by April Tayson, Regional VP, INSEA
With revenue in the video streaming segment expected to grow to $30.4 billion by 2024, the opportunity that Over The Top (OTT) media affords mobile marketers is enormous, yet largely untapped.
Whether in the living room or on the move, mobile is an increasingly important component in the OTT mix. Recent research conducted by Adjust showed that younger consumers lead the pack in mobile streaming, with Gen Z and Millennials most likely to pay for streaming and on-demand entertainment services than any other generation.
And as mobile marketers tap into OTT and ratchet up their spending on advertising for user acquisition, the question for 2021 is really how they’re spending and how they attribute users. Many companies are investing heavily in OTT, but often have no way of understanding what drives value — measurement is the answer.
Subscriptions become the ultimate monetization model for apps across verticals
The growth of subscription-based apps has intensified this year as users look to their mobile devices for a broader array of activities, from entertainment and e-commerce to fitness and finance. This is also being driven by changing user habits that point to the ‘stickiness’ of subscriptions. As subscriptions become a regular expenditure, we’ve seen that older consumers, especially, are more willing to pay for a premium app product or supporting brands they love.
Recent research conducted by Adjust found that 25 – 34-year-olds in Singapore spent the most on subscription apps — $34,78 a month — compared to $27,45 for respondents between aged 55+. Overall, around a quarter of Singaporean consumers also said they have stopped paying for other services in order to buy subscriptions on mobile app services (for example, subscribing to fitness apps over going to the gym).
We expect an increasing number of apps will be looking to diversify their monetization models beyond ad revenue in 2021 — and subscriptions will become the ultimate income stream for many publishers and advertisers.
Sophistication of the mobile gaming industry driving Southeast Asia’s app market forward, with other verticals to follow suit in 2021
2020 has been a breakout year for mobile gaming apps across Southeast Asia, with gaming studios such as Indofun, Gamejam, SHIN-Agency and publisher Storms making huge inroads across the region and internationally. With so many hot new gaming studios producing innovative and high-quality games, user acquisition is aided by the buzz and high quality apps on offer.
Their success is also in part down to the sophistication of their marketing: developers in the region are renowned for making clever use of data to better target and segment users, improve ASO, and master ad monetization.
This laser focus on analytics and return on investment is paying dividends, and is also helping push forward the app industry as a whole forward. In 2021, we’re expecting to see more verticals looking to the gaming industry and applying the same level of data-driven thinking to their own marketing strategies.
Battling bots will be key to improving user experience
The pervasive problem of in-app bot fraud is a trend we have been following closely in gaming, ecommerce and other industries. It’s becoming a big business, where professional bot fraudsters aim to provide bots-as-a-service for unscrupulous customers.
Bots are designed to be faster and more efficient than humans, so bots can easily beat human players when competing against them in games, for example. Our research found that more than 40% of the respondents have paid for bots when playing mobile games, spending an average of $65. This becomes an incredibly frustrating experience for honest players who don’t cheat. In e-commerce apps, bots can be used to snap up limited edition items in one go, or even use stolen log-in credentials to take over accounts and make purchases with the saved account information. A breach like this can destroy user trust for years to come.
Unfortunately, many companies still don’t fully understand the threats posed by bots, which can have a big impact both on their financials and reputations. Going into 2021, we recommend brands safeguard their business – and their users’ experience – by making sure battling bots is top of their priority list.