More and more advertisers are tightly focusing on the mobile environment as it doesn’t rely on cookies, it is ad blocker-resistant, and you won’t see competitors’ banners placed nearby your own. Today average user spends up to 70% of their daily time using mobile devices. By the end of 2020, mobile advertising budgets will account for 50% of all digital advertising spend worldwide.

Have you ever thought of how much leisure time do people spend on their smartphones or tablets playing mobile games to simply entertaining themselves? Mobile gaming is not the newest hit, it is already something common in today’s internet-savvy society, regardless the gender, age, education or nationality. According to the fresh stats, almost 70% of Americans play games using at least one type of mobile device, while 90% give preference to their smartphones. The researchers predicted, by 2020 the number of mobile gamers is expected to reach 213 billion.

In this regard, game advertising has become a gold mine for advertisers that opens new opportunities in the mobile advertising market. So, here’re 2 options for in-game adverts: to make users’ games experience more pleasant and enjoyable or spoil an impact by intrusive content. Let’s find out how to achieve the right results.

Freemium Versus Free to Play

Basically, a freemium game is an app that a user can download for free. After a while, it may require some purchases in order to add extra functions, new app features or game upgrade. Thus, if a freemium game contains ads the user can disable by paying additional costs.

Conversely, in Free to Play game version (F2P) users cannot exclude in-game advertisement throughout the whole game process. Frequently, an excessive number of in-game ads in free to play game versions can cause a lot of annoyance so the player can opt for another one. That’s why it is always important to calculate the right balance beforehand.

Static or Dynamic? Which in-game ads are better?

Static in-game ads are embedded into an app during the development process. They are implemented directly into the game storyline and could be shown without an Internet connection. Advertisers can decide how they want their ads to be displayed in a game. However, this process can be too time-consuming with no ability to make necessary updates in real-time. Sometimes advertisers can find it hard to be on the same page with user behavior.

dynamic in game ads

Yet static in-game advertising is still effective as it works the exact same way as advertising in real life, e.g., how we perceive ads looking at billboards or banners in the streets.

Another regularly used types include dynamic ads. These ads are placed dynamically throughout the game in the form of the same billboards or banners in all shapes and sizes. Probably the biggest benefit is that they can be removed or inserted into the game flexibly in real-time. Dynamic ads are a perfect fit for time-sensitive or time-limited marketing campaigns. But, unlike static ads, dynamic ones cannot be displayed without an Internet connection.

in-game advertising types

The main types of in-game ads

Interstitial ads are full-screen ad formats that cover the whole interface of an app. These ads appear naturally between breaks at the transition to the new game levels. Without actual game interruption, they pop up to cover the whole screen. That’s a great chance for advertisers to enrich their media with interactive content, engaging media, add animations, videos, etc., and to make the retention rate higher. However, these ads work well only if designed and deployed wisely. Implementation requires professional and creative skills alongside an in-depth understanding of how mobile gaming works in general, (understanding human perception and mindset).

in-game interstitial ads

Improve your view rate with expandable in-game ads

Advertisers should be careful with setting too much on expandable ads. These ads cover the whole screen. When the user taps on them too often such “taps” are just accidental. To unveil their creative potential, expandable ads should be clearly marked and deployed, while alerting the users about the gameplay interruption.

expandable in-game ads

Video games advertising can also be implemented in the game flow. It tends to bring higher view rates, but here’s the thing to remember – users won’t stop the playing process to see the video that exceeds 30 seconds length. In such a scenario, it may turn out to negative experience while dealing with your ads. To avoid the view rate decrease, the users should get a reward. Rewarded video ads offer a player to get any form of bonuses, add coins, points with an exchange for watching advertising video.

rewarded video in-game ads

Games that are aligned with brands

The concept behind advergaming means that the entire game is created by a company, that promotes its products or services using game. To tell a brand story through the whole game or video is probably the best way to offer an immersive experience. Advergames allow users to get fun and positive emotions as well. That’s definitely worth the costs spent on development.

in-app advergaming

How can advertisers conquer the gaming space?

If you incorporate in-game advertising into your brand campaign, it’s better to leave all the efforts to a full-featured solution for your ads to be fitted as naturally as possible with a suitable format. Feel free to contact our experts who will assist you in choosing a mobile ad format that fits your KPI best.

SmartyAds mobile advertising platform is designed for advertisers who seek control and transparency along with new, out of the box solutions to reach the audiences through effective ad campaign deliveries. Our self-serve mobile platform connects you to the premium publishers ensuring the best viewability for your mobile ads with a variety of ad formats for image and performance-based advertising. Our programmatic platforms will help you reach new audiences with high-quality in-game advertising formats.

Explore all cutting-edge formats of SmartyAds demand-side platform!

Written by
Irina Kovalenko, CMO of SmartyAds
October 2019