Playable Ads and the Future of Programmatic — A Q&A With CrossInstall
Performance marketers continuously stress the importance of creatives and how they play a critical role in every campaign and its performance. As the industry continues to adopt programmatic buying, we wanted to take a closer look at how demand-side platforms (DSPs) like CrossInstall use creatives across the Chartboost Exchange to achieve performance for their customers.
In this interview, we asked Andrew ‘Hochi’ Manglapus, VP of Partnerships, what makes their demand attractive, how it aligns with Chartboost’s supply, and their overall thoughts of the future of mobile programmatic advertising.
What do you think makes CrossInstall demand especially attractive?
To start with, we only work with direct advertisers, and we don’t work with any affiliates or re-brokers. We have demand from a wide variety of advertiser types, from casual to social casino, hardcore/RPG, and non-gaming. Our programmatic bidder is able to create unique buying models per client app, genre and key performance indicator (KPI).
We also focus on working with high quality interactive and playable ads. We maintain an in-house quality assurance team, which qualifies and ensures that each of our playable ads are not only technically viable, but also designed for an engaging user experience.
Why is Chartboost’s supply a good fit for your advertisers?
Gaming! Chartboost is a tremendous source and community for game devs. Chartboost inventory aligns and performs very well with our gaming demand.
Do you have any recommendations for publishers to help them make their supply more attractive to DSP’s like CrossInstall?
Firstly, publishers should ensure that their ad placements for the Chartboost Exchange are at optimal breakpoints within gameplay, either rewarded or interstitial, and focus on making the best ad experience for their users.
Secondly, mediation waterfall position and user signals will allow DSP’s to accurately bid on impressions. Confirming the technical aspects including the SDK integration, which sends user and device signals are important to ensure the publisher is being targeted appropriately by the DSP.
What are the benefits for DSP’s as the monetization stack switches to in-app bidding and unified auctions?
Unified auctions will allow for accurate pricing and a fair and competitive marketplace. Allowing each programmatic DSP to bid in parallel in an unified auction truly gives us an equal opportunity to compete for every single impression!
We’ve started buying on Helium’s in-app unified auction inventory and the results show promising results. We look forward to scaling it further.
Where do you think mobile programmatic advertising is headed in the future?
In terms of opportunities, I would say that unified auctions promote a fair and competitive landscape, which makes CrossInstall very excited. Some top trends we’ve seen in the market are the importance of creative development and optimizations.
When looking at mobile performance rankings (even outside of gaming), self attributing networks (SANs) typically lead the way, such as Facebook and Google, and have trail blazed in terms of their ad serving, campaign structures, targeting, etc.
Recently, there has been a shift of focus with SANs towards empowering creatives as one of the only levers UA teams can effectively impact (aside from bids/budgets).
It will be interesting to see how programmatic networks develop in response. Will they follow suit and double down on creative or emphasize their differentiators from SANs by focusing on placements, PMPs, publishers, geo specific bids and budgets, or other levers aside from creative.
Watching how the market reacts to the growing number of hyper casual studios will also be interesting. The introduction of new game experiences and gamer types coupled with the structure of those studios will evolve, likely resulting in UA budgets and timelines becoming unique from more traditional game shops. It will be interesting to follow how that will shape the future of mobile gaming.
How is CrossInstall positioning themselves in the future?
CrossInstall as DSP, is hyper-focused on driving quality users and installs for advertisers. In order to achieve that, we’re diversifying our algorithms and model behavior to target only deep funnel retention and ROAS events in addition to any higher funnel events advertisers may want to optimize towards. Our overall aim is to align as closely as possible with UA strategies of our advertisers, whether through creative development or performance modeling.
How do you see the Chartboost and CrossInstall partnership growing in the future?
Up and to the right! In January we always do an evaluation of the previous year’s exchange performance and growth, measuring volume, signal clarity, advertiser demand, and other metrics.
Looking back in 2019, the Chartboost Exchange grew to be one of our top 4 exchanges sources at a few different points throughout the year. Improving and, more importantly, sustaining such growth is no easy task, but we feel confident that Chartboost and their investment into the exchange partnership will continue to grow for years to come.