Driving App User Engagement

User Engagement in Product! One tricky problem to crack in today’s volatile and inconstant market. It’s easy to drive it as long as you are pushing some kind of benefit to the consumers but what if there is no hidden incentive for them to stick around. Will they keep coming back? What if your sole motive is to drive the usage of the product in terms of them exploring new features or trying out its flow. Would you succeed? What if the only reason of users checking out your product on a frequent basis is mere some offers. Can you change the trend? Now it might sound very obvious that NO would be the answer to all the above 3 questions but if you think bit deeper you’ll realize that all of them require a subjective approach. The point being, it is challenging to drive organic user engagement in your product on a regular basis but if you can somehow link your out-of-the-box ideas with the users’ expectations it’s definitely achievable.

This one time we came up with a distinct idea of hosting a Treasure Hunt for our users in Niki Android App (chatbot that serves as a One Stop Shop), with a clear objective let users experience the unexplored features and try out the never used services. The idea did sound bit unfamiliar, most of us had second thoughts at the beginning regarding the ideation, acceptance from users and the final execution. We knew it would be a big task to build a campaign with so many attached variables but the pros could be equally rewarding is what we had in mind and hence, the team got motivated to pull it off.

We named it ‘Hunt & Win’ contest and it was designed in a manner that there will be a total of 9 clues, arriving in the App on an interval of 20 minutes, clues can be solved in any order and the time taken to solve all the clues was the metric to decide the winners.

Initially, we were skeptical of generating significant traction, we doubted if such kind of contest could actually develop interest amongst the users. Also, because of the fact that I used to witness very minimal participation for these events in my college days, maybe the word ‘Treasure Hunt’ doesn’t really excite the mass, was our intuition. We finished our ideation and started framing the clues, unexpectedly things got interesting and we started liking the whole concept. That is when it struck that the participation would majorly depend on how fun and interesting the clues are and thus we would have to keep the thrill consistent throughout so as to avoid drop offs. After a complete day of slogging, we were ready with the complete flow of the game. The way things turned out, it was quite satisfying and that kept us going, the final draft of all clues was interesting, contextual and crisp. Sharing a sample clue below to give the gist

Clue 7: Idea was to let the users explore our newly built Promo Code section

Post the conceptualization, our task was to spread the word among our users and acquire new users from the relevant audience so as to maximize the response. Deep down we knew once they get started it’s highly likely that they’ll keep playing. The contest was scheduled on Sunday (coinciding with Ind Vs Pak ICC Champions Trophy 2017 league match) and the plan was to wrap it up before the match starts. The match wasn’t as thrilling as the junta expected it to be, which somehow played in our favor and ultimately led to a massive turnout for the contest. Our predictions said that the contest would last till late afternoon (max) but to our surprise it went on for the entire day and some users even continued playing till late night. We noticed new users kept coming in even in the night, playing just for the fun involved and not concerned about the prizes.

The overall response was overwhelming, much beyond our estimations, DAU count skyrocketed to 7X of the usual. At times, the traffic rose to 50X of the regular. Daily acquisition saw a rise of 50% and 3% of which were acquired with the help of ‘Ask a Friend’ feature enabled in the clues (inside the App). 15% of the participants solved all 9 clues and finished the hunt successfully. Users did have a good time which we inferred from daily reviews, the contest helped us garner good number of 5 star ratings as well, 2X more than the usual daily count. Consequently, we observed a steep rise in WAU and MAU as well. As per our daily metrics and behavioral analysis of users post the contest, In-App Treasure Hunt proved to be one of our most successful campaigns for User Engagement.

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