Dec 11th 2018

Why Everyone Loves Rewarded Ads

Rewarded ads seem to be doing the impossible: getting users to actually want more ads. Also known as opt-in value exchange ads, rewarded ads offer the user in-app goods in exchange for watching a video ad, trying out a demo, answering a brand survey, or somehow interacting with in-app ad content. Because users gain something valuable that helps them upgrade their app experience, they’re more than willing to not only sit through an ad but participate with it.

In IAB’s new Opt-In Value Exchange Advertising Playbook for Brands, Vungle and other top mobile marketing leaders uncovered some serious numbers about rewarded engagement and conversion:

68% of users had a positive reaction to rewarded ads on their mobile devices.

80% of users preferred opt-in ads to pre-rolls.

74% of mobile gamers claim that rewarded ads improve their in-app experience.

Considering that unlike traditional incentivized ads, rewarded ads are only redeemable in-app, why do they resonate so strongly with users?

Rewarded ads intercept the user at a moment of need

Maybe the user needs one more powerup to beat that last level. Or maybe the user needs to unlock some kind of UI functionality that will supercharge the app. Suddenly the promise of a payoff turns an ad into a useful tool rather than an intrusion. Seamlessly integrated into the context of the game, rewards make the ad experience more organic and create an emotional connection with the user, who genuinely enjoys receiving the exact thing needed at that exact moment.

With rewarded ads on Vungle’s network, Zimad improved monetization for their expansive array of games.

Instead of being shoved in users’ faces, rewarded ads are welcomed with open arms and authentic enthusiasm — a great moment for brands to cement their relationship with users.

Rewarded ads empower the customer with the ability to choose

Users like to be given choices, and rewarded ads thrive on that layer of user empowerment. One of the major impacts of the mobile revolution has been placing more control into the hands of customers, forcing advertisers to pull back on aggressive, unskippable ad content. But this ultimately leads to higher engagement, since customers are more inclined to act when they know they have a choice and when they can actively select an immediate in-app payoff.

Rewarded ads satisfy the customer with engaging content

Rewarded ads go far beyond good old-fashioned video views. Playables, AR, VR, and other custom rich media formats are evolving to capture the user’s undivided attention, as well as drive authentic hands-on engagement. These cutting-edge ads are immersive, irresistible experiences that don’t feel like ads at all, especially when the user gains something from them.

The rewarded ad format is fast becoming a premium strategy for publishers to engage users in-app longer, and for advertisers to create moments of positive association between customers and brands. Want to know more about rewarded ads? Check out IAB’s playbook for information about pricing models, viewability, and other important factors about rewarded.

Amir Friedlander

Sr. Content Marketing Manager