Changing Markets And The End Of The Mobile Ad Network

Discussion in 'Advertising Discussion' started by stollo770, Sep 23, 2013.

  1. stollo770 LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Message Count:
    236
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    200
    Ever since Google announced in back in August that notification ads would be banned, I started to look heavily into mobile ad networks in general because I was worried about the fall out. I researched every company without bias, looked at the biggest ones, the smallest ones, and the one I use which is Leadbolt. What I found did not look good, but I questioned the results until I started seeing the returns from my new post notification ad units and began talking with former staff members from Leadbolt. After about a month of digging, I feel obligated to post my findings here, so LWC community can better optimize their revenue. Here it is:


    There has been much hype over mobile advertising, so companies (leadbolt, start app, etc.) have been created to make money off of the thousands of dollars that big brands should start throwing into mobile campaigns. The idea is sound on paper: mobile markets are huge, ever growing, and companies should line up at the door to advertise on mobile devices. However, this never happened, and likely wont. Companies don't just want to advertise on mobile devices, they want to reach their target audience regardless of what device they are using. They want efficiency, volume, and cross platform traffic that can reach everyone. By cross platform, I don't mean different mobile devices, I mean different universes like the internet websites, different OS's, different apps, different programs, etc. Advertisers want to reach everywhere, all at once, for as little money as possible. So who does this? Google, Facebook, and Twitter all accomplish this extremely well, and can send ads to a number of users regardless of what device/service/screen they are using. For example, Amazon wants to advertise their new E-book reader: kindle paper white. So they sign up for an ad campaign with Google's Ad Mob company. Ad Mob, since it is a child of Google, can universally blast out the Amazon ads to its website, any other website using Google Ad Mob ads, Google products, emails, play store ads, mobile devices, etc; literally thousands of places all at once. All Amazon has to do is check the boxes on where they want the ads to go and to what demographic. Amazon does not want to sign up for ads on Google's homepage, then sign up for mobile ads through Leadbolt, then sign up with other popular websites for advertising, etc. That costs to much money, time, and effort. This situation is not limited to Amazon, every single company with advertising budget worth a damn does this; they go through Google, Facebook, Twitter, or iAd. So to summarize everything for you guys, the companies that are the making the most money, the companies that are getting the most mobile ad traffic are NOT selling mobile ads; they are selling ads that happen to work on mobile devices. Advertisers are only interested in target audiences, not device types. This presents a problem for mobile ad networks, as they only cater to mobile devices, and nothing else. So one by one mobile ad companies are failing, and publishers are losing revenue hand over fist.

    The numbers all support this, and I encourage you guys to go research them for yourselves. This year Facebook will obtain 15 percent of global mobile ad revenues this year, up from 5 percent in 2012, according to market estimates. Google, which earns the majority of its mobile revenues from search ads, will see its share grow by around a percentage point to over 53 percent. Twitter, meanwhile, will enjoy a growth of nearly 2 percent, up from around 1.5 percent in 2012.

    Lets compare this to networks that do ONLY mobile ads. The largest one that I can think of is Millennial Media; they have an IPO, and are the largest of the mobile only ad-networks. This year they will see their market share decrease from 1% to 0.7% and that's even down from 2% from 2011. Millennial Media has also never made a profit, and currently sustain a $3,100,000.00 deficit (money they are losing) as of September of this year. They are also dropping staff and consolidating departments in a desperate last ditch effort to stay afloat. This isn't limited to Mellennial Media, Velti, which is probably the second biggest mobile ad network, has also seen its stock prices plummet, has aid off 50% of their staff, and is running out cash to stay afloat. Those are the big guys. Leadbolt, Start-App, AirPush, MoPub, etc, are all privately held networks that do not release their financial condition; but they don't need to in order for us to estimate it. If the biggest of the big are failing, how can Leadbolt, Start-App, AirPush, MoPub, etc, be profitable? When was the last time you saw a meaningful ad come out of Leadbolt? I haven't. All the ads I can remember have said "win big!", "free money", "other obvious scam", "etc". I had a Leadbolt support specialist named Nicholas, and a couple weeks ago I emailed him out of concern for Google's new "anti-notification" policy. He replied saying he was laid off by Leadbolt. When I asked him why he said that Leadbolt has always been struggling to make a profit and recently has been losing money. So to compensate they laid off a large portion off staff and closed some offices. He doesn't know how leadbolt will survive without notification ad traffic. These are things your support rep won't ell you. I personally have noticed this trend, with starting in late May; the steady reduction of my ECPM culminating in a total revenue crash this month post notification. I am getting 30,000 impressions, and a current average ecmp rating of only 0.40 cents (including my dwindling notification ads). Thats shit, and if the market is any indication, it won't get better but will end with leadbolt's bankruptcy or merger with another company. If I'm not making any money, neither are they, I used to make good money with them, but not since the post notification revenue crash this month. I'm sure other users have noticed this with their ads and networks.

    So whats the solution right now? I have no idea. I don't want to panic switch to ad mob yet because they don't offer as much flexibility as leadbolt does with ad formats (I like the floating and audio ads). However, if I can't make any money with leadbolt (I'm giving them 30 days) then I will switch. Either way, those who switch and those who stay will notice a shift in mobile ad companies. They will all most-likely start merging with each other, and offering ads in other services hoping that a bigger audience will be enough to attract advertisers. Some might go out of business (I predict airpush). One thing is certain though, the era of small mobile only networks is over.

    Hope this pumps some good information into the community. Let me know your feedback.
    fatos likes this.
  2. Vas Origin

    Member Since:
    Jan 4, 2012
    Message Count:
    770
    Likes Received:
    167
    Trophy Points:
    500
    I don't think there's a reason to panic. Yes, push notifications and icon ads are dead, but they are just ad units that proved to be successful. Everyone who used push notifications should have had a realization at some point that this kind of advertising will soon die. It was good while it lasted. However, we live in a world of innovation. Companies will come out with new ad units that will either be successful or unsuccessful. Old companies will either persevere or fold, new companies will start up. This is the cycle. Whether you will persevere or fold with the cycle is entirely up to you. I look at all this in a positive light and hope to see change for the better.
    Joshua and stollo770 like this.
  3. fatos LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2013
    Message Count:
    268
    Likes Received:
    72
    Trophy Points:
    200
    Mee too Im having bad ecpm whith leadbolt $0.30 -$0.40 and my revenue has dropped drastically. I dont know what is happening whith Leadbolt but if they dont raise my ecpm's I will switch very very soon.
    Joshua and stollo770 like this.
  4. davveis Keeps coming back

    Member Since:
    Mar 20, 2013
    Message Count:
    15
    Likes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    10
    Same here, my ecpm is 0.25-0.35. Yesterday I had 25 000 imps with 0.26 ecpm and 6,5$ revenue. Two weeks ago I had always more than 33$/day and about 1.25-1.50 ecpm. :/
    stollo770 likes this.
  5. stollo770 LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Message Count:
    236
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    200
    Ditto @fatos and @davveis. I was making $45.00+ a day and now I'm barely making past $12. And @Vas, you make good points. However, I was pointing out that those innovations will only come from/be profitable on mainstream ad companies because the industry has moved past/does not want small, specialized mobile only networks. We need to diversify if we ever hope to make good money again.
  6. fatos LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2013
    Message Count:
    268
    Likes Received:
    72
    Trophy Points:
    200
    @stollo770 before a week ago and I was making 45-50$ every day (from the beginning every month was spectacular whith good revenue) but whith new ad units Im making nothing. Two days ago I made 21$, and yesterday just 10$. Otherwise Im getting 38.000 - 40.000 impressions and lot of clicks. This is very painful for me..
    stollo770 likes this.
  7. stollo770 LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Message Count:
    236
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    200
    @fatos. Ditto man. I hear ya. I was making good money too. It was awesome; I bought myself a hot tub with the money I earned. Now its gone. To be fair, more users need to update and leadbolt probably needs some more time to nail down clients to send us ads and money. So I'm giving Leadbolt a month to get their act together. If my poor revenue is still the same by October 15th, I'm switching to AdMob, where all the real money is. The only thing keeping me at leadbolt are their different ad types and my loyalty, but that runs out when the money does.
  8. stollo770 LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Message Count:
    236
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    200
    Also, @fatos, check your error logs for your new live wallpapers. Are you getting crashes and error reports? I am for low-end phones and I'm trying to diagnose the problem myself while I wait for @Vas to point me in the right direction.
  9. fatos LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2013
    Message Count:
    268
    Likes Received:
    72
    Trophy Points:
    200
    @stollo770 recently I didnt make any new live wallpaper,because I was busy updating my live wallpaper whith new ad units. I dint notice huge crashes report, just two crashes for a live wallpaper (one report was from Galaxy Ace and one from Galaxy Tab 2). Everybody has a little bit crashes stollo, sometimes crashes depends and from theyre android version,some versions has more bugs then the others,especially custom roms . But If you have huge crashes report that might be a problem.
  10. stollo770 LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Message Count:
    236
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    200
    I was having a few crashes, not a lot, but more than usual. I actually figured it out though and until Vas tells me how to fix it, I've posted clear instructions for my users to. The crashing only occurs with users who are updating their live wallpapers from the old format to the new one. If they completely uninstall their live wallpapers before installing the new update, everything works fine. I have no idea how or why its doing that.
  11. Joshua Seasoned Vet

    Member Since:
    Jul 12, 2013
    Message Count:
    116
    Likes Received:
    16
    Trophy Points:
    100
    Yeah.. Just yesterday my epcm was 49 cents.. about a week or so back it was nearly 9 dollars.. I may just switch over now. To Admob or Air Push. @stollo770 why do you think Airpush would be the first to go out of business?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk - now Free
  12. stollo770 LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Message Count:
    236
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    200
    @Joshua. I think AirPush is done simply because of how heavily they specialized themselves. In my above article I point out that massive mobile-only ad companies are going under/doing horribly, and these companies offer lots of different advertising formats and lots of different advertising methods. However, AirPush chose to only focus on Push notifications, hence their name air-push. So in a world in which companies that specialize only in mobile ads are doing bad, Air Push chose to narrow its field further to only Push notifications. Now that format is illegal and push notification ads are useless/worthless. Sure AirPush might quickly slap together some other format to desperately try and keep some users, but its not about its new format and the users that AirPush is trying to keep; its advertisers. If your an advertiser who is stupid enough to advertise through mobile-only ad networks, would you pick a big company with lots of different formats and targeting (like Millennial Media, even leadbolt), or would you pick a company that specializes in a now illegal ad format that is just now getting into a few other basic formats? I would go with Millennial Media, or leadbolt. AirPush no longer has the proper audience and I would bet that advertisers are avoiding them in favor of other more diverse networks. Look at leadbolt, yes their doing bad also, but they were not limited to notification only advertising, so it will be easier for them to survive because they can still maintain their target audience through other ad formats. AirPush cannot, and I give them 2 months tops before they fold. Maybe a bit more if they take out loans, have extra cash to blow, or merge with another network. Bottom line: avoid them, it will be bad for you. Go with Ad Mob, they get the big budget stuff.
    Joshua likes this.
  13. fatos LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2013
    Message Count:
    268
    Likes Received:
    72
    Trophy Points:
    200
    Vas Stollo Eraste guys what do you think about MoPub and AdMob, which one will be more useful for us. Im going to wait a little bit for leadbolt and Im going to switch to AdMob or MoPub, but really I dont know which one.
  14. stollo770 LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Message Count:
    236
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    200
    You already know what I think of Ad Mob compared to everything else
    Joshua likes this.
  15. fatos LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2013
    Message Count:
    268
    Likes Received:
    72
    Trophy Points:
    200
    @stollo770 yes I know what you think about AdMob, but what about MoPub
  16. stollo770 LWC Major

    Member Since:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Message Count:
    236
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    200
    MoPub has got a nifty little exchange that people seem to like. However, the failing Mellenial Media also has an exchange, and its bigger and better. MoPub is a small, specialized agency, so they are also likely doing bad because theres no way a big budget advertiser will choose them. I dont know what competitive formats they have over AdMob, but if you want big companies with big budgets, then MoPub isnt for you. However, I do not use MoPub, so I can only speculate. A person who actually uses MoPub would be a better reference.
  17. Joshua Seasoned Vet

    Member Since:
    Jul 12, 2013
    Message Count:
    116
    Likes Received:
    16
    Trophy Points:
    100

    Thanks for the advice man, I appreciate the insight. AdMob looks great and I am going to give them a try, but aren't they also a mobile only ad network?
  18. Vas Origin

    Member Since:
    Jan 4, 2012
    Message Count:
    770
    Likes Received:
    167
    Trophy Points:
    500
    I think you are off on many levels. You can't just speculate that a company will fold because their name sounds too much like an ad unit that is no longer allowed. That's just preposterous. Whether they are actually in trouble or not because of the policy update is a whole different matter. However, the logic behind your reasoning is baffling.
    Airpush has banners and interstitials. Interstitials are available in a form of their smartwall unit, which includes Appwalls, Dialog ads, Landing Page ads and Rich Media ads (now also video ads that might fall under Rich Media). I can't speak for their banners, but the interstitials have performed quite well for me. Considering the fact that Airpush offers weekly payments at a low threshold should say something about how much money they are actually bringing in. Not much can be said about their new upcoming revolutionary ad unit, but their existing units are no worse than AdMob's.
    Push notification ads are crap anyways. They are spammy, text only (for the most part), and nobody likes them. Just because you may choose a "light schedule" of push delivery doesn't mean that somebody else isn't spamming the crap out of their users. Besides, a company is not likely to advertise via a poorly converting ad unit (unless you are Zynga and pretty much just throwing money around).
    Airpush (and most established companies) are usually brimming with developers. There is never enough inventory to go around for everyone. That's why fill rates are never 100% (except for AdMob). That's why there is a cap that nobody tells you about. Yes, Airpush lost some devs and their apps due to the change, but they still have enough to spread their inventory to.
    Here's a good read - http://pandodaily.com/2013/07/01/how-airpush-bootstrapped-its-mobile-ad-network-to-150m-in-revenue/

    I can't speak for Leadbolt, as I've left them a long time ago. Also, if you go with AdMob and your developer accounts gets banned, you will lose your accumulated earnings.
    MoPub was small. Now, it's a part of Twitter, which is bigger than MillenialMedia. MoPub is good for its mediation, where they don't require advertiser contracts. They have a small marketplace where they can offer advertisers to sell ads. Inventory is limited, but they distribute all of it very well, and you can even set your own CPM rates. The exchange system seems to work well; I'm sure Twitter will look to build on it.
    Joshua likes this.
  19. Joshua Seasoned Vet

    Member Since:
    Jul 12, 2013
    Message Count:
    116
    Likes Received:
    16
    Trophy Points:
    100
    Damn. AirPush it is. :D
  20. Eraste Seasoned Vet

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    Message Count:
    159
    Likes Received:
    75
    Trophy Points:
    100
    I Think start apps PPD will be the most beneficial right now. I know its not much but its a guaranteed amount per download. I am using Leadbolts new ad units in conjunction with start apps new ad/search box PPD sdk, I am making more in PPD with start app than ads from leadbolt! I have impressions, clicks but no revenue earned with leadbolt.

    Ad networks before Google policy change:
    User clicked on add you got paid no matter what, If they downloaded the app they were taken to you got a bigger payment.

    Ad networks after Google policy chagne:
    User clicks ad your not making any money for some reason, possibly now you only make money if the user actually downloads the item. Im not sure what is going on. I don't see why they would need time to "pay you for a click". If a user sees an ad and clicks on it we should be getting paid.
    Joshua likes this.

Share This Page