Updated Wed May 6, 2020
At Fyber, we’re in the business of solving the toughest growth challenges faced by mobile game developers and app developers. And helping game devs solve these growth challenges is also the founding principle behind our customer event Fyber Next.
To think of better times before COVID-19, we decided to take a trip down memory lane a couple of months ago and look back at the incredible insights shared at Fyber Next Cancun 2020. Here are some of the highlights from day one.
“Why Is Holistic LTV Such a Challenge?”
For mobile game developers, lifetime value (LTV) is their true north. Game devs use the LTV metric to assess the current as well as future financial value of each user in a mobile game. There’s just one small hitch in every mobile game developer’s LTV forecasting model: It’s not forecasting an accurate user-level LTV metric. In his session, “Why Is Holistic LTV Such a Challenge?,” Fyber Senior Director of Corporate Strategy Itai Cohen shared the user-level LTV challenge that all mobile gaming devs deal with at work, and made a compelling argument for why the user-level LTV metric is so powerful.
“Merging Product and User Acquisition: The Modern Growth Function”
The user acquisition function at a mobile gaming studio has rapidly evolved before our very eyes. When UA managers today think about UA, they start thinking about what happens in their product, i.e. their mobile game.
So what’s so important about the functional changes to a UA team? Eric Seufert, media strategist and owner of Mobile Dev Memo, explained how it’s now a UA team’s job to move their focus down a mobile game’s in-app experience funnel so they can have agency over shaping the game experience itself. UA team’s today rely on in-app events in a mobile game as one of their key targeting signals to run effective, ROI-positive UA ad campaigns. Coincidentally, a product team needs UA to be successful at acquiring users, otherwise a mobile game won’t perform commercially. There’s a mutual dependency between the UA and product teams at today’s mobile gaming businesses.
Mobile game developers on ad monetization and beyond in 2020
We sat down in Cancun with seasoned industry leaders from Dots, Hothead Games, and Epic Story Interactive to get their thoughts and hard-won advice on all things mobile game monetization and beyond.
On choosing ad formats
Kenneth Wong, Director of Research and Monetization at Hothead Games: “I would say that rewarded video is the easiest to approach for developers because rewarded video does take design into the equation, whereas when you think about offer wall, interstitials, or banners it feels like I’m just slapping something on a game. THe UI/UX of these ad formats is definitely something that not all developers will appreciate. But at the same time, I would say that I do challenge my designers saying, ‘Why can’t you think of a place in the game where banner ads are less intrusive? Think about why banner ad placements should be in the gameplay. Think outside the box kind of thing.'”
On marketing and product teams working in silos
Nir Efrat, CEO at Dots: “That’s a huge conflict for any game company. At King there were wars between creative teams and product people. It’s all about communication and trying to collaborate as much as possible. And make sure that people understand each other’s team. And understand what’s driving each team. And educate creative teams to listen to business objectives, KPIs, and goals. It’s all about continuous communication.”
On product teams understanding the value of rewarded video
Dennis Leong, Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer at Epic Story Interactive: “We think rewarded video is the best type of placement because it gives the user a choice. From our developers, there’s always the moral and ethical argument of rewarded video. I’ve heard the term a “necessary evil” used many times in association with rewarded video. What I try to get [our developers] to do is get them away from thinking [rewarded video] is evil at all. There is value in rewarded video to users. [Rewarded video] is always the easiest way you can up your revenue in the game. I tell them, if we can take the easiest path to up our revenue in our game, that actually buys you more time to work on the features that you feel are really important to the game, and less pressure for you to deliver on those features and have those generating revenue. You actually get a bit more time now if you can get ads into the game and provide value to the user through ads. So they usually come around to that point of view if I frame [rewarded video] that way.
Check back to the Fyber Blog next week for more highlights from Fyber Next Cancun 2020.