Commentary

The Great App Advertising Exodus -- Or Not

As I was rummaging through my inbox for fodder for this week's column, I was struck by a report published recently by eMarketer suggesting that app marketers have been growing less reliant on advertising as a source of revenue -- and not surprisingly, that this would likely be accelerated by …
2 comments about "The Great App Advertising Exodus -- Or Not".
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  1. Dan Ciccone from STACKED Entertainment, December 29, 2021 at 5:20 a.m.

    App developers are abandoning ad-reliant apps because most app developers don't have an internal team to hustle ad deals and the network deals are pennies on the dollar - so unless your app gets millions of downloads and a sustainable audience, the ad model doesn't work.

    Following the model of some of the most popular multiplayer video games, app developers are offering their apps for free, and for those who get hooked, then it's time to charge for additional content, levels, avatars, skins, weaponry, etc.


    The typical mobile game has a lifespan of about 3 months if it's lucky.  Most people delete the app within a few days.  So relying on ads doesn't make sense and the ROI is nominal if they rely on ads.

  2. Joe Mandese from MediaPost replied, December 29, 2021 at 6:29 a.m.

    @Dan Ciccone: Offering something for free, charging those who "get hooked" and closing shop after three months doesn't sound like a sustainable business model to me. It sounds like a drug pusher operating on street corners.

    The truth is both app developers, and their "users," fall along a spectrum.

    Zynga, which is probably the best pure play example of the model you're describing, made half a billion from selling ads last year.


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