Let’s set the scene - the Mobile Growth Summit took place last week in San Francisco and our very own VP Mediation Platform, Darren Keyes, joined the experts on the Ad Mediation Hot Seat to talk about what else, ad mediation. Here are the six hot topics discussed:
1. The SDK Size Issue – Does Size Really Matter?
Unanimous amongst the panelists, yes, size does matter. The fact is SDK size is, and inevitably will remain, a significant issue for publishers. SDK size is a concern on iOS, and the library method count limit of the DEX file format is an issue for Android development. Case in point, why include static and native ads serving logic with bundled networks, thus increasing SDK size, when the publisher intends to only serve rewarded video ads? Instead of a cookie cutter solution, it’s imperative for publishers to lean towards flexible solutions that take a white glove approach like building custom SDKs that can be pared down to deliver the streamlined solution the publisher actually requires.
2. Is Brand Spend Here to Stay?
Cue the theme song to The Apprentice, ‘For the Love of Money’ by the O’Jays – money, money, money…money! A common theme that continues to pop up at events is related to changes in demand spend and the manner in which it is allocated. Panelist, Kate Herbert, Sr. Director of MoPub Client Services, emphasized the rapid growth in brand spend year over year, “About half of the demand on the MoPub marketplace is now provided by Fortune 1000 companies, with Fortune 500 accounting for nearly a third of that total spend.” The question on everyone’s mind, is this the year brand advertising finally makes a significant shift from desktop into the mobile ecosystem? The short end, no one really knows for sure, but early signs suggest we’ll continue to see brand spend increase into Q2 and beyond.
3.The Power of Actionable Segmentation
We’ve all heard the terms “minnows, dolphins and whales” to describe segments of users based on their relative IAP spend, but what true value does segmenting your players have? In terms of monetization, actionable segmentation can generate significantly higher revenue for a publisher, while simultaneously minimizing churn as a result of poor user experience. It is generally understood that a player who has made an IAP purchase is significantly more likely to become a repeat purchaser. As such, being able to segment those paying users and provide them with an ad-free experience, or custom IAP bundles priced relative to their average IAP spend, is far more effective than delivering a ‘one size fits all’ experience. On the flip side, it’s fair to conclude that a player who has not converted after their 10th session, for example, is likely to not engage with an IAP offer. Instead, why not monetize that non-paying user with ads? A player who has spent significantly more time playing and has earned 1,000 coins should be offered a larger number of coins for watching a rewarded video ad compared to a player who is new to the game and has only earned 10 coins. Segmentation allows you to show the right offer, to the right user, at the right time. Being able to segment and apply custom value propositions serves to maintain equilibrium in your in-game economy, as well as keep your players engaged with your opt-in ad placements. Actionable segmentation is highly beneficial for customizing a user’s game experience.
4. Programmatic RTB is Connecting Buyers and Sellers
One of the more efficient ways to connect buyers and sellers is via a real-time bidding platform, such as the MoPub Marketplace exchange. Buyers who utilize the RTB approach can define bid parameters, such as desired user device, country, and various other targeting characteristics. Alternatively, they can rely on an algorithm to automate the process of optimizing their bidding behavior. When an ad request is sent by a supply source, all buyers plugged into the real-time bidding platform are able to bid for the opportunity to display their ad impression. This complex interchange of data and the resulting auction occurs in real-time, within milliseconds, for each and every ad impression. Optimally, this results in a greater amount of demand competition for a publisher’s supply, which typically serves to drive up CPM, as well as improve fill rate (due to wider coverage of geographies by the various demand sources plugged into the major exchanges).
5. Removing the Middle Man with Private Marketplaces
One industry trend that was discussed is the emergence of Private Marketplaces. Private Marketplaces (PMPs or private exchanges) are invitation-only miniature exchanges where premium publishers’ supply is available to advertisers who want to pay for exclusive access to the inventory. PMPs focus on the more traditional transactions between advertising supply and demand. While public RTB exchanges, such as the MoPub Marketplace platform described above, serve as a “middle-man” approach between sellers and buyers, a private marketplace requires a direct relationship. Publishers work with an individual or multiple advertisers to define set rules for purchasing their supply. Benefits of utilizing a PMP include guaranteed CPM rates for the publisher and a premium audience, as well as increased transparency for the advertiser. Furthermore, by leveraging programmatic technology, both sides introduce a level of automation to the process, which reduces human error and optimizes the transaction.
6. Upsight’s Acquisition of Fuse
One final hot topic from the conference was our recent acquisition of Fuse Powered and its powerful ad mediation platform, AdRally. Fuse’s mediation platform continues to grow in popularity with the world’s leading publishers due to its elegant single SDK (no additional ad network SDKs or adaptors to install), as well as its neutrality. Upsight now delivers the markets only ad mediation solution that top-skims all the major ad networks, like Unity Ads, AppLovin and AdColony, without offering any of its own demand. It’s a winning solution for publishers - secure the highest revenue possible for every ad impression, worldwide!