Reactivating Gamers in a Post-Push Notification World

Reactivating Gamers in a Post-Push Notification World

By Andre Ficerai • October 21, 2016

Throughout the course of 2016, iOS and Android phone users are increasingly grouping apps into folders instead of leaving them on the home screen. More than 61% of smartphone users 18-34, and 41% of users 35-54, use app folders according to comScore. This can make your app’s notification icon hard to read. At the same time, Localytics found that over 50% of app users found push notifications to be annoying. 46% of app users opt-out if push notifications exceed 2-5 notifications per week. The same comScore study reported that 38% of app users do not allow push notification for apps. It’s clear that these days, generating a push notification, or an app notification is not an effective strategy to retain new users. How can top brands drive lapsed players back into their mobile game? Re-engagement campaigns on Facebook.


Shifting Gears and Budgets

Ampush Analysts on the Gaming Team noted this shift in user behavior and have prepared our gaming clients to adjust their acquisition and revenue strategy accordingly. Facebook remains the app with the highest amount of time spent, leading Analysts to emphasize a strategy of Facebook app re-engagement campaigns.
Re-engaging mobile gaming users has numerous positive effects on overall mobile gaming strategy:

  • Increase LTV of New Users. It’s important to ensure long-term adoption by new players. According to a study from NYU’s Stern School of Business, gamers are more likely to remain a long-term user if they play a game for the first 3 months. Everyplay also found that the average revenue received from acquired users (ARPU) increases significantly if they spend more than ten hours playing the game.
  • Efficient Volume. Ampush analysis found that cost of driving a lapsed user back into a mobile game cost around $.30 per user, while acquiring a new user typically cost 9.7X more. It’s significantly more effective to re-engage a lapsed user than to replace them with a new user.
  • Proxy for High LTV Targeting. Successfully re-engaging lapsed users helps Ampush prioritize primary new user audience targeting tactics. Analysts prioritize acquiring users are more likely to stick with the game and therefore have higher LTV than lapsed users

The success of recent re-engagement campaigns on Facebook has allowed Ampush Analysts to scale the size of this operation by an average of 54% per month, over a recent quarter. Analysts report that recent re-engagement budget is up over 37.5% year-over-year.
Ampush Analysts also have noted an increase in app starts from a re-engagement ads (clicking through to re-join the game). In recent analysis, app starts have increased by 2.9X Q/Q.


Who To Re-Engage and When?

Overall, new gamers are more likely to stick with a game for the long-term if they play consistently over the course of three months. This means a top tier targeting group should be recently lapsed gamers and those who appear to be near lapsed stage within the first three months. Ampush’s mobile gaming campaign analysis reveals that re-engagement campaigns are most efficient and see higher conversion rates at the early stage (31-60 days since last gaming session). Don’t give up hope on gamers who haven’t played in a while, however. Ampush Analysts also found that ROAS for re-engagement campaigns doubled for users that lapsed 181-270 and 271-360 days ago, compared to users who had lapsed for three – six months.


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