New data from Localytics, the Boston-based analytics and marketing firm, has shown that apps using in-app messaging tend to enjoy retention rates 3.5 times higher than those that don't.
Perhaps the more surprising finding, then, is that this is a largely untapped resource - with only 33 percent of app marketers currently using in-app messaging.
Communication is key
Localytics found that third month retention among new users of apps that used in-app messaging to stand at an impressive 50 percent.
So why have so few adopted the feature?
“Many app owners wonder how to create content that isn’t viewed as spam and doesn’t detract from the user experience,” said Localytics’ business analyst Dave Hoch.
“This may explain why only one third of app marketers are currently using in-app messaging as part of their mobile engagement strategy.”
However, it seems that there's something in the nature of being unprompted and unsolicited that causes users to deem a message spam, and that when handled correctly people are actually quite receptive to them.
Indeed, while average engagement with an in-app message sits at 28 percent, that figure rises to 56 percent when a message is directly triggered by the actions of the user.
Games, however, appears to be one app category in which it barely makes a difference when or how an in-app message is presented - only a 1 percent lift in click-through rates is reported with event-triggered messages.
A lift is a lift, though, and 1 percent shouldn't be discounted as irrelevant when it comes to mobile games with enormous player-bases.
For more information, you can read the full blog post from Localytics featuring all the findings.