Why savvy gaming advertisers are embracing cross-device marketing
Did you know that 76% of gamers play on multiple platforms? Today’s gamers are becoming more and more device agnostic, preferring to switch among devices to play the same game—from PC to console to mobile, and likely soon, to smart TV apps. For gaming app marketers, this introduces a major opportunity—cross-device marketing. Discover how placing ads across multiple channels can open up new paths to user acquisition, how prominent brands are jumping on this advertising development, and how Adjust can help you measure your cross-device marketing efforts.
Cross-device marketing is a huge advantage for gaming marketers
In-game advertising revenue is growing and is projected to reach US$71 billion this year, up from US$61 billion in 2022. This number is expected to grow as the younger generations, many of whom identify as gamers and even use games as social networks, continue to extend their gameplay on different devices. More advertisers, large and small, are realizing the power of multi-channel marketing in the gaming realm.
App marketers are already familiar with advertising on mobile games, across paid channels, and—if wise—connected TV. However, PC and console platforms are an advertising realm yet to be fully realized, as Newzoo reports that a significant share of players on these platforms are not monetized.
As discussed in our previous article, PC and console platforms are the hottest new ad channels to consider as gamers continue to play on these platforms in enormous numbers. These gamers are also becoming accustomed to crossplay, where they can play games across multiple devices. Crossplay allows marketers to run multi-channel campaigns, displaying ads to the same user across different platforms. As new monetization models emerge among these platforms, we anticipate even more new user acquisition opportunities for gaming marketers.
Why gaming marketers should do multi-channel marketing
Businesses with strong multi-channel marketing enjoy a 9.5% increase in annual revenue, which is likely due to the potential of multi-channel marketing to increase performance by over 300%. By advertising across multiple channels, your app business can reach users where they are, deliver a more consistent brand message, and increase potential user engagement with your cohesive ads.
Big brands are entering the cross-device gaming fray
Recognizing the growth in cross-device adoption among users, notable brands are stepping into the cross-device gaming market.
Netflix: Additional games and a controller app
Although Netflix has been offering mobile games on its OTT service since 2021, it recently announced that it’s working to make “games playable on every device where our members enjoy Netflix—TVs, computers, and mobile”. The streaming giant is set to release 40 games by the end of 2023. Last month, Netflix also rolled out a new app for iOS, the Game Controller app, that will allow users to turn their iPhones and iPads into game controllers in anticipation of upcoming smart TV games.
Speaking of streaming, “Games” is the second most-used category on Roku and the second largest section on Apple TV and Fire TV by number of applications. While currently, most of these games are ports from the iOS or Android system, games designed for CTV platforms are growing in popularity.
If you haven’t tried your hand at CTV advertising and are curious to learn more, check out our guide: Unlock connected TV as a powerful performance channel.
Samsung expands Gaming Hub to older devices
Last year, Samsung launched Gaming Hub, which grants players access to video games and services via a Samsung Smart TV, i.e., without downloads or consoles. Players can use compatible game controllers or Samsung devices, like a smartphone or TV remote, to stream and play a plethora of games. Monthly active users grew thirteenfold from July 2022 to May 2023 as Samsung added more games and partners, such as Amazon Luna, Xbox, and Utomik, to name a few.
In a surprising move known as “backward compatibility,” Samsung recently allowed partner apps with 2021 Samsung Smart TVs the ability to access Gaming Hub. In doing so, the company opened Gaming Hub to tens of millions of players.
Xbox: Cloud gaming and other monetization options
In contrast to needing a console or PC like traditional video games, cloud gaming allows gamers to play remotely on multiple devices. As users become used to streaming across multiple devices, they expect greater capability to play across them.
The Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is a subscription providing gamers access to console and PC game downloads, online multiplayer services, and a cloud-based service that can stream to most devices. Not only does this enable greater user accessibility to these games, but it also offers substantial advertising opportunities.
Of note, Xbox has also recently considered alternative monetization methods, like adding timed slices of games to PC and console games. Similar to the emergence of hybrid casual games from casual and hyper casual apps, Xbox is looking for hybrid monetization models in which they can deliver ads while still offering incredible user experiences.
Ready to start cross-device marketing? 3 tips to get started
Whether you’re in the PC, console, or mobile app gaming world, it’s time to expand your advertising to multiple platforms (and perhaps, too, your game, but that’s for another time). Check out our three recommendations to begin your journey into cross-device marketing.
1. Tap into automation
Before starting campaigns across multiple platforms and channels, it’s essential marketers invest in smart campaign automation for budget and bid automation. The solution you select should allow you to set rules to optimize your campaigns based on your business-specific metrics and make bulk edits, saving valuable time. It should also provide automated reporting for your performance data in one place so you can quickly act on insights.
Adjust’s Campaign Automation solution offers all of the above with the added bonus of our smart alerts feature, Pulse. Pulse lets you set customizable alerts for your cross-device campaigns so your team can spend more time strategizing and less time data scanning.
2. Get your analytics in one place
Scaling your advertising efforts to multiple platforms and channels not only requires automation but the ability to access clean, accurate data from all of your marketing sources in a single place. By having a unified analytics platform to view, analyze, and optimize campaigns, marketers benefit by removing data discrepancies and being able to act fast.
With all your data in one place, you can optimize campaigns quickly based on highlights and easily drill down when needed. Remaining competitively agile is crucial to your campaigns’ success, so we recommend utilizing an analytics solution like Adjust’s award-winning Datascape to make smarter, faster decisions.
3. Try Adjust for your cross-device marketing needs
At Adjust, we’ve anticipated growth in cross-platform adoption in the gaming industry and at large. From mobile to PC and console to CTV, Adjust’s measurement and analytics suite provides attribution data, campaign automation, and the intelligent reporting your game needs to scale efficiently.
For over a decade, Adjust has been the top leader in Mobile Attribution, helping gaming apps like Duolingo, Tetris, and Magic Tavern measure app performance, identify best-performing channels, and prevent fraud.
Adjust was the first MMP to market with a comprehensive CTV measurement solution—CTV AdVision—which won Best New Measurement Tool last year. In addition to helping marketers link mobile app conversions and post-install events to CTV ads, CTV AdVision reveals the exact impact of their CTV campaigns on their other channels.
PC and console measurement
Adjust’s PC & Console measurement solution offers single and cross-device measurement, utilizing our S2S integration, Web SDK, and external device IDs. Gaming app marketers can ensure they’re wisely allocating their ad spend budgets and can better understand the best ways to accrue new players and revenue.
Our PC & Console measurement solution answers questions like:
- Are my marketing efforts ROI positive?
- Which channels are most effective for my gaming app?
- Where are my most valuable players coming from?
Monitor across devices and channels too
A unified overview is a must for success in cross-device advertising. As gameplay expands to include multiple devices, we know marketers need to be able to follow the user journey over different channels and devices. That’s why we built Adjust’s mobile measurement and analytics suite as a comprehensive platform where marketers can easily measure how their campaigns on one device or channel impact campaigns on another.
So, ready to gain a 360° view of your players’ cross-device journeys—mobile, PC, console, CTV, and web? Get early access to Adjust’s PC & Console measurement solution by reaching out to @firstname.lastname@example.org.
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