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September Wrap-Up: Fyber takes GamesBeat

Gamesbeat 2014

The Fyber team has had quite a busy September! A highlight of this month was our participation in GamesBeat, VentureBeat’s annual event on disruption in the video game market. This year’s conference certainly didn’t shy away in theme: “Total World Domination”.

Clearly this tagline set the bar high for some serious discussions about the power and reach of the gaming industry. Joining in on the conversation was our very own Chief Revenue Officer and co-founder, Janis Zech, who moderated the panel, “Monetization and Doing Good” with Fyber’s partner Oliver Miao, CEO and co-founder of Pixelberry Studios. The panel showcased that a commercially successful mobile game can balance the user experience, while also having a great positive social impact.

Oliver and Janis explained how Pixelberry Studios’ hit mobile game, “High School Story”, served as a platform to organically surface some serious issues affecting teenagers’ lives, such as cyberbullying and eating disorders. Pixelberry worked with partners, like the anti-bullying non-profit Cybersmile Foundation, to effectively incorporate these topics into the game’s storyline. By interacting with different characters and solving quests, teens are exposed to coping mechanisms for serious, real-life issues through an engaging gaming experience. Pixelberry was also able to raise over $300k for the Cybersmile Foundation through revenue generated by in-app purchases.

In fact, “High School Story” was so successful at engaging users, that players actually requested that Pixelberry provide additional ways to earn premium currency, so they used rewarded video ads as a solution. The addition of these ads led to a 14% boost in 30 day retention.

Pixelberry also incorporated ads into their “Your Voice” feature, which allows users to earn virtual currency by answering poll questions. There’s a limit to the number of polls that a user can complete at one time, but engaging ads enables the user to “rush” a poll and access it sooner than they otherwise would have been able to. The “Your Voice” feature turned out to be a great success for “High School Story”:

  • DAUs (daily active users) increased 11%
  • Engagement boosted 12%
  • Revenues are tracking to exceed $1M this year

But the greatest benefit of incorporating ads into “High School Story”, Oliver explained, is that by using the money generated from ads for marketing the app, the game was able to reach and help hundreds of thousands teenagers. As long as developers take user experience into account when they are developing their advertising strategy (for example, by using opt-in ad formats), ad monetization and having a positive social impact can actually go hand-in-hand.

Outside of the sessions, traffic was also in full-swing at our booth. We made a slew of new acquaintances and were pleased to also see familiar faces. Chats centered around ad monetization, as well as user acquisition, and we were excited to hear positive feedback from existing clients.

Didn’t get a chance to see us this time around? Sign up for our developer newsletter and we’ll send you updates on our upcoming appearances. We hope you’ll stop by and say hello at our next event!

fyber ad monetization gamesbeat 2014

SF Meets Berlin

berlin san francisco fyber ad tech careers

Last week, Fyber’s San Francisco headquarters were a little quieter than usual, as the SF-based marketing team took off for HQ in Berlin!

A hop, skip, and 14 hours later, our sleepy-eyed California crew set up shop in the Berlin home office. The week was jam-packed with meetings, workshops, and even a special team project. Since we don’t often get the chance to meet our Berlin teammates face-to-face (and in the same time zone), we made sure to make the most of it.

berlin fyber careers advertising technology

But of course, we were in one of Europe’s most exciting cultural centers, so you know we couldn’t spend all our time behind the desk. Naturally we took time to enjoy the sights, the sounds, and – of course – the food of Berlin.

The highlight of our trip was a team Segway tour around some of the city’s most recognizable landmarks. We zipped along the banks of the Spree river, past Bellevue Palace and the Victory Column, through the Brandenburg Gate, and ended in front of the Reichstag Building. Afterwards, we headed over to the restaurant Lokal to tuck into some delicious German fare.

As the saying goes: time flies when you’re having fun – and we definitely were! Before we knew it, it was time to head back to San Francisco, many of us with a few boxes of German chocolate in tow.

To the Berlin crew: thanks for showing us a great time in your city and being fantastic hosts!
Until next time…

Berlin2Berlin

Fyber at ProductCamp 2014

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It’s not easy to create a product that consumers love, and creating an enjoyable user experience requires much more than a clean interface and easy usability. On September 13th, the Fraunhofer Fokus Institute in Berlin opened its doors to ProductCamp 2014, where attendees were eager to learn how to strike that elusive balance which makes a great product. Product managers, agile coaches, scrum masters, and more – joined in a day of workshops and talks on various product development topics, from Iterative & Incremental Product Development to Developer Marketing to using Google Analytics for customer research.

The Fyber team had the opportunity to meet a lot of great attendees and to learn more about the importance of following a structured design process; asking customers what they want, creating user personas and doing what you do – with love.

As for sharing our own knowledge, Fyber’s very own Technical Product Manager, Jakub Uniejewski, was honored with the opportunity to give a talk on product experience. Jakub provided three real-life stories from his career which demonstrated that product experience is much more than just UX. User experience issues might arise with no fault on the part of the product manager, as external circumstances that one can’t influence often come into play. However, it’s up to the product manager to research and solve these issues and on occasions, it may require taking bold decisions for a better user experience, over short term gains. The takeaway is; you’ve got to take risks, be bold, and be innovative to become a good product manager – not to mention possessing good research and analytical skills worthy of Sherlock Holmes.

We’re looking forward to the next series of ProductCamp events coming up in Q4, which will take place not only in Germany, but globally in Australia and the U.S. See you all there!

What Does the New Apple Product Launch Mean for Mobile Advertising?

ad monetization fyber
Much like the rest of the tech world, the Fyber team anxiously awaited the unveiling of Apple’s latest product line-up on Sep. 10th. As everyone now knows, the big reveal brought four new major offerings: iOS 8, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, and the Apple Watch. To take a look at how these might affect the mobile advertising industry, we caught up with Fyber’s SVP, Global Ad Marketplace and Partnerships, Ted Liang (TL).

iOS 8

TL: “A few features of iOS 8 stand out as potentially impacting the mobile advertising landscape. First, are interactive notifications. This feature is an extension of previous message formats, such as push notifications, which allow the user to further engage with the app (such as respond to a message or “like” a Facebook post) without having to directly open the app or leave the screen that you’re on. The ability to instantly engage users could have a positive impact on advertising engagement. For example, let’s say a game offers the chance to earn gems through an offer wall. The app could then deploy a notification letting the user know that a special promotion is being run where they are eligible to earn over 50 gems, and if they decide to interact with the notification, it takes them directly to the offer wall.

Another feature is location-based notifications. Located in the corner of the lock screen, it activates when an app on your device identifies a relevant location nearby via GPS – let’s say a Starbucks or a Target. By tapping the button, the user can automatically open the app and begin engaging with a proximity-based alert or promotion. It’s easy to see how this feature could seamlessly tie into promotions – whether it’s advertisers paying to have their icon displayed to those that don’t have the app or if the one-tap functionality could feed into certain advertising features (for example, taking you directly to an alert about a sale).”

iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus

TL: “The most obvious change here is the sheer size of the phone. With displays at 4.7 and 5.5 inches, respectively, both the 6 and the 6 Plus are considerably larger than the iPhone 5/5s. What does this mean for advertisers? Simply put, it’s more real estate to display ads, which could trigger an uptick in richer formats, such as video. The ability to display larger, more engaging content also means that users are more likely to interact with an ad. In addition, both phones have a longer battery life, which should naturally increase the amount of time that users engaging with apps, and therefore organically increase the number of potential impressions.

We also can’t overlook the impact that the new A8 chip will have on overall user experience. Those who watched the unveiling saw the demo of Vainglory, a self-described “unapologetically core” MOBA (multi-player online battle arena) game developed by Super Evil Megacorp. Viewers were treated to a sneak peek of how the game takes advantage of the A8’s enhanced processing power, packing an impressive visual punch. This capability will translate into more games, traditionally developed for PC or console, making the shift to mobile and providing advertisers with further access to the market of immersive, hardcore games with very engaged user bases.”

Apple Watch

TL: “This one is the most exciting, albeit uncertain, of the bunch. Only time will tell how the Apple Watch will impact mobile advertising, but one thing’s for sure: there’s a huge potential for it to be a game-changer. The intimate nature of wearable devices provides advertisers with a unique opportunity to serve advertising directly to the user when they’re most relevant. Ultimately, the advertisers that will “win” in this game are those who take a close look at the intent of the user. If you can understand your audience’s intent for using and interacting with the Apple Watch, then you can develop advertising campaigns that will effectively influence their behavior.”

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dmexco 2014: Back from the future of the digital marketing industry

dmexco is not your average digital marketing industry gathering, it’s a trip to the future. A hotbed of business meetings, ideas and networking, dmexco 2014 delivered excellently on the promise of ‘Entering new Dimensions’, the overarching theme of this year’s conference. It did so not only through the impressive size of the exposition (spread over three vast aircraft hangar-sized buildings), but also through the top-class speakers and their visionary perspectives on the future of the digital economy.

This year, the theme of innovation was clearly top-of-mind. As the mobile ad tech industry starts to consolidate, it must continue to innovate its technology, its products and the way it does business. This is especially relevant in a world where each marketing dollar is scrutinized from every conceivable angle to gauge ROI.

Meanwhile, at the Fyber booth, there was a lot of conference action: we were thrilled to see deep interest in our video and performance advertising offerings. Other topics of discussion spanned from our ad mediation solution to our user acquisition capabilities. The inspiring conversations confirmed that we deliver great value for advertisers and offered a wealth of take-aways on how we can further improve our product offerings.

All in all, it was another fantastic year for Europe’s premier digital event. Check out a snapshot of the highlights below! A big thank you for everyone who stopped by our booth. We look forward to seeing you again in 2015 as we’ll be going back to…the future!

Fyber @ dmexco 2014

RUG::B Meetup at Fyber

rug:b berlin ruby developer fyber
What do Ruby developers do on an average Thursday night in Berlin? Well, on one particular Thursday night last week, more than 60 members of the RUG::B group (Ruby User Group :: Berlin) were welcomed to the Fyber office for their monthly meetup to enjoy exciting Ruby presentations and discussions, along with pizza and an impressive selection of artisan beers.

The hot topics discussed included:

Afterwards, Weidenfeld took his place at the DJ decks, as the most determined guests stayed for more chatting and playing a round or two of Fußball.

To our fellow RUG::B members: we don’t know how your Friday at work was following the meetup, but the Fyber team definitely needed an espresso or two to kick start the morning! Tired eyes aside, the exciting evening was well worth it, and we are looking forward to welcoming the RUG::B group again soon!

rug:b berlin ruby developers fyber

 

Berlin Startup Tour Visits Fyber

Berlin Startup Tour
The Berlin startup scene is booming, some predict that Berlin will become the European startup hub or the next Silicon Valley, and some say it already is. New ventures are born every day, and it is a tough but exciting environment to be a part of.

On August 27th, Dr. Pätzold, a member of parliament from the CDU (Christian Democratic Union) party, visited Fyber as part of their Berlin Startup tour and sat down with our co-founder, Janis Zech. As Fyber started in Berlin and successfully expanded to Silicon Valley, Dr. Pätzold was interested in the insights and teachings Fyber was able to share.

The German government understands the importance of startups, not only for tax contribution and attracting foreign investors, but particularly for the jobs it creates. According to a McKinsey study, by 2020 more than 100,000 new jobs may be created in Berlin, thanks to the startup trend.

Of course, in order to attract entrepreneurs and venture capital, the German government needs to get involved and be proactive. They can offer startups resources and foster growth that will help to develop the economy in the long run, specifically in innovative industries. Interestingly, the government seems to be on the right track already. A number of programs and grants have already or are currently being developed for startups, and learning from the positive examples of businesses, such as Fyber, can help those that take the brave step of starting their own venture.

Below are thoughts from Fyber co-founder, Janis Zech, on what can be done to spur additional growth and foster success within the expanding German startup scene:

  1. Registering within the German system should be simplified for those that arrive as employees or entrepreneurs. One must visit a myriad of bureaucratic offices when one moves to Germany and must operate exclusively in German. A more welcoming culture can be created via the availability of a multilingual start-up agency. Interpreters could be hired for the existing bureaucratic offices to allow for a stress-free registration process.
  2. More venture capital should be attracted to the city. There is a growing interest among international investors, but more must be done to secure capital for growing businesses.
  3. Work closely with financial institutions to empower companies on their path to a successful initial public offering.

We hope that even more great startups grow in Berlin and succeed in entering the U.S. and other international markets, just as Fyber has done.

Learn How Cie Games Achieved 50% Boost in Ad Revenues and Engagement

Cie Games ad monetization case study
Wondering how to increase ad revenues, while boosting engagement? Take a note from Cie Games. Recently acquired by Glu Mobile, Cie Games is an award-winning publisher of top mobile and social games. Over the last 13 years, they have entertained more than 95 million players by leveraging their expertise in the racing game genre. Fyber is the ad monetization solution of choice for all of Cie Games’ mobile titles, including their hit Racing Rivals.

Our latest case study takes a look at how Cie Games:

  • Tweaked their monetization strategy to increase ad revenues 50%.
  • Simplified their approach to monetization, while staying in
    full control of their direct relationships with demand partners.
  • Boosted engagement with an over 50% increase in Avg. User Session Time.

Download Button

Maximizing ROI on Your App Distribution Campaigns

Let’s say you have just finished developing a new app – perhaps a casual game to entertain your users on the subway, or a travel app to help business people book hotels worldwide. Whatever the genre of your app, you’re likely setting your sights on next steps – namely, app marketing. How will users discover your app among the thousands out there? And how will you find users who will engage and re-engage with your app? Paid user acquisition is one strong option, and some important formats of paid user acquisition are rewarded formats, such as “Install” or “Engagement Campaigns”. But then, are users who download or engage with apps for rewards really loyal users?

The truth is that, with appropriate tracking and optimization, rewarded user acquisition campaigns do provide high-quality users for our clients. That’s why Fyber offers “Install” and “Engagement Campaigns”, alongside our expanding non-rewarded ad format offering. Our clients who have ran rewarded campaigns for app distribution have achieved outstanding results in generating loyal and engaged users at scale. Underlying the success of these clients’ campaigns are two key factors:

  1. KPI tracking to measure performance and analyze user behavior, and
  2. Using the right type of rewarded campaign to maximize ROI.

 

KPI Tracking and Analysis

A key measure for optimizing rewarded campaigns is collecting data on where new users are coming from, as well as how loyal and engaged they become. By tracking installs and user behavior through developer app IDs, which identify each traffic source for the campaign, it is possible to break down user traffic into segments and evaluate the success of rewarded campaigns. Setting a definition of quality before the campaign (e.g. X number of users need to revisit the app within 7 days, or Y% of acquired users must make an in-app purchase) is key in objectively evaluating the success of the campaign. For example, one of our clients promoting a casual game has set up the following regimen to keep tabs on ROI:

  • Analyzing traffic quality on a weekly basis by tracking developer app IDs
  • Looking at collected data to see which traffic source delivers the most installs
  • Tracking how many of these installs will make an in-app purchase within the next 28 or 40 days, and whether the overall campaign is ROI-positive.

With the support of our account management team, they were able to put the different traffic sources into one of the three quality groups, making it easier to take the appropriate actions and improve campaign performance. Campaign analysis based on developer app IDs is extremely effective for campaigns that have generated 5,000-10,000 installs, which is the baseline we recommend for collecting meaningful data.

 

Choosing the Right Rewarded Campaign Type

“Install” and “Engagement Campaigns” are a tried-and-true method for increasing ROI and user quality for app distribution using rewarded ad formats. “Install Campaigns” (CPI) will reward users for downloading and opening the promoted app. This type of campaign allows you to reach a very wide audience and generate visibility for your app. After tracking installs and identifying the traffic sources that are ROI-positive, you can use “Install Campaigns” to effectively drill down on these traffic sources and maximize your ROI. By adjusting the bid, you can tailor “Install Campaigns” to your needs, be it acquiring quality users at an accelerated pace or sustaining quality download volumes over time. Mobile_CPE Typically, “Engagement Campaigns” (CPE) will ask users to download and engage with the promoted app. A music app might request that the user create a playlist, while a game might require the user to play to a certain level before receiving a reward. Other popular engagement options include asking the user to fill in a registration form or to complete a tutorial explaining the app. Whatever the ask, “Engagement Campaigns” are used to guide users to a specific point in an app’s flow where user conversion rates are the highest. The benefits of helping users understand the apps they are installing are clear: you avoid top-of-funnel churn, and increase the likelihood that they will return to the familiar apps they enjoy.

 

If you’re looking to implement paid user acquisition, our account managers are here to help guide you through the process. We’re ready to invest in understanding your needs and helping you meet your goals. If your style is more independent, we’ll give you the tools you need to lead the way. To learn more about Fyber’s user acquisition capabilities, get in touch with us at [email protected]

Gamescom, Great Times

GamesCom Collage
Gamescom 2014 may be behind us, but the memories are still fresh in our minds. From Aug. 5th-9th, our team descended upon the beautiful city of Cologne, Germany to take part in the flurry of activity that is the world’s second largest gaming convention. For us, the show was a great opportunity to see familiar faces and make new connections. While the day was busy with meetings and demos, at night we welcomed a much-needed break to dine with 50 of our friends and colleagues at the gorgeous KölnSKY restaurant. The restaurant offered breathtaking views of the city skyline and delicious dishes, but our focus was on the company. Our guests represented all aspects of the mobile and gaming industry – and all corners of the globe. Conversation and networking carried well into the night, leaving just hours to grab a few necessary winks before the activity of the convention kicked into gear once again. If we didn’t see you at Gamescom, we hope you’ll stop by at one of our upcoming events to say hello and check out the latest and greatest from Fyber!