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  • Writer's pictureKaizen Ad

Creative is King – 3 Tips for Driving Greater ROAS

One powerful way to reach new users is through innovative and creative ads. New digital ad formats, placements, optimization technology, integrations, and targeting tools appears on the daily basis. With increasing demand on people’s time being higher than ever, quality creative remains the most influential driving force behind engagement. At Kaizen we aim to share our top 3 creative lessons from testing high volume of quality creatives with a number of mobile app publishers and developers – using only a moderate number of assets.

"Facebook says that “creative is key for mobile ad performance – 56% of brand lift is attributed to quality of creative.”

Why make & test more creatives?

Generating more creative allows for ample testing and optimizing towards best-performing videos. Higher volumes of creative allow you to showcase more in-app gameplay, diversify creative themes and characters based on targeting parameters and audience segments, and generally appeal to more mobile users – this is a large part of Kaizen’s strategy to attract engagement and user acquisition. Testing outcomes are greatly dictated by how creatives are designed and repeatedly refreshed to iterate around performance results. We’ve found that designing a higher volume of diverse creative greatly affects testing outcomes – meaning more fresh creatives, or more creatives in general, improves testing, insights, and overall outcomes.

“The fastest growing advertisers had 11x more creative assets (45 vs 4).” – Facebook best practices"



Creative at scale doesn’t mean we need to jump to creating 50 different ad variants today. In balancing value vs. volume when it comes to designing video creatives, there is a strategic middle ground that we aim to produce in order to present your app with the best opportunities for engagement. Your campaign goals should dictate the number of videos created – for example, we’ve worked with numerous publishers that want to design localized videos for global regions. We iterated towards best-performing assets and themes and produced concepts to appeal to nuanced targeting segments by first setting up 3 top themes to test in that region (e.g., mini game theme, level-up theme, holiday theme). After initial testing round, expanding on those themes with variations of each (e.g., mini game theme, mini-game plus social, mini-game plus holiday).

Proactive planning is essential to providing creative ideas that perform. Even in well performing markets, we’ve worked with app publishers and developers to refresh their creatives and observe which new iterations performed best. Whether the campaign objective is to develop and grow or drive engagement for new user acquisition and/or re-engagement, we strike a balance between value and volume when it comes to ad creation. Working with one of the top idle clicker games, Optimizers created 6 new video concepts to test across top two social networks, providing client with ability to identify new opportunities for using refreshed creatives to learn and attract users.


Every mobile user that we target with our ads is in either one of two states of mind – a state of need or a state of want. Someone in a state of need is looking to buy cleaning products or gasoline for their car, while a state of want is someone looking to be entertained or for something to engage them (or say, play a game). Serving creative with a state of want in mind will help to form a strategic baseline to design content around. Mobile user attention is notoriously short, so this limits the amount of time your creative can make a lasting impact that will hopefully lead to a download on the back end. By thinking about what your audience will resonate most with will lead to higher engagement.

Diversifying based on audience segments and targeting varying users based on their mobile habits helps to identify which assets and themes spark the highest levels of engagement. For instance for a hardcore PvP game, we aimed to align audience segments with short videos for Facebook ad network with different creative themes that played off of the USP’s of the game that we hypothesized may resonate to different gamer personas. We also worked with numerous casino game clients to strategically concept a variety of different themes (e.g. slot games, levels, prizes, contests, high graphics & transitions, messaging). Leveraging your best assets to align themes to audience profiles is a best practice to help ensure your ads drive ROI.


Use your most engaging content that will resonate with your intended audience. Depending on the genre of your game, examples we’ve seen have success are showcasing exciting gameplay footage, clever animations that will hook users into your storyline, and featuring fan-favorite characters or in-app themes. Variations can be built using past best performing videos, gameplay footage, character animations & backgrounds, static ads, TVC and live action ads.

Kaizen also supports clients in recording brand new gameplay footages, to bring in fresh content. Producing best-performing content that is attractive, relevant, and engaging is not easy to do – it requires expertise and forethought. Effective ads don’t always require massive production of original assets. Kaizen’s Optimizers use their prior experience working with similar apps, combined with trained best practices learned for specific platforms, to design respective elements, layouts, and copy that further enhance the effectiveness of creatives.

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1 Comment

Michael Carter
Michael Carter
Mar 08

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