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Guide

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7 Steps to Product Roadmap Success

Learn how to fight feature creep, deliver the right value, and translate vision into action. Let us help you revitalize your product roadmap today, and help make 2021 your year.

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Targeting & Remarketing

The #1 Mobile Customer Engagement Secret

Madeleine Doyle  //  December 28, 2021  //  4 min read

Have you ever been looking for a recipe online but have to scroll all the way through a long, drawn-out story about the author’s family to get to the actual recipe? We won’t do that to you today. Instead, let’s cut right to the chase: Retargeting the right customers at the right time and in the right place is the ultimate key to driving mobile customer engagement.

Now, it might sound like common sense to say, “just retarget your customers to boost engagement,” but let’s break down what this actually means. The concept of retargeting mobile customers is not a new idea by any means, but few brands practice it successfully.

We’re going to walk you through three specific ways to effectively and efficiently retarget customers to boost mobile engagement.

  1. Retarget using demographic factors such as age, gender, location, etc.
  2. Retarget using behavior and mobile customer engagement history
  3. Retarget based on shifts in sentiment

Let’s jump right in.

Demographic factors

Obviously, in order to start segmenting on demographic data, you’ll need a system and CRM to collect this information.

Here are examples of a few demographic data categories:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Location
  • Nationality

Next, in order to engage these segments effectively, find out how they’re spending their time online. This takes some basic research but tools like Statista can help you quickly gather high-level data. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, but these generalizations are a great starting point to make informed decisions.

If you work in mobile marketing or advertising, demographic information is critically important. You can create hyper-specific and personalized in-app ads that speak directly to the interests of your target demographic.

Truly powerful mobile customer engagement comes from hyper-specific brand interactions. The secret sauce here is not just targeting your ads or your messaging toward one demographic at a time, but finding ways to target even smaller combinations. For example, young Hispanic adult women who live in California have very differet interests, behaviors, and buying habits than a white elderly men who live in Maine. The more personalized and specific you can get with your outreach, the higher your mobile customer engagement will be.

Past behaviors and mobile customer engagement history

You don’t want to reach out to first-time customers and dedicated loyalty-club members in the same way. Communicating with both through the same message does neither group any good.

Instead, split your customer base into different sections based on past behavior like these:

  • One-time buyers, who purchased something once and haven’t returned
  • Seasonal buyers, like those you see every holiday season and then not again until next year
  • Semi-regular buyers, who appear every two or three months
  • Dedicated customers, who are the backbone of your customer base

These groups all respond better to different engagement strategies, so you’ll have more success after splitting them up. You don’t have the same goals for all of these different groups, so why would your engagement strategy be the same?

When you segment by your consumers’ previous histories of engagement, you can more effectively inspire mobile engagement and increase customer retention.

Shifts in sentiment

Customer sentiment is the emotion behind customer engagement. When you monitor sentiment, you try to measure the tone, context, and feeling from customer actions. Whether a customer completes a purchase, leaves a review, or mentions your company socially, there is always an emotional state connected to their action.

In short, tracking customer sentiment helps you understand three major metrics: Overall customer satisfaction, loyalty, and engagement intent. The more you know about a customer’s current emotional state, the more you can tailor your marketing campaigns to provide an engaging, helpful experience and adjust your product roadmap to meet customer needs faster. Customer sentiment analysis gives you insight for your mobile marketing and product strategy, helping your dollars stretch further and your ROI increase.

  • Identifying and utilizing your fans (directing them to leave reviews, encouraging them to share on social media, etc.)
  • Winning back unhappy customers (closing the loop on their negative feedback, following up with them via one-to-one messaging, offering them exclusive discounts if they stay, etc.)
  • Creating more fans by targeting neutral customers (offering them special discounts, driving them towards more engaging experiences, etc.)

Customer Loyalty Program

But the magic happens when you track these data points over time. Tracking sentiment over time allows you to identify and act on shifts in sentiment. In other words, you can understand why certain people feel the way they do about your brand, and therefore take action to win them back.

At Apptentive, we have Fan Signals™ which looks at expressed sentiment based on mobile actions and feedback. In measuring expressed sentiment, we segment customers into four categories:

  • Fans Shifted to Risks: Customers whose expressed emotion has shifted from positive to negative, or from Fan to Risk.
  • Risks Shifted to Fans: Customers whose expressed emotion has shifted from negative to positive, or from Risk to Fan.
  • New or Repeat Fans: Customers who have expressed positive emotion for the first time by answering “Yes,” or who have expressed positive emotion at least twice in a row.
  • New or Repeat Risks: Customers who have expressed negative emotion for the first time by answering “No,” or who have expressed negative emotion at least twice in a row.

Now, just imagine the incredible power you’d have if you could retarget customers based on these shifts. The opportunities to drive revenue and increase mobile customer engagement are endless.


No matter your business model, industry, or company size, the key to driving mobile customer engagement is to target the right people at the right time and in the right place. And no, simply targeting customers in your app rather than on the web isn’t enough of a strategy. Your targeting can be so much more sophisticated and effective with minimal effort or extra resources.

Get started today!

About Madeleine Doyle

Madeleine Doyle is the Senior Content Marketing Manager for Apptentive. No stranger to B2B tech, Madeleine enjoys translating complex concepts into easy-to-digest pieces of content.
View all posts by Madeleine Doyle >

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