Gaming saw a meteoric rise amid the pandemic, peaking in 2020 and 2021. However, that hot streak ended in 2022 with an 8% drop in in-app purchase (IAP) spending. While IAP growth has rebounded somewhat in 2023, game developers are still on the lookout for new monetization opportunities.
“Some of the leading publishers have thrown out the original playbook of how they launch games, how they think about what is going to be a successful game, and focusing more on LTV as opposed to quick cycles,” says Chartboost‘s Publisher Relations Manager Daniyal Ahmad. “This is becoming more and more of the new normal and it opens the door to test new ad formats.”
Indeed, challenging times lead to innovation. According to Zynga VP of Ad Monetization Phil Suh, with pricing strategies offering diminishing returns, “the bigger opportunity is with supply.”
Native ads, for example, offer an intriguing option. “Native ads have to come from brands; it’s Coca-Cola on the cars and trucks that we want to see [in game],” says Jane Anderson, VP of Ad Monetization at Popcore. But brands still need to learn that this ad format exists and that its LTV can be comparable to interstitials or rewarded videos.
Check out the entire recording for all of Daniyal, Phil, and Jane’s thoughts on enhanced strategies for mobile game revenue growth: