Quick Tips for Maximizing Your Mobile In-App Mileage

The explosive growth of the Mobile Advertising Economy has undeniably caught the attention of marketers worldwide, and for good reason. Most people today carry their mobile devices in pocket, purse, or hand at all times.  This means “going mobile” can offer engagement opportunities not previously realized by other media. Haven’t made the jump? Have no fear. The mobile advertising train shows no signs of slowing down, with Juniper Research projecting that mobile advertising will grow over 300% in the next 5 years. More specifically, in-app advertising is the fastest growing slice of that pie. Before you decide to take a bite, have a look at some of my tips below for getting the most mileage out of your mobile media buys.

When engaging in a media buy for an app it is important to consider all available targeting criteria. Often, additional targeting can be used to improve campaign performance and efficiency for no added costs. Here are some targeting parameters I’d recommend using on your in-app media buys:

Geo, Age, & Gender:

If you have a good understanding of what your audience looks like from other advertising efforts, like AdWords, it is best to leverage this knowledge in targeting. If your market or product is sensitive to weather conditions, using geographic targeting can really improve ad relevancy and efficacy. For instance, imagine that your app helps people book hotel rooms. Mapping your advertising to storm watches could help you capitalize on last-minute flight cancellations that will become hotel bookings. Additionally, inquire about affinity segments for use in targeting. Not every network will be able to provide this level of granularity but for those that can I’d recommend taking a look. Affinity segments, like “Fashionista” or “Outdoor Enthusiast”, can really help you get the most bang for your buck and find your perfect fit audience.

Pricing Structure:

Another major consideration in app media buying is pricing structure. Typically advertising is purchasable in one of 3 ways:

CPC – Cost-Per-Click

CPA – Cost-Per-Action

CPM – Cost per 1000 Impressions


Depending on your goals and financial flexibility, each means of buying has its strengths and weaknesses. If you’re on a tight budget and would like to hedge against risks, try CPA buying. With this route, you can say “I will not pay more than X, for EACH action”, so there is no guesswork in forecasting what your budget can accomplish for you. One use case for this is installs. If you are trying to improve user acquisition and lift your user base, you can set a ceiling on how much you pay for every app install that you bring in.


Maximize Creative Executions:

Lastly, and at the risk of sounding like an echo in the marketing world, keep in mind that content is key. The more ad sizes and file types you have at your disposal, the more places your app will be eligible to appear. This will help drive down costs and provide valuable insights as to which styles, sizes, and content types are most conducive to your brand’s messaging. Don’t’ be the marketer that’s married to the tried, true, and frankly tired banner ad types. Mobile has opened up new, more engaging ways to reach audiences and drive results. It is also important to have a good understanding of what your placement experience looks like. Utilizing color schemes that complement, not clash with your placement will improve your click-through-rates. Creating winning ads is one of the best ways you can get the most out of your ad placements.


Hopefully, these tips will help you stretch your marketing dollars and get the most out of your mobile in-app advertising performance. As always, test, test, and test some more to figure out which targeting, pricing, and ad content drives you the best performance. Lastly, the mobile landscape is ever-changing. Make sure to stay abreast of new ad delivery formats to reach your audience in new and exciting ways.

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