Your mobile app should be a revenue machine. The best way to bring in revenue as an app publisher is through app advertising. But getting to the point where you have a great mobile app that can bring in-app ad revenue isn't easy. It requires a significant investment of both your time and your money.

From developing the app and building your target audience to implementing ad tech and managing sales, the investment you make in your app will be sizable. That's why you should expect sizable returns. Measuring mobile app advertising ROI can be difficult as you get your app revenue rolling.

In this post, the app advertising experts at Playwire discuss the costs of app advertising and how to measure app advertising ROI. To get a personalized app revenue amplification strategy and reduce your stress, reach out to Playwire today.

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The Complete Guide to App Advertising
The Complete Guide to App Advertising

Developing an App

App development and app advertising may at first sound like completely separate costs, but you have to have an app in the first place if you want to bring in-app ad revenue. So, the initial cost of app development should be considered when breaking down the investment required to advertise on your app.

To bring your app idea to life, you have two main options: hire an internal development team or outsource the development.

Internal App Developers

Building your app internally, with developers who work for you, might give you the tightest grip on the project, but it will be expensive. Still, if you need to exercise total control over the process to get your idea exactly right, this might be the option for you.

An Outsourced Dev Team

Outsourcing the development of your app will be the more cost-effective solution. However, you do sacrifice some control over the project when you place it into the hands of another company.

If you go this route, be sure the development team understands that you want the app to be capable of hosting ads. That way, they can make sure your app is going to work with programmatic platforms and similar advertising technologies.

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App Advertising Resource Center

The Complete App Advertising Resource Center

Acquiring App Users

The only way you bring in-app ad revenue is if you have an audience that advertisers want to reach. That means you have to have an app user base to entice advertisers into buying your ad inventory.

Advertising Your App

Most app publishers looking to grow their user base end up advertising their mobile apps so they can then turn around and use mobile advertising to generate their own revenue. It may sound crazy, but it's often the fastest and most effective way to acquire users.

Where do you advertise your app? On other apps, in most cases. You can do this through cost-per-action (CPA) and cost-per-install (CPI) campaigns:

  • CPA campaigns. With a CPA ad campaign, you select specific user actions that you pay for each time they occur because of your ad. This action could be a click on a link to your website, a visit to your app's page in the app store, app purchases, or an installation of your app.
  • CPI campaigns. With a CPI ad campaign, you charge only for a user app install.

In most cases, an app developer will use a combination of both tactics to drive new app users and customers.

Check Your App Advertising Margins

Advertising your app to build your audience network and, ultimately, bring in ad revenue is a game of margins. Make sure you are not overspending on app user acquisition to the point that it will be difficult to be profitable through your eventual ad revenue.

For example, if your budget for ad spend is $25,000 but you only expect to bring in $28,000 from the ads you monetize within your app, such as rewarded video ads, interstitial ads, or banner ads, you may want to look at some ways to reduce the cost of building your audience.

The Cost of Ad Ops Professionals

Once you have your app and your audience, you're ready to start app advertising. But to get ads into your app at the right times and prices, you're going to need some help. This is what advertising operations professionals specialize in.

Typically, you will need a one- or two-person ad ops team to manage this. Make sure your ad ops team has direct communication with your app developers in the development phase. Otherwise, developers who know all about integrating software development kits (SDKs) will miss the intricacies of ad servers and price floors. If that happens, you'll be leaving money on the table.

Playwire offers an alternative to hiring an ad ops team. We run all of your app advertising to maximize your revenue and let you focus on your app's content. Contact us to learn more.

Direct Sales Team for App Advertising?

While many standard in-app ads can be bought and sold programmatically, direct insertion order (IO) sales can allow for high-value custom ads and placements that can bring in more revenue. But to do those kinds of IO deals, you may need a direct sales team - or an ad partner like Playwire who can facilitate those kinds of sales for you.

Building a direct sales team simply isn't an option for many smaller publishers. Paying salaries and setting up standard operating procedures are outside the abilities and scope of smaller or newer platforms. Even after implementing a sales team, it can take a long time for the sales to start rolling in.

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App Monetization Resource Center

Browse our complete library of resources on app monetization!

Managing Your in-App Advertising

One of the final investments you may need to make in-app advertising will be hiring someone who can make sure your app displays the right ads. With busy and largely automated mobile advertising marketplaces, ads that you don't want on your mobile platform can easily slip through. That's why you need a human touch, even on an automated ad campaign.

For example, you don't want ads for your competitors to show inside your app and potentially take users away from your app. Similarly, you don't want ads that might be offensive or off-putting to your key audience. Unless you are a very large app publisher, it might be difficult to hire an in-house person to manage ad quality assurance, ad placement, individual ad format, and much more without losing money on them, but Playwire offers human-managed ad sales campaigns that can take care of these concerns for you at a fraction of the ad cost.

Boost Your App Advertising ROI with Playwire

Playwire handles all aspects of app advertising for publishers, working to reduce costs and increase revenue at every turn. With our cutting-edge in-app advertising technologies and a world-class team of experts, you can reduce your investment in in-app advertising and increase your ROI at the same time.

To learn more about how to boost your app advertising ROI with Playwire, contact us online.

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