Facebook introduced three new ad tools for video game marketers, designed to help them reach valuable players.
First, developers can now activate playable ads, which let players try a game in their News Feed to decide whether or not they want to download the full game. Playable ads are now available to all advertisers that use the “app install objective” on Facebook News Feed.
In testing this new format, Facebook said in a blog post that developer Bagelcode saw a 3.2 times improvement in return on ad spend on Android and 1.4 times on iOS. Meanwhile, Angry Birds developer Rovio saw a 40 percent “lower cost per paying user” and a 70 percent “lift in day seven return on ad spend” after testing playable ads.
Next, Facebook is testing retention optimization with select advertisers. This tool allows video-game marketers to deliver ads to users who are most likely to play their games. Upon testing retention optimization, Facebook said developer Beijing Fotoable saw a 30 percent “higher return on ad spend using retention optimization, compared with optimizing for installs.”
Finally, Facebook said it will roll out minimum ROAS (return on ad spend) bidding to advertisers over the next few weeks. This will allow advertisers to set a minimum spend to find the users who would be most likely to make in-application purchases in their games. Facebook said minimum ROAS bidding will be available to all eligible advertisers “by September” on Facebook, Instagram and Facebook Audience Network.
In a statement, Rick Kelley, vice president of global gaming at Facebook, said, “The explosive growth of the mobile app ecosystem poses a real challenge for today’s game developers. It’s no longer enough to build a great game; app developers must strategically market their games to capture the attention and loyalty of their most valuable players. That’s why we’re excited to introduce new solutions that help game developers as they shift their focus toward value and profitable growth, and away from install footprints. With playable ads, advertisers can now give players a chance to experience a game in Feed before they install it, creating higher intent. And through two additions to our value suite, game developers can more efficiently reach their most valuable players—whether they’re optimizing for payers or for retention.”