App Engagement Decreases Soon After Install

While there are more than enough mobile apps to go, the frequency in which they’re used isn’t as frequent as most companies hope, according to a new report from Millward Brown Digital.

First reported by eMarketer, a study conducted back in August indicates that there’s a serious lack of engagement with smartphone apps. Interest usually dips after the first 24 hours of install. The survey shows that 43% of smartphone owners in the U.S. use four to six apps on an average day. Considering they have between 40 to 70 installed per device, that’s a pretty small count.

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The study also shows that 72% of smartphone owners delete an apps due to lack of use. Other reasons for removal include an app’s battery drain, or freeing up memory space.

Another study, conducted by Appsflyer in July 2015, took a closer look at engagement, and how useful it is for app marketers. Looking over 450 million installs across all of eCommerce, the report indicates that engagement drops for both iOS and Android devices after that 24 hour period, with only 3.3% of Android users and 3.2% of iOS users using an app afterward.

Organic app acquisition plays a big part, according to the Appsflyer’s report. Retention rates on Android devices after a month’s time (30 days) shows 156% greater for organic app installs than paid app installs. The chart below breaks it down even further, for both Android and iOS. As you can see, there’s quite a drop off over a period of time – which could be alarming news for marketers that rely on app success.

Now it’s just a matter of finding a solution to this problem by looking into apps that keep people around on the long-term. Social sharing applications, like Facebook and Snapchat, keep people coming back for more with a daily, even hourly, interactions. Free-to-play games like Candy Crush Soda Saga and Clash of Clans also have a high popularity rate, making big money for its producers as a result.

Will marketers find a way to keep their apps relevant It’s just a matter of time, but it never hurts to study the successes.

What You Need To Know About Big Data

Put plainly, big data is a term that describes huge data sets produced from a variety of digital sources like social media. It’s comprised of structured, semi-structured, and unstructured data that cannot be handled by conventional databases or software. Instead, all of it is sent through specific analytical programs to make sense of it all and make predictions.

ABI Research believes that big data spending will reach $114 billion globally in 2018. An estimate that was echoed earlier this year in a Duke University report, reported on by Adweek, which indicates that marketing data budgets will double, while mobile ad spending will triple over the next three years.

Big data is big business, and here are 8 key stats to keep in mind:

  • Mobile advertising currently takes up 3.2% of marketing budgets, and is likely to almost triple to 9% over the next three years, according to the Duke University report.
  • The report also indicates that traditional advertising budgets are expected to fall 1.1% by early 2016.
  • Social media advertising currently makes up 9.9% of spending, and a jump to 22.4% is predicted over the next five years.
  • Marketing budgets are expected to rise by 8.7% in 2016, which will make it the biggest growth since 2012.
  • A Q1 2013 survey from CMO Council and SAS found that 6 out of 10 marketers see big data as both an obstacle and opportunity (reported by eMarketer).
  • That same report reveals that 15% believe it is full of opportunity, and that they had all the tools they needed.
  • A KPMG survey, also reported by eMarketer, found that 2 out of 5 managers believe that buy-in was important, but only 25% of them were putting big data related insights into practice.

The biggest obstacle in dealing with big data is that everyone agrees that it’s powerful, but at the same time, can be overwhelming. Furthermore, customers are becoming increasingly wary of privacy concerns. A 2014 study from the content analytics firm SDL (via Adweek) showed that almost two-thirds of customers in the U.S. and around the world worry about marketers using their personal information. A fear that surely contributed to how the E.U. court ended Safe Harbor earlier this month, a compact that had streamlined data flow across 4,000 companies including technology firms and ecommerce.

The chart below, published by SDL, shows that 65 percent of respondents in the U.S. (62% globally) worry about their personal information being used in marketing. Yet, 71% (72% globally) rarely or never use “Do not Track” or “Incognitio” features on their devices. Furthermore, 58% of U.S. respondents (57% globally) said that they wouldn’t do business with brands or companies that want to use personal information for a better experience.

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However, a little trust goes a long way. 80 percent said that they’d be willing to share information with trusted brands, so long as they’re transparent about how they collect data, what’s it’s used for, and what they get out of it.

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Darude Discusses How Music And Gaming Intertwine On Twitch

Popular Twitch streamer Darude has been using the platform to promote his music and his strategy has been working. Most recently, he was tapped to participate in the creation of the Counter-Strike sound pack. Here he talks about how this came about and about Twitch’s creative community and how it intertwines and overlaps with the gaming community.

Top 100 Countries Ranked By 2015 Game Revenues Revealed

This year, Newzoo s Top 100 Countries By Game Revenues, the comprehensive overview of the global market, represent 99.7% of the $91.5 billion games wallet worldwide. This overview, taken from our 2015 Global Games Market Report shows that top 20 countries alone will generate an estimated $83.0 billion this year, or 90.8% of total global games revenues. The ranking shows China at number one with 2015 revenues estimated to reach $22.2 billion, eclipsing the US for the first time as the world s top games market. El Salvador takes position 100 with $11.5 million in annual revenue.

Asia Pacific Contributes Almost Half of Top 100 Revenues

In 2015, countries from the Asia Pacific region account for 47.2% of top 100 revenues, with China leading the way. Despite mobile gaming growing faster than PC gaming in China, the market is still dominated by the Computer Screen, which will generate $15.2 billion this year, or 68% of total Chinese revenues. Southeast Asia is growing faster than anywhere else, driven mainly by mobile gaming, the region s largest segment in 2015. Thailand remains Southeast Asia s biggest earner. Thai revenues will reach $338 million in 2015, up +42.2 from the previous year, making Thailand the 23rd largest games market in the world. Hot on Thailand s trail, Indonesia will gain six ranks this year to take position 24 and generate $313 million in revenues, an astounding increase of +52% on 2014. With explosive growth rates like these, it wouldn t be too surprising to see a Southeast Asian country break into the top 20 in 2016.

India Soars into the Top 20

The most notable climber in the top 20 is India, gaining five ranks this year to be the 18th largest games market in the world. Indian consumer spending is growing rapidly. In 2015, India will have 159 million gamers who will generate revenues of $428 million, up +62.0% from 2014. By 2018, the Indian games market, driven primarily by the mobile segment, will break the billion dollar mark, representing an impressive compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of +49.2% for 2014-2018. This makes India one of the fastest growing games markets in the world and on its way to being a major global player. Increasingly, international companies are turning their focus to India, especially following recent news that Apple and Google have lowered the minimum price for apps and in-app purchases there. Stay tuned for our upcoming report, The Indian Games Market Review, for more insights into this dynamic and rapidly growing region.

Countries Overtaking Western European Nations

The overall Western European games market will reach $15.6 billion this year. While this represents a steady year-on-year increase of 1.9%, individual countries are losing their positions in the top 100 to faster growing regions of Southeast Asia, Latin America and Middle East and Africa. Notably, the Netherlands will lose two spots, while Belgium and Norway will lose five positions each. Mexico will gain one place to be the 13th largest games market in 2015, while further down the ranking, Argentina and Colombia will also see slight gains. Brazil remains, Latin America s leader at $1.5 billion. In Middle East and Africa, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Iran will also climb the ladder and overtake Western European countries in the process. Meanwhile, Germany will maintain its spot as the largest Western European games market and generate $3.7 billion, with TV/Console gaming taking the biggest share of the market.

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Ad Blocking: Adding Up The Numbers

[a]listdaily reported earlier in the year about the rise in ad blocking services, and how they are concern to marketers and companies alike. The issue continues to grow, as new numbers indicate that ad blocker usage is growing faster than ever among Internet users, even on mobile.

Now the IAB has changed their tune about ad blocking. “We messed up,” said Scott Cunningham, senior vp of technology and ad operations at the IAB. “Looking back now, our scraping of dimes may have cost us dollars in consumer loyalty.” He goes on to say how not focusing on the user has directly impacted the rise of ad blocking. “The fast, scalable systems of targeting users with ever-heftier advertisements have slowed down the public Internet and drained more than a few batteries. We were so clever and so good at it that we over-engineered the capabilities of the plumbing laid down by, well, ourselves. This steamrolled the users, depleted their devices, and tried their patience.”

PageFair recently posted a series of startling numbers, in partnership with Adobe, that show just how much ad blocking is being used these days. The full report can be found here, but here’s the quick rundown.

  • Ad blocking is set to cost publishers nearly $22 billion for this year alone.
  • There are now almost 200 million active ad blocking users around the world. Right now, it sits just at 198 million.
  • Ad blocking has grown over 41% around the world over the last year.
  • U.S. ad blocking grew 48% in the last 12 months, leading up to June 2015. The total number of active users is 45 million.
  • U.K. ad blocking grew even higher, by 82%, to 12 million active users for the same time period.


The chart breaks down just how much ad blocking has grown in the U.S. alone, going higher in penetration over the past two years by nearly double the count.

This is a cause of concern for many companies, including many of the bigger ones working their way around the market. As noted by AdWeek, YouTube has been fiddling with an ad-free subscription service to counter the many users that have been utilizing ad blocking software.

But Zack Sinclair, CEO of FairBlocker, states that YouTube is its own problem in that regard. “A lot of people blame YouTube for ad block usage,” he said. “Display ads are easy to ignore. On YouTube, you see exactly how much time is being wasted.”

Adblock Plus, AdGuard and uBlock have thrived as a result of users wanting to block these ads, although it’s leaving quite a dent in big business. Especially considering that digital video advertising has increased by almost 60% for this past year. But with almost 150 million people having some form of ad-blocking software, companies are scrambling for solutions.

Not everyone thinks that YouTube’s proposed subscription plan is a good idea, particularly Frederic Montagnon, CEO of Secret Media. “What I don’t understand, actually, is that today, for someone using ad blocking, they don’t see any ads, so they won’t see any reason to pay YouTube – or anyone – to prevent being exposed to them,” he explained.

A report from Montagnon’s company indicates that only two percent of Internet users would be willing to pay for the subscription plan to access online services, which is far from encouraging.

There is some question in terms of users blocking such ads and possibly doing harm to companies, but that isn’t stopping them from subscribing, according ad block user Ian Evans, who explains the benefits in a recent blog post. “I first began using AdBlock primarily because of YouTube,” he explained. “Before every movie trailer, every music video, every episode of Crash Course and every 90-second cat video, I had to watch a minute-long advertisement. Sometimes I could click past it after 30 seconds, but increasingly, I couldn’t. Sometimes it was longer than the video itself.”

Even Apple is taking preventive measures, recently blocking the iOS ad blocking app Been Choice from sale on the App Store, according to Business Insider. The app’s co-founder, Dave Yoon, believes it could return, but ad blocking may have put the company into a “conundrum” in terms of user privacy and the customer’s choice to use such an app.

Apple’s statement the matter is, “Apple is deeply committed to protecting customer privacy and security. We’ve removed a few apps from the App Store that install root certificates which enable the monitoring of customer network data that can in turn be used to compromise SSL/TLS security solutions. We are working closely with these developers to quickly get their apps back on the App Store, while ensuring customer privacy and security is not at risk.”

However, the question of whether they can still effectively be used for ad blocking has yet to be seen.

“They can’t let us in if we block in-app ads and iAds, could they ” Yoon asks. “We obviously don’t win by putting the biggest and arguably the best-loved company in the world in a conundrum. So we need to work with them.”

“We need to get back to the App Store without this stopping us since we’re trying to be more than an ad blocker.”

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Activision, Carl’s Jr. And Hardee’s Assemble The Ultimate Care Package

Call of Duty: Black Ops III has been building quite a bit of steam leading into its release on the market next month, between both reveals and features to the casual audience, as well as a devoted base for eSports enthusiasts. Soon, fans of the game will be able to eat along with the action.

Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s announced a partnership today with video game publisher Activision to create a special Ultimate Care Package for customers. This includes a combo meal consisting of a special burger, fries, a drink, and a peel-and-win game featuring a variety of prizes.

This is the biggest promotional tie-in that the fast food chain has had, and it also marks Activision’s first Call of Duty tie-in with a quick-service restaurant (QSR for short). The promotion will also include a Veterans Day fundraising campaign for Activision’s Call of Duty Endowment program, in addition to a national ad campaign featuring the return of model Charlotte McKinney.

Call of Duty is the most beloved video game franchise in the world and one of the biggest entertainment brands of all-time, so partnering with Activision for the launch of the new Call of Duty: Black Ops III presents a great opportunity to bring our brands together, says Brad Haley, chief marketing officer for Carl s Jr. and Hardee s restaurants. Our target customers love burgers, like our new Tex Mex Bacon Thickburger, and Call of Duty, so the two have now come together in an Ultimate Care Package combo meal, complete with customized Call of Duty packaging that includes a peel-and-win game piece for a chance to win epic Black Ops III prizes.

The giveaway will consist of a number of prizes, including a three-day trip to Los Angeles and a tour of the Treyarch development studio, as well as Astro gaming headsets, a “Take Out” personalization pack for immediate use in the game, and other Call of Duty oriented gear.

Rob Kostich, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Call of Duty, added, We re thrilled to partner with Carl s Jr. and Hardee s on this far-reaching program that truly benefits the entire Call of Duty community. This unique collaboration and campaign gives fans across the country a chance to win some great prizes in-game and in-restaurant, and, importantly, creates a special activation for our military veterans. We are very thankful to Carl s Jr. and Hardee s for their support of the Call of Duty Endowment, whose sole purpose is to drive our shared passion to put as many of our returning veterans into high quality jobs as possible.

Less fattening Call of Duty: Black Ops III promotions include a revamped World League that will launch a new tournament in 2016, a special edition that comes with desktop Juggernog mini-fridge,and an exclusive PlayStation 4 bundle that features a specially designed console and controller.

As Twitter Plots Its Next Steps, Instagram May Skip Ahead

Instagram turned out to be a lucrative investment for Facebook, which bought the photo/video sharing site in 2012 for a billion dollars. It has since garnered 400 million users, and it’s still on the rise. Now a new report from Adotas suggests that it could be putting Twitter to shame.

eMarketer provided numbers indicating that Instagram’s global ad revenue will reach $600 million this year, and will increase even further to $1.5 billion next year and $2.8 billion in 2017. Additionally, its thriving advertising program will enable it to compete, and perhaps outpace, Twitter in terms of both ad revenue and users.

Twitter’s new CEO Jack Dorsey stated that the reason that Twitter may be lagging behind is due to the lack of bold product changes. He also cites a lack of discipline within the company, and not giving the employees the clear company vision they deserve.

As for Instagram, it’s on the rise globally, with more than 75% of users living outside of the U.S., including Brazil, Japan and Indonesia, making up a big chunk of the audience.

That said, Twitter isn’t counting itself out, even in the face of Instagram’s meteoric rise. It has plans to launch a new Lightning service for a better handle on live events. Furthermore, Re/Code reports that in spite of recent layoffs within the company, Dorsey has noted that big things will come from the smaller team.

Former Microsoft exec Steve Ballmer, who became the new owner of the Los Angeles Clippers last year, is investing a substantial amount into Twitter (a 4% stake) according to a separate Re/Code report, and he’s not the only one putting a lot of faith and money into the company. Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal invested a five percent stake around the same time.

Whether these big changes can translate to bigger audience numbers has yet to be seen. Now it’s just a matter of seeing what Twitter’s next move will be.

We’ll find out more from the company when it reports its financials on October 27th.

China’s Gaming Revenue Is Officially Outpacing The U.S.

It has been just over a year since China lifted its longstanding ban on console sales, but Chinese gamers haven’t wasted any time diving in.

A report published by Newzoo lists the top 100 countries according to game revenues, and China takes the top spot by bringing in roughly $22.2 billion. In comparison, the U.S. took in around $21.9 billion, which puts it at a close second place, and outpaces the next three countries on the list (Japan, S. Korea, and Germany) combined. Both China and the U.S. taken together represent almost half of the $91 billion in global revenues earned by the gaming industry.

Newzoo report

The top 10 countries for gaming revenue are: China, The United States of America, Japan, South Korea, Germany, The United Kingdom, France, Canada, Spain, and Italy. The last three have close numbers to each other.

Newzoo also reveals in a separate report that the highest earning game company in world is the Chinese owned Tencent Holdings Ltd, which has stakes in other game companies such as League of Legends developer Riot Games, Activision Blizzard, and Epic Games, makers of the Unreal Engine. Sony, Microsoft, EA, Activision are all listed respectively behind Tencent.

China continues to be an important and fast-growing market in Asia, but it isn’t alone. Japan and South Korea are third and fourth place earners, while Southeast Asia – particularly Thailand and Indonesia – are potential up-and-comers.

The massive growth in game revenues in China shouldn’t be much of a shock, considering how the country has been a market leader in mobile apps and saw explosive growth in mobile for quite some time, inspiring mobile game companies like Kabam and others to push aggressively into the market. Earlier this year, Kabam’s COO Kent Wakeford saw China as the company’s opportunity to develop the first “billion dollar video game.”

That same sentiment was heard when [a]listdaily spoke to Golden Gate Games co-founder Keith McCurdy, who described China’s mobile market as being on a “It’s on a hyper-growth trajectory,” doubling each year. McCurdy also remarked that at the time, “In the top ten games, five of them are Western games, things like Plants Vs. Zombies and Subway Surfers. There’s a huge, fast-growing market, and there’s a proven appetite for Western content.”

The Chinese love gaming, and they love being Number One, and now we have further evidence of that.

YouTube Gaming: Over Two Billion Streaming Hours Served

Ever since YouTube Gaming launched earlier this year, it has been making great strides for video game livestreaming content like “Let’s Play” videos. Now we get a glimpse of how successful the service has been.

YouTube recently updated its blog page to discuss streaming numbers, and they’re quite impressive. The site estimates that gamers view more than 144 billion minutes of video per month, between posted videos and live streams on YouTube. “To put it into perspective, that’s like watching Let’s Play’s for more than 270,000 years straight 24 hours a day or beating Final Fantasy VII 1,900,000 times a day!” the post reads.

The company also highlights a number of improvements to the YouTube Gaming service.

Firstly, it introduced a better focus on mobile capture, thus empowering streams of “every shape and size,” including players of popular mobile games like Boom Beach or Hearthstone. “You can now record and live stream mobile gameplay on-the-go directly from Android devices using Mobile Capture on YouTube Gaming,” the post reads. “You don’t need any additional hardware or software just tap Go Live (or your avatar on a phone) in the YouTube Gaming app, turn on your selfie cam and record your commentary with your phone’s microphone.”

The company also discusses sponsorship potential. A new beta program is in place to help assist with Fan Funding and Sponsorships, which offer perks such as a live chat badge and the ability to create exclusive chat sessions for a small monthly fee. YouTube intends to expand the list of beta channels as time goes on.

Other features that are being introduced include better search capabilities to find relevant livestreams, bookmarking videos for later, a redesigned watching page with improved performance, better search navigation for iOS devices and importing existing subscriptions through the Settings menu.

It sounds great, but YouTube Gaming still has a ways to go before it can catch up with its chief rival, Twitch. The livestreaming service continues to draw in a vast community of gamers (100 million monthly and rising), and works with big-name partners such as Old Spice. On top of that, the company recently hosted its first successful TwitchCon, bringing in both game companies and streamers to appeal to its vast community. Twitch has over 1.7 million broadcasters, with 12,000 that are making a decent living by working within its partnership program.

Now that YouTube is facing fierce competition from Facebook, we’ll have to keep a close eye on how quickly the livestreaming sector develops.