Generating download traffic to your app may be a momentum starter for your mobile business, but if you wish to keep your monthly active users (MAU) consistent and your revenue trending upward, you must find a way to give users a reason to return day after day with daily notification targeting.

The most thoughtfully crafted productivity app will not maintain an active user base without sending them a constant stream of personalized recommendations. Conversely, the most addicting mobile game in the world will quickly drive their users to uninstall because they are bombarding them with a swarm of irrelevant notifications. How do you split the differences and remain top of mind, without being absolutely insufferable?

Disclaimer! The Dangers of Over-Messaging

Just because your users subscribe to receive notifications from your app doesn’t mean they want to hear from you all the time. With every passing year mobile message fatigue grows, prompting frustrated users into the dreaded pipeline of “ignore, unsubscribe, uninstall.”

Sending daily notifications may only work for apps in certain categories and use cases that lend themselves well to constant communication. Your app is much more at risk for over-messaging users if:

  • You have several messaging campaigns running, managed by different internal teams
  • Your app is triggering many transactional messages
  • Your notification open rates are consistently very low
  • You are sending notifications en masse to all users often and without notification targeting

Remember, mobile notifications aren’t about reaching everyone all the time. They’re about reaching the right people with the right message at the right time. Only once you’ve dialed this in should you consider sending daily notifications. Your goal? Provide relevant information, promotions, or updates to re-engage dormant users and regularly drive them back to your app. Your app should naturally become a part of users' daily routines, without causing them to ask, “Why am I getting this?”

To explore all the ways you can avoid message fatigue, check out our guide on 7 Easy Solutions to Mitigate the Risks of Over-Messaging.

Re-Engaging Through Daily Notifications For Mobile Games

Mobile gaming is uniquely positioned to make the most out of re-engagement campaigns. They tend to be simple to pick up and resume playing at a moment’s notice and they can be innately addicting experiences, making them difficult to put down. This “stickiness” can be nurtured with the right daily notification targeting sequences to make your game a habitual part of players’ days while also increasing the likelihood of converting casual players into loyal champions, and, eventually, a source of in-game revenue.

Use a targeted push notification strategy to deliver timely updates about repeating challenges with brief descriptions and potential rewards, daily streak reminders, and milestone accomplishment celebrations. All of your notifications should emphasize the value of in-game rewards and highlight the benefits of continued play to motivate continued engagement.

Need inspiration for creating in-game challenges your players can’t ignore? Take a quick detour and check out our strategies for creating engaging mobile game challenges!

Consider the following push notification strategy to re-engage players on a daily basis, without sending them searching for the unsubscribe button.

1. Pick Your Shot With Impeccable Timing

Analyze player behavior to determine the optimal time for push notifications based on when players are least active. Your goal is to reach dormant players after their “peak” play times to re-engage them at their most inactive and ultimately shorten the gap between concurrent play sessions. Don’t bother players too soon after peak play times — you want to give them time to forget that they were playing and a chance to remember they actually miss playing. Then you can conveniently deliver your daily push notification, enticing them to revisit your app for another dose of that addicting play experience.

Consider scheduling your daily notifications between 8 and 9 o’clock in the morning to capture players' attention while they’re checking their phones before work or during the midday lunch hours to coincide with your players taking a break from their days.

Don’t know where to start? OneSignal’s Intelligent Delivery feature studies your specific historical engagement data to determine the most optimal send time for each of your user segments. This process is automatic, requiring no manual targeting on your end, and has been proven to increase open rates by 23% compared to merely sending notifications immediately!

Lastly, pay close attention to player time zones! Your players in Memphis take their lunch breaks at a completely different time than your players in Mumbai. One of the most common mistakes we see mobile-first businesses make is spending a bunch of time carefully scheduling their messages without taking into account players in different regions. It’s a recipe for inconvenient notifications and a huge missed opportunity for re-engagement!

2. Segmentation

Segment players based on their preferences, activity levels, or in-game behavior so you can send them targeted daily notifications that address their relevant needs.

Consider adjusting your push notification targeting to these specific player segments to increase relevance and amplify your chances of successful re-engagement:

  • Frequently active players — Send notifications about advanced challenges, elite rewards, or exclusive events to maintain repeated re-engagement.
  • Players dormant for longer than three days — Emphasize missed rewards, upcoming events, or changes in the game to lure them back.
  • “Completionists” or players who consistently complete all challenges — Notify them about limited-time achievements, leaderboards, or rare in-game items to entice their spirit of 100%’ing everything they touch.
  • Casual players who play frequently but haven’t explored your game in depth — Send notifications about easy, achievable daily challenges and simple, rewarding activities.
  • New players who have downloaded your game this week — Guide beginners with notifications explaining basic game mechanics and providing early rewards.
  • Social players — Engage socially-oriented players with notifications about multiplayer events, team challenges, or cooperative gameplay opportunities.
  • Event enthusiasts or players that regularly participate during in-game events — Notify them about upcoming events, exclusive event rewards, or limited-time challenges.

When you resonate with different player segments, you increase the likelihood of re-engagement across the board and prove to your entire player base that your game is flexible enough to fit their playstyle.

An effortless experience with guaranteed rewards is one worth revisiting every day!

3. Get Personal

According to our recent State of Messaging Report, businesses saw a 259% boost in engagement rates when they sent messages with personalized content. If you have a customer engagement solution that allows for notification personalization, you should be using it for every single message! Craft personalized messages that highlight each player's specific progress, challenges, or rewards. You may use this dynamic content to display current streaks, challenge statuses, or upcoming rewards for each player. Each player has their own unique journey with your game (especially if your game has RPG elements) and your daily notification targeting should tap into that personal journey to remind them of the progress they’ve made so far, along with what’s next.

Consider the following examples of push notification copy personalized to fit specific player progress:

For a progress-oriented player:

Notification Title: "Rising Star Alert! 🌟"

Message: "Hey [Player Name], your journey in [Game Name] is truly otherworldly! You've reached level 25 and conquered the last three challenges with finesse. You’re that much closer to level 30 and your Elite Reward. Check back tonight for a double XP challenge to help get there faster 🚀"

For a challenge-focused player:
Notification Title: "Challenge Conqueror Unleashed! ⚔️"

Message: "Bravo, [Player Name]! You're on fire! You've just completed the 'Master Duelist' challenge and earned exclusive armor. The battlefield bows to your prowess. Ready for the next challenge? 'Nightmare Realm' awaits, and the rewards are legendary 🤩"

How to Avoid Message Fatigue for Mobile Games

By utilizing OneSignal’s Frequency Capping capabilities, you automatically prevent your players from receiving too many notifications and suffering from message fatigue. If you are sending multiple mobile messaging campaigns simultaneously or have multiple teams delivering multiple sends every day, this safeguard gives you an easy way to set a specified maximum notification limit across all recipients.

Don’t worry, if you have a particularly important message that needs to go out ASAP, OneSignal allows you to override your frequency cap and ensure every user gets the memo.

Read more about Frequency Capping to avoid over-messaging and bothering your users!

Re-Engagement in Action: Beach Bum Games

Game studio Beach Bum Games has been bringing popular table and card games to the mobile gaming space since 2015, and rather successfully, having recently been acquired by Voodoo Games. One of their most popular games, Gin Rummy, had been experiencing plenty of engagement success in-game but struggled with a specific re-engagement pain point: although players were completing their daily missions, they were immediately exiting the app without collecting their rewards.

To reinvigorate players’ daily challenge retention, Beach Bum set up a OneSignal messaging journey that focused on these inactive players who hadn’t collected their rewards with a post-mission reminder message. They were able to set up push notification targeting to send alerts based on players’ in-game challenge statuses and specific periods of inactivity while delivering messages to thousands of players across multiple time zones.

The campaign not only generated a notable 6.5% conversion rate but prompted Beach Bum Games to move their other reactivation campaigns into OneSignal where they experienced a 140% jump in paid user activation only 10 days after implementation!

By crafting notification campaigns with intentional timing based on player activity, re-engagement campaigns like the one Beach Bum Games created create a simple, yet powerful way to bring back players who have abandoned their hard-fought progress.

Read the full Beach Bum Games Case Study to learn more gaming retention insights, including the story behind how they achieved a 650% increase in CTR with data tags!

A Customer Engagement Solution Made to Re-Engage

This was just a small glimpse into some of the useful, mobile-first re-engagement tools that OneSignal offers. Whether you are recapturing user attention after a lengthy onboarding process or simply trying to rekindle daily retention to kickstart app growth, we’re ready to get started with you. Cross-channel, automated user journeys and a best-in-class mobile messaging analytics suite is just the beginning…

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