On Monday, Facebook announced that it has started to roll out an expanded, personalized notifications tab in the Facebook app that will surface personalized information alongside the regular notifications. The revamped tab will now include your friends’ birthdays, your upcoming events, as well as sports scores and TV reminders based on Pages you Liked. Moreover, users will also have the option to add localized information to their notifications tab, such as popular events and news based on the city they live in, movie showtimes in nearby theaters, and restaurant recommendations, if they enable the Location History feature in the app.
What Brands Need To Do
Notifications alert users of new happenings, and the notifications tab naturally receives a lot of user attention. So it makes sense for Facebook to take advantage of this prime real estate in its mobile app and turn it into a customizable feed of relevant, hyperlocal information. For brands, this new notification feed provides a brand-friendly channel to reach consumers. Sports or entertainment brands can use it to engage fans with notifications of new content, whereas local businesses can use it reach potential customers and target them with relevant value offers. For the latter, it is crucial to make sure relevant information like store locations and business hours is properly indexed by Facebook.
Source: Facebook Newsroom
The Lab is bullish on iBeacons, Apple’s latest technology which enables proximity messaging (1-150 feet in range) via compatible apps. Think about recipes tailored to the grocery aisle you’re in or facilitating wait times at a restaurant without the need for those lovely restaurant pagers. Well, Apple’s recent announcement of actionable notifications brings the promise of iBeacons to another level. Now apps can push proximity-based notifications that let users take action like downloading that recipe or preordering appetizers right from within the home screen notification.
It’s a DR marketers dream, but don’t abuse the power! These notifications need to reduce friction for the user, not increase it. Users will be as quick to drop the app as they were to install it if they are bombarded by Like requests.
The stakes are raised with push notifications. Tailored and timely, they can be a powerful driver to get users to reengage. Used haphazardly and they can be more obtrusive than a spam folder. Recently, ABC News has become savvy with their push strategy, however, letting users customize their notifications based on the stories they “star.” Understanding what topics interest users provides ABC with insight into the content and frequency of notifications. Politically-active users, for instance, want very niche messaging while celebrity followers will benefit from a higher volume. Thus far, the alerts have lead to mobile accounting for greater than 80% of the total views for some news stories.