Mobile In-Game Advertising

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More Game Developers Turn to Advertising

With gaming shifting to mobile, developers are looking to monetize their games through advertising, and advertisers are realizing that mobile games attract players from nearly all demographics.

How big is the market for mobile in-game advertising?

We estimate that the US market for in-game advertising on all devices will exceed $3 billion this year, with mobile comprising the majority. Ad spend in all games grew 16% in 2019 and will continue to grow by double-digit rates next year, driven by better ad technology, more free-to-play mobile games and an influx of new advertisers attracted by the relatively brand-safe environment.

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Who’s playing mobile games?

Although the stereotype of gamers is that they’re young males, the majority of mobile gamers are female. Females outnumber males by a wide margin in mobile strategy and puzzle games, while the opposite is true of mobile action, racing and shooter games. There is also age diversity, with gamers ages 21 to 35 accounting for 39% of the total and those ages 36 to 50 accounting for 33%. More than a fifth of gamers are 50 and older.

Which ad formats are most important?

Overall, rewarded video is the most prevalent format, but playable ads are growing rapidly. The rise of free-to-play games has also spurred renewed growth in banners.

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What’s the best way to target in-game ads?

In contrast to other ad ecosystems, game publishers place more emphasis on contextual than behavioral data. As analysis of in-game and cross-game behavior increases, behavioral targeting is on the rise, but it is still less common and more contained to in-app behavior than advertising in other apps.

WHAT’S IN THIS REPORT? This report covers in-game advertising trends, including formats, players, targeting and measurement.

KEY STAT: US gamers ages 14 and older spend nearly half of their time with digital games on mobile devices, according to February 2019 data from Deloitte.

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