ROI-positive app marketing campaign with rewarded installs: science fiction or reality?


There are three types of mobile app traffic for app owners to choose from to advertise an app including premium, incentive and organic. With premium traffic an app is getting a certain amount of installs via a mobile banner ad campaign while incentive traffic generates installs for an app via an online ad campaign that offers certain incentives for mobile app users to download an app. Finally, organic traffic represents installs that an app is getting without any banner ad campaigns, but instead via search and from being listed high on app store charts.

By definition incentive is the type of traffic that is being used to generate a burst increase for an app’s ranking on the app stores. Recently we’ve seen an interesting question arise, which was asked in the Gaming Insiders Growth group community.

Is it possible to generate revenue via incentive traffic campaigns?

We were extremely interested in figuring out the answer to this question so we pulled data for the app we promoted to compare three types of traffic and see what ARPU (app revenue per user) each brought. We provide our own incentivized install solution, AppBooster, a Self-Service Platform for Rewarded Installs.


Below you can see the actual data from three premium traffic sources, two incentive campaigns and the number of organic installs an app got for a year period. Premium traffic campaigns weren’t very effective in terms of ROI, even though they brought certain number of loyal users, people who launched the app 3 times or more, but no revenue at all. The most surprising part is that incentive traffic campaigns, which are supposed to serve only for an app visibility burst, actually brought 15 and even 51 cents per the app user.

Traffic breakdown


We don’t want to claim that incentive traffic campaigns should be utilized as the advertising tool, for which you can actually set certain ROI you can rely on. But if incentive traffic is part of a promotional campaign for an app you may indeed expect to get a profit with it as well – think of it as a bonus.

For more, check out AppBooster here.