Before you dive in, ask yourself: who’s using Choice Hotel's app? No marketing campaign will get the results you’re looking for if it’s not targeting the right user. Here’s how you can be sure you’re attracting high-value users to your app.

 

1. How’s your messaging?

All of the messaging you use to promote your app must be clear and concise. It sounds obvious, but double check (with testing or multiple editors) whether two things are clear:

1. What Choice's app is?

2. Why consumers (and guests) should care/use it

Travel apps are popular. The market is crowded. It’s more difficult to stand out in a crowd. If your messaging is doing the work it’s supposed to do, you can be confident that it’ll attract the type of users that you’re looking for.

 

2. What are your high-value acquisition channels?

Let’s take a look at your user acquisition plan. Which channels are bringing in users with strong engagement and life-time value (LTV)? Don’t focus on app downloads as a key metric. You’re not winning if an acquisition channel attracts thousands of users who churn days later. Closely monitor LTV to make sure you’re attracting high-value users.

 

Wait, how do I attract high-value users?

Invest in a mobile marketing platform that gives you insight into attribution. This way, you’ll know where high-value users are coming from since you’ll probably be advertising in several different places, like social media and paid search. Understand each channel’s true impact by tracking the sessions and LTV of the average user these channels bring in. Cut channels that attract a high rate of users who churn and invest the additional spend in places where you’re obtaining high-value users.

If there are groups of users that are particularly relevant to your app, take advantage of features like Facebook’s Lookalike Audiences. Lookalike Audiences lets you send Facebook a list of valuable customers. Facebook will show your ads to Facebook users who are similar to your high-value customers.

 

3. Have you created user funnels?

Once you’re attracting the right audience to your travel app, you can create funnels that give you insights into how your users behave, and how your app drives results.

Understanding the app user lifecycle is crucial to this part of your mobile marketing strategy. Where your users are in the lifecycle should help dictate how you engage with them. Different marketing channels work at different points. With a solid mobile engagement platform, you can set up different funnels to evaluate user flows, conversion paths, and in-app actions.

Let’s look at the funnels you should create to help you optimize your in-app experience:

Onboarding is crucial to user retention. Users don’t waste much time deciding whether they like an app or not, so make your app’s value clear from the get-go. Onboarding typically starts the first time the user opens the app, and progresses through several subsequent user actions.
 

How do you know if your onboarding works?

Create an onboarding completion funnel. This funnel shows how many users progress through each step of your onboarding. If a significant number of fall off between certain steps, it indicates that something about the app or the onboarding process isn’t working. Your next move? Do some user testing and get a directional sense of what in your onboarding isn’t working. Consider reevaluating your onboarding process to ensure you’re delivering clear, concise instructions that highlight key app features and promote engagement.

Conversion. Conversion funnels are straight-forward, and also a must. You’ll see how many users start the path to taking the primary action your app is built around. Depending on what kind of travel-related service your app offers, it could be fairly complex. (Travel websites typically have low conversion rates for just that reason.)


A travel app conversion funnel for Choice's booking app could look like:

  1. User searches for a hotel
  2. Filters according to preferences (nights needed, preferred neighborhood)
  3. User looks at details of one of their options
  4. User makes a selection
  5. User starts checkout
  6. User completes checkout

Conversion funnels are important because they help you pinpoint areas where you can improve your app’s user experience or identify potential bugs. When you review your conversion funnel, look for any significant drop-offs in the number of users proceeding from one step to the next. This indicates that something is keeping your user from progressing to the next step.


Whew. Now that we’ve covered funnels, channels, and messaging, let’s get into marketing campaigns.