Facebook just gave brands using apps a hugely powerful tool for communicating with their audience, one to one. Betapond has been using the new app to user notifications since June of this year on our Waterworks application built for Unilever and PSI. Now it become available to all developers. It could be the beginning of a real game-changer for the way brands can communicate one on one with consumers.
Facebook launched a beta version of the new Notifications API for apps on Facebook.com. Notifications are the short, custom messages you see under the notifications “jewel” on Facebook.
This is particularly powerful in re-engaging users on apps, to let them know about updates, friends’ activity and calls to action in the app. Bringing them back in to an app helps keep them engaged and growing the reach for your brand.
Before, app requests on Facebook were often hard to find and generally ignored by all but the most engaged users. Now, they are potentially in some of Facebook’s most valuable real estate. Not surprising that Facebook say that their tests suggest that the Notifications are far more effective:
In recent tests, people who received high quality notifications were five to ten times more likely to click through than they were for requests.
In our own testing, we would say that our own numbers stack up in the same range that Facebook is reporting, between 700% and 800% of our average click rates on app requests. What’s interesting as well is that these numbers for app to user notifications compare highly favourably with click rates on other one-to-one forms of communications, such as email.
Facebook warn, however, that with this power comes responsibility. Developers and brands who use app to user notifications to put spammy or low-quality messages in front of consumers will be penalised. Users can always opt-out of app to user notifications from an app. If enough users do so, Facebook will block that app, to preserve the quality of experience for Facebook users, and that’s only right.
With Waterworks, we go one further – and we think this is best practice – by making it easy for users to opt out of app to user notifications within the application itself.
By making sure the user always has the option, brands and developers can ensure there are no negative surprises. To find out more, why not get in touch?