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Meeting the Expectations of Modern Gamers: The Art of Interactive Ads in Premium Mobile Games

July 28, 2023

5 minute read

To stand out among mobile gamers, advertising needs to successfully replicate the satisfaction and immersion that players have come to expect from their gaming experiences. In response, advertising strategies have evolved beyond traditional methods, leading to significant opportunities for brands who understand the expectations of mobile gaming audiences.

Understanding the Premium Mobile Gaming Experience

Mobile gamers value convenience, high-quality graphics, and responsive controls in their gaming experience. These elements not only amplify user engagement but also significantly enhance the overall user experience. The gameplay quality directly correlates to user retention and loyalty, with 64% of mobile gamers having played on mobile for over five years, and 55% of them also gaming on console platforms.

Three different pie charts showing 64% of mobile gamers have played for 5 years or more, another showing 55% of mobile gamers also play games on console, and a third chart showing 42% of mobile gamers also play on PC/laptops.

Source: Premium By Design: Defining Premium Gaming Experiences (Activision Blizzard Media, 2023)

The Challenge for Advertisers

Advertisers face the challenge of crafting well-considered in-game advertising strategies and understanding the particular dynamics of gaming audiences. Striking a balance between ad effectiveness and a satisfying gaming experience is key—ads should be short, relevant, and preferably rewarded. Data and analytics play a pivotal role in understanding player behaviors and expectations. For instance, ads by King have achieved much higher engagement rates compared to industry averages (Activision Blizzard Media, 2022) in part due to their default opt-in nature.

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

Source: Premium By Design: Defining Premium Gaming Experiences (Activision Blizzard Media, 2023)

Player Expectations of Ads in Premium Mobile Games

Players have clear expectations from in-game advertisements: they prefer short ads with high-quality visuals that do not disrupt their gameplay. Meeting these expectations positively impacts the gaming experience, making ads more immersive and even welcomed when executed well. Satisfying these expectations is crucial for ensuring audience satisfaction and enhancing ad effectiveness.

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

Source: Premium By Design: Defining Premium Gaming Experiences (Activision Blizzard Media, 2023)

Best Practices for In-Game Advertising in Premium Mobile Games

Successful examples of in-game advertising, like this Prada Candy partnership which led to a 1813% increase in web traffic, demonstrate the power of meeting gamer expectations. 

The key strategies for creating high-quality, non-disruptive ads are: 
  • Capture audience attention with interactive experiences

  • Invest in experiences that are authentic to the game 

  • Partner with a reputable game studio

A bar chart showing that the majority of experienced mobile game players consider King games to be "premium" and that King offers high-quality games.

Source: Premium By Design: Defining Premium Gaming Experiences (Activision Blizzard Media, 2023)

By understanding and meeting the expectations of modern gamers, advertisers can unlock significant potential and drive engagement with their campaigns in premium mobile games.

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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