Presented by Adikteev

For a long time, installs have been king when it comes to app growth, from games to productivity apps and more. But like most business models, it’s more cost-effective to retain, activate and upsell current customers rather than hunt down a new one. Even more crucially, developers realize that to stay profitable long-term, they need to maintain a core group of highly invested users.

One of the top ways to accomplish that is retargeting. With mobile user behavior data as a guide, developers can target users who have previously visited or already downloaded your app. That includes customers who haven’t engaged in a while, ones who have left the fold, or those who’ve demonstrated interest but, for whatever reason, never fully committed. Personalized ads are a powerful way to snag their interest again, encouraging them to re-engage, re-install, or complete a down-funnel conversion.

However, an effective retargeting campaign needs some careful strategy behind it.

Making the most out of a retargeting strategy

Mobile users are picky about their apps; 21% of users will simply abandon a newly downloaded app after just one open. But finely tuned retargeting campaigns can make all the difference. Just segmenting audiences using a broad array of profile and behavioral data boosts open rates by 2x and serves up to 3x higher conversion rates.

But that takes a great deal of data, not to mention deep insight into how a particular app’s market works — skills not often in an app developer’s wheelhouse or part of an in-house hiring budget. Each app type demands its unique audience strategy, and developing a retargeting campaign requires comprehensive market knowledge. App developers, particularly those new to the market, often don’t have the knowledge, time or resources available to track metrics and fine-tune a retargeting strategy. That’s where an experienced retargeting partner is invaluable.

“Working with a retargeting partner frees up bandwidth for your team,” says Kate Lovejoy, COO, Retargeting at Adikteev. “There are self-serve options out there, but by working with an expert in the space, you can access materials and resources you might not otherwise have. And they’ll have that high level of expertise acquired in working with various campaigns setup and app verticals.”

Here’s a closer look at the ways dedicated retargeting partners offer value.

Freeing up bandwidth

The work of running an app or multiple apps already takes up the bulk of a developer’s time, and it should. For many, tackling creative testing, prelaunch analysis and campaign measurement just isn’t in the cards — there’s already too much to do in the day-to-day of ensuring the app is running smoothly.

A dedicated retargeting partner is able to offer A/B testing for creatives, creative workshops and extra analyses to ensure that campaigns are up to date with market trends. For the highest chance of success, every business relationship should begin with a pre-launch analysis, including an in-depth app audience audit before retargeting.

Tapping into billions of data points

Even apps with a large data science and product team behind them don’t often have the breadth of experience and data that a retargeting partner can offer.

“For instance, a partner that’s been in the business for a while will have accumulated billions of data points on hundreds of apps in different verticals and understand the app user engagement universe at large,” Lovejoy explains. “That means data on ideal bid prices, which strategies work the best for which types of apps, how to maintain revenue streams as IDFA collection decreases, and more.”

To build this knowledge in-house, an app marketer would need to sink a substantial amount of time, effort and budget, and even a dedicated team member. But partnering, which offers detailed insights far more quickly, becomes a significantly more cost-effective solution, whether complementing existing retargeting efforts within your team or on its own.

Strategic recommendations and creative expertise

Most retargeting partners offer creative services, whether just consulting or a full-service design studio. UA creatives and retargeting creatives differ greatly in terms of their end goals, and by working with a retargeting partner, app marketers can get a clearer sense of that difference. A/B testing those creatives is also an easier and more effective process with a retargeting partner. Testing can be more comprehensive when run as an outside process rather than taking up resources in-house.

An experienced retargeting partner will constantly tap into the audience insights it has garnered based on work with other apps. For example, lapsed payers in an RPG game may require different creatives than active payers in the same game.

Developing creatives and creating audience segments requires much more time and careful analysis. That’s where partners come in with supplemental analyses, studies on the best creative strategy for the current market context, or the ability to pinpoint where a campaign needs to be optimized. A self-serve DSP means much more trial and error trying to find the source of the problem or even where to start, which wastes time and budget again.

In the end, retargeting requires less time and effort than recruiting new users and brings more conversion than any other type of app marketing. One study found it can deliver 50% more paying users and increase revenue by 63% compared to developers who don’t invest in retargeting strategies. But to maximize the effectiveness of these campaigns and deliver results like those without breaking the budget, Lovejoy recommends going all in with a retargeting partner.

“What I’ve seen make these folks successful is a deep partnership, testing and an iterative mindset, no matter what skills and expertise they tap us for,” Lovejoy adds. “Whether you’re looking for someone to be an extended arm of your BI team, creative support or to outsource the work of retargeting entirely, the good thing about working with a retargeting partner is that you can tailor services to your app’s requirements, to achieve any of your goals.”

Learn more here about app retargeting — from strategic best practices to working with a retargeting partner to maximize the success of your campaigns.