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App Install Ads: 5 things developers need to know about creatives

Posted on July 21, 2014
By Sujoy Golan

So users love your app and you are now ready to scale your app business through app-install ads. You have chosen the ad network that you want to work with and the audience that you want to target and are now working on the creatives for your campaign. What seems to be a seemingly straightforward matter, can have far-reaching impact on how effective your app-install campaign would be. In other words, the fate of your app business could hinge on how effective your creatives are.

Thankfully, there are ways to increase your chances of success. Following are key creative learnings from some of the most successful app install campaigns.

1. Use specific calls to action that take the guess work out

‘Download Now’ or ‘Install Now’ don’t tell users what to expect from your app. Instead, how about asking if an adventure game enthusiast would like to ‘Command a dragon’, or if a building game fan wants to ‘Build a successful city’? When in doubt, a button that reads ‘Play Now’ works well too.

Do remember to localize your message for different language across your target countries.

2. Wow and inform users with your images

With fleeting attention spans, your creative won’t get a second chance to make an impact. Successful app install ads use eye-catching graphics that also showcase the best of the app. Ads provide games a great opportunity to promote their best characters and scenes.

Take at look at what Subway Surfers features below - their most popular surfers Jake and Tricky with a surfboard under her arm, set in Sao Paolo. Evernote’s app install campaign has an image that very nicely captures everything the app does.

3. Leverage video for gaming apps

Everyone loves watching videos. And video ads perform well especially for games, where users are able to get a front-and-center experience. Video ads on InMobi have had, on an average, a 54% higher click through rate (CTR) compared to static images.

For your video ad, choose a scene which is at the heart of your game’s experience.A low-cost way to create an effective video is to just record footage of your game itself, and sync it with your game’s soundtrack.15 to 30 second video ads work best.

4. Try “playable ads” creatives

How about a creative that lets users try your app before downloading it? The ‘playable ad’ creative format has emerged through advances in virtualization and delivery optimization that have enabled ‘gamelets’ to be played with negligible latency. Engaged and committed users acquired through these ads have demonstrated a higher lifetime value (LTV).

5. Test, test and test

Most importantly, keep testing everything you do. Testing variations of your ad creative to determine performance (CTRs, conversion rates) will give you insights that you need to drive the growth of your app’s user base.

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