Mobile Gaming Best Practices

Sunday, August 21

The mobile gaming market is growing rapidly. By examining the industry’s trends and adopting them, you can take advantage of this opportunity to increase your market share. In this blog, we’ve covered the mobile gaming best practices that are based on Facebook data.

  1. Mobile gaming is booming.
  2. Mobile gamer behavior.
  3. Path to your audience.
  4. Best promotion practices.

Mobile gaming is booming

Even though the pandemic destroyed many businesses, there is at least one industry that is quite successful in these times of uncertainty. It is mobile gaming. Mobile games proved to be a simple and convenient way of entertainment during the lockdown.

Now we are witnessing the dynamic era of mobile gaming. The industry’s tremendous growth didn’t start right at the time of the global pandemic. Other factors influenced the upgrowth of the mobile gaming industry. A growing smartphone penetration, technology advancement, and increasing adoption of trending technologies for developing games.

According to the App Annie, “State of Mobile: 2020” report, since 2017 mobile games have gone mainstream. From 2017 to 2019 mobile apps increased by 17% exceeding $5M in consumer spending annually 2017-2019.

In 2019 the mobile game’s profits were 25% higher than all other gaming combined (home console, PC/Mac gaming, handheld console). And, according to the marketers’ forecasts, the industry will continue growing.  According to the forecast, 49% of mobile gaming’s projected share of overall gaming revenue worldwide by 2022.

Mobile gamers are all of us

Mobile gaming is appealing for people of all ages and gender. Here are the data from the Game Gavel, “2020 Mobile Statistics” study that showcases the age and gender demographic of mobile gaming players in North America and Europe:

e age and gender demographic of mobile gaming players in North America and Europe

People spend a lot of time playing mobile games. eMarketer study from April 2019 shows that the average US adult spends around 22 min playing mobile games. Of course, these numbers have grown rapidly during the lockdown since March 2020. Requirements to stay at home have led to more time spent using the Internet and a greater need for online entertainment.

Source: eMarketer, April 2018

But not only adults and millennials enjoy spending time playing mobile games. Kids also love to play, for example, 46% of US children ages 8-12 play mobile games daily. The digital game’s revenue generated by children aged from 7 to 12 was rated as $2.18 billion in 2020, as reported by Nielsen.

How mobile gaming industry revenue is growing so fast? Well, the recipe is pretty simple: a broad spectrum of mobile game genres attracts a larger and more diverse gamer audience. That causes more monetization avenues such as in-game ads, in-game purchases, and subscriptions.

Mobile Gamer Behavior

People are most likely to quickly try a game that catches their eye. An Accenture study says that, on average, 54% of survived mobile gamers do little or no research at all if a game looks interesting. They just try it. The survive covered 9 countries such as the US, Canada, France, Germany, UK, Australia, Japan, South Korea, and Brazil.

The study also showed that players don’t mind advertising in-game apps, especially if they get something for watching it. 41% of mobile gamers surveyed are more inclined to watch an in-game ad to gain virtual currency. And only 18% of paying mobile gamers surveyed say that they make in-game purchases to eliminate ads altogether.

Around 40% of gamers in the surveyed countries are ready to make in-game purchases to improve their game-play performance and make the game exciting again. This readiness for purchasing makes mobile gaming a great ad platform.

People play to be part of a community

Mobile games connect people together. A lot of gamers are primarily playing to interact with people they know — their community.

In 2018 the Accenture agency studied mobile gamers’ behavior in their Global Mobile Gaming Consumer Journey research. They found out that compared to regular mobile gamers, community gamers surveyed are:

  • 7.1x more likely to say their community heavily influences their decision to download a mobile game;
  • 4.2x more likely to play for more than three hours per day;
  • 3.9x more likely to spend money on their mobile gaming experience.

This showcases that mobile gaming is a new way of connecting people across the world as the community highly influences players’ behavior and decisions.

Mobile Gaming Best Practices - Power Up

Key takeaways

  1. Rewarded video ads benefit gamers, app developers, and advertisers.
  2. The mobile game developers are focused on the value exchange for in-game purchases to retain players.
  3. Social influence greatly influences consumers’ behavior and decisions, especially in the discovery phase.

The path to your audience

According to the “Global Mobile Gaming Consumer Journey Study” by Accenture 50% of mobile gamers surveyed discover new mobile games on the Facebook family of apps (Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and Whatsapp). 700m people engage with games on Facebook each month (playing games, watching videos, engaging in a gaming group).

Where do mobile gamers connect?

As the study shows, Facebook and Facebook family apps are the most widespread places where mobile gamers connect and interact:

  • 42% of surveyed mobile gamers chat, make plans, and/or share recommendations about mobile games with friends on Messenger and WhatsApp.
  • 23% of mobile gamers surveyed follow a mobile game and/or brand on Facebook.

This is an example of how a mobile gamer might utilize Facebook at various times and in various ways.

This is an example of how a mobile gamer might utilize Facebook at various times and in various ways. Source - Facebook

So, if you are a mobile game developer, the best way to study and reach your target audience is through Facebook and Facebook family apps.

Best promotion practices

Making your mobile gaming startup profitable is a challenging task at the first stages of a company’s growth. Here’s a step-by-step strategy for advertising mobile gaming apps on Facebook. These tips will help you get the most out of your expenses.

 1. Select a campaign objective

This is your main business goal for advertising. Looking to increase app installs from your target audiences? Choose App Installs. Trying to drive app engagement or conversions from your existing userbase? Pick Conversions and select your app.

 2. Identify your target audience

Which audiences do you want to get in front of? Define who you want to target with a Custom Audience or Lookalike Audiences.

Custom Audience: Connect with active players and payers, active non-payers, and lapsed players by using data you own.

Lookalike Audiences: Identify people who have similar traits to your high-value customers with sophisticated modeling.

3. Optimize the marketing campaigns

Use optimization to help enable ad delivery to those most likely to take your desired action.

4. Be creative

What type of assets you will use to get your message across? Allow people to try a game before they install it with Playable Ads. Communicate your message and drive high-intent installs with this interactive ad experience.

5. Set Bidding

Choose a bidding strategy that suits your goals and helps you maximize value.

6. Select placement

Choose apps and services your ad will appear on. Use Automatic Placements to deliver ad content to the right person on the most cost-efficient placement at any given time. Reach your target audiences and optimize performance in real-time in more than one position on a single platform or across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and the Audience Network.

7. Measure your success

Analyze what’s working and what isn’t. Gain an understanding of how your campaigns are performing with Conversion Lift. This app will help you to:

  • Measure real business value, not clicks
  • Understand which channels drive impact
  • Make more informed budgeting decisions
  • Optimize campaigns post results

Conclusions

Due to a broader variety of mobile game options, the mobile gaming market has become much more diverse. Mobile gamers have different options in what to play (game genres) and how to play (watching ads, making purchases). These developments have led to diverse revenue models in the industry. To make your mobile gaming startup profitable, you need need to set your goals, identify your target audience and select the best channels to reach customers. With Facebook, you can promote your mobile games, set up effective advertising campaigns.

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