Hypercasual is dead!
Not really, I just thought it was customary to start articles on mobile gaming in December with some very exaggerated reports of the death of the hypercasual …
It is true that mobile gaming is diversifying, attracting grassroots players through titles such as Genshin Impact; competitive PC players with League of Legends: Wild Rift or PUBG Mobile; and crypto enthusiasts on Axie Infinity. Much of this happens alongside the continued success of hyper-laid back titles like Subway Surfers and Helix Jump.
The result of new content and new audiences is that the ways in which mobile games make money and advertise must evolve. While the monetization methods of mobile games are driving the increase in app revenue in general, and the free-to-play model is also taking the console and PC markets by storm, mobile games are the ultimate testing ground for the next generation of ad formats.
In an age of ad blockers, user privacy and the emerging metaverse, it’s time to get creative again.
Award-winning video is a popular format with developers, publishers, and gamers. Studies indicate that Gen Z generally prefers videos under 10 seconds, which means longer award-winning videos can quickly become a thing of the past.
But there is a huge opportunity here not only for award winning video, but also award winning ad content of all formats. The growing popularity of game mechanics for winning also offers a lesson for commercials. We’ll likely see more branded NFT integrations and crypto rewards that increase in-game revenue and user loyalty.
But what about award-winning playables that grant in-game currency or even cryptocurrency, in-game items like skins or cosmetic NFTs? By integrating ad formats with Gen Z preferences and the dominant direction of game mechanics, publishers could be a winner.
Tolerance for interrupted and intrusively targeted ads is decreasing across the board: enter billboards and in-game videos. These Admix-developed ad units blend into in-game content rather than distract the user from the game; a plus for gamers, publishers and advertisers.
I expect continued growth for these formats as well as for in-game audio, which has proven to be more effective than legacy ad formats such as interstitials.
A staple of hyper-casual campaigns, playable ads are becoming a lifeline for mobile game marketers across genres (and have even helped Joe Biden become President of the United States). And while mobile games are universal, studies have shown that the large Gen Z demographic in particular has a shorter attention span than previous generations, preferring ads that aim to engage and entertain them. .
There are many other factors driving the growth of playable and interactive ad formats such as better graphics, easy-to-use templates, and editing options that make A / B testing very easy. , and the integration of added value into end cards such as video ads and quiz questions. Likewise, as the rollout of 5G intensifies around the world, it will be possible to create even more engaging, playable and interactive advertisements of greater fidelity for gamers on the go.
Supercell has teamed up with YouTuber’s Mr Beast’s recreation of the Netflix phenomenon Squid Game, which has 167 million views at the time of writing. While undoubtedly a costly decision for the publisher, Brawl Stars downloads, which were heavily plugged in throughout the video, increased significantly, resulting in a 54% increase in revenue. which generated $ 8.2 million.
This kind of activation is obviously not feasible for the majority of publishers, but tying mobile games to hot IP and pop culture seems like a smart UA move for those who can afford it.
Pokemon GO developer Niantic was recently valued at $ 9 billion, which shows the strength of its mixed reality model. Again, there are lessons here for mobile advertisers.
US insurance giant State Farm has developed an XR scavenger hunt for digital NFTs, some of which also rewarded real-life counterparts such as autographed soccer balls. The potential for adding value to gamers through XR, in combination with other new technologies, is essentially limitless.
Dive into the metaverse
It happens whether you like it or not, and it brings a mind-boggling number of ways to advertise. I’ll try to paint a picture of one of the admittedly hypothetical ways the metaverse can refresh mobile and digital ad experiences …
So imagine you’re in a gamified metaverse, right? It’s a recreation of that cool ’80s mall from Stranger Things. You head to the arcade for some retro gaming action, but you run out of crypto quarters for the machine. No problem, you can unlock it by watching a video ad for the Ralph Lauren store along the way, or even earn some through one of the other games in the arcade!
Read the room
As mobile game advertisers, we are so conditioned to audience-based advertising. But what if we could advertise based on content? Contextual advertising can already analyze the content of web pages and audiovisual content to deliver suitable advertisements – why not mobile games?
Combined with the data that users are happy to share, this would not only serve to deliver relevant and engaging ads, but also deliver the rewards and added value that users want most.
Mobile gaming is diversifying, bringing new devices, new content and new audiences. Our players’ understanding of the advertising content they will tolerate and the data they are willing to share is enhanced. The technology of games and advertising is evolving day by day. I have no hesitation in saying that only mobile games can meet these challenges and be at the forefront not only to keep advertising working for gamers and game publishers, but also for consumers and advertisers. from all sectors.