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Harnessing the 'Premium' Advantage in Mobile Gaming and Advertising

June 27, 2023

8 minute read

The success of mobile gaming ad campaigns hinges on partnering with a reputable game studio and meeting players' expectations for premium ad formats. But not all games or studios are created equal. Players consider graphic quality, enjoyment, and challenge when choosing a premium mobile game, with thoughts on the accompanying ads also influencing their choice.

Together, premium games and ads engage and immerse players, and ultimately enhance their overall experience.

Creating Seamless Brand Experiences:

Premium mobile games are ones that offer an unparalleled user experience, with stunning graphics, immersive gameplay, and engaging storylines. 73% of all gamers already think of mobile games as high quality, and 99% acknowledge it takes only 1 attribute to make a mobile game “premium.” (Activision Blizzard Media, May 2022)

These elements not only attract mobile gamers but also keep them engaged for longer periods. 64% of mobile gamers have been playing on mobile for more than 5 years, and of all gamers, 79% are playing on mobile every day. Regular updates, new content, and strong community support further contribute to the appeal of premium games.

Seamless brand experiences are crucial in the premium game environment, as they enhance the player's immersion and overall satisfaction. By integrating well-crafted and relevant advertisements, the game maintains its high-quality appeal and keeps players engaged. Consequently, premium games demand premium ad experiences to create a cohesive and captivating atmosphere, ensuring both the game and the brand leave a positive, lasting impression on players. 

A graph showing the qualities of premium ads according to players.

Unobtrusive in-game advertising formats, such as rewarded videos and playable ads, can deliver a positive experience for mobile gamers while benefiting advertisers. Incentivized ad options, like offering in-game rewards or access to premium content, can also boost customer acquisition and retention.

Two pie charts showing what percentage of players prefer short and rewarded ad formats.

Optimizing Ad Placements in Popular Game Genres:

Understanding what game genres players consider premium, and why they play is fundamental to choosing the right game to partner with. Our research shows that the most common reason mobile gamers play is to pass time, followed by having fun. It makes sense, then, why puzzle games are considered the most premium genre by both mobile-first and PC/console players. Puzzles provide players with an engaging and mentally stimulating experience that can easily fit into the spare moments of their daily lives. 

A bar graph showing mobile and PC-slash-console players reasons for playing video games.

The appeal of puzzle games lies in their ability to provide a satisfying sense of accomplishment as players successfully solve each challenge. Additionally, the diverse range of puzzles in these games cater to different skill levels and preferences, making them accessible to a wide audience. 

Two pie charts showing that the number one genre of game according to mobile and mobile-PC-console players is Puzzle games.

The Benefits of Partnering With Premium Game Studios:

Two pie charts proving the vast majority of Candy Crush Saga and Call of Duty: Mobile players consider these titles "premium" games.

For an in-game ad campaign to succeed, it’s essential to collaborate with top-tier game studios that boast an exceptional reputation, high-quality gaming content, and a devoted player base. Working with esteemed developers provides access to a highly engaged audience, increasing the likelihood of ad campaigns resonating with players.

This is particularly evident with Candy Crush, one of the most successful mobile games of all time. A remarkable 79% of Candy Crush Saga players consider it to be a premium mobile game, which is 13 percentage points higher than the 66% of players who identify puzzle games overall to be premium.

Similarly, the iconic franchise title Call of Duty: Mobile scores well above average. Although shooters rank relatively lower on the list of premium genres, mainly due to a smaller base of mobile-shooter players, a substantial 87% of Call of Duty: Mobile players regard it as a premium game. This figure is 18 percentage points higher than the 69% of players who describe shooter mobile games overall as premium.

When partnering with a studio that takes the game experience as seriously as their players, advertisers can optimize their ad placements, align with their brand values, and ultimately maximize the impact of their media dollars in the mobile gaming space.

Learn more in our latest research, Premium By Design, where we analyzed and defined what makes games and advertising “premium” according to gamers.

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