What’s next for the mobile in-app marketplace: Verve’s 2024 outlook

Verve Marketplace 2023 reflection and 2024 outlook

As we step into 2024, we’re reflecting on our key product achievements from 2023. Last year was a period of significant growth for our in-app marketplace, PubNative. This has set the stage for a stronger path to value for our demand and supply partners in 2024 and beyond.  Highlights from 2023 Topping the charts for mobile scale and quality The Pixalate SSP Market Share Report ranked Verve as North America’s top mobile SSP for both Apple App Store and Google Play. Verve maintains this lead for the third and second consecutive quarters for Google and Apple, respectively. Notably, Verve’s market share in Apple’s platform rose from 17% to 28% between the second and third quarters. Globally, Verve now ranks first in APAC on Google Play, second in LATAM, third in APAC on the Apple App Store, and fifth in EMEA. In 2023, Jounce Media released a benchmarking report that ranked Verve as the leader in providing premium mobile app supply, ensuring quality ad experiences at a lower cost. Verve delivers 79% of premium mobile app supply — more than any other SSP. Jounce Media is one of ad tech’s most authoritative voices in programmatic supply chain management.   Performance powered by interstitial units The interstitial ad inventory on PubNative (our in-app marketplace) increased by 115% in ad request volume. This growth is thanks to our expanding footprint of SDK publishers from a wide range of mediation and bidding platforms. This surge is also due to an increasing demand for high-impact performance ad units (especially interstitial video) on the marketplace. Advertisers prefer these ad formats because they help drive better conversions.  Our revamped interstitial suite now supports multiple performance-first features including SKOverlay and Storekit Auto Open. You’ll also find a completely refreshed ad template that balances user retention and conversion goals.  Verve’s in-app marketplace, now on Ironsource  Verve is a key demand partner for top monetization platforms, including Applovin Max, Google Ad Manager, Google AdMob, DT Fairbid, Amazon Transparent Ad Marketplace, Prebid, and Nimbus, to name a few. This year, we broadened our publisher footprint by partnering with Ironsource, a significant expansion that lets publishers (especially in the gaming vertical) access diverse demand sources from PubNative’s exchange. Thanks to the integration, publishers connected to Ironsource can now efficiently monetize their interstitial inventories through both waterfall and bidding demand.  More transparency and easier optimization with bid stream enhancements As an ad marketplace, we strive to improve our bid streams continuously to help buyers optimize towards their goals efficiently. In 2023, we introduced a few significant updates, including “minimum bid to win” and “bid loss notifications” to drive better transparency for your bid decisions. These additions also give DSPs crucial insights into the competitive landscape of ad auctions and detailed reasons for lost bids. What’s ahead in 2024 The year ahead will pack some significant updates relevant to our publishers and demand partners, beginning from Q1 2024. Below are some of the highlights to keep an eye on in our in-app marketplace. Powerful SDK Updates: In the upcoming SDK updates in Q1, we will continue to make improvements that are performance-focused, while introducing new SDK modules that are critical for privacy-first monetization.  More ID-less scale with ATOM: We are making significant upgrades to ATOM to help publishers and demand partners make use of the on-device cohorts at scale to recapture unaddressable users. A new powerful version of ATOM (or Anonymized Targeting on Mobile), with updated cohorts, will be available to our publisher partners to integrate, very soon.  Privacy Manifests: Privacy manifests are essentially files (created in Xcode) that every SDK and app developer will need to fill and add to their app. These files describe which user data the app is accessing and how the app developer is intending to use it. Moving forward, whenever an app developer prepares to upload an app to the App Store, Xcode will combine Privacy Manifests from all third-party SDKs used by the app into one comprehensive privacy report. PubNative, an in-app marketplace, is addressing this change by preparing our SDK to support Privacy Manifests. Our upcoming iOS SDK will be completely compliant to the Privacy Manifest requirements, well ahead of Apple’s enforcement. More tests with Google Privacy Sandbox: Google is finally phasing out third-party cookies for 1% of the world’s Chrome users. Verve will build on our 2023 momentum and continue to work closely with Google and other ad tech partners to test the Sandbox APIs and share results as we make progress towards a more privacy-conscious approach to targeting users on mobile. Advertising is on the brink of a privacy-first era filled with potential and promising opportunities. 2024 could not be more exciting, and we are confident that the foundation we built in 2023 has positioned us to support and drive our client objectives and growth.

Verve’s in-app marketplace drives 256% revenue uplift on APS

Amazon Publisher Services logo - Verve case study PubNative

Verve, one of the fastest-growing SSPs for mobile and connected TV and a part of Media and Games Invest, is excited to share the strong performance of its in-app marketplace PubNative on Amazon Publisher Services, according to a recent case study published by Amazon Publisher Services (APS). In 18 months, Verve’s in-app marketplace PubNative has seen a 256% increase in revenue on APS. The catalyst for this was APS’s broad reach in 70 regions worldwide, combined with Verve’s global footprint and the differentiated demand Verve offers through its privacy-first and performance-centric platform.

The gift of sustainability: Making it easier for advertisers and publishers to give back

Verve sustainability efforts make it easier for advertisers and publishers to give back and create a more sustainable media industry

Unwrapping purposeful advertising: At Verve, our motto is “Let’s make media better,” and this holiday season, we’re taking it a step further. We believe that giving back should be more than a seasonal tradition — it should be a seamless part of our everyday practice. 

Verve’s commitment to a greener approach spans partnerships with organizations like Eden Reforestation Projects, innovative ad units with Givsly, curated inventory with a sustainability twist, and our collaborative efforts with Cedara to measure and reduce carbon emissions across the advertising supply chain. For us, “Let’s make media better” isn’t just a tagline — it’s a commitment to a greener, socially responsible, and better advertising ecosystem, 365 days a year.

User acquisition from a transparent mobile DSP perspective: Preparing for 2024

User acquisition for app developers - mobile DSP perspective

The keys to successful mobile user acquisition (UA) are changing. App developers seeking new users need to understand and embrace transparency, privacy, and contextual targeting. The shift from behavioral to contextual targeting, the implications of SKAdNetwork (SKAN), and the balance between machine learning and human intervention are key factors shaping the industry. In this blog post, we’ll explore these factors and share strategies and best practices for navigating this new terrain in 2023 and beyond.

Explained: What are iOS 17 Privacy Manifests, and how do they impact app developers?

iOS 17 and Privacy Manifests enforcement date have huge implications for app developers and SDK developers

Apple is further expanding on providing app store customers with more visibility into the use of their data. The end goal is to make sure that an app user has full understanding and control over what data they share, and that users aren’t unwillingly paying with their data for the app content they consume. Below, we explain how this is achieved by Privacy Manifests, required reasons API process, and other privacy tools included with iOS 17. We will take a look at the implications around third-party SDKs, both from an app developer’s and an SSP’s perspective, and provide examples as Verve is getting ready to support the new privacy measures.

Game on for the gaming sector: Winning with data

KEY TAKEAWAY:  While the gaming sector has lost some of its pizazz, it cannot be overlooked as a source of growth and opportunity. I wish I had a title like “Entrepreneur in Residence.” I wish I could channel my teenage son’s desire to get paid for playing and knowing about the world of video games.  AND, I wish I could have the futuristic foresight like Clara Markovich does. Alas, there’s no genie in a bottle granting me three wishes, but Clara is as close to a “trend capturer” that Verve has. And she wants to make sure marketers don’t forget about the gaming sector as a source of opportunity and insight as to where the next wave of growth may take place. Clara had a chance to sit down with #AVA and me to talk about the obvious and not-so-obvious ways that gaming can benefit clients across the Verve ecosystem. She started by talking about our parent company’s origins and why they matter more than ever. “With our parent company being Media and Games Invest (MGI), you would have to think that our company invests in media companies and gaming companies. In business and in life, media and games naturally go together,” Clara said. “While these units operate independently, we always look for opportunities to collaborate. For instance, MGI brought together a CTV re-engagement/user acquisition campaign with a gamigo group game. It is but one way we connected the dots. We believe there are more opportunities like that on the horizon.” Games People Play (for Money) Clara may be on to something, especially when looking at the number of ad tech conglomerates adding gaming studios to their portfolios (e.g., Microsoft acquiring Activision Blizzard). Verve’s sister company, gamigo group, has more than 500 games across mobile, PC and the web. This means we can hear and learn from gamers’ pain points about advertising more closely. For example, we can better understand the consumer and user journey thanks to data intelligence within the apps. We can also identify and discover consumers more efficiently. These direct insights help Verve solve problems that benefit all gaming publishers across our stack — and potentially other publishers who may face similar situations. “The most important thing to be mindful of when looking at the gaming sector is tapping into the data possibilities stemming from owned and operated games,” Clara noted. “In an ideal world, we can utilize and enhance all the pain points our gaming unit has through data, and at the same time have the capability of creating new gaming audiences that our clients can benefit from.” Publishers and brands alike should tap into Verve’s gaming expertise to find some “extra plays” in the form of new revenue sources. Reach out to your Client Partner Manager to learn more about how gaming can help you grow your business.

Back to Basics: A quick guide to SKOverlay banners

Back to Basics: A Quick Guide to SKOverlay Banners

What are SKOverlay banners, and how can they help your monetization and advertising strategy? In this blog, we’ll go back to the basics on this innovative ad format that is helping demand partners improve their app install campaigns, and generating higher revenue for publishers. What are SKOverlay banners? SKOverlay banners are small click-to-install banners that appear at the bottom of interstitial ad formats like playable or rewarded ads. Uniquely, these banner ads are not only clickable, but also allow for immediate, in-banner downloads of the advertised app. As a result, users can download a new app without ever leaving the native app. Available on iOS, SKOverlay banner placements are transforming app-install campaigns. Why do advertisers and marketers love SKOverlay banners? For demand partners, SKOverlay banners help drive app installs. As a user is engaging with the ad, they will see an option to download the advertised app. Historically, ads redirected users to the App Store, where they had to manually select to download the app. With SKOverlay banners, however, they can simply confirm install/purchase right from the banner ad. The banner triggers an install prompt. Upon completion, the new app appears on the user’s device, and their in-app experience is uninterrupted. By keeping the download in the native app experience, dropoff is less, brand sentiment improves, and of course, app installs increase. Additionally, for rewarded video ads, after a user installs the app they can continue to watch the video ad to reap the reward upon video completion. What are the benefits of SKOverlay banners for publishers? Quite simply, SKOverlay banners keep users engaged with the publisher’s app. With any ad that causes a redirect, users are less likely to return to the app. By creating an opportunity to install the advertised app without a redirect to the App Store, users have a better UX, and they stay engaged with publishers’ content. Of course, as marketers and demand partners see better returns on their KPIs, they are willing to spend more for placement. As a result, publishers can also enjoy higher eCPMs with these SKOverlay placements. Getting started At Smaato, we make it easy to enjoy this ad format, along with countless others. For publishers, download the latest version of our SDK to ensure you can monetize SKOverlay banner inventory. Integrate with Smaato’s NextGen SDK for iOS. For demand partners, get in touch with your client partner manager to learn more! As always, we’re here if you have any questions. This blog post originally appeared on Smaato’s website. Smaato is part of Verve.