We’ve been lucky to work with many of the world’s most loved brands; however, few brands have a following like the over-zealous fans of One Direction. To reach this audience, Nabisco sponsored 1D’s North American Tour and, along with their agency Momentum Worldwide, created 1D VIP and 1D Degree mobile apps. Using Carnival to power mobile marketing automation for the apps, Momentum delivered over 300 pieces of rich content and triggering personalized messages to One Direction’s army of fans at just the right moment.

Read more about the app here in TechCrunch

Building an army of engaged users

Through Carnival’s creative messaging and automation, Nabisco and Momentum built a thriving community of app users and drove user actions in different cities throughout the Tour. The return on their engagement efforts were staggering!  Personalized, rich push notifications (a push notification that links to a full screen HTML5 in-app message) drove a 30% average app open rate by all users, active and inactive.

The highest app open rate that we saw, was an industry leading 55%.

To put that number in context, over half of all app users responded to a message from Nabisco, regardless of whether they had downloaded the app that day, or four months earlier.  Many popular gaming apps have only 1 – 4% push notification open rates, and most mobile ads get less than 1% tap through rate. 55% is a mountain.

Breaking through the noise to reach millennials

Carnival Fake Phone Call

You might dismiss these unbelievable results as the “One Direction effect;” however, the first few weeks of Nabisco’s messaging only delivered single-digit app open rates. So, how did we accelerate response rate?

  1. More creative messages. Text-only push notifications or expected in-app messages hardly spark joy. Nabisco leveraged 1D’s fame by sending users a fake FaceTime call from the band when they arrived in a Tour city. For a “Directioner,” getting a call from Harry Styles tops the charts in terms of excitement. This is a native feature to Carnival’s platform, which only requires a standard video file to setup (drag and drop upload).
  2. Automation to reach fans at exactly the right time. To drive even more hype before concerts and boost entries for VIP ticket giveaways, Nabisco triggered messages to users in concert cities as the band pulled into town. To keep users actively engaged, Nabisco used Carnival’s automation triggers to send rich push notifications driving to fresh in-app content to users who hadn’t opened the app in several days, a week, month, etc.
  3. Providing value. Nabisco and Momentum designed the 1D apps with a mobile messaging strategy in place from the start, including allowing users to unlock new in-app content via messaging. Carnival’s deep linking allowed the teams to drive push notifications and in-app messages directly to fresh content inside the app, such as features or a VIP ticket sweepstakes, ensuring that every message sent offered the user something new or valuable.

In the eight years I’ve worked in the mobile industry, I’ve seen this recipe repeated over and over and result in success 99% of the time. A well-designed app should never lose users. Marketing automation paired with a mobile messaging strategy that’s creative and offers value at a specific moment is the key to winning apps. Have an app? Contact us, we’ll help you drive success.

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