Performance Power Players: AppsFlyer on the power of CTV for mobile marketers

Performance Power Players: AppsFlyer on the power of CTV for mobile marketers

Gaston Rendelstein, Director of Product Marketing at AppsFlyer

Key takeaways

  • Advertisers should implement Media Mix Models alongside other measurement essentials, such as a Mobile Measurement Partner (MMP), to enable strategic media decision-making. Advanced brands now have a suite of measurement methods available to enable day-to-day and long-term ROAS evaluation.
  • CTV will become more akin to mobile, and developments within the tech stack to enable more granular bidding, targeting, and buying are on the way. Marketers must be prepared to adapt to this new channel as it develops.

What has changed in the last 12 months?

Last year at AppsFlyer, we made hypothetical assumptions about how CTV would impact performance and mobile marketing. The leading theory was that CTV campaigns, because of the nature of the larger screen, would improve customer retention and grow Lifetime Value (LTV). Consumers who engage with brands while watching CTV are likely to have higher LTV than those who engage on a mobile device where the ads are smaller, perhaps of lower quality, and, therefore, less impactful.

“Over the last 12 months, we’ve observed robust performance, especially considering CTV is a channel where measurement is evolving. As marketers and media partners are still optimizing performance, the potential for CTV is already clear and promising,” says Gaston Rendelstein.

Based on AppsFlyer data, 40% of apps had a higher ARPPU (average revenue per paying user) from CTV-to-mobile users vs mobile-only installers – no less than +56% on average.

The big screen offers CTV an entirely different experience than mobile. Of course, the real advertising power comes when running both mobile and CTV campaigns simultaneously because so many people now use a second screen as a habit. Both channels allow advertisers to reach audiences, reinforcing messaging while measuring cross-channel impact.

In May 2023, AppsFlyer released a new PC and Console measurement solution, connecting marketing campaigns across PCs, gaming consoles, and any other platform, device, and channel. This has empowered game developers, marketers, and studios with an improved understanding of cross-platform user journeys, allowing them to optimize their campaign measurement and explore new revenue opportunities.

We know customer journeys are not linear, and people constantly move across multiple devices; understanding this impact is vital to growth marketers. We can now correlate the impression with a conversion regardless of channel and, therefore, understand the impact of CTV on KPIs such as app installs.

What should advertisers consider before testing CTV?

Mobile-first advertisers may consider a different type of creative intended for CTV, depending on the placement context. People are becoming accustomed to TikTok-style creatives on larger screens but still consider the needs of the big screen, e.g., format size, resolution, etc.

Advertisers need to understand their audience’s needs and expectations and match these with the quality of the creatives they deliver. Where audiences are watching high production-level content, such as Game of Thrones, the advertising should be high quality, too.

However, due to the nature of CTV, advertisers can create different segments to be built and targeted with different content, which enables significant opportunities for testing and learning. Building a strategy that enables a thorough testing plan is advisable for advertisers venturing into CTV.

“Take a step back, think about being a marketer first and foremost. Consider what your audience is looking for when working on creative strategies,” says Gaston Rendelstein.

Where do you see CTV adoption taking place?

To date, gaming advertisers have been the most prominent group that has tested the waters with CTV. As is often the case regarding new channels, the gaming industry has been an early adopter of CTV — and for good reason. Gaming is an entertainment-driven industry similar to TV. Therefore, showing a gaming ad on TV is logical, as the context of the ad aligns with the audience’s mindset, which is primed for entertainment. 

Shopping/retail/eCommerce is another vertical that benefits from the entertainment context that CTV offers, as consumers are already highly familiar with seeing ads from retailers and can immediately take action by scanning a QR code.  Displaying ads on a larger screen allows advertisers to tell richer stories, which suits many verticals that can leverage CTV to engage customers with more emotive creatives or convey more complex messages than what would be possible on mobile alone.

Audience targeting tactics

At AppsFlyer, CTV is a door brands can use to open up new, incremental audiences.

“The first instinct is to target content by buying certain shows and networks. However, because CTV offers the option to buy programmatically, a wide range of targeting options are available. For example, behavioral signals such as interests and past behavior offer a more targeted way to reach audiences.” says Rendelstein.

He continues, “In addition, CTV can offer re-engagement strategies, which have become increasingly important to marketers due to economic concerns. We know that retention leads to better LTV, and we now know that CTV is a good channel to test for re-engaging existing users or to find new users that will stay with a brand for a longer period and become active users.”

Any advice on how to measure CTV campaigns?

When it comes to CTV campaigns, cross-channel measurement is essential. To measure CTV performance, mobile marketers need to consider:

  1. A cross-platform measurement solution (MMP) to optimize the day-to-day performance
  2. Advanced methods, such as Media Mix Models (MMM), to make strategic, long-term ad spend allocation decisions.

This is important not just for CTV measurement but also to provide future safeguards. As privacy policies change and data sources reduce, Media Mix Models should become best practices for modern marketers. Having advanced measurement in place through the combination of an MMP and MMM can help marketers answer strategic questions such as ‘What is the optimal media mix for my brand.’

Predictions for the next 12 months?

  • The connection between CTV and retail media is developing rapidly. Some retailers, e.g., Amazon, now own CTV platforms or collaborate with strategic partners to utilize first-party data. In addition, data clean rooms are increasingly being used to ensure that no customer data is shared, meaning that targeting accuracy and segmentation will continue to become more detailed and exciting for advertisers.
  • CTV will become more akin to mobile, and developments within the tech stack to enable more granular bidding, targeting, and buying are on the way. Marketers must be prepared to adapt to this new channel as it develops.
  • Some customers are reducing the number of CTV subscriptions. They have many choices; budgeting and the end of COVID restrictions all play a role in audiences cutting subscriptions. As a result, we’ve seen many consolidations and mergers of major networks, such as Disney and Hulu, Discovery, and HBO Max. As consumers further reduce their subscriptions, we can expect to see more such mergers between various streaming companies in the future.
  • CTV started in the US with CTV-to-CTV and CTV-to-Mobile. We are seeing markets like the UK, Japan, and India growing significantly in the CTV space, whereas in previous years, the US was by far the most dominant. The global reach of CTV is likely to shift again as these markets mature, new markets emerge, and CTV’s impact continues to grow.

About Gaston Rendelstein

Gaston Rendelstein is Director of Product Marketing at AppsFlyer, focused on CTV and cross-platform measurement. Gaston has over 13 years of experience in B2B and B2C marketing, go-to-market strategy, and user acquisition.

Further Reading

AppsFlyer’s new report, CTV to Mobile Trends Report 2023

Ashley Parduci Performance Power Players; The Role of CTV in Holiday Shopping Campaigns

Download ‘The Retailer Marketer’s Guide to Holiday CTV Campaigns’ here.

Why Mobile Marketers Should Test Streaming TV Campaigns

Steaming TV’s Time to Shine

Why Media Mix Models are the answer to unlocking measurement in a privacy-centric world