In May, Tapjoy, the provider of Maximum Impact Platform™ for mobile advertisers and app developers, announced a key partnership with an Oracle-owned digital ad search engine –Moat. The partnership provides Moat’s independent viewability and attention measurement for video ads on Tapjoy’s in-app inventory. We spoke to Changsu Lee, SVP, Platforms and Ben Chen SVP & GM, Developer Relations at Tapjoy to understand how rewarded advertising helps app developers keep users engaged longer.
MTS: How does the Maximum Impact Platform™ provide mobile engagement and monetization services?
Ben Chen: Our Tapjoy Maximum Impact Platform™ is a unified SDK that is powered by data science, marketing automation and industry-leading ad units to help app developers segment their user base, deepen engagement and generate more revenue. It uses predictive analytics to help developers understand what type of promotional campaign to serve to which user and when. For instance, you can target engaged users (those who play regularly, opt in to rewarded ads, make in-app purchases, etc.) with a completely different set of promotions from nonengaged users (those whose participation is more passive, and are therefore less valuable). This level of targeting helps increase conversions, improve user experience and drive better engagement with the app.
MTS: What are the current dynamics in the relationship between rewarded ads and user retention?
Changu Lee: As this latest report shows, rewarded ads help drive retention in mobile apps. We’ve always suspected this to be the case because we’ve seen it play out anecdotally and through individual case studies, but this is the first network-wide analysis that we’ve conducted to prove our hypothesis. The reason for this dynamic is that rewarded ads serve as an excellent introduction to an app’s virtual economy. Rewarded videos, in particular, are especially easy to complete, and once the user has more currency to spend in the game they can access more content and do more things, which lets them experience the app on a deeper level.
MTS: What are the factors that affect retention among mobile app users?
Changsu Lee: There are a lot of factors that go into app retention. First and foremost is probably the quality of the app itself. Does it meet user expectations and do what they want it to do? If not, they won’t stick around very long, but that is the base requirement for users to continue using an app after they first download it. After that, there are factors such as the quality of the tutorial in explaining how to use the app, the quality of the First Time User Experience (FTUE) and how positive the user’s first session is, whether or not there are bugs in the app, the overall quality and ease-of-use of the User Interface, and so much more.
MTS: What is the impact of video advertisements on mobile app campaigns/retention?
Changsu Lee: As we learned from our research, videos ads have the strongest correlation with app retention of any of the ad formats studied. Players who watched just one rewarded video during their first week had a 30-day retention rate of 53 percent — an increase of more than 300 percent over the average 30-day retention rate. For players that watched seven videos in their first week, the 30-day retention rate was 71 percent, which was more than 450 percent greater than the average.
MTS: How do you see Mobile Advertising technologies integrating with traditional MarTech stack – Email, CRM, Automation, cloud, etc.?
Ben Chen: We see AdTech and MarTech merging within mobile apps to form a synergistic relationship. Historically, ad-tech and mar-tech clearly addressed different segments of the digital landscape. The former was designed to attract audiences, while the latter was for selling products and services to existing customers. But as mobile game developers started embracing the freemium model, these lines began to blur. Soon, developers will be able to factor in ad metrics like placement and frequency into app retention and monetization analysis, allowing them to automate control of their ad stacks and optimize results for a variety of consumer profiles. All of this is possible because of the fact that on mobile, every action is measurable and actionable.
MTS: The world is steadily growing from small screen to ‘no screen’ experience. How do you see Tapjoy shaping up for this upcoming trend?
Ben Chen: It’s probably a little too early for us to start building monetization solutions for “no screen” developers, but it is definitely something we are keeping an eye on. It will be interesting to watch how the market matures. We are also intrigued by advances in Artificial Intelligence that create no-screen opportunities — like what Google and Amazon are doing with Echo and Alexa. You can be assured that as the market grows, we will be there to help app developers turn their passions into real businesses.
MTS: What are the disruptions you would like to see in mobile advertising by 2020?
Ben Chen: I think that we’ve only just begun to tap into the potential of Artificial Intelligence in terms of its ability to create a better, more personalized and overall more meaningful ad experience, so it will be really interesting to see how that disruption plays out over the next few years. I would also like to see mobile ad creatives continue to evolve by delivering fun, engaging experiences that are native to app content. For instance, we are seeing playables and game-like rich media ads gain popularity, and consumers are spending a lot of time engaging with them. I think there’s a lot more that the industry can do to bring similar innovations to market and continue experimenting with new formats.
MTS: What are the top markets for Mobile Advertising technology providers?
Ben Chen: For the world that we play in — rewarded advertising — mobile games have been leading the way because they were the first to truly embrace the freemium model. But we are quickly seeing other types of apps — from news and media apps to healthcare, finance and productivity apps — jumping on board as well.
MTS: What is the role of content management systems used in Mobile apps and advertising? Is there any programmatic or AI algorithm working behind the content?
Changsu Lee: It’s true that more and more app developers are turning to Content Management Systems to help them deal with the growing demand for constantly updated, timely and personalized content inside their apps. This is especially true for content-heavy apps like news and media apps or retail apps. And yes, AI is working behind the scenes to drive better targeting and personalization through content management systems, just as it is with nearly all content and advertising in this day and age.
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MTS: How do you see AI technologies and advertising converging in mobile-first businesses?
Changsu Lee: AI technologies enable mobile advertisers and mobile-first businesses to deliver ads that are more targeted to each user’s individual tastes and preferences. At Tapjoy, for instance, we use AI to build profiles based on device-level data — using anonymous data, of course — that help us predict which category of ads a user is likely to be interested in, or how likely they are to complete a certain type of ad. This particular use of AI, to improve targeting and personalization, benefits all involved — app developers, advertisers, and the consumers viewing the ads — so it’s a critical strategy for the future of the entire mobile ad industry
MTS: Thanks for chatting with us , Ben and Changsu.
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