4 Best Practices to Optimize Ad Campaigns on Chartboost’s Dashboard
So you’ve integrated Chartboost’s SDK and created a network publishing campaign. Now what?
Good question. Making the most of your campaign means more money in your pocket and more players in your game. More than 200,000 mobile games have integrated our SDK over the years, so we’ve learned a thing or two about how to optimize for success. Here, a few helpful tips and tricks:
1. Let it run, collect your data
Time is your friend here. Some devs want to see results or identify trends right away, but the only way to analyze your campaign properly is to let it run (unless you’re launching at the top of the App Store, in which case you’ll have a ton of data to look at from the start). In general, we suggest waiting three weeks before distilling the data from a campaign. From the Chartboost dashboard you can see every advertisement that has run for the specific campaign (down to the impressions, clicks, and delivered installs per player), so get to know these numbers after a decided time frame. Then, once you do start to look at your data, pinpoint which ads are converting well within your game—and which ones aren’t.
Insider tip: Chartboost gives you the ability to exclude the advertisers that aren’t performing the best in your campaign, so you don’t have to waste energy on them moving forward.
2. Implement segmentation, waterfalls, and use mediation
It’s also important to create segments with your data to ensure you’re showing the right ads to the right people. For example, you can target a cross-promotional ad to players with a high ARPU to keep spenders in your network of games. Alternatively, you can show network publishing campaigns to users with high retention but no spend to help generate some revenue from their playing time!
With segments in place, you can implement a waterfall, which is essentially a prioritized list of the campaigns you want to show. For instance, you may want to set cross promotions at the highest priority (to grow your internal network), then set network campaigns at a lower priority to make a bit more money. Different segments can participate in different parts of the waterfall. This way, non-paying players can be directed to a publishing campaign while high-LTV players can be shuffled to cross promotion campaigns so that they continue to spend within your network.
If after setting up a waterfall you wish to use additional networks to monetize, use mediation to help manage your total publishing inventory. If you’re having trouble juggling multiple networks in your advertising waterfall, mediation can automatically allocate traffic towards the best paying networks. With plenty of partners to choose from, fill rate should never be a concern.
3. Don’t set minimum bid floors
Many new publishers see that they can set minimum bid floors and, as such, target only high-paying advertisers. But because Chartboost looks at eCPM and clickthrough rates (not just bid-rates), if you set yourself up with a high minimum bid floor, you’re limiting a percentage of advertisers that could have really helped your campaign performance. Logically, it makes sense to set a high bid floor, but it’s not beneficial for most campaigns. Most publishers think, for example, that if they set a high minimum, only the top advertisers will show and they will get paid more money, but that’s not always the case. Sometimes conversion is higher with lower paying advertisers. Don’t try to outwit the system!
4. Experiment and take risks!
Last but not least, take some chances throughout your campaign. Whether that means implementing a honeymoon period where you only start showing ads to your players following seven days of game play (or however long makes sense for your specific game) or partnering with a game from a vastly different genre, remember that you’ll have numbers to validate or negate the risks you take.
Of course, be sure to pay attention to the data following these experiments and assess their performance. As long as you’re willing to test and try different things, Chartboost will provide the data you need. Just remember: Common logic won’t necessarily dictate how your campaigns play out. But as we all know, it wouldn’t be mobile gaming if you weren’t constantly on your toes.