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6 steps to captivate mobile users

Top Trends from the AdColony Video Creative Best Practices Study

6 steps to captivate mobile users

With over 3 million apps vying for user attention, intriguing and captivating users is no easy task.

While advanced targeting can help app install marketers reach the ideal users, the ad itself must still pique their interest to drive an install.

We already know video is effective for driving conversions, but what exactly makes a mobile video app install ad captivating?

How can app install marketers drive installs through the power of sight, sound, and motion?

To find out, we indexed and studied over 10 billion mobile video ad impressions.

While the full results are available in our new study, the top trends to remember are below.

1. Tell a story

As ads become more captivating and more immersive than ever, so users are more receptive to longer creatives that tell a story. As a result, full-screen video ads that are 23 to 29 seconds in duration typically have the highest install rates.

2. Localize.

As campaigns become more global, the top app install marketers are leveraging language localization to drive higher install rates in new markets. Localizing for the right languages can boost install rates 16% to 48% over baselines.

3. Be authentic

Regardless what type of app you have, giving the user a realistic sense of the in-app experience to retain the users that you acquire. In fact, focusing on in-app footage is the #1 install-driver across all app categories, and using a careful mixture of in-app footage with custom animations yields far higher conversion and install rates than custom animations alone (page 8).

4. Stand out

The most successful campaigns find ways to stand out creatively from the competition while showcasing the aspects of their app that are unique. Find creative attributes that are not heavily used in your genre (page 9) that are associated with a positive IR lift (page 10) for maximum effect.

5. Cast audio in a supporting role

While the right mix of narration, sound effects, and music can enhance an ad’s emotional appeal, the creative must make sense and intrigue even if the user’s device is muted.

6. Use live action carefully

While featured characters can elicit emotional responses and celebrities can drive mass appeal, they can also outshine the app itself. Likewise, while finger-tapping or in-device framing can help users understand how they might engage with an app, these creative methods can also distract from the app itself.

Want to dive deeper?

The full report breaks down data from over 11,000 ad creatives for over 2,500 apps, sharing the nuanced best practices and trends for 23 unique app categories.


PocketGamer.biz regularly posts content from a variety of guest writers across the games industry. These encompass a wide range of topics and people from different backgrounds and diversities, sharing their opinion on the hottest trending topics, undiscovered gems and what the future of the business holds.

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