Best Practices for Running Successful In-App Holiday Advertising Campaigns

Many advertisers see the value in running creatives dedicated to a holiday, like Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, Halloween, and many more. It helps create a more diverse and engaging advertising experience for the users. In nations where those holidays are well-known, the holiday creatives can serve as a bandwagon for the opportunity to get an uplift in revenue and entice users to spend more time on mobile apps and games. In this blog post, we will discuss the best approach for using holiday creatives and what the benefits are. I will also offer recommendations that will ensure successful in-app holiday advertising.

Create a separate campaign with only the holiday creatives

As elaborated in my previous blog post ‘How to Test Your Ad Creatives Like a Pro! – Do’s and Dont’s’, our algorithm is designed to send the most traffic to the ad creative with the highest IPM. Therefore, adding holiday creatives to existing campaigns is not a good practice. The algorithm will blend the IPM with the existing campaign’s creative performance, and the new holiday creatives won’t be able to live up to their true potential and get proper traction. The best solution is to create a separate new in-app holiday advertising campaign to run your holiday creatives.

Start running the holiday creatives at least two weeks before the holiday

If you want to maximize the impact of your holiday creatives, start running these creatives at least two weeks before the actual event or holiday. It will ensure that your campaigns have enough time to get the proper performance data and be shown to the relevant audience.  

There is nothing worse than being late to the party when it comes to holiday campaigns. Starting a holiday campaign on the same day as the actual event doesn’t guarantee that the algorithms will pick up the campaign. You’re also not going to run the same creatives after the event making it highly irrelevant to the user. The expiration date for in-app holiday advertising campaigns should be the day after the holiday.

Debunking the common myths of holiday creatives

Here are the most common myths debunked if you are still hesitant to start running your holiday creatives.

I don’t want new campaigns to compete with my existing campaigns. 

Your campaigns are already in tough competition with other advertisers on our platform. There is a frequency cap per individual campaign on our platform, so you won’t be able to compete with yourself. Instead, one more campaign will help you attribute more installs.

Holiday creatives show better performance. 

When it comes to performance metrics such as IPM for holiday creatives, it is usually lower. People tend to click on the holiday ads, which increases the click-through rate (CTR), but they don’t necessarily install, which decreases the install rate (IR). However, our advertisers have reported an uplift in overall performance, such as Murka, a social casinos developer who shared the following on their experience running holiday creatives: 

“Based on our experience, we see that the seasonal holidays’ creatives show an uplift in performance only during Christmas and Halloween. The creatives for the rest of the holidays, e.g., Easter, don’t show the same dynamic nor perform on the same level as usual creatives. However, It’s hard to say whether it happens due to users being more susceptive during certain holidays or whether it depends on the creatives itself.”

I can run with smaller CPI since I’m not sure of the performance and it’s more for brand awareness 

Your performance on the network is based on your eCPM, and if your IPM is low and you set the bid (CPI) low, it means that you don’t get to participate in all the relevant auctions. Read our previous blog post, Maximizing Tools and Features to your Advantage, to learn more about the correlation of eCPM, IPM and CPI, and how it affects your campaign. 

Our recommendation is to set your CPI at 20-30% more to ensure that your predicted eCPM will be higher. The result will be that your ad will become more competitive and therefore receive more impressions. 

To summarize, when running holiday creatives it’s important to start with a new in-app holiday advertising campaign separate from your existing ones. Start at least two weeks prior to the holiday itself and turn it off the day after the event. Place competitive bids and you’ll get more installs followed by an uplift in your user acquisition (UA) performance. 

Get started with your holiday UA campaigns by signing up to the Chartboost platform today, chartboost.com/sign-up.