AppLift Blog

The mobile games marketing Blog.

AppLift Blog

It is now time for the sixth instalment of our Mobile Industry Exposed interview series, which has featured key mobile industry players such as Serkan Toto of Kantan Games and PubNative’s Ionut Ciobotaru talk about everything from Japan’s mobile app market to native advertising.


Whether a game is free (with ad-based monetization), free-to-play (while offering in-app purchases) or paid is a matter of publisher or developer choice and should be based on your business model. Will you go down the F2P route of creating an amazingly addictive game that’s free to download but relies on in-app purchases to make a player more competitive and enhance the user experience?

Asia Pacific is the world’s largest market for mobile games, presenting a big, though challenging, opportunity for games publishers worldwide. The specifics of the Asian mobile games market conditions and the trends in each of its countries and regions, South Korea, Japan, China and South East Asia, represent so much variation that it’s important for publishers to get to know each one before attempting to enter the Asian market. (more…)

Whether that’s an independent app development shop, a major brand or a zoo, running a business is hard work. Here are five reasons why app marketing can often be reminiscent of managing a wildlife park – complete with illustrative GIFs. (more…)

Last Wednesday we aired a webinar on the best practices of leveraging TV and YouTube as effective user acquisition channels for your mobile games. For those who attended, we sincerely hope you enjoyed it! For those who missed it or if you would like to watch it again, no worries: you will find both the presentation deck and the video recording below.

Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us if you have additional questions or simply would like to know more about our TV and YouTube offerings. (more…)

Welcome to a new episode of our Mobile Industry Exposed interview series! Today, for the fifth instalment, we caught up with Ionut Ciobotaru, Managing Director and Co-Founder of mobile native publisher platform PubNative.
Ionut is no stranger to us at AppLift since, before launching PubNative, he was heading up AppLift’s product team. (more…)

Television commercials, billboards, and magazine ads are the “must haves” when advertising traditional products. They have been around for years and will continue to be a staple in most companies’ advertising budgets. This fact, however, does not seem to apply for mobile game developers. Mobile games are anything but traditional and mobile game developers looking to acquire users have, until now, mostly stuck to advertising on mobile devices. Even though digital advertising is estimated to reach $47.8 billion in 2014, TV advertising will also keep on increasing up to $68.54 billion, with no sign of slowing down anytime soon.Times are changing: both traditional and mobile companies are starting to embrace the second screen.


Welcome to the fifth instalment of our Asian Beat series! Having dived into South Korea (twice), made it big in Japan and scrutinized the behemoth Chinese market, we now move on to a smaller but extremely promising country: Vietnam. For this specific post we benefit from the insights of Anh Hoang Duc, analyst at Dynamo Partners and native of Hanoi.

A couple of months ago Flappy Bird, an app developed by Dong Nguyen, a Vietnamese developer, roared out of the gates like no app before, leaving behind a mobile games industry flabbergasted by its sudden success. Flappy Bird put the Vietnamese mobile games market in the spotlight in the global developer community, and yet many of the country’s facts and figures are still not widely covered. This post aims at shedding some light on the Vietnamese mobile games market, which has many of the characteristics needed for mobile success: a young population who have grown up with smartphones and tablets as their primary internet touchpoint, widely spread internet penetration, and the booming number of smartphones.


As the saying goes: “A picture is worth a thousand words”. How about a motion picture then? There is no doubt about the fact that video ads are currently one of the most compelling way to advertise your mobile game (or app for that matter). Video is a strong medium because it enables you to convey a lot of emotions in short period of time. The truth is, however, that when talking of video ads for mobile user acquisition today most people think of in-app video clips. (more…)

It is now time for the fourth instalment of our Mobile Industry Exposed interview series, which has so far seen us talk with key mobile industry players from games market research firm Newzoo and mobile marketing platform Swrve, as well as attribution tracking and in-app analytics company adjust.


Once again, we are keeping you up to date with the latest news at AppLift as well as a round up of issues affecting the wider mobile industry.


Effective retention strategies are the key to successful mobile game monetization. Creating a game, and marketing strategy, which hooks users in and keeps them returning results in good player retention levels and more revenue.


At AppLift, we take the data privacy of the visitors to our website very seriously.
For this reason we have applied to, and received TRUSTe’s Privacy Certification for the property This means that our Privacy Policy as well as the entirety of our website practices have been reviewed for compliance with the TRUSTe website certification program. (more…)

We are pleased to present the third instalment of our Mobile Industry Exposed interview series, which has so far seen us talk with key mobile industry players from games market research firm Newzoo and mobile marketing platform Swrve. (more…)

Welcome to Asian Beat #4! Having talked about winning moves in South Korea and cracking Japan, we now move to the Chinese mobile games market.

It’s no secret that the China is emerging as one of the most important mobile games markets this year. The forecasted figure for the number of Chinese mobile gamers in 2014 is 288 million, and this is predicted to rise to 770 million by 2018. China is hot on North America’s heels; according to a SuperData Research report from May of this year, the Chinese mobile games market is set to overtake the US and Japan to become the largest mobile games market in the world in 2015.


App reviews, ratings, referrals, social media endorsements and shares are all beneficial to highlighting the quality of your app or game to potential users browsing the app stores. But just how influential are app reviews, Facebook Likes and the like on click-to-install conversion rates and how can you encourage your players to review and Like your app or mobile game? (more…)

What does the last two weeks in mobile look like? We interview Swrve’s CEO, PubNative talks about native advertising and a PG Connects panel talk about the console/mobile convergence. But there’s no denying it: China is the talk of the town right now when it comes to mobile games news. As well as an opinion piece about China’s booming growth, the last two weeks have also given us a WSJ interview with the Vice President of Tencent’s game business. Stay tuned also for our upcoming Asian Beat installment devoted to China!


It’s time for the second interview of our Mobile Industry Exposed, the interview series in which we feature key mobile industry players from games market research firms, mobile marketing platforms and more.


What has been happening in the last two weeks in mobile? Once again, we’re bringing you the latest in mobile news, both from AppLift and the global mobile industry. Our latest eBook, 7 Steps to Cracking Native Advertising on Mobile, is now out. Additionally, a reminder: if you’re going to Affiliate Summit East in New York, come and meet us there!


We all love stats. And, at AppLift, working within and for the mobile industry, we love App Store stats. (more…)

On paper at least, Japan looks as though it should be the world’s most lucrative mobile games market. A Distimo report called Asia: The Leading App Market in the World, published in January of this year, indicates that Asia is the world leader in terms of mobile app revenue with 41 percent originating from here, with Japan being the biggest Asian market.


In a bid to shed some light onto the world of mobile, games and advertising, over the coming weeks (once a fortnight) we are putting the spotlight on key industry players and executives from game publishing companies, mobile ad tracking providers, supply-side platforms and more. We will ask eight questions, specifically geared toward their expertise.


It’s here again: the AppLift newsreel, summarizing the last two weeks in AppLift and mobile games industry news. This time we have five highlights in the form of a video, our new infographic, a recent announcement from Google and one of the unmissable upcoming industry events, gamescom!


In October 2013 we published our first Global Mobile Games Landscape infographic, sharing data on the state of the mobile industry from global game market research company Newzoo. Now, almost one year on, we are coming out with The Global Mobile Games Landscape Reloaded, the revised version with the most up-to-date industry data.


Once again, it’s time for the latest mobile news, including this week’s exciting announcement from AppLift and a video of our CRO Jean-Philippe being interviewed by PocketGamer at PG Connects Helsinki. (more…)

Yesterday PubNative, the first API-based publisher platform 100% focused on native ads, announced that it had raised a 7-digit seed-funding figure from AppLift. We would like to take this opportunity to explain the reasons behind this investment, as well as how it is going to benefit AppLift’s existing clients and partners.


Welcome to our second episode in our Asian Beat series!

South Korea is a mammoth opportunity for mobile game publishers. As we mentioned in the first episode of Asian Beat, South Korea’s domestic mobile gaming market reached $754 million in 2012.  Smartphone penetration stood at 73 percent (of the total population of 50 million South Koreans) last August, which is significantly higher than the US (56.4 percent), and second only to the not so far ahead United Arab Emirates (73.8 percent). With 61 percent of said smartphone users playing mobile games, and the total South Korean game market being worth $9.16 billion as of October last year (Japan’s figure stood at just over half of that at $4.6 billion), this can only mean good things for mobile games advertisers in terms of new user acquisition, as well as high retention rates and revenue –if campaigns are run effectively, with consideration paid to our best practices as set out below. (more…)

It’s that time again. Here’s our fortnightly update of news of, and insights into, all things mobile. As well as the latest Apple and Android news, we’ve packed into our roundup all the main insights, trends and forecasts relating to the mobile games market.


A few weeks ago we published a handy cheat sheet which featured the most important metrics to monitor for mobile game publishers in the fields of user acquisition, retention, engagement and monetization. However, we left out a hugely important part of most mobile publishers’ activity. Advertising. Today, even though the majority out of the overall app revenue comes from in-app purchases, monetizing through virtual items remains extremely hard and on average, only a very small fraction of the user base actually converts. For this reason, in-app advertising, when done right, remains an attractive monetization strategy for all mobile publishers.

What’s been going on in mobile the last two weeks? The short answer: a lot. Once again though, the slightly longer and more useful answer can be found below, in our five-piece summary of the hottest happenings, including some game-changing antics from Apple and some insights into the South Korean mobile gaming market from our blog! (more…)

A couple of days ago, in our summary of the WWDC14 keynote presentation, we wrongfully stated that we would have liked to see Apple announce more transparency and more advanced analytical features in iTunes Connect. This was without counting on the smaller developer sessions.

It turns out, our wish came true as they did announce just that. (more…)

Welcome to our first episode of our Asian Beat series!

In this first issue we investigate the current state of the South Korean mobile games market. In particular, we look at the history of messaging app Kakao Talk as well as the reasons behind its incredible success. We also dive into the game trends, which have been rapidly evolving over the past couple of years.

To begin with, a few facts and figures: (more…)

Yesterday, Apple held the keynote presentation of its annual WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference) in San Francisco. The company announced a myriad of new products and features, including iOS 8, the latest edition of the mobile operating system, which will be available to the public later this fall.

Overall, Apple’s announcements are quite strong, especially for app developers; for app marketers, Business of Apps nicely summed up the main improvements included in the release.

Here, we would like to focus on just a few which we believe will directly impact the life of mobile marketers. Then, as it has also been noted that many of these new features effectively close gaps between iOS and Android (widgets and third-party keyboard integrations in particular), we would like cast a light on a few things that we would like Apple  to catch up on in terms of app store marketing. (more…)

The links are back! From now on we will select the main stories, facts, figures and charts of the two weeks that were.
Welcome to Mobile News of the Fortnight! (more…)

Big news! Today app store analytics company App Annie announced that it had acquired its competitor Distimo in the wake of an additional founding round of $17 million, bringing their overall financing to $39 million in the process.

This deal shows first and foremost that data and analytics continue to take on a growing importance within the mobile industry. We have always been very fond of both companies’ insights on the app store ecosystem and we are confident that this consolidation will enable even more powerful, qualitative and accurate analytics in the future.

With only one major company left in the app store analytics space, we also hope that these insights will continue to benefit everyone in the industry.

Good luck!

Today we won’t publish the “5 links you shouldn’t miss” as we have done over the past months.

However sad the news, there is one good reason for it: we are preparing a new, better format for this column.

We will release it very soon…stay tuned!

As presented in our Global Mobile Games Landscape infographic, and with $5.9 billion in revenue in 2013, Asia-Pacific is currently and by far the largest market for mobile games. The Asian mobile games market is also overall very lucrative, with a monthly average spend per paying player of $2.86. (more…)

Last week we attended and entered the prestigious Media Momentum Awards In Paris. Every year the Media Momentum Awards, organized by the investment bank GP Bullhound, celebrate the fastest-growing and most promising companies in the European digital space. The event hosted speakers from some of the largest and most renowned European companies, such as the founders of Business Objects, which was acquired by SAP for €4.8 billion in 2007 and of Criteo, which recently IPO’d at a valuation of $2 billion.

We are very excited that the Media Momentum Awards’ jury crowned AppLift as a “Rising Star“. This recognition, along with our successful selection in the RedHerring Europe awards last month (celebrating the top 100 European startups) acknowledges the hard work that we, as a company, have put in over the last two years to become the leading marketing platform for mobile game publishers.

We thank all our partners to whom we dedicate these achievements. We feel proud and honored to be working with you and look forward to keep shipping  :).

Week 20

Here are 4 stories not to miss from the week that was in the mobile industry. (more…)

Week 19

Here are 4 stories not to miss from the week that was in the mobile industry. (more…)

With monetization happening after the install and for a minority of users, the Free-to-Play model presents serious challenges to mobile game publishers, who need to take the whole user lifecycle into account in order to be successful at developing, publishing and marketing their titles. With a multitude of metrics to keep an eye on all along this user lifecycle, Free-to-Play is without doubt a numbers game.

For this reason, we designed a handy cheat sheet with the most important metrics to monitor for mobile game publishers, across 4 main categories:

  • Retention
  • Engagement
  • Virality
  • In-Game Monetization

The cheat sheet is obviously completely free and can be downloaded here!

In the complex and rapidly-evolving mobile marketing landscape, it’s more than ever paramount for mobile marketers to consult the right sources of information in order to remain updated on the latest news and evolutions in the space. At AppLift we do our upmost to bring you insightful tips, news and resources on a regular basis so you can find your way through the mobile jungle. There are however hundreds of other blogs and websites out there and it’s not always easy for the mobile marketer to know which ones to focus on at first.

This is why we put together the top 40 blogs, websites, tools and other resources into one single simple HTML file that you can easily import straight into your browser of choice and consult at your convenience. (more…)

Week 18

Here are the 5 stories not to miss from the week that was in the mobile industry. (more…)

Week 17

Here are the 5 stories not to miss from the week that was in the mobile industry. (more…)

What some of the trendiest words in ad tech actually mean.

The mobile ad tech space has only been around for a few years but still long enough to accumulate a clutter of ad tech lingo that leaves newbies and onlookers to the industry equally confused. Sure, you’ve heard these terms before – but do you really know what they mean? If you no longer want to pretend to know but actually want to become clear on what’s behind these fancy acronyms and names, then the following glossary is for you – ranked in decreasing order of buzziness! (more…)

On Wednesday, April 23 we held the second episode of AppLift Webinars on how to leverage Customer Lifetime Value (LTV) for mobile user acquisition campaigns. We had the pleasure of hosting 3 industry experts: (more…)

Week 16

Get the 5 most interesting stories from the week that was in the mobile industry.

Also, don’t miss our webinar next week: “Leveraging LTV for user acquisition campaigns”. Wed, April 23 at 9:30am PDT/6:30pm CEST.
Click here to register now!

Happy Easter! (more…)

A couple of weeks ago, Google updated their Play Store Developer Program Policies with a few substantial changes, notably in terms of app content, app store promotion and advertising. While this is somewhat old news, there are a few points we’d like to focus on more specifically for what they mean for the industry as a whole, and for native advertising in particular. (more…)

Week 15

Get the 5 most interesting stories from the week that was in the mobile industry. (more…)

Week 14

What happened this week in the mobile industry? (more…)

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