It’s Time for Africa Part 2: 5-Step Guide to Set Up Successful Campaigns in African Mobile Market

Sub-Saharan Africa has been emerging as a mobile-first region for a few years now. Telecommunications, mobile connectivity, and mobile adoption have been growing at an impressive rate, making its audiences an ideal consumer market for mobile advertising. “It’s Time for Africa!” is our three-part series that throws the spotlight on the region as a go-to guide for both local and global advertisers to make sense of the mobile marketing landscape and navigate the mobile UA space in Africa. Through this series, our readers will learn about the mobile landscape and dominant app verticals through unique statistics and also hear indigenous voices from the continent. 

[Read the first part in the series here]

Africa is evolving and growing year by year. In the first part of this series, we shed some spotlight on the mobile marketing landscape in the region. With the growing mobile internet users and increasing contribution of the mobile industry to the region’s GDP, mobile advertisers have a ripe opportunity to acquire users and scale their campaigns to reach new growth goals.

When we talk about Africa, it mainly has 4 major hubs, South Africa, known as the “Rainbow Nation” and also the most rapidly evolving region. Followed by Kenya, Egypt, and Nigeria. While the growth of the app market has been slow, the COVID-19 pandemic also led to changes in the mobile app economy and user behavior. Having said that, there has been an impressive growth in both the advertisers and publishers in Africa. We have seen some interesting homegrown apps come from the region, with apps like Halan emerging as super apps.

What is the right way to set up campaigns and launch a successful app in the African market that is as fragmented and diverse? Strong of our experience of launching and running successful mobile UA campaigns, we demonstrate a step-by-step guide on how you can set up campaigns for the win.

1. Decide Your KPIs

Before you start with any UA campaign, it is important you set the right KPIs. Depending on the category/nature of your app you should decide what performance metrics are suitable for your app. This will help you to work closely with your ad platform to understand what are the right channels to work on, the right creatives as well as budgets. 

As an example, below are some of the most commonly used KPIs for specific app categories: 

2.  Benchmark Your Conversion Funnel

A typical user journey follows from seeing your app to finally making a purchase/registration, etc. Now it is important to understand a) how many are new users b) which are converting, and c) users who are coming back to your app.

If you are a new app, then definitely your focus should be on the new user acquisition. And when your app matures to a certain user base then you can start thinking about retargeting. Next in the funnel is to track your clicks and impressions to get an idea of the clicks to install ratio, which in turn can help you strategize your app marketing journey. Benchmark your clicks and impressions and other KPIs to help measure the user behavior and best optimize your UA strategy.

3. Get Your Mobile Measurement in Place 

MMP (Mobile Measurement partner) is a third-party partner who helps you track/ organise data and statistics for your app. Modern-day app marketing is not just about the right data, but also to understand what to do with this data. How well you can use these insights to analyse customer behavior on the campaign can help to optimize your campaigns. Identifying the right MMP for your app needs will depend on your KPIs as well as the kind of reports you are looking for around ROI, acquisition channels, conversion, etc. Want to find out how each of the MMPs compares with each other? Download our free-to-use MMP Battlecard to learn more about the capabilities of some major players in the market.

4. Work with Your Ad Partner to Find the Right Creative Mix

Analysing the performance of your creatives is very important for your campaign. Having the right creative mix and then testing the performance of those creatives can help you to understand your audience better, which in turn can help you to increase users’ engagement with the campaign and ultimately improve the conversion goals. Your ad partner can help you to test the type of creatives that work well for your campaign goals, thereby improving your ROAS and effectiveness. 

The best creatives are those that have a CTA or any offers, which lead to a higher engagement rate. However, in the African markets where internet costs are high, it is better to use data-light formats such as static creatives focusing on text-based creatives and links. 

5. Drill Down on Effective Insights

Finally, it comes down to having the right statistics for your campaign and actionable insights. The buck doesn’t stop at just having the right data, but also have the insights into how to use that data effectively. Now, just running the campaign isn’t enough, but creating a strategy around the test results is also equally important. Testing can be OS-based, which sources are giving better conversions or which creatives have a better engagement? Testing not only helps to analyze your data but also saves a lot of time and energy which may be wasted running after options that aren’t reaping results. Therefore continuously testing the different parameters for your UA campaign is necessary.

When choosing the right UA partner, ask the right questions as to what degree you can access campaign analytics and insights.

Traditional data tools make it difficult for advertisers to have a holistic picture of the campaign. Not only is jumping between different tools and dashboards frustrating, but you can also miss important connections between different reports. A unified platform like MAAS can give advertisers access to all their campaign performance on one dashboard. Through our dashboard called mInsight, advertisers have a slice-and-dice approach that can help you to drill down your insights to the level of year, months, and days. You can see your A/B testing results, how your ads are placed, which OS is doing better, and a lot more! You can also get a competitive edge over the market with trends for your competition such as downloads, DAUs, MAUs.

Final Word

If these above steps are sorted for your app, then your campaign setup is complete and good to go.

Africa is being called “The Land of Opportunity” and whether you are a new local app launching in Africa or a global app wanting to make an entry into the African mobile market, there are plenty of unique opportunities available for everyone. But, as the region is fragmented and differentiated with its unique set of users, languages and cultures, it is important to have the right channel mix. A unified audience platform such as MAAS can empower advertisers to acquire quality users at scale through directly integrated publishers, programmatic platforms, and relevant app recommendations to put you on the path to UA success.

Diljeet Grewal

Diljeet is a Sales professional at Affle's MAAS, specialising in managing app growth in the African markets. She is also a photographer and an avid reader.

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