Creative Best Practices for Mobile and Gaming Marketers

4 min read·Jan 23, 2024

94% of US households are now discoverable via Connected Devices and the signal loss plaguing most digital platforms is just a blip on CTV advertisers’ radar, thanks to cookieless, privacy-safe IP targeting. 

The advantages of CTV advertising for mobile UA are clear:

  • Affordable access to the most trusted screen in the home
  • Granular targeting
  • Unprecedented engagement
  • Advanced, holistic measurement

It is important, however, to remember that a performance-focused campaign - even on TV - will need to follow creative best practices that serve its needs and don’t necessarily match our idea of what a “traditional” TV commercial should look like. Here is a list of the tactics we have found most successful for our gaming and mobile clients when developing ad creative. 

Be consistent

CTV advertising really shines as part of an omnichannel campaign, driving up results across social, display, and more; but its tone, look, and specific messaging need to fit seamlessly within your overall campaign to make an impact. Keep your other channel creatives in mind when developing a new one for CTV so that a viewer following your call to action to the App store or your website will find a landing page or app listing that fits their overall impression of your brand to minimize friction and increase conversion. 

Test early and often

While consistency is key, so is optimization. Leverage real-time campaign results to test multivariate strategies and learn which videos/devices/time slots/channels most engage your target audience. You can then optimize and customize your creative per audience segment as your campaign is running without ever having to hit pause. 

Make it snappy 

It might be tempting to invest in a long-form, high production value commercial, especially if this is your first foray into this medium, but streaming audiences have different expectations from linear viewers. We typically advise keeping your ad close to 15 seconds, with a strong focus on feature introductions, game highlights, and testimonials.

Show (and tell) them how it’s done

Viewers will only act on CTAs they can understand immediately, especially if it’s reiterated aurally. Remember, CTV advertising allows marketers to finally move beyond muted, skippable ads on social media or display and fully leverage the premium sights and sounds of TV. Mobile marketers especially should highlight app usage and act out their calls to action (as well as the mobile devices and platforms their app is on) in their creatives. 

Get the specs right

Programmatic CTV advertising allows you to upload your ad creative in seconds, the same way you would a social or display asset, but make sure you get the specs right! Bookmark this page and always preview your ad before launching a campaign:

  • Size Ratio | 16:9, 1920×1080
  • Length | 30 seconds max, 15 or 30 second slots
  • File Format | .mp4 or .mov
  • File Size | Max size 200MB
  • Frame Rate | Must be constant; 23.98, 25, or 29.97 FPS
  • Bit Rate | Greater or equal to 2500 KBPS

Leverage dual screening

More than with any other digital medium, Streaming TV viewers are likely to engage in “dual screening,” which means looking at their phone/tablet while also watching your ad, but don’t fret! What might at first seem like a distraction is actually a boon for conversion-hungry marketers who are now one step closer to leading trigger-happy audiences where they want (to their websites/app store/app). 

In order to do so, however, your ad will need to take those other screens into account. Set a narrow attribution window and test CTAs centered around mobile conversion to garner insights into your audience’s behavior. 

Pull on their heart strings… and funny bone

Yes, we’re focused on performance, not brand building and yes, CTV frees advertisers from the strictures of Hollywood-style commercial production, but at the end of the day, audiences respond most viscerally to (and remember) emotionally resonant content. The emotion itself doesn’t necessarily matter, it’s more about its depth. So whether you’re choosing to promote an app with a heartwarming mission or a silly meme, make sure to calibrate your creative for maximum emotional impact. 

Avoid viewer fatigue

Programmatic CTV ad platforms have come a long way and advertisers can now customize their campaign metrics at a much more granular level than they could just a few years ago. One of the most exciting features is frequency capping, which allows advertisers to avoid alienating their customers with ad over exposure, but also customize frequency to suit their goals. We typically recommend setting a cap of about 5 views per day per household for awareness, while performance-focused campaigns can push for 7 to 10 ad repeats. 

Refresh creative every 3 months or so and set reasonable caps to ensure your viewers remain engaged, alert, and involved. 

Want to learn more about Streaming TV? Follow along!

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