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Selecting Your Message Type

What is a Message?

A message is the combination of a particular message content (what is in the message), message type (push notification, SMS, Interactive Display Message, etc.) and the message triggers (whichever you select).

You can add many different messages, which once you save each one, will be sent out to everyone who has your app installed.

There are three types of messages:

  • Smart Push+ - A smart notification delivered using triggers to guarantee optimal timing.
  • In-App - Smart notification that can contain media.
  • Standard Push - Standard push notification that is delivered immediately.

Creating the Message

1 - Message Type

Smart Push+

Smart Push+ is similar to sending a standard push notification but instead it utilises the OpenBack delivery triggers. A Smart Push+ can be a simple message notification or it can also contain a URL/deeplink. Find more information on URLs and deeplinking here.

If you plan on using Smart Push+, click here to skip to Step 2.


An In-App message brings a user to the relevant app with an OpenBack overlay displaying the notification content. In-App messages are used to deliver rich content and media to users through push notifications. These messages can contain:

App Install

Using In-App messages, you can prompt a user to install another app that they may not have installed. You can combine this message with the Other Apps trigger to ensure that users who have the app installed do not get the message.

When selecting the app you would like to advertise, the package URL needs to be added to the notification. To show how this works, the OpenBack Companion App will be used as an example.

First get the package URL for the app you are sending in the notification. This can be done by going to the app's playstore page and taking the id value from the URL, as shown below.

Package URL

You can now add the app package URL and the app name to the message details.

App Install


You can send users an image via In-App messages. This image must be hosted either on your own servers or by a third party service, as a URL is required for the image to be downloaded. In-App images are downloaded and cached before the message is due to be delivered, enabling users with no data/internet connection to receive the message as intended.

You can also switch between message display and in-app display to see how your notification would look to user.

Image IDM

IDM Video

You can set an IDM to contain a video. The video is precached which allows for delivery regardless of data connection once it is downloaded.

Must link directly to a file hosted on a server.

Must be in either .avi or .mp4 format with HT64 encoding recommended.

Video Message

Custom HTML

Custom HTML In-App messages are the most customisable messages available in OpenBack. These messages use HTML/CSS/Javascript to send users much higher quality notifications.

HTML Message

In-App Message Payload

The In-App Message Payload is a powerful feature that can be used to send any form of text payload to your app. The payload can be sent in any form of string, for example JSON/CSV/simple text, and can be interpreted as intended by the developer.

App Inbox

The App Inbox is a great feature to keep all the messages in one place, allowing users to read messages even after they dismissed a notification. Your application is in charge of managing and displaying the messages.

To use the App Inbox feature simply select it from the dropdown when creating an In-App message.

App Inbox

Custom Inbox Message

The Custom Inbox Message is used to send a message with a title and content directly to the app inbox.

App Inbox Message

Standard Push

The Standard Push Message works as a normal push notification - select the message content and push the message out immediately. FCM/GCM is required for Android Standard Push Messages and an APNS certificate is required for iOS.

Testing Standard Push

Testing Standard Push is very straight forward. Testing can be done by using singular device push tokens as shown below or by setting up a test application. A test application can be used to push a message to all users with that app code.

Standard Push Message

2 - Message Details

After picking the message type, enter the name of the new message and select the app that the message is going to.

After the app is selected, the audience and predicted audience values are shown in the top right. The audience value is the total userbase of an app whereas the predicted audience uses predictive analytics to assess the population that will receive the message. This value fluctuates based on different factors in the message (message type, selected triggers etc).


Optional - You can also add:

  • Message start/end dates. These settings determine when a message should roll out and when it should finish. For example, a month long message starting on the first day of the month and ending on the last day of the month.
  • A target goal. Select a goal to be associated with the message. Goals
  • Attribution tag. A tag associated with your marketing campaign.
  • Another app to assign this message to. You can have a pair of apps to assign this message to.

Create Message Step 1

3 - Settings and Content

Enter your notification title and content. You can add emojis to give your notification and extra flair.

Optional - You can also add/change:

  • Message type
  • Notification type, either standard message or you can add a URL
  • Notification language. Up to ten languages can be added which will send the appropriate notification to users based on their device language. If no other language is found, the default is used.
  • Recurring delivery settings - if you plan on using marketing automation, recurring delivery settings are great for setting up when a message should be sent again.
  • Emojis
  • User Parameters
  • URL Deeplinks

Character Limits

The average character limit for a notification's title or content is:

  • Android - 40 characters.
  • iOS - 86 characters.

Create Message Step 2

You can set a Smart Push+ message to contain a URL/Deeplink. A URL can be used to link to a web page in the user's preferred web browser or a deeplink is used to bring a user to a certain section of an app. Deeplinks can be predefined for an app in the App Settings page.

Add Deeplinks

4 - Delivery Triggers

What is a Trigger?

A trigger is something that happens on your user's device (phone/tablet) or app that is monitored, or checked, on an ongoing basis. Multiple triggers can be used together, to enable you to easily create wonderful and engaging experiences for your users.

There are many many different trigger groups within OpenBack, each with multiple settings and options within each one. When the trigger, or group of triggers, happen locally on the device, the message is sent to the user - and best, it all happens in real-time, locally on the device.

OpenBack is constantly adding triggers, and if you have a great idea for one, please tell us and we will try and include it -

Select which triggers you plan on using to deliver the notification. The more triggers you add, the more conditions that need to be met for a message to deliver.

Delivery triggers allow users to send messages that segment by local app values, meaning a backend integration isn't required.

Create Message Step 3

Adding Emojis and User Parameters


Adding an emoji is a simple way to give your notifications a more personal feel. Select your notification title or content, click the emoji icon and choose which emoji suits the message you're trying to send.


User Info Parameters

To use User Info Parameters, the values must be set within your app. For initialising these values, consult the Android and iOS API guides.

Using user info parameters can add a much more personal and unique feel to your notification. In the example below, the notification title is set to:

Hey {{user.firstName | you}}!

This will set your notification title depending on whether or not you have a first name for this user. If a first name is found, the notification appears as:

Hey user!

Whereas if no first name is found, the notification uses the default value supplied and appears as:

Hey you!

Same for the notification content which is set to:

We've great deals in {{ | your area}}!

User Info Params

To set up a list of URLs to use, add them in the App Settings screen. To add a deeplink to a message, follow the procedure in the image below.

How to Deeplink