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New App Install Marketing Study: Video Creative Best Practices

Posted Jun 23, 2016

As the mobile app stores continue to become increasingly crowded, so the job of the app install marketer becomes ever more challenging. While advanced audience targeting and look-alike modeling can improve a campaign’s likelihood of success, there is yet another important consideration when launching a campaign: the creative.

So what makes a video ad creative successful? What drives higher install rates? To find out, we indexed over 11,000 ad creatives for over 2,500 apps, tagging each with the specific creative elements featured within, from use of voiceover or other sound effects to text callouts and live action. In total, over 10 billion mobile video ad impressions were analyzed, and we found:

  • The creative durations that perform best
  • Which languages are most important to localize for
  • When to use —and when to avoid— live action
  • When featured characters work …and when they don’t
  • Winning combinations for audio
  • And much more

High Level Trends
While the report offers in-depth best practices for 23 unique app genres and lessons for each can be quite nuanced, the study also revealed a few overarching high level trends, which are:

  • Audiences are more engaged. As ads become richer and more immersive than ever before, so users are more receptive to longer creatives that approach more traditional durations.
  • Localization is key for global campaigns, and the majority of the top 100 app install marketers are already leveraging it.
  • Be authentic. Giving the user a realistic perspective of the in-app experience is critical. Don’t distract with too many special effects or other out-of-app elements.
  • Stand out. Know your competition. Sometimes it pays buck the trend and to stand out creatively from other apps in your genre.
  • Cast audio in a supporting role. While the right mix of audio can enhance the user’s emotional response to the creative, it mustn’t be a narrative crutch or a distraction from highly detailed visuals.
  • Live action is risky. While featured characters and celebrities can improve ad recall and showcase heuristic benefits, they can also outshine the app itself. Likewise, poorly executed finger-tapping or in-device framing can distract users and deter installs.
  • The top creative attributes for mobile games are in-app footage, post sound effects, in-device framing, and on-screen copy.
  • The top creative attributes for mobile non-gaming apps are featured characters & celebrities, narration, in-app footage, and post sound effects.

Get the Study
To access the full study, simply visit the report page in AdColony Insights.

Join the Conversation
How do you balance the need to provide users with a realistic perception of the in-app experience with the need to make your app stand out? Tweet your thoughts to . For the latest AdColony mobile news and updates, follow  on Twitter, like us on Facebook, or connect on Linkedin.

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