Diverse Approaches to App Inventory for Enhanced User Insights

There is value in experimenting on your inventory to understand your users better. 

All mobile users are not treated equally, especially those with Android versus those with iOS. After all, they are two completely different operating systems, so it’s best to know the key differences to attain the success you want as a publisher. Both giants in the mobile ecosystem contain specific characteristics that demand careful consideration from publishers.

During a breakout session at AdMonsters Pub Forum Coronado Island, Joey Stern, Ad Systems Manager at TuneIn, led an exciting discussion during his session titled “Navigating Multi-Platform Madness: Unleashing Revenue Opportunities Within Complex Mobile Strategies.” The session is one to highlight as it delved into the critical differences between Android and iOS, emphasizing the role of privacy, app longevity, and user habits.

In the extension of the session below, Stern left further insight regarding strategies to combat the privacy constraints that come with both platforms, ways to unlock opportunities for audio monetization, optimizing ad revenue on Android’s extended lifespan, understanding diverse audiences, and leveraging app release info to quickly resolve any issues that arise. Learn more about the world of mobile according to Stern below.

Yakira Young: Can you explain some of the differences between Android and iOS platforms that app publishers should be thinking about?

Joey Stern: The biggest difference is how they handle privacy. iOS is much more locked up than Android. Android allows for a much more extended period of app updates, while iOS has a longer period of system updates, meaning Android users will be on newer app versions, while iOS users will get held back at some point, and those users may still offer valid revenue. Don’t just assume all mobile users have the same habits; test to see what divergences exist.

YY:  How can publishers navigate the very different approaches of iOS and Android as it pertains to privacy?

JS: Staying up to date is key here. This is a constantly moving goalpost and legally fraught.

  • Pay attention to both the political decisions and the financial ones.
  • Make sure you have a trusted privacy partner and meet with them regularly, not just when a big change is coming up.
  • Understand that location can be a big factor in what platform/client your users are on, so privacy strategies should be location and device-specific where needed.

YY: What advice do you have for businesses looking to monetize audio? 

JS: Start understanding your demand options now, and figure out where to layer that in with existing audio. Companion Banners for audio ads are key drivers. Understanding the long tail of your users can help drive campaign revenue more than in-video ads. Also, server-side delivery (especially with Smart Speakers) is a huge opportunity, and having a DAI you trust and understand is key. This is new territory, and being nimble will be necessary for success.

YY: With apps on Android having a longer lifespan, how do you optimize ad revenue from these apps over an extended period? Do you utilize any particular tactics or approaches to maximize ad performance in such cases?

JS: With Android, the goal should be stability because there are various devices. Clear and actionable metrics are necessary to ensure a good user experience across a much bigger variety of possible screens. It also helps to build out ad requests with some flexibility or external configuration ability that isn’t app release-centric (request timers, ad units, etc).

YY: How should publishers go about understanding their audiences on both Android and iOS platforms? 

JS: TEST TEST TEST TEST. Look at different devices and check the basics:

  • Clicks
  • View Thru Rate
  • Render rate
  • Viewability

Your biggest asset is understanding your audiences by device and geography. Combine those data points to know where to offer higher-value users and when.

YY: How can getting app release information into your reporting help find issues as they are happening?

JS: Errors are so much easier to track when you understand what version of the app users are on. So it’s important to make the app version part of your key value reporting for tracking an issue quickly. Also, sometimes bulk user settings (logged in vs. new users vs. registered, for example) can help determine *who* and which issue is affecting vs. version which tells you *when*.