Based in Japan, Ignition M develops and publishes games not only for mobile devices but also for gaming consoles. Takafumi Masuda and his team created the “super-cute and hyper Simple RPG” Cats the Commander, named by Google Play Japan as one of the best indie games of 2018.
The company has been using Tapjoy Offerwall for ad monetization and running advertising for about 4 years, but the release of Japanese, English, Korean, and Traditional Chinese versions of Cats the Commander underscored the need to focus on new user acquisition. The time had come to explore additional high-performance promotion methods.
IGNITION M began promoting Cats the Commander with video ads in 2018, adding a single Cost Per Engagement (CPE) campaign in December of that year. They expected that CPE would motivate users to complete deeper in-app engagements beyond the install threshold. The strategy at the time was to place high bids and target deep engagement checkpoints in order to make high ROAS performance. However, these high-friction offers did not reach install volume as they expected, so IGNITION M had to rethink its approach.
The studio switched the ad unit to multi-reward CPE in March of 2020. The new challenge would allow it to target high and low friction engagements within a single campaign, so users could engage without an upfront commitment. The engagement checkpoints offered progressively greater bids, which allowed the team to optimize every stage. They adjusted bids for each event by reviewing ROAS performance and LTV after the initial test flight. Cats the Commander is available in four different languages across 11 countries, which created a great deal of flexibility for campaign events. The team reviewed and optimized every deployment according to performance in its respective region.
Given Ignition M’s high-friction targets, multi-reward CPE made stronger engagement than single-event CPE in every country. The absolute in-app-purchase amount was also higher, which correlated to ROAS. It is also worth mentioning that the effects were seen immediately after the change.
Install volume compared with normal CPE
In-app purchases with Japan
“Tapjoy’s CPE and Multi-Reward CPE are great advertising methods that can motivate the users to play the game before install. Especially Multi-Reward CPE can allow us to set multiple events for one campaign, and this makes it easier to focus on the LTV and ROAS performance.”
- Takafumi Masuda, CEO, Ignition M