Advertising In Mobile Games Is Broken
When I think about the current generation of mobile monetization in reminds me of people reading radio programs on TV. Banner ads were never very effective on web pages so it baffles me that it’s the preferred method of advertising today on mobile devices.
Both by conversion rate and by intrusion factor, the worst forms of advertising known to modern marketing are banner ads and pop-ups. How is it that they are are the only commonly used forms of mobile advertising? These ads intrude on the user at best, and outright rip them away from their content at worst. In a game, this interruption can be critically damaging to the user experience.
Taking this line of thought a step further, an argument can also be made that not only do in-game banner ads and pop-over ads damage the user experience, but that any advertising at all in a game can harm that experience. It comes as no surprise that advertising revenue from mobile applications has stalled since February 2010. Advertising permeates every aspect of our lives, and games are often a blessedly ad-free place to escape after a long day. No matter whether you are flinging birds at pigs or commanding armies of swordsmen, an advertisement for car insurance does not add to the game’s ambiance. As a game developer, you have to choose between increased revenues and immersing your players in your game world, hardly a win-win decision.
However, in-game advertising doesn’t always have to be an intrusive experience. Game developers just need to pursue new methods of approaching this monetization channel, and one of the interesting alternatives that has been born in recent years is Kiip. Backed by True Ventures, Kiip is a new way to seamlessly offer coupons and deals when the user completes an in-game achievement. This is the first serious attempt at tackling the problems with in-game advertising that I’ve seen, so check them out. Additionally, be sure to subscribe to our blog to find out more about game monetization and what Betable is up to.