Sending the right message to the right person at the right time and on the right channel is the holy grail of marketing. Today, 72% of consumers will only engage with personalised messages, so customer communications that land your message are non-negotiable (we share more on that topic in this post). Thankfully, the days of blanket emails fired out on a Monday morning are gone – the technology now exists to give your messages the maximum amount of impact, increasing app engagement, brand awareness, and ultimately, revenue. Mobile customer engagement platforms can do most of it for you and it’s time to choose one.
What is a mobile customer engagement platform?
A mobile customer engagement platform for mobile apps (sometimes just referred to as Mobile CRM) helps you reach your customers, wherever they are. A good mobile customer engagement platform will integrate your existing MarTech stack, such as Appsflyer, Mixpanel, and Typeform, and will make it easy for you and your team to create messages that convert. A/B testing should allow you to optimise every messaging strand easily and data should be presented in a way that allows you to draw useful conclusions. Some will even use AI and machine learning to draw out these conclusions for you.
Why are mobile customer engagement platforms important?
Where do we start?! A customer engagement platform is an essential part of your mobile tech stack and here’s why:
- It helps to increase app engagement and retention rates by keeping users informed and interested in your app and encouraging them to return regularly through numerous channels including in-app messaging, push notifications, email campaigns, and more.
- It allows you to provide personalised messaging that is tailored to your users’ needs improving user satisfaction & loyalty.
- It improves user experience by providing users with relevant and meaningful content and app features
- It gives you a competitive advantage and helps to increase revenue – by providing an engaging user experience, you can differentiate yourself from the competitors and present your users with new offers through app engagement channels.
What should you consider when picking customer engagement platforms?
Budget is one of the most important factors to consider when you’re making your platform choice. Much of the pricing in this area is based on the number of active users or messages you send, so you need to make sure that you’ve chosen a customer engagement platform that you can afford to use now, and one that will scale with your growth plans.
If you’re a start-up, you may be happy to begin with a more cost-effective option in the short term, with a plan to upgrade to a different platform with more functionality when you outgrow it. While changing platforms is to be expected throughout the lifetime of your business, it’s not something you want to do on an annual basis as it can be costly in terms of time, resources, and capital.
Specifically, it’s worth asking yourself:
- How many active users do I have now – and how many am I forecasting in 6-12 months’ time?
- Based on this projected growth, how important is contract flexibility?
- What are the key features I need from a platform?
- What needs to be integrated from my tech stack?
- What barriers does the platform have, and how will these impact me in the short-, medium- and long-term?
- How much time is available to train my team on the platform and how easy is it to use?
We’ve collected together a range of the 10 best customer engagement platforms for mobile apps and included our expert advice to help you make an informed decision. The tools appear in no particular order.
Why we like it: Braze is a leading platform, and scalable all the way from creating small, straightforward campaigns to larger, more sophisticated, automated real-time campaigns. With content cards and simple third-party integrations, Braze can take app engagement to a new level. And if required, coders can levitate your campaigns further through API triggers from a number of data sources. As an added bonus, their visual interface makes it simple to set up and run activities such as A/B tests.
Best suited to: A team looking to grow and use multi-channel campaigns in one platform. It requires a dev team to set up and integrate but is easy to use once that’s done. That makes it best suited to those companies with both dev team resources, and junior employees who will need to use the tool.
Why we like it: CleverTap bills itself as the world’s number one retention platform, and with features like an automated segmentation engine using rich customer data, guided lifecycles, omnichannel engagement, and extensive campaign insights, you can see why. CleverTap is powered by the 3rd generation of TesseractDB™, the world’s first embedded Native CDP inside a retention and engagement platform that enables hyper-personalization of every user interaction at scale, in real-time. This is a premium tool, but with the broad range of features it offers, it’s worth the investment!
Best suited to: The premium nature makes it more suitable for enterprise clients. It’s trusted by 2000 customers, including Canon, English Premier League, AirAsia, Papa John’s, and Tesco to name a few.
Why we like it: MoEngage is growing globally, which is reflected in a lot of their integrations. It’s highly secure, aligned with GDPR, CCPA, and OJK, and compliant with ISO 27001, SOC 2, and CSA STAR. They position themselves as an insights-led customer engagement platform that has a good breadth of messaging channels to engage customers across the web, mobile, email, SMS, web push notifications, mobile push, social and more. Their AI-driven insights go beyond the campaign and product analytics, helping businesses proactively optimise customer LTV. It’s worth adding that the MoEngage Inform feature is a unified messaging infrastructure that enables you to build and manage transactional alerts across channels through a single API and deliver critical messages to customers in real-time.
Best suited to: This is a truly global enterprise, so is well suited to any business that needs to consider compliance across many countries or territories. It powers over 1200+ customers including Nestle, Deutsche Telekom, Sweatcoin, Foodhub, Spencers, McAfee.
Why we like it: From the beginning of apps, Airship powered the first commercial messages and then expanded its data-led approach to all re-engagement channels (mobile wallet, SMS, email), app UX experimentation, no-code native app experience creation and App Store Optimization (ASO). The platform provides countless real-time connectors and open APIs to third-party solutions and end-points. With low-code, inbound and outbound, recipe-based integration, Airship orchestrates connected experiences across customer journeys and your entire digital ecosystem. The integration is flexible too allowing you to design the tech stack you want. It’s also got extensive reporting capabilities, including more than 75 pre-built reports.
Best suited to: As a premium tool, Airship is suited to teams who are willing to make an investment in their engagement technology.
Why we like it: Iterable is easy to use and competitively priced. They’ve thought a lot about how teams work today, with small things like Folder functionality, Avatars, Last Modified information, and Roles/Permissioning making cross-collaboration easier in a remote-first world. The tool can achieve ROI in record time by activating the entirety of your multi-source data to deliver the highest level of personalization and orchestration. It’s easy to use with AI-powered analytics to increase the impact. It also allows for tech stack flexibility with their SDKs, open APIs and custom send controls.
Best suited to: It’s a good fit for a well-resourced team, who are able to manage the HTML requirements needed to use the editor tool. The platform leads in verticals such as fintech, travel and education.
Why we like it: Pushwoosh is a smaller platform, which means that while features like their analytics are less robust compared to the more sophisticated platforms out there, there is a range of subscription levels that make it an extremely accessible option. Pushwoosh empowers users with sophisticated personalization features: Dynamic tags & content, geo-based push notifications, multi-language messaging, silent hours, and Custom Data Builder are all friendly to non-developers. With their RFM grid, you can assign a recency and frequency value to each of your users based on their purchase/event history and categorizes them into groups based on the scores. It’s very easy to use, but if you do run into problems, the customer support is on hand to help.
Best suited to: Pushwoosh charges for the number of devices, not for data points. It represents value for money, making it ideal for those wanting to experiment with the power of a customer engagement platform without committing a major budget.
Why we like it: This app engagement platform is extremely easy to use, making it the perfect solution for less experienced teams. It allows for generating consistent growth by building, optimizing, and automating lifecycle messaging and promotions with no developer support required. By offering transparent pricing, unlimited API calls, and sophisticated messaging automation tools, One Signal is a good option if you’re just starting out.
Best suited to: It’s one of the only customer engagement platforms to feature a free subscription tier, so it’s great if you want to experiment with what a customer engagement platform can do for you.
Why we like it: A growing engagement platform that’s ideal for start-ups and enterprise businesses. Batch prioritizes creating a positive ROI in a short space of time, whilst easily integrating with other customer engagement platforms within your mobile tech stack. It offers unlimited Custom Events Storage and praises itself for delivering up to 1M push notifications per operating system. There’s a big investment in customer support, offering live chat support in 5 different languages! During all this, Batch will have a heavy focus on ensuring the privacy of your users with an in-house managed platform hosted in Europe.
Best suited to: With flexible packages, prioritising customer support and success, Batch is ideal for mobile-firstengagemen start-ups, who prioritise privacy but also want to integrate their tech stack into one system and drive immediate revenue.
Why we like it: Swrve is a solid and well-respected platform. There is no developer requirement to integrate the product, and this continues in how simple the whole platform is to use once it’s online. However, that ease of use comes at a cost, makes this a more premium investment.
Best suited to: Used by companies such as Emirates, Sony and Warner Brothers, this is a platform built for sizable enterprises.
Why we like it: This platform is relatively new to the market, requiring a fair amount of dev set-up time initially. Once you’re up and running, you’ll find excellent A/B testing functionality and easy to use email campaign set-ups.
Best suited to: Anyone with a good background in the technical side of marketing.
No matter where you are in terms of your app growth journey or what budget you have, there are customer engagement platforms for you. If you need help in finding the right platform and getting set up on it, contact us at email@example.com and we will be more than happy to help you get set up and achieve those vital app growth goals.