Game on: three steps to successful retargeting

by Jim Jones on Apr 18, 2014

The attention span of an average human is 8 seconds. The average smartphone user has 26 apps installed. If someone doesn’t open an app within 12 hours of the first time they used it, there’s a huge chance they won’t ever open it again, says Richard Cipolla from Localytics. Do some quick math, and you’ll understand why it’s a struggle to keep a user’s attention – and why it’s an all-out battle to stay relevant on a user’s device.

Capture your audience

Richard Cipolla further reports that 60% of users who don’t come back to an app within 7 days never return. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to make sure your game doesn’t fall prey to statistics.

Retargeting helps you transform one-time users into players who are hooked on your game, returning often and making frequent in-app purchases. Take it one step further, and those players turn into whales. Retargeting allows you to have a conversation with your players outside of your app. You can use it to tell them about updates, new features, special promos – or any other compelling reason why they should keep coming back.

According to Flurry Analytics, re-engaged players use their apps 7x more and generate up to 2.6x more purchases. And that’s good news for your bank account.

Keep their attention

For retargeting to be effective, you should have two things:

  1. A sizable user-base
  2. A retargeting channel with massive reach

With these variables in place, you’ll be able to see which players best serve the objectives of your campaign. The most useful group is one whose users have browsed or clicked on an item in your store, but failed to complete a transaction.

If possible, appeal to your players with creative messaging. Give them incentives to come back, such as a reminder for the Divine Samurai Sword, or power-ups they were looking to purchase. Of course, this information breakdown requires a dynamic setup between you and your retargeting partner. Be sure to choose one that gives you the info you need.

Don’t drop the ball

Last, but not least, be sure you have the capabilities in place to track ROI.  The better mobile retargeting networks out there should be able to report on ROI within their dashboards – and AppLovin is on the top of that leaderboard.

Once you have the ROI information, you can continue to allocate dollars to the campaigns that are working – and drop the ones that aren’t. Because in the end, good marketing is like a game. The better information you have, the closer you get to the prize.

Jim Jones is Senior Vice President for Sales at AppLovin.