Rewarded video: Three tips for success

Monday, July 25, 2016
By: Elain Szu

What should publishers know to maximize rewarded video success? Last week, MoPub hosted a session on rewarded video at Casual Connect featuring MoPub product expert Boris Logvinskiy , product marketing lead Elain Szu , and Magmic’s Jonathan Simon . Here’s the recap:

Video is everywhere: according to eMarketer, people in the US average over 30 minutes per day watching video content on mobile devices, and mobile video ad spend this year is predicted to reach $4.24 billion. So how can mobile app publishers take advantage?

Rewarded video ads, which give users the choice to engage with ads that offer an additional in-app reward such as an in-game resource or lives for a game, can be a win-win for everyone involved. Users can choose to interact with an ad to get something they want within the app; advertisers can see more success against their goals, such as video completions or app installs; and publishers can receive competitive eCPMs. In addition, rewarded videos can be a great way to introduce users to a publisher’s in-app economy. One of our publishers, Magmic , has received a lot of positive feedback from users about rewarded video ads, and in fact have seen retention increase for users watching rewarded videos in their Scattergories app:

scattergories user retention

Magmic’s Director of Marketing Jonathan Simon stated, “Since adding MoPub’s rewarded video product to Scattergories we have seen a pretty significant increase in the retention of users who are watching rewarded video. Overall, our users are more engaged and have even reached out to us to tell us how much they like watching rewarded videos to earn coins. Based on these exciting results we are now rolling out rewarded video on all our other games and we can’t wait to see the impact.”

Here are three important considerations for publishers looking to maximize rewarded video success:

  1. Find the right time and place. Consider where a rewarded video ad may make most sense in your app: when do users need a resource in your game to continue advancing successfully? Apply economics principles of scarcity and rarity. Make sure you’re not giving away too large of a reward, but enough to entice the user avoid a persistent reward that the user can always access, since users are more likely to interact with more rare rewards.
  2. Consider your security needs. Client-side rewarding is simpler to implement and makes sense for apps that don’t have complex in-app economies and when rewards are superficial, such as a life in a game. Server-side rewarding is a more complex implementation, but is worth it for publishers with complex in-app economies that need to be very secure.
  3. Work with multiple partners. By choosing to work with multiple demand sources, publishers can increase fill rate, see greater ad diversity, and ultimately increase revenue through competition between sources.

When implemented thoughtfully, rewarded video ads can be a sound monetization strategy for many publishers — and a great experience for their users and advertisers. If your app has a place where rewarded video ads may make sense, consider testing this format.

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