4 User Engagement Tips to Boost the Health of Your Fitness Apps

The health and fitness apps industry is growing exponentially with more and more people adopting healthier lifestyles. Users aren’t shying away to opt for paid subscriptions of quality apps that aid them on their individual health and fitness journeys.

Back in 2016 alone, the market size was estimated to be $83.15 billion

If you are a marketer from this industry, you’d know how user acquisition is comparatively easier than user retention and increasing your paid subscription base.

Keeping your users engaged while consistently delivering value is crucial to cushion the blow of competition. A data-driven mobile marketing strategy can help you get noticed by and win love from your users.

In one of my previous posts, I highlighted the leading health and fitness apps that continue to flex their muscles in the Indian market.

Delving deeper in this post, I’ve outlined 4 key mobile marketing best practices that are critical to elevate user engagement and retention for apps in this category:

  1. Personalise communication with relevant messagingHealth and fitness apps are all about setting goals and achieving them. Your users set diet plans, weight targets, workout goals, etc. and it is your job to proactively update them about their progress, motivate them to stay on track, and log their activities in your app.This is where push notifications play a crucial role.

    Push notifications constitute the most powerful tool in your app marketing kit. They can boost app engagement by up to 88%.  Especially for health and fitness apps like yours, it is extremely important to keep the users engaged through personalised, relevant, and timely messages.

    If your user is following a diet plan, notifications at appropriate intervals don’t just help him/her stay on track and achieve his/her set goals, but they also strengthen your relationship with the user by highlighting your customer-centric approach.

    Here is how HealthifyMe keeps me on my toes!

    triggered based push notificationsPersonalise Push Notification communications

    These are some use cases where push notifications can be leveraged as your user engagement channel of choice:

    • Send timely notifications to log activities04
    • When they’re nearing goals like weekly miles run or calories burned, send them notifications about how close they are to reaching their goals05
    • Encourage them, and nudge them through motivational messagingRemember your role as your users’ personal coach. If they see you playing an active role in the improvement of their health, they will have reasons to keep coming back to your app, and may become your brand advocates.06
  1. Welcome and reward paid subscribersAlmost all your users start with free trials. Only when they’ve experienced enough value in your app, will they consider paying for the premium services. When a free user turns into a subscriber, thank them and make them feel welcome.Well timed push notifications and in-app messages serve this purpose. Send this user segment an exclusive discount or a coupon code to thank them for subscribing. A warm welcome message sets the right tone for a potentially long customer relationship.

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    Related read: Push Notification Essentials: What You Need to Focus on Before Sending Your Notifications

  1. Encourage usage of app featuresDo your users use all the features your app has to offer? Do they know about the community of fellow app users that they can join, the video channel in your app, or the testimonials from other satisfied users?
    • Share helpful content: Utilise push notifications and in-app messages to share information about unused (or under-used) features in your app, blogs, app updates, daily exercising tips, etc. Let the users know how serious you are to help them achieve their fitness goals.If you can make your app a source of actionable knowledge, you can make it more than just an ordinary health and fitness app.08
    • Help build a community: Usually, people achieve more as a group or a community than as individuals.If you, as a health app brand, can connect users with similar goals, you can build a community that your users can turn to when they’re falling off the bandwagon, in need of some motivation.You already have the user information, all you need to do is to facilitate communication between users and transform a group of users into a rich connected network.

      Target content at user segments with similar goals. Encourage users to share experiences, success stories, and write comments.

      Here is how HealthifyMe does this.

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  1. Pay close attention to the frequency and timing of push notificationsExcess of anything is bad. This good old saying applies to everything. Pushing too much content is intrusive and uncalled for.Along with frequency, it is important to send the content at the most appropriate times. This is why you need to have a schedule in place to keep the frequency and timing of push notifications in check.

    While you are best placed to understand your space and users, you can leverage both historical and real-time user behavioural data to draw insights about the time slots when your users are most receptive to your campaigns.

    Optimising your send-times using the power of machine learning can help you tailor and deliver campaigns to users when they are most likely to respond to or act on your messages.

    Here are some best practices to keep in mind in this regard:

    • You may want to follow a time schedule for must-do campaigns like regular reminders about diet, sleep, workout timings, updates about progress made, etc. A renowned app I installed on trial, sent at least 10 notifications throughout the day – about meals, water, snacks, etc. I was compelled to turn off the notifications. The app lost one of the most important channels that it could use to build a strong connect with me.
    • If you are a Yoga or workout app, notifications at appropriate times (morning between 7-8 AM) will serve your purpose.
    • A notification in the evening (7-9 PM) to remind users to update or log their progress works well.
    • Ensure that the send-time of promotional campaigns is optimised. For instance, notifications promoting new plans, goals, etc. get better response at the beginning of a new week, a new month, or a new year when users decide to change their habits or start afresh.

Points to Note

No two users are alike when it comes to their health and fitness goals. It is important to adopt an intelligent user segmentation strategy based on their preferences so that you can personalise the content and experience they receive. Behavioural segmentation is a must.

Each communication you send out must be relevant to individual users. In other words, your push notification must convey “You will benefit from reading this.” Instead of “Use my app!”

Also, craft your app marketing content (in-app messages, and push notifications) creatively with the intelligent use of elements such as images, CTAs, deep links, emojis, and other advanced features.

Related read: 4 Top Tips for Writing Push Notifications that Drive Conversions

Concluding Thoughts

The competition in the health and fitness app category will continue to grow. It is important for you as a mobile marketer to understand your users so that you can be a part of their fitness journeys in a meaningful way.

Starting from user acquisition to engagement and retention, you need have an effective mobile marketing strategy in place to stand out from the pack.

Leverage the power of advanced data analytics and customer insights to consistently deliver highly personalised and differentiated user experiences that help you positively impact your key app metrics! To know more about how can Smartech can help you achieve your app marketing goals, get in touch with us today!

 

Ritu Poddar

Ritu Poddar

Ritu is a Technical Writer & Content Developer by profession, and a Poet & Creative Writer by passion. She works as Assistant Manager, Content Development at Netcore.