How To Create Video Ads For Your Mobile Game’s Social Media Campaign
2021-03-22 | Alisa Begoun
Newzoo states that the number of mobile gamers in 2020 will peak at 2.7 billion, of which, 38% will pay for games. Moreover, according to App Annie, mobile games were downloaded at record levels in Q2 2020, and consumers spent over $19 billion (that’s the most successful quarter yet). Mobile games are having a blast!
How to nail your next video ad for your game’s social media campaign and encourage more gamers to download your creation? Here are some tips and ideas.
Tips & Ideas for the Next Video Ad for Your Game’s Social Media Campaign
1 - Monitor your competitors
Don’t underestimate the importance of competitive analysis. Finding the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors will help you improve your own product. By the way, spying on other companies does not mean that you are trying to steal their idea. The analysis can help you identify some benchmarks that you are going to be measuring your growth against. Or the information will show you the gaps between what the users need and what the competitors have to offer. Thankfully, it is relatively simple to monitor the social media campaign of different companies.
AdLibrary Helper, for example, is a free Facebook Chrome extension. You can find any ad within seconds. Directly view all of the advertisements, collect and track the pages you care about, and track any changes in targeted competitors.
SocialPeta has a strong data analysis function. It has a huge database that you can use to monitor not only the ads placed on Facebook but also 73 other popular social media platforms and advertising channels.
Spyder will make things even more easier for you (in case you’re working in a team). Save all of the ads of interest from the Facebook ad library and make a collection that you can quickly share with your colleagues.
2 - Involve the user acquisition team during the production process
Creating a video ad is, basically, one of your last steps. Getting the user acquisition team involved is the first thing you have to do. Gaming companies need to bring in media buyers during the production process. This will help the product team understand the current market conditions and make improvements along the way.
As a result, you will have a mobile game that is easier to promote.
User acquisition experts have a deep understanding of tracking platforms. They know exactly what information needs to be collected and how to transform this data into a functional tool.
Even though a lot of tasks can be outsourced, the person responsible for user acquisition should ideally be a member from inside the team (the level of commitment will be much higher, in such a case).
3 - Try Guerrilla Marketing
Guerrilla marketing is a very cool advertising strategy. The company uses surprise and/or unconventional marketing tactics to boost sales and attract interest to the brand. And the best part is that, in a lot of cases, this strategy doesn’t require any investments!
One of the best examples of guerrilla marketing in the mobile game industry is the Flappy Bird case. At one point, the creator of the game, Dong Nguyen, said that he would remove Flappy Bird because “it is too addictive” and “it ruins my simple life”.
Next thing you know, everyone started downloading the game, in fear that the Vietnamese creator would deliver on that threat. In May 2013, Flappy Bird was downloaded around 50 million times. Until today no one knows for sure, whether it was a genius marketing trick or not.
4 - Choose the right mobile game ad format
No matter what video ad format for your mobile game you are going to choose, the number one rule always stays the same - don’t be misleading.
The most popular video ad formats are:
Playables are much appreciated as they let the user have a bit of fun while watching an ad. The conversion rates with such formats are 7 times higher! Playables just don’t look like an ordinary ad and the user doesn’t feel like he’s been persuaded to do something.
The gameplay type helps you show the users exactly what they will be getting. However, don’t forget to highlight the most unique features of your creation.
The storytelling format is, mainly, about evoking different emotions in users. Such videos are great for quests or games with an interesting plot. They should leave the gamer with the question “What’s next?”.
5 - Nail your video script
First things first, consider the main game benefits and features, what you want to achieve with the video, and your target audience. The purpose is to map out exactly how the video will look and what it’ll include. The script also serves as a guide for your video production team. Perfomante, for example, will create the video ad of your dreams in the shortest time frame - and a video script will help ensure that the result matches your expectations.
By the way, the competitive analysis that we talked about earlier will come in handy at this stage as well. Keep an eye on the following things when you look through the ads of your competitors:
Video ad length
What features are highlighted?
Is there a CTA?
Sound effects and music
How interesting are the first few seconds?
6 - Create more than one video for split testing
Which video ads are the most appealing and engaging? Create a few to find that out!
Check out these split testing ideas:
Your CTA. Test different aspects - the words, how long is the CTA on screen, the word color.
Text. Will it be overlaid on gameplay? Or do you want to use title cards?
The color of the button. Make sure that it matches your overall style. Pick at least two colors and then choose between them depending on the ad’s performance.
Try including positive reviews and/or star ratings.
Video length. The ads are most effective when they’re between 15 seconds in length or less. But that does not mean that you can’t try out a video ad outside of this time frame!
7 - Keep track of KPIs
If you have decided to try out one (or a few) tips mentioned above, then make sure to keep an eye on your main KPIs.
What is your monthly sales growth?
Did the conversion rate change?
What about the retention rate?
These are the types of questions worth asking.
8 - Finally, don’t forget about localization
Gamers prefer localized games and therefore they are more likely to respond to your ad in their native language. If you want to target new countries, setting a DLO campaign might be the right decision. It allows you to create up to 48 language variations with one single ad set.
All these abbreviations and numbers may sound a bit complicated at first. But once you take care of the settings for the social media campaign, the rest of the process is pure creativity - and that’s where you’ll truly get to shine ;)
About the author: Alisa Begoun is a freelance writer who works with Perfomante - a team of professionals that creates unique handcrafted video ads in less than 72 hours.
Since there is no longer a gamer archetype, like several years ago, video game advertisers have to deal with a diverse audience. eMarketer reports an approximate $3 billion market for mobile in-game advertising with gamer’s age diversity from 21 to 50 and older. Video game advertisers can reach more people with their messages using Facebook ads but they need to find new creative ways for that. Check this guide to run top-notch campaigns on Facebook.