Apptivate: App Marketing Explained podcast

Apptivate: App Marketing Explained


Apptivate is a show that explains app marketing, one expert at a time. It's produced by retargeting specialist Remerge, focusing on the challenges and advancements in the ever-evolving world of mobile marketing. Every week, we interview marketing game-changers and app experts to share industry insights and real-life lessons, covering optimization, incrementality, creative strategy, data science, and more. Subscribe now to stay on the cutting edge of app marketing strategy.

111 episodi

  • Apptivate: App Marketing Explained podcast

    Customer Experience: The Key Ingredient to App Growth - Bryce Boothby (McDonald’s)


    Bryce Boothby is the Director of Global Tech at McDonald’s. He’s responsible for aligning the 150+ markets McDonald’s serves. Previously, Bryce oversaw the growth of McDonald’s digital marketing in the U.S., including its rewards app and Before McDonald’s, he was the Sr. Operational Cost Analyst at Ford. Questions Bryce Answered in this Episode:What piqued your interest in digital marketing when you were at Ford?How challenging was it to evolve McDonald’s digital ecosystem when you first joined the company?Can you tell us about the evolution of the MyMcDonald’s Reward program? What components of your strategy do you think really made a big difference?When you’re doing customer research for a brand of your size, do you have to meet a pretty high minimum threshold of consumers that you’ve engaged with before you can make any sort of determinations, and do you have to do that across multiple geographies?When you ran the test pilots in Phoenix and New England, did you have any unexpected results that drove changes within the loyalty program?What’s next for the mobile loyalty program?Timestamp:2:38 Bryce’s background7:25 Selling McDonald’s on the need for digital10:20 Massive growth of their loyalty rewards app13:10 3 key strategies to growing the app15:35 Innovative integration with Twitter16:35 Audience research at McDonald’s17:37 Surprising results from test pilots19:26 Why the McDonald’s workforce was key21:21 What’s nextQuotes:(11:47-12:04) “Just as a point of reference, granted McDonald’s scale is pretty significant compared to some of our competitors, but we essentially have 21 million members over the course of four months. Starbucks I believe had about 25 million members over the course of seven or eight years.”(16:40-17:03) “I think one of the statistics that really astounded me when I joined McDonald’s is, I think it’s something like 80 or 90 percent of the entire U.S. population visits McDonald’s at least once a year. So if you take that scale, that’s massive. So how do you understand what drives all our different types of customers? What’s compelling to them? Because they all have different need-states, different demographics. So, it is challenging.”(19:59-20:04) “In the world we live in, it’s really about connecting both the digital to the in-person experience.” Mentioned in this Episode:Bryce Boothby’s LinkedInMyMcDonald’s Rewards App
  • Apptivate: App Marketing Explained podcast

    Lessons from the Loss of Third-Party Cookies on the Web - Sarah Polli (Hearts & Science)


    Sarah Polli is the Senior Director of Marketing Technology at Hearts & Science, a global marketing agency. Sarah began her career in digital media 10 years ago at the Washington Post.Questions Sarah Answered in this Episode:What’s it been like to experience the growth at Heart & Science over the last 5-6 years firsthand and what would you attribute it to?What got you into marketing technology and what do you still find interesting about it?Tell us what’s going on with Chrome.When these changes happened with Safari and Mozilla around 2018, did marketers shift their spend to Chrome or have you seen marketers actively working towards solutions since 2018 to present?Was it possible to measure the impact of those campaigns? Or were you using proxies to measure the effectiveness of your campaigns?How do you guide your partners through what’s going to happen? What are smart marketers doing today?What does it mean to be open and agile to you?Timestamp:7:08 Sarah’s background9:36 The growth of Hearts & Science11:30 What keeps MarTech interesting13:09 Changes with Google Chrome15:30 The loss of third-party cookies since 201818:55 First-party data: the new gold19:58 How Hearts & Science is preparing its partners28:11 On being open and agileQuotes:(14:30-14:53) “[Google] Chrome is actively building these APIs and we should start to see them being released toward the end of next year. So really 2023 for advertisers will be the big year of understanding these APIs--what do they look like, what are the ones for targeting, what is for retargeting, what is for measurement, and testing to see what they look like against what it is we have today, and determining how we want to proceed in the future.”(16:46-17:14) “The CPMs for Safari drastically went down. So smart advertisers, and we did this with our clients, you could take what was happening in Chrome, understand your audiences and use that to then go and target Safari by similar audiences, take advantage of that CPM decrease and still reach these users instead of just completely ignoring those people. Similar to what’s happening today with iOS apps and Android.”(19:16-19:24) “It’s really important for brands to focus on the data they collect on their site and on their apps because that is the new gold.”Mentioned in this Episode:Sarah Polli’s LinkedInHearts & ScienceAgents of Change Blog 
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    Why It’s the Right Time to Consider Investing in a DSP - Alexa Wieczorek (Electronic Arts)


    Alexa Wieczorek is the Growth Marketing Manager for Electronic Arts (EA). Previous to EA, Alexa was the Growth Marketing Analyst at DraftKings, and a Data Analyst at Glu Mobile. She is based in San Francisco.Questions Alexa Answered in this Episode:Do you have any thoughts on why EA, one of the largest game developers in the world, had not made any significant investments in DSP as part of their strategy until you joined?Why do you think it is important to be investing in the programmatic landscape? What are some of the advantages?What more data do you get from a DSP?What do you find yourself gravitating more towards: the self-service or the Bidder-as-a-Service as a managed service?You mentioned that DSPs that offer creative services can be more appealing. Is there anything else when you’re looking at DSPs that really matters? When you’re vetting DSPs, what are you looking out for?Have you found that most programmatic partners have been ready for the challenges presented by the ATT prompt and the lack of access to the IDFA? Are you confident that DSPs are doing the right thing?Timestamp:6:17 Alexa’s professional background9:46 Barriers to investing in DSP11:05 Advantages of a DSP11:56 The data you get from a DSP13:21 What you’re in for with managing DSPs15:05 Self-service or Bidder-as-a-Service19:15 Vetting managed DSPs21:41 Shifts in what DSPs are offering22:45 Tackling ATT and IDFA changesQuotes:(13:34-13:45) “I think it comes down to two things: a lack of understanding and I think it’s a lack of resourcing because going through a managed DSP is a lot more hands-on than a lot of Facebook or Google campaign management is.”(15:15-15:34) “The self-service option can be a little more cost-effective. The fees are a lot lower and they’re transparent. Whereas depending on the manager service partner, the fees aren’t always transparent. So I think that when you’re spending at a certain level of scale it makes sense. But if you don’t have the internal support, or you’re a smaller company, I think managed services are a great option.”(21:59-22:18) “I think that’s why a lot of people are moving toward a self-service or an in-house approach. I think also just being transparent about the data is important. All the DSPs don’t share exchange and publisher-level reporting, just to some degree. So I think working with a DSP that will share that level of data with you is also super important.”Mentioned in this Episode:Alexa Wieczorek’s LinkedInElectronic Arts
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    How to Lead with Confidence and Vulnerability - Erin Webster-Shaller (Lose It!)


    Questions Erin Answered in this Episode:What was the transition like from director to VP?How did you become comfortable with not having all the answers and being a little vulnerable?What is it that you’re doing every day for yourself so you can be the person and leader you need to be? What are some of those non-negotiables for you?Tell us about your career journey.What’s the worst advice you’ve received in your career?How do we encourage women to feel more confident in speaking up?What do you go to for inspiration?Timestamp:1:14 About Lose It! and Erin4:25 Stepping into the VP role during Covid7:38 Not having the answers9:15 Perspective from peers12:00 Working with an executive coach14:00 Non-negotiable self-care habits18:11 Erin’s career journey26:45 The worst advice Erin’s gotten29:02 Hacks for speaking up32:30 Sources of inspirationQuotes:(8:27-8:45) “Getting really inquisitive. Trying to be more of a coach and not a manager, and create space for the team to do their job. I realized over the last year, that’s what I should have been focused on instead of trying to understand everything that I needed to know as part of this job.”(11:03-11:20) “That notion of confidence and uncertainty, I think of it as, ‘I’m confident that we’ll find the answers. I’m confident that we’ll be able to solve this problem. I don’t know how we’re going to get there, but I believe in the team or I believe in my ability or whoever to get us to the place that we need to go.’”(13:02-13:25) “The whole mindset of this coaching program is that people will become better leaders when they’re more in tune with themselves, essentially. When you know who you are as your person, your authentic self with a capital ‘S,’ you’re more likely to show up in a way that’s authentic to you and to be a leader that people can believe in and follow and they want to work for.”Mentioned in this Episode:Erin Webster-Shaller’s LinkedInLose [email protected] Business Review - Leadership E-NewsletterHBR Women at Work PodcastThe Skimm
  • Apptivate: App Marketing Explained podcast

    Why Performance Marketers Need to Revisit the Olden Days - Diane Le (Curtsy)


    Diane Le is the Senior Growth Marketer at Curtsy, a thrifting app for buying and selling women’s clothing. Diane’s specialty is scaling emerging channels like TikTok and Snapchat. Previous to Curtsy, Diane was a growth marketing consultant at Right Side Up. Questions Diane Answered in this Episode:What job experience do you think was most influential to your career? Are you still in performance marketing today? How have you felt during this period of privacy changes? You mentioned reverting back to old strategies. What does that look like for your team at Curtsy?Do you still buy media on a platform like Facebook and Instagram? Have you seen your media mix within these social channels change dramatically as a result of the privacy changes? Has it been challenging for you as a performance marketer to shift to this new mentality of mobile marketing, or has it been eye-opening or refreshing to you? Does this make you more meticulous in where you decide to spend your ad dollars? What do you spend your day focusing on?Timestamp:4:34 Diane’s background10:07 What is performance marketing today?12:06 Diane’s revamped strategy for app marketing15:42 Measuring aggregate performance over time19:22 Investing ad dollars in the right channels23:28 Tapping into existing, loyal users for content25:56 Cracking emerging social channelsQuotes:(11:20-11:42) “I think at this stage we’re kind of in the Wild Wild West of growth marketing. We’ve kind of reverted back to the olden days where we really just need to take a step back and get all of the learnings just because the historical data doesn’t count anymore. You can look back at your yearly metrics, but what are we going to learn from that at this point? So this is like year-one and then we’ve got to continue learning and move on from that.”(17:12-17:33) “Look at the holistic growth numbers, like where are we trending? Because we don’t have granular data anymore, we can’t afford to just get in the weeds like that and optimize based on A, B, CTA, things like that. We really have to take a step back. But I think integrating brand campaigns with performance, you should effectively see that growth.”(22:20-22:32) “Now advertisers need to really get creative. Can you incorporate your brand message in a TikTok dance? Can you leverage a trending song? Are you picking the right influencers?”Mentioned in this Episode:Diane Le’s LinkedInCurtsy App
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    How to Tell the Story of Your App’s Data - Anna Yukhtenko (Hutch)


    Anna Yukhtenko is the Senior Games Analyst at Hutch, a mobile gaming developer and publisher known for its racing games. Previous to Hutch, Anna was a marketing analyst at Next Games. She is based in London.Questions Anna Answered in this Episode:When you were in university did you have an idea of what you wanted to do?Were you a gamer prior to joining Next Games?Why do you find game analytics more interesting than marketing analytics?Where do you find yourself spending the most time as it’s related to gameplay or game analytics?Is intuition a part of your strategy or is it really all data-driven?How do you make data and your explanations of data accessible to those who are not necessarily data savvy?What tools do you use for data analysis most often?Timestamp:4:03 Anna’s background7:20 The advantage of being a non-gamer8:41 Why Anna loves game analytics10:50 What to analyze14:45 Making data analysis accessible to team members16:45 How to make data easy to understand21:53 The best data presentations23:03 Memes27:26 Data analysis tools and applicationsQuotes:(15:15-15:28) “When it comes to presenting the numbers and the data to people who are not analysts or who are not working in the data, I would say that it’s part of an analyst’s job to make your analysis accessible, to make your analysis readable.”(19:21-19:24) “The job of an analyst and the point of data is to tell a story.”(10:52-11:03) “As a game analyst, quite frankly I feel the most efficient way is for game analysts to work in sprints with the game team. So basically, you’re there with them and you’re following the development of the game.”Mentioned in this Episode:Anna Yukhtenko’s LinkedInHutch
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    How to Nail Humor in Your Mobile Ad Creatives - Arthur Cordier-Lassalle (Voodoo)


    Arthur Cordier-Lassalle is the Creative Lead at Voodoo, a mobile gaming studio specializing in hyper-casual games. Previous to Voodoo, Arthur was a UI/Motion designer for Emissive. He is based in Paris.Questions Arthur Cordier-Lassalle Answered in this Episode:What does your day-to-day look like creating ads for Voodoo? How big is your team?What is the underlying theme that drives your creative approach?What’s weird is relative. Talk to me about how you arrive at these creative concepts.What was a successful ad you had achieving humor?What’s the life expectancy for a successful creative ad, like the one you described?When you’re iterating, how are the concepts that you’re focusing on?What has you excited about the future of creatives within Voodoo?Timestamp:1:29 A little about Voodoo3:08 Arthur’s background5:57 Creating ads for Voodoo games7:53 Balancing what works with the unusual9:33 Why “shock” isn’t a great strategy10:02 How humor can work17:25 Shelf life of creatives18:04 Identifying what to iterate on19:00 What’s to comeQuotes:(7:53-8:15) “What we like to do is first, keeping the balance between what we know is performing well and what new stuff we can do. My shtick with this is trying to find a daring creative, something that is going to stop the user in his track and have a moment of ‘What the fuck am I looking at?’”(15:55-16:07) “We kind of have a saying that is ‘we don’t know what works, so we just test.’ We don’t have anybody that says, ‘Okay, this is not going to work, don’t do it.’ We ultimately just rely on data.”Mentioned in this Episode:Arthur Cordier-Lassalle’s LinkedInVoodooDraw Climber
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    The Power of Podcasts and Audio Ads for Mobile Marketers - Josh Brooks (M&C Saatchi Performance)


    Josh joined M&C Saatchi Performance in early 2021 to head up their Client Services and Planning teams. Josh has over 12+ years in media working both in London and in New York specializing in Media Strategy and Planning. Outside of work, Josh is an avid fitness enthusiast and even launched a workout happy hour program during his time at Group M. Josh is also planning on running the NYC Marathon this year.Questions Josh Answered in this Episode:What podcasts do you listen to?What is the perception your partners have about podcasts as a performance strategy?When is appropriate for a marketer to consider podcast advertising?How do you figure out if a podcast has your audience or not?How are podcasts priced?How is measurement executed? Is it sufficient in its current form, or where do you think it’s going?Do you see a future in which marketers across the board will start leveraging podcasts?Timestamp:6:30 Josh’s background10:40 Planning and Client Services16:10 Client attitudes on podcasts18:45 When are podcast ads the right fit21:42 Deciphering the audience of a podcast26:01 Leveraging audio creative29:39 Performance metrics for podcast ads34:22 Josh’s forecast of audio adsQuotes:(11:50-12:06) “You can read and read data over and over, but if you can't then turn that into a strategy or go, ‘How am I going to use that to execute my media plan,’ that can be a really big challenge. And I think that’s what we pride ourselves on at this agency, is being able to combine those two to tell compelling stories for our clients.”(35:57-36:12) “Smart speakers are going to grow this podcast industry in the next few years because people’s behaviors are now changing. People feel more comfortable saying to Alexa, ‘Alexa, buy me this,’ or, ‘Alexa, can you find me this?’ And so as that becomes more the norm, this is where audio is going to play a really strong position in that.” Mentioned in this Episode:Josh BrooksM&C Saatchi Performance
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    The State of Retargeting in the Privacy-First Era - Pan Katsukis (Remerge)


    Pan Katsukis is a Berlin-based serial entrepreneur serving as CEO and Co-Founder of Remerge, a leading programmatic app marketing platform. Before starting Remerge in 2014, Pan co-founded a European mobile ad network, madvertise in 2008.  Questions Pan Answered in this Episode:Why did you launch Remerge? When did you become aware of the retention problem and the opportunity to provide a solution?Typically, CEOs have to have a lot of conversations that they’re not willing to share with their employees. Are you saying that everything that you know about you’re willing to share with your team?What change do you think marketers will have the hardest time adapting to as it’s related to the privacy era?Why is iOS an opportunity for marketers today?When do you expect the market to stabilize as it’s related to no-id marketing? When do you expect marketers to feel more comfortable buying that 60% cheaper traffic to the point where it starts shifting to more expensive rates?Is retargeting still a strategy that marketers are leveraging?Is there a future in which the available inventory of IDs on iOS decreases, or do you think we’re at a point where it’s become saturated?The market is changing as a result of privacy changes. Why do you think we’re seeing a lot of businesses consolidate? What’s your take on what’s going on?What does consolidation do to open bidding? Is there an advantage to staying independent?What are you excited about for the future?Timestamp:3:16 Pan’s background5:25 Culture: The impetus for Remerge9:20 Modeling openness and transparency12:40 Adapting to SKAdNetwork15:42 The opportunity of iOS15 for marketers21:03 Why retargeting will stick around24:53 The drivers of the app market consolidation29:20 Strengths in staying independent34:08 Why Pan’s excited about the future of RemergeQuotes:(13:57-14:12) “I think the opportunity is big. Even if you have this inventory, this audience which is very valuable of iOS users who are using the newest version, you can’t simply stop spending on iOS. You want to tap into the audiences and address them.”(29:28-29:54) “Whether you’re independent or not independent, I think it doesn’t matter so much. It all comes to the mission and why you’re in the market. What’s the purpose? What do you want to solve? What do you want to achieve? What kind of mission are you on? Being independent and having a very clear mission and focused perspective on how to address market needs helps you obviously to execute towards that goal.”Mentioned in this Episode:Pan Katsukis’s LinkedInRemerge’s openly available dashboard for app marketersRemerge Careers
  • Apptivate: App Marketing Explained podcast

    Data Science: Advanced Modeling for Mobile - Suresh Pillai


    Suresh Pillai is a theoretical physicist by training and the Vice President of Data at Beat. Beat is an information and technology services company that created a ride-hailing and taxi mobile app. Beat claims to be the fastest growing app in Latin America (p.s. they’re hiring).Questions Suresh Answered in this Episode:How do you approach mobile data science from your theoretical physics perspective?How have you used uplift modeling or incrementality?Define propensity in the context of uplift modeling.Can you explain in more detail the marketing settings you never turn off?What is the difference between how people use uplift modeling, incrementally, and other causal machine learning?Do you have any tips for people to make sense of attribution in the complex setting of multi-touch marketing?We’re losing unique identifiers for users with the change to iOS14. What does this change for you? Has it been a problem? And do you think there’s a role for marketing mix models here?What are the most interesting insights you’ve seen from incrementality models? What really surprised you? What changed your view on how customers are acting?Timestamp:0:41 Suresh’s background & complexity science2:14 A physicist’s view of complex systems in mobile data science5:03 The granularity of incrementality and uplift modeling6:05 Sure things, persuadables, lost causes, and sleeping dogs11:31 Uplift modeling when there is no baseline13:31 Uplift vs causal vs attribution models16:48 What people get wrong with multi-touch attribution25:44 Dealing with the challenge of the iOS14 update27:50 The role of marketing mix modeling33:51 Validation: Engaging customers after conversionQuotes:(2:25-2:52) “When you’re thinking about any system, especially a complex system, and you’re given a problem, you need to decide which level of granularity you choose to model and understand that system. So different levels enable different insights, but it’s also a practical thing. If it’s a really complex system it may be too much to understand at the atomic level. What I say is you can’t predict anything at the atomic level because there’s too much going on. And we know this in physics, too.”(24:23-24:35) “When I come to a website, I don’t care what channel I came through. I don’t think about it consciously. There’s no reason to organize how you measure incrementality based on channels. Channels don’t exist. Customers exist.”Mentioned in this Episode:Suresh Pillai’s LinkedInBeat (Psst Beat is hiring)

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