Diving deeper into push notifications – connecting with the right audience at the right time

How many times do we receive a communication to when we don’t want it, and then we can’t find the information when we are looking for it? I just want to be sold to when I am ready, and leave me alone otherwise. There are many marketing techniques and studies out there, but engaging a player or communicating to a player at the point of gaming consideration is most effective. Bullseye! When a player is performing a search, how can casinos effectively interject with a message that wins the player’s patronage? Casino and player-centric apps are today’s relevant engagement vehicle to communicate with today’s player.

With 71% of people owning a smart device in the U.S. alone, Push Notifications and Texting (SMS Messaging) are two tools that companies can use to communicate with customers. The key for deciding which tool to use is evaluating which technique can increase customer engagement without irritating the customer. The goal should be to deliver content that offers something of value to consumers in a non-intrusive way.

What’s the real difference between push notifications and text messaging?

Push notifications are considered to be a less intrusive marketing tactic than text messaging and just as effective, since messages can be delivered without interrupting the user in their current activity and never incur an additional cost. Simply put, push notifications come through an “app” rather than as a text message. When opening a new app for the first time, you are sometimes asked if you want to allow the app to send you push notifications. Users essentially opt in by downloading the app, so businesses don’t need an opt-in consent to push a notification. A customer downloaded the app; therefore they want to hear about promotions, offers or relevant topics that pertain to the app. This allows businesses to improve targeted communication about their product to customers within their app.

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Push notifications can be triggered by geo-fencing, allowing businesses to segment and cater to their existing customers based on where they are located. It gives businesses the ability to send push notifications to a device when it’s in a certain location or zone. Companies can reach a customer right at the decision making process. A push notification can be sent to a customer right when they are close to your business or in targeted marketing trade areas. That is an intuitive and productive marketing tool!

Okay, so what app do I use for my push notifications?

Fellow Raving Partner Mark Astone wrote about different types of apps that casinos are using. In a nutshell, here are different vehicles to use apps for push notifications:

• Develop an app for your casino. This is primarily informational and your guests can make hotel reservations, find out about events, etc. Some casinos’ homegrown apps have the ability to send out push notifications and use geo-tracking – this is typically an add-on service and can be pricey.

• Develop a social gaming app. This can be an additional source of revenue; or it can be a means of incentivizing players to come in to your casino.

• Advertise on another company’s app. Make sure you understand if they’ll send out push notifications or just offer banner ads.

• Partner with another company app that markets primarily to gamblers and will market with you to meet your objectives. Partner with a third party app company’s app platform to connect with gamblers in your area. Some companies already have a huge database of gamblers. Leverage these companies’ expertise and technology, and let them work for you by allowing you to segment your offers to their database or to utilize geo-tracking capabilities. For example, Comp My Play is one of those companies that caters specifically to gambling customers – imagine Expedia for casino players. We will work with you to develop marketing campaigns using our player app and its guest acquisition technology.

Whatever means of communication you choose, whether it is push notification, email, text message or other traditional marketing methods, it always comes down to making the offer relevant for that customer. And with all the data you should be gathering about your customers, this should be easier than ever.