The Fiksu Blog

Incentivized Downloads: Carpe Diem!

Much has been written in the past month about Apple’s ban on apps that use incentivized downloads to promote other apps. Whether you support Apple’s move or not, there remains one indisputable fact: for advertisers, incentivized networks have been a valuable and cost-effective means of securing app store visibility and downloads; and for app publishers it has been a complementary, high margin revenue stream.

So before the train leaves the station altogether, we say: “Incentive based downloads are still viable, so get 'em while you can!”

As of April 19, 2011, Apple stopped accepting new apps with offer walls that enable incentivized downloads. But there are preexisting apps that contain these mechanics; and inventory in these apps is still available for the time being. And for those mobile app brands that have not yet used incentivized networks, why not try them – right now, while you still can – to stimulate your downloads? What’s to lose? Carpe Diem!

But when incentive based downloads do dry up, what will this change mean to mobile app marketers?

Apple’s move signals an interest in creating more opportunities for visibility for many different types of apps. We think this turn of events could serve as a catalyst for change and opportunity for the whole app ecosystem. Here’s our take on a few ways this change may manifest itself:

  • The lack of apps being buoyed by incentivized downloads will create a boost in visibility for apps previously not sourcing this traffic.
  • App marketers will need to acquire fewer downloads through advertising to achieve a given rank.
  • Those marketers who were reliant on incentive based networks will seek diversification through sources like real-time bidding platforms and cost-per-click networks. Although the cost per conversion may increase, a focus on properly measuring and managing loyal users will help to ensure a fairly constant ROI.

To quote Darwin: “It is not the strongest that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.” At Fiksu, change is part of the equation. We have always cast a wide net to ferret out opportunities from across the mobile ad ecosystem. We are closely monitoring and adapting to these changing dynamics so our clients continue to thrive, supported by our platform’s ability to optimize marketing spend by associating app usage data within the most effective ad channels – whichever ones they may be.

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