In a recent report by MediaBrix, an analytics advertising platform, in-game reward ads are providing massive returns for games featuring free-to-play business models with an estimated 91.4% in engagement.
According to MediaBrix, the study was conducted using over 200 different social and mobile gaming advertising campaigns during the month of July through December 2013. The company compared those impressions to standard industry averages derived from eMarketer and DoubleClick.
“Performance year-over-year on the brand side saw a 30 percent increase,” commented co-founder and CEO Ari Brandt on the new research. “We’ve mapped specific emotions in games and leverage those breakthrough moments to deliver ads.”
MediaBrix claims that they’re impressive engagement numbers are a result of their embedded ad strategy and the process of catering to specific gamer needs with accurate timing.
“You’re playing a game, maybe Kill All Zombies, and after you get a certain point, if a zombie kills you and you can’t get to the next level, we notice that,” said Brandt. “Then we ask if you need some help smashing those zombies … and tell you that T-mobile is here to help you. You click here, engage in this unit … and T-Mobile will give you a zombie crusher.”
The option to receive an instant reward at a key moment during the game is attractive to most social and mobile gamers but MediaBrix takes their strategy up a notch from other competitors by building customized ad units for each game.
“It’s a triple-win scenario,” says Brandt. “The user is happy … he or she got saved. The developer is happy, because the user gets returned to the game loop. And the brand is happy, because it was just positioned as the savior.”
The study results on MediaBrix’s own ads revealed that videos that are shown as part of the reward or ‘value exchange’ ads have a higher completion rate (percentage of users that finish watching the whole video before exiting) set at 83.1% on mobile in comparison to the average industry completion rates of 58%.
Brandt refers to it as “emotional targeting,” due to the face that the gamer is already emotionally engaged in their game and waiting for the brand-offered solution to appear.
Although marketing techniques can often vary, MediaBrix’s data uncovered some interesting insights on mobile gamers that many app developers and advertisers should consider for their own app monetization strategies.