1. What is cross-promotion?
Cross-promotion, which involves the practice of setting up apps that promote each other to their audiences, is a wonderful, free way to promote your app. In practice app developers advertise each other’s apps via advertising placements within those apps. It’s a perfect approach for app developers on a tight budget. And, although there’s no real currency being exchanged between the app developers using this model, the app downloads this promotion strategy can drive could certainly be considered a form of currency.
Whether you’re exchanging impressions, clicks, downloads, installs, or sales, the fundamental principle is the same. The key is to ensure that all participants are extracting a similar value to the value that they are contributing to the exchange.
2. What are the benefits? What pitfalls to avoid?
The benefits cross-promotion offers are plenty. App developers can target their customers with ads related to the apps they already know and love — and it costs nothing!
Keep in mind that cross promotion is a kind of barter that relies heavily on data analysis, funnel optimization and testing (and lots of it!). If the idea of cross promotion is sounding more and more interesting, you can take advantage of it by either joining an existing platform or creating one yourself.
Many app developers have huge audiences of users. Since users download and use many apps, cross promotion can make business sense. Be sure you swap your audience with a non-competitive app developer. And be aware of the pitfalls. It’s hard to hard to know if you’re getting equivalent value out of the swap.
3. What options do you have to implement cross-promotion?
There are a variety of options available for developers to implement cross-promotion:
a. Create direct deals with other game developers. Agree to use your game to send traffic to their game, in exchange for them sending traffic to yours. You will need to add a mediation layer, or a tracking mechanism.
b. Implement advertising in your existing games. If you have several existing games in the mobile market, partnering with an ad network like InMobi enables you to create House Ads and run them to promote your new game.
c. Utilize an in-game advertising service that offers in-network cross-promotion.
4. When is cross-promotion effective?
Cross-promotion works best when you have developed a string of games and can tap into an existing customer base of people who already love and play your games. In this scenario, where you have a captured audience, you capture their attention by running in-house ads for your latest games — effectively harnessing in-house ads and doing cross promotion on your own inventory.
5. What inventory do you use?
It’s imperative to understand which inventory you want to use to show house ads vs. inventory that you wish to monetize through an ad network or an ad exchange. For instance, to your premium users, you could show promotional house ads to sell virtual goods instead of showing an ad-network ad. You will realize that by effectively understanding the sections/ placements of your app where your ads perform well, you will be able to generate higher eCPMs.
There are various scenarios where cross-promotion can be really beneficial. Click here to read about it and also how you can use InMobi Analytics to cross-promote your apps.