At Casual Connect Europe, Nicol Cseko (VP of Product at Aarki) gave a talk entitled Level Up Your App Marketing with the Power of Creatives. She advised others on how to take the performance of your mobile app campaign up a notch by leveraging data for creative optimization. She also gave insights into successes and failures for mobile app campaigns and answered why they had the outcome that they did. Learn how you too can optimize ad creatives using data and previous lessons to deliver significant improvements in ad performance. Please see the video below for the full talk.
Who is playing your games? As a publisher, you know there is a huge, diverse audience out there, actively engaged with a tremendous variety of games. And now, brands are discovering the value of this highly engaged audience. So brands want to reach them; they want to reach the players of your games. The game inventory is a perfect fit for brands, but how can publishers capitalize on this demand?
Casual Connect set out to find the answers, bringing together a panel to discuss this question at Casual Connect USA 2018. The participants included industry experts from all sides, including brands, mobile developers and monetization platforms, offering their perspectives on the present and future of brand advertising in mobile gaming. These are the participants:
- Chandra Hill, Vice President of Monetization at MobilityWare. Chandra brings more than twenty years of experience in digital media and is responsible for monetization strategies at MobilityWare, including an in-app advertising platform that produces revenue streams for the company’s portfolio of mobile games. Before joining MobilityWare, Chandra filled executive positions at textPlus and MySpace.
- Sameer Sondhi, Vice President and General Manager Business Development at InMobl. Sameer specializes in mobile monetization, display ads for mobile products, digital media business development, mobile advertising performance-based advertising, search engine and ad engine platforms.
- Sally Lu, Senior Director, Ad Monetization at Jam City. Sally has managed ad campaigns from the ground up, growing them to over billions of ads served. She has also managed ad campaigns that reach more than 200 million customers each year and manages the ad operations team.
- Andrew Gerhart, Chief Operating Officer of AerServ. After spending time as a marketer for multiple publishers, Andrew understands the complex advertising landscape with multiple ad networks and exchanges. He has been Chief Operating Officer for AerServ for five years, helping to build a world-class mobile app monetization and mediation platform. AerServ was acquired by InMobl in January, 2018.
- Dave Edwards, Senior Vice President, Digital Marketing – Theatrical Films, Lionsgate. Dave is a news media enthusiast, entertainment industry operative and film lover. He has years of experience in high profile content creation, virtual reality and augmented reality, digital media and marketing, art direction and project management.
The Panel was moderated by Grant Cohen, General Manager of The Collective and Free App Analytics at Kochava. Kochava is the leading mobile measurement company providing analytics and attribution services across many of the world’s top apps. The Collective is a new business unit that utilizes data from Kochava’s Free App Analytics solution to deliver rich mobile audiences at massive scale over 2 billion devices globally through a self-serve UX.
To learn more about brand advertising in mobile gaming and what to expect in the future, be sure to watch the video of Getting in the Game: How Publishers Can Help Brands Reach Their Players.
As everyone involved in the mobile game industry knows, ad monetization has become critical to monetizing mobile games. And without effective monetization, no game can succeed. So how can you learn the best ways to monetize your game. At Casual Connect USA 2017, the panel discussion, The Pain and Gain of Ad Monetization – Publisher Stories, offered some important information from the publishers’ perspective of what works and what doesn’t.
Publishers experienced with ad monetization for mobile games participated as panelists. They included:
Jarrko Rajamaki, Vice President Advertising at Rovio. This is Jarrko’s second commission in this position at Rovio, heading ad monetization over the entire Rovio game portfolio. Jarrko began his career in online advertising at AOL’s European business and still proudly uses aol.com as his email address.
Dave Yonamine, Co-Founder and Chairman of Mobilityware. Dave is the primary liaison between Mobilityware and other app developers and has the primary responsibility for the company’s strategic direction. Mobilityware is a leading mobile games developer and has more than 250 million downloads across its award winning portfolio.
John Boog-Scott, Chief Operating Officer at PeopleFun. John has spent the past five years growing PeopleFun, learning the hard way what succeeds and what fails with mobile games UA and monetization. PeopleFun builds five star casual word games. John has also been a lean startup founder in many other software and games companies, including Ensemble Studios, the creators of Age of Empires.
Karim Farghaly, Director of Business Development at Bandai Namco Entertainment America for mobile platforms. Karim manages external partnerships with development studios, licencors, digital distributors and advertising platforms. Prior to BNEA Mobile, Karim held a number of executive positions in the games industry, including at Scarab, Empire and Interplay.
The panel was moderated by Ayala Rudoy, Director of Strategic Customers at SafeDK. Ayala is passionate about helping game developers ensure the ads they serve in their games don’t affect the game’s user experience, retention or revenue.
This session discussed the benefits and best practices when monetizing with ads and described the issues and main risks of displaying ads in mobile games. Watch the video of this session to learn from these experts in monetizing with ads in games.
How is mobile advertising working for you? Do you have an effective mobile attribution strategy? Today’s mobile advertising landscape is so complex that these questions might be difficult to answer. There are thousands of networks, publishers and sub-publishers that you must navigate to most efficiently reach the highest ROI.
If you feel you could use a little help figuring all this out, you couldn’t find a better person to ask than Grant Cohen. Grant is the General Manager at Kochava, a leading mobile measurement company. Kochava provides attribution and analytics services to many of the top apps.
At Casual Connect USA 2018, Grant presented the session Evolving Your Mobile Attribution Strategy in 2018. In it he explained how you can drive your 2018 success with fraud prevention, configurable attribution and full funnel analysis. You can learn more about succeeding with mobile attribution, watch this video of Grant’s session.
Alexis Kennedy has a storied career in gaming, literally. He has done guest-writing gigs for such prominent studios as BioWare, Telltale, and Paradox – and as the creator of Failbetter Games, he grew a two-person startup into a studio with 16 employees and over $1.3 million a year in revenue. As part of the Industry Insights track, Alexis will open the conference at Casual Connect Kyiv with a keynote lecture on game narratives and how to better marry stories with game systems. Many other experts will join Alexis in sharing their expertise with attendees over the conference’s three days of lectures and workshops.
By Ori Meiry, Head of Social Acquisition, yellowHEAD
Earlier this month, yellowHEAD had the pleasure of discussing user acquisition and retention for mobile games at Casual Connect USA 2017 in Seattle. Together with three leading players in the social casino arena – DoubleDown Interactive, Zynga and Playtika – we shared the latest trends we foresee developing in 2018 when it comes to maximizing acquisition campaigns.
by Bryan Buskas, Chief Customer Officer, AdColony
Mobile monetization is easy…said no one ever.
But it’s true: even though the advertising industry has come incredibly far since the early days of the mobile banner, the way we deliver advertising experiences and messages to consumers in apps still has significant room for improvement. And the shift from fixed-budget, brand awareness advertising to highly measured, performance-based campaigns is only further expanding this gap. Advertisers are expecting more from mobile than ever before – and publishers must be able to support the ad experiences that drive these outcomes.
The ideal ad experience
What are these ad experiences, though? Is it full-screen video, leveraging the power of sight, sound and motion? Is it interactive and sensory experiences, using features like haptic effects and 360-degree video? The answer is yes, yes and yes – to all of the above. The best mobile ads are those that integrate multiple elements and formats, that are truly a hybrid of everything that is possible on mobile today.
However, there is one component that, whether it’s the foundation of the experience or simply an added component, consistently improves the quality – and hence performance – of every mobile advertisement. “Gamification,” or introducing elements of fun and competition (e.g., points, rewards, scoreboards, levels, rules) has long been proven to deepen engagement and satisfaction with ads. It makes an ad participatory and draws in the user (pull tactic) versus simply illustrating or explaining (push).
That’s why playables ads are here to stay. They attract and engage mobile users not just because they are new and different, but because they are truly opt-in. Rather than interrupt the content experience, they give the user the option of seamlessly moving into a different one – and when they’re done, moving right back, almost like an interlude.
Poised for massive growth
So it’s of little surprise that in an app developer survey we ran earlier this year, we found that playable ads were, by far, the mobile ad experience that gaming advertisers were most excited about in 2017 – much more so than full-screen video or social video. Already, more than half (64 percent) of app install marketers are using playable ads, and 7 out of 10 of them find playables to be effective.
On our platform, we’ve found that they can drive 100 percent higher install rates for mobile apps – more than double the rates of full-screen HD video ads. The demand is so high that many ad companies cannot build playables fast enough to keep up with it.
Not just for gaming advertisers
While app install marketers were the first to fully harness the power of playables, creating mini-games that drive downloads of their game, we’ve seen other verticals quickly catch on. Entertainment companies have started to “gamify” their movie trailers: For Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Disney’s campaign let players go on a treasure hunt for specific items hidden inside a video, and they were rewarded with additional video content from the film for everything they found.
For Transformers: The Last Knight, users had to “wipe away” the dust that was accumulating on the screen in order to keep watching trailer content. Brands in other verticals, like QSR (Buffalo Wild Wings), are also integrating game elements into their mobile ad experiences and seeing stellar results. Users are not only fully engaging with the ad (versus multi-tasking or passively viewing) but they are choosing to replay it over and over again – which multiplies the awareness impact and is a clear indicator of developing real brand loyalty.
3 reasons publishers should embrace playables
With so much positive advertiser sentiment and user engagement, you would think that publishers and app developers would be excited about playables, right? But the most common complaint is that they are almost “too good.” That is, the mini-game competes with their own, and users could be drawn away from their app.
I’m here to tell you that is no reason to eschew playables in your app – playables can have many positive impacts to your monetization. Here’s why:
- Playables enhance user experience. Playables can add to the positive experience that users have in your app, not detract from it. And, just as mobile users became accustomed to value exchange (rewarded video) ads and started looking forward to using them in certain apps to build virtual currency or unlock gated content, they will also return to app environments that offer enjoyable mini-game ad experiences (versus annoying banner ads).
- They pay a lot more. Playables have extremely high conversion rates, and users that do convert are less likely to uninstall the app, since they’ve already tried and enjoyed the game. Free trials work! They are also more likely to spend money and engage in high-value activities within the app later. This all means high value for advertisers, and therefore much higher eCPMs for publishers.
- Incremental revenue stream. Playables can immediately run inside an existing video or interstitial display zone, but as they grow in popularity with users and advertisers, savvy publishers will begin to build a specific home for them as a “demo center” for discovering new apps. Since this essentially compartmentalizes the playable ads, giving them their own section, it’s a great way to address concerns from publishers that they distract the user from the game experience. With higher payouts for publishers, users could try new apps to get more points and even larger rewards than exist today with video.
As mobile users ourselves, we all get excited when we discover a new app. We tell our friends, family and everyone about it. But what if ads actually become games themselves and allow us to “play” instead of just see and hear? All of our lives could become a tad bit more exciting with some much-needed play.
By Tsahi Levy, CMO, CoolaData
Today’s mobile gaming industry is thriving, with a rapidly growing number of players across the globe. According to Newzoo‘s Global Games Market Report, 2.2 billion gamers are expected to generate $108.9 billion in 2017, an increase of 7.8% compared to 2016. Mobile games are a marvel of code, challenging gaming operators at different levels: Dev teams must constantly deliver bigger and more complex updates, develop highly personalized systems, and keep up with trends like VR and synchronous multiplayer. Marketing teams are faced with high churn rates, and need to familiarize themselves with multiple user profiles, from whales through FTDs to annoying bonus abusers.
By Irene Yang, Director of Business Development for APAC, Mobvista
Ad fraud costs the industry an estimated $8.2 billion per year. As a medium that sees some of the highest amount of time spent on mobile, games are one of the biggest targets for fraudsters.