determining your success rate.
A. Retention Numbers
It’s no secret content customers give you the most business. If your products and services keep bringing them back on a regular basis, that’s a healthy sign that your app is achieving the desired results, while keeping your users happy.
B. Competitor Comparisons
It’s etched in stone, that at some point your customers will try out competitor apps or interact with them in one way or another. Even though customer retention and general satisfaction levels are reasonable ways of measuring success, it is crucial to know that you’re doing everything you can in order to stack up well against formidable competitors.
Check out your competitors’ apps, follow them on Twitter, get in touch with unhappy customers of your competitors and talk to them why they’re dissatisfied etc. You could also analyze their marketing strategy. Do whatever it takes.
C. Number Of Active Issues
Issues getting resolved quickly within a reasonable time frame generally means your customers are content and you can focus your time and energy on other areas. However, a high volume of issues is not a good sign and you need to address those sooner than later.
An app crashing too often will lead to users abandoning it, possibly uninstalling it or worse yet, move to a competitor app.
D. Number Of Resolved Issues
During any given week or month, see the ratio of resolved/unresolved customer service issues. Even if you’re running a highly successful business, there’s no guarantee you won’t be dealing with complaints at some point.
As long as you’re able to address those queries quickly, while providing customers with favorable outcomes, you will be seeing a lot of happy people flooding through your front door.
E. How Customers See Your Brand
How do customers identify with your brand? Is it a catchy phrase they like to use or perhaps a standout feature of your service? Do their opinions go in line with your expectations?
By getting specific feedback on how they see your brand, you can determine your standing in the eyes of your customer. In the process, you might even unearth certain qualities which need to be introduced in your app-making model, so that customers can start seeing your brand just the way they like it.
In short, if they see your brand being projected in a positive light, they are satisfied customers.
Useful: How to Measure App Success
F. The Time It Takes to Resolve Issues
Exceptional customer service is all about resolving issues quickly and feasibly. The lower your response time, the more pleased your customers will be.
As long as you keep the issue resolution response time low, you’re going to have content customers all year round.
G. NPS – What It Means
Happy customers will always recommend your mobile app to others. The rate at which people recommend it – Net Promoter Score – is essentially a good indicator of where your app stands, as far as keeping customers happy is concerned.
H. Keeping An Eye On Satisfaction Levels
You can track changes in customer satisfaction levels over time. So, let’s say, overall satisfaction levels have gone down in the last quarter, you can identify areas where changes in the app need to be made.
In-app ads can bag you extra cash, however, the less you have in your app, the more eagerly people will use it due to infrequent interruptions.
You could review a few top competitor apps, and start offering similar add-ons and features to your users, only better in some form. Offer higher capabilities at a lower price – you’ll be seeing conversions sooner than you think.
There You Go!
There you have it! Use these methodologies, tools and metrics to ensure your customers are happy. All successful app makers have exceptional customer support at the forefront.
Incorporate these tips into your daily customer acquisition drive, and you’re bound to hit multiple home runs and strike a chord or two with thousands of satisfied customers.