App publisher XM Studio discusses how a partnership with Pangle improved mobile app monetization and user acquisition for XM Studio’s Perfect 2048 game.
Games publisher XM Studio is no stranger to mobile app monetization. Their parent company, XM Studio, produces a variety of top apps as part of its mission to empower users with apps and tools that improve everyday life. Thus far, the company has seen over 500 million app downloads.
One of XM Studio’s most recent offerings, Perfect 2048, targets the puzzle game market. In the game, users swipe to match numbered tiles and multiply them, aiming for a “perfect score” of 2048. If they reach a point where two of the same number aren’t available to multiply, it’s game over, and the quest for that magical perfect score starts again. It’s a simple but addictive formula with the potential to pull in scores of casual gamers with the right advertising.
So, when XM Studio wanted to expand their reach to new markets, they needed to ensure they were doing so in a way guaranteed to bring returns. They set their goal to acquire, retain, and effectively monetize new users. XM specifically aimed to increase the in-app event conversion rate for new and existing users while upping retention overall.
With these goals in mind, they turned to Pangle for help with user acquisition in the Southeast Asia (SEA) market.
At first, XM Studio focused on the broader SEA region for their user acquisition efforts. But when Perfect 2048 saw only moderately good performance in the region as a whole, Pangle’s advised them to focus on Indonesia — with great success.
They joined forces with Pangle in May 2021. A month later, in June, the app was seeing unbelievable growth. The game’s DAUs (Daily Average Users) shot up to 200,000, and Perfect 2048 reached the top of the charts in the region. Natural user acquisition also increased as the game became more visible.
But where, exactly, did these phenomenal results come from?
To increase user acquisition, and ensure they’re attracting users most likely to drive monetization goals, advertisers often tap into the expertise offered by advertising platforms.
One of the strategies that may be offered is the use of AEO (App Event Optimization). Here, the idea is to move beyond targeting new users simply for an install. Instead, the advertiser identifies a specific goal that’s valuable to their business.
For XM Studio, the goal was to maximize retention. Pangle’s solution was an AEO aimed at Retention Optimization (RO). The goal of the RO product is to advertise to users who are more likely to regularly engage in-app. Once these users are successfully converted, the idea is that they’ll stay active, boosting the game’s retention rate.
Of course, the final piece of the puzzle is to do this at the most cost-effective rate, ensuring the maximum ROAS (Return on Advertising Spend) possible for the advertiser.
For XM Studio, the return on advertising spend with Pangle surpassed all expectations. The hyper-focused campaign netted the publisher a staggering 20x return on their initial investment after only a month. In addition, the game saw a marked increase in user retention.
After using Pangle’s RO product, XM Studio’s two-day retention rate went up 58% while the cost per two-day retention went down 49% — a truly impressive result.
One of the strengths of Pangle’s approach in maximizing returns for clients is the close cooperation between the user acquisition and monetization departments. Pangle offers value at multiple levels by focusing on a complete growth loop — after users are acquired, they’re effectively monetized, thanks to close collaboration between internal teams.
In XM Studio’s case, the key was to ensure they attracted the right users to boost retention and ad monetization. The boost in retention and revenue meant that XM Studio can now stretch even further, reaching into new markets and acquiring an even broader player base.
In addition, Pangle’s regional expertise, encompassing multiple markets, also means advertising can be precisely targeted where it will have the most impact. For Perfect 2048, the focus point on Indonesia meant giant returns in a short space of time.
XM Studio notes that Pangle’s expertise helped them achieve significant growth on several key metrics. Their CTR and CVR were higher after using Pangle, and they had a lower CPI. The localization support they received also made a significant difference, helping them reach their target audience and grow.
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