User Acquisition: Networks, Marketing & Creative Strategy
UA can be a minefield with a vast array of opportunities to market your application on networks all over the world. Selecting the best strategy for your application/game relies on a variety of aspects including historical knowledge of game/genre, early data indicators & educated experimental budgets. In this chapter of our Bubbles of Wisdom Series, Arthur Chin (UA Lead at Snowprint Studios) will share his views & experiences with SDK Networks, SANs, DSPs, and other mobile marketing channels.
Covering experimentation and how to get started with SDK Networks if you are new to this, Arthur will also explore creative strategy & the importance of engaging adverts to attract users to your app or game.
Over the past week, we have released 12 videos of Arthur’s expert insights, if you missed part 1 or 2, you can catch up below. You will also be able to listen to the interview in full via podcast here.
Bubbles of Wisdom: Arthur Chin Part 1 – Automation for a Mobile App Publisher, Performance Indicators for Optimization, LTV Prediction & Arthur’s Holy Grail for User Acquisition
Bubbles of Wisdom: Arthur Chin Part 2 – Impacts on the Mobile Gaming Industry from iOS 14 & the Coronavirus Pandemic
The Ideal Mix of SDK Networks, SANs & DSPs
Arthur’s advice is to focus your initial energies and budget on SANs. You should look to ensure this expenditure is beneficial regardless of how much you spend before moving to other networks. If you can prove your game/app works on SANs then there is no reason why this should not work on other platforms, however, it is important to get everything right when starting out in this stage including audience, creatives & geographies.
You will reach a point where you have exhausted all the opportunities within SANs, this is where you should look to SDK Networks & DSPs. These can provide a vast amount of experience and solid achievements if you can establish good relationships with your account managers and be clear & honest with your aims and expectations. And if/when the effort that goes into managing several channels starts affecting your efficiency… look into automation!
Getting Started with SDK Networks
Don’t expect instant results if you have never used these before, it takes time to acquire learnings and understand the platform you are utilizing. There needs to be an expedition budget and you need to leverage the relationship you have with your account manager, you should be honest with your KPIs and help them work with you to see if the network is viable for results. Manage expectations within your management, as you will need to set aside a good budget to explore new networks, figure out how many installs you need and how much this would cost. If your account managers are unsure their network will work for you, more often than not they will be honest and let you know. Transparency & relationship building are the foundations of successfully entering into SDK network adoption as part of your marketing strategy.
UA Strategy for Whale-Driven Applications: Predicting high-value users based on early IAE
Driving UA on products with a long payback window or few big spenders is tough. Think about genres such as Hardcore, Forex & Social Casino. An early in-app event being used to predict long-term monetization is very dependent on the specific application. Proxies for future revenue could be how long users are staying in the application, whether they use specific features & how much they spend early on. The UA team will be the first to know these triggers and whether they are significant & reliable indicators, it is important to work closely with the development team to build a user journey that aligns to a clear early prediction of user value; which will greatly benefit the profitability and longevity of the application.
Creative Strategy, Performance, Analysis, and Scalability
Before going into optimization & testing strategies, you have to set up a working process to brainstorm new ideas & put into motion constructing new creatives. This involves all stakeholders, including UA, Artists, Marketers & Developers. This provides additional empathy and a common language to build creatives together. Inclusive to this is sharing all results and data for further iterations and to devise why things have or haven’t been effective. Incremental changes are always necessary and you need a constructive way to provide feedback and work from this. All teams are vital to the process, with developers knowing the game’s USPs, UA knowing the users you are looking to attract and artists designing attractive and engaging ads across different formats (Static, Video, Playables, etc).
Arthur Chin, UA Lead at Snowprint Studios after previously leading UA at Treasure Hunt & Wargaming Mobile. Arthur is currently responsible for user acquisition strategy for titles including Rivengard & Legend of Solgard. If you would like to know more about Arthur, please visit his UA Wavemaker profile page.
Bubbles of Wisdom is Bubbleye‘s audio and video series aimed to extract unique insights from outstanding UA Wavemakers around the globe – like-minded professionals that contribute to evolving User Acquisition armed with unique expertise and outside-the-box thinking.
Stay tuned for a stream of thought-provoking questions and new perspectives into the world of mobile marketing and user acquisition.