Recap & Insights: 2023 App Marketing Conference in India

Rachana Pintoby 
Sales and Marketing Intern

16 min read

Held on 14 April 2023, the App Marketing Conference hosted by AppTweak, India was a huge success! The event brought together the brightest minds from the mobile app industry with over 180+ attendees. Participants got a chance to connect with like-minded folks in the industry and gained interesting insights into mobile growth through various panel discussions and hands-on workshops.

In this blog, we’ll recap some of the key takeaways and valuable learnings from the App Marketing Conference in India, 2023.


Karan Lakhwani at the App Marketing Conference
Karan Lakhwani, Head of AppTweak India, kicking off the event by welcoming all attendees.

Localization & ASO in India: Best practices

App Marketing Conference India 2023
On the panel (L-R): Kumaresan Thangadurai, Head, Digital & Mobile Marketing at Dot Com Infoway; Hemang Pandit, Founder, MD and CEO of Ganesha Speaks; Mano Ram, Growth Hacker at KalaGato; Tejas Godboley, ASO Manager at Betterhalf; and panel moderator Lara Garit, Head of Partnerships at AppTweak.

The day began with the first panel discussion by AppTweak, focussing on the best practices for app store localization and ASO. Some really interesting inputs regarding app localization in India were shared by our panelists:

  • App store localization is important if you’re looking to target different markets and appeal to users who are not well-versed in English, especially in India.
  • It becomes easier to attract app store users by catering your app in the local language. Optimizing keywords and creatives following ASO best practices to improve visibility is a big part of successful app store localization
  • Focus on localizing in a region with higher user acquisition to help users understand the app features better
  • Learning and understanding the cultures of a region is a priority when planning to localize an app. It is also a good idea to have a customer support team that also understands the local language.

Success stories with app localization

The panelists then went on to share some of their successes with localization. Let’s have a look at these:

Hemang mentioned how changing the way they communicated with a specific audience segment, for example, in one case Marathi audience, helped them to see an increase in their paid users.

Tejas from Betterhalf mentioned that they created a CPT model keeping in mind the NRI users. This helped them see an increase in their app’s visibility. He also gave an example of how a poker gaming app saw good conversion rates during Halloween by using visuals and creatives related to Halloween. It also helped the app with user acquisition in the US market.


“Localization helps you achieve two main things: personalize the user experience for a regional user and open up the untapped regional market for apps,” says Mano.

Kumaresan added that it is important not to overlook the cultural practices of a specific region and optimize your apps’ appearance on the app stores in a way that the user understands the interface and the experience they will have. At the same time, he harped on the importance of being able to adapt to specific regions and optimize your app accordingly.

Read these exclusive tips to successfully localize your app or game in any market

From user research to revenue: The journey of Betterhalf

App Marketing Conference India 2023
Shankar Krishnamurthy from Betterhalf delivered a keynote speech about the journey of their app.

As Group Product Manager at Betterhalf, Shankar stressed on the importance of utilizing the right kind of market research to help improve the final product. A major challenge Betterhalf faced earlier, during the app’s conception, was reaching the right target audience on the platform.

After spending the right kind of time and efforts on conducting market research, and focusing on the right type of user acquisition for their app, Betterhalf succeeded in creating a desirable app. Adopting a blue ocean strategy for them in the matrimonial space helped them create a niche for themselves in the crowded Indian market.

Role of programmatic in privacy-first world

App Marketing Conference India 2023
On this panel (L-R): Neelabh Mallick, Sr Manager User Growth from Meesho; Shivram Padmanabhan, Head of Digital Marketing (LUX) from Tata Unistore; Manikanth Deverakonda, Director, Growth Marketing from Urban Company; Joel D’souza, Associate Director, Retention from Junglee Games; Kumar Pratik, Associate Director, New User Acquisition and Partnership from Rummy Circle; and panel moderator Martje Abeldt, CEO of RevX.

Talking about the latest trends in programmatic advertising, this panel discussion covered various topics related to data collection, programmatic advertising, and user consent. Panelists addressed some key topics:

  • Benefits of programmatic advertising and the importance of collecting the right kind of user data for effective targeting
  • Implications of Android’s Privacy Sandbox and how to increase iOS opt-in rates by showing the ATT prompt after users have experienced the app
  • Enhance brand visibility and consumer trust before seeking user consent and convey the mutual value exchange to incentivize users to consent
  • A fine balance of give-and-take while onboarding a new user as well as interesting insights into incentivization strategies for gaming apps
  • Benefits of a customer data platform and using various data points to build predictive models for better segmentation and personalized services

Organic user acquisition and how apps can leverage it

App Marketing Conference India 2023
Keynote speaker Charmis Pala discussed organic user acquisition and how apps can leverage it.

Charmis Pala, our keynote speaker at the App Marketing Conference 2023, spoke about the ASO framework. A few main insights from his talk are highlighted here:

  • As important as market research is, it is also vital to identify the market size and the niche sentiments of the markets.
  • Identify the most ideal customer for you.
  • Understand sentiments of the target audience. One way to identify your audience’s specific areas of interest is by analyzing search engine results pages (SERPs) and utilizing the Play console to gain insights through keyword analysis.
  • User reviews can be valuable in gauging demand.
  • Empathize with customers’ perspective. This can be achieved by learning from their behavior, creating campaigns in regional languages, and designing personalized touchpoints to leave a lasting impression.

Charmis took us through the importance of having the courage and experimenting, while expecting to fail. It is better to experiment and fail than dwell on thinking. He also feels that each app niche is different, and it is essential to understand what your users are voicing out instead of just getting information from data. One should never miss an opportunity to use beta features on Google.

Discover how Games24x7 used AppTweak to build a strong keyword list and increased its visibility on the App Store

Advanced app attribution & ROI optimization

App Marketing Conference India 2023
On this panel (L-R): Saatvik Goel, Director of Marketing & Growth at EloElo; Mahip Dwivedi, Head of Marketing, Growth and Retention at Tyke; Mohit Gupta, Head of Growth at Chingari; Sumanta Sengupta, VP Growth and Brand Marketing at Gameskraft; and panel moderator Suchit Huria, Director Sales (India) at Adjust.

The panel discussion highlighted tips to enhance the effectiveness of user acquisition campaigns.

  • The Head of Growth, Mohit Gupta at Chingari, a video sharing app, talked about different elements within their app that help retain users
  • Sumanta Sengupta, VP Growth & Brand Marketing at Gameskraft, stressed on the importance of carefully handling user data
  • Mahip Dwivedi from Tyke noted how vital it is to identify your engagement cohort and what qualifies
  • Interestingly, Saatvik Goel, Director of Marketing at EloElo, viewed it necessary to stop relying on Facebook and Google as they work in their own silos as two major ad platforms; instead, one should work on putting in personal effort into the ads

Data sharing models, targeting, & creative optimization

App Marketing Conference India 2023
Workshop hosted by Pranesh Sharma, Director of Product, & Shashwati, Senior Account Manager at RevX.

Agenda: To discuss user acquisition, using creatives as a differentiator, and using data sharing for scaling UA/RT campaigns.

The workshop started with the team conducting a quiz about user acquisition. They had questions like:

  • What is the frequency of purchase for an apparel company?
  • What percentage of installers actually open an app?
  • What percentage of installers actually make purchases on a gaming app? etc

Segment and target users for better funnel results

Pranesh Sharma spoke about the two options for user acquisition:

  • focusing on installs
  • focusing on conversions

He shared how RevX can help with user retention and repeat purchases, even though the number of purchases compared to installs is less. With a lower budget, they enable more first purchases. Familiarizing the audience with the different stages of user acquisition, he explained the difference between the organic installs in the initial stages through word-of-mouth and no advertising and the later stages with over 10k plus installs with lower eCPI / eCPA and lookalike models for better conversions.

The last part of the discussion focussed on the UA costs like eCPI/eCPO/eCPA; user funnel – click to install, install to app open, install to purchase etc, as well as about user spends like average amount spent, repeat purchase days(frequency), percentage of repeat purchases and more.

How to make your app creatives stand out

Shashwati began with resonating the importance of app creatives as a differentiator. She emphasized on the importance of app creatives for a brand to help them stand out in a crowded market, connect with customers, and build a long term relationship with them. An example that she used in this context is for the brand Mentos India’s jingle “Dimag ki batti jala de,” which created a buzz among the Indian audience and stuck with them for a long time.

She also had some useful tips to share for creating great ads:

  • Come up with an effective tagline
  • Craft a compelling ad copy
  • Have a clear and strong call-to-action
  • Create content that is attention-grabbing
  • The value in the variety of different types of ads that brands can use like product feed ads, dynamic video ads, hybrid ads, and skippable and non skippable ads

In the last segment of the workshop, the discussion was directed at segmenting and data sharing for UA/RT campaigns. Some key elements from the discussion centred on:

  • Insights into re-targeting and its importance for revenue realization
  • Data science models for user acquisition and re-targeting at RevX
  • Importance of programmatic in the present age and how it helps with transparency, fraud protection, and creative optimization

Trends to navigate a tough macro-economic environment

App Marketing Conference India 2023
The Adjust workshop was hosted by Kapil Bonde, Senior Market Evangelist, INSEANZ; Mathew Raju, Senior CSM, INSEA; and Dipayan Dhar, Solution Consultant, IN.

Agenda: To discuss how navigating a tough macro-economic environment can be challenging for businesses across all sectors.

The team at Adjust emphasized that the Indian app economy is no exception with the pace of growth in app downloads slowing down in 2022. However, there are trends emerging that can help app and game based businesses navigate this challenging environment.

Here’s a summary of the keynotes acquired from the App Store Intelligence data:

  • Non-gaming categories such as Shopping and Finance have witnessed faster growth in downloads, while downloads in categories like Education and Health have declined.
  • Advertisers have become cautious and are cutting down on spends, leading to a shift towards driving growth through organic acquisition strategies.
  • Engaging existing users has become more important than ever, as an average of 65% of a company’s revenue comes from existing users.
  • Reactivate lapsed users moves up the priority list of app marketers, and user loyalty has witnessed an increase across short and long term – except for games.
  • User churn has decreased across key categories except for the Entertainment category. With declining media costs and improving user loyalty, businesses have an opportunity to grab market share.

To navigate this tough macro-economic environment, businesses must adapt their strategies to focus on organic acquisition and engaging existing users. Leveraging earned and owned media can help achieve more with less, and reactivating lapsed users can move up the priority list of app marketers.

Leveraging ASO for organic UA & better conversions

App Marketing Conference India 2023
This workshop was conducted by app growth consultants at AppTweak India – Shivani Shukla, Aditi Singh, and Avinash KP.

Leverage ASO to optimize your app

The workshop, conducted by AppTweak India, started with Aditi, App Growth Consultant, emphasizing on the importance of ASO in your app marketing stack, such as:

  • Different elements in ASO and their impact on organic downloads
  • How ASO and paid acquisition work together to improve app visibility and conversion rates
  • How to use in-app events, reviews and ratings, and app visuals to boost conversion rates

Offering some key insights, Aditi shared that ASO helps an app get an average of 35-40% uplift in organic downloads over time and the LTV of organic users can be 3-5x that of a paid user. She also delved into the different aspects of ASO, including the app title, app descriptions, screenshots, and more and how these different metadata elements can help with app conversion rates.

ASO & paid marketing for your app

For the next part of the workshop, we had Avinash talk about how ASO managers make an impact on paid marketing and retention marketing. He spoke at length on:

  • Ranking factors for apps in the app stores
  • How Google and Apple decides to rank apps after analyzing different factors like app ratings & reviews, overall conversion rates, and the overall performance of the app & ANRs
  • Velocity of app downloads

“There comes a stage where your organic downloads can sustain your top rankings and, at that stage, you can stop your paid marketing campaigns & start getting users at 0 CAC.” Avinash KP, App Marketing Consultant

He attached importance to aligning ad communications with the landing page. Citing the example of the app Rummy Circle, he said that their landing page focuses more on the UI of the game & multiple rummy variants compared to the ad where the communication showed real cash rummy game. This confuses the user for a couple of seconds and, in that time frame, the user scrolls down and is going to land in a competitor’s app and you lose the user forever.

In the next segment, Avinash drew attention to how paid UA and ASO can collaborate to create greater conversion rates through app store localization. We’ve jotted the key highlights in the discussion below:

  • Localization not only helps your paid marketing efforts but ASO managers also need to keep in mind that having a localized page can improve the overall visibility of your app in the app stores
  • Conversion rates increase by 26% and retention rates increase by 20% through app store localization
  • Conducting multiple A/B tests and promotional content also helps with increase in profits and retention rates along with setting up the right expectations for the users
  • Having positive ratings and reviews also drives user loyalty and retention

Here is why overlooking ASO is one of the biggest mistake a UA manager can make

App Marketing Conference India 2023
Shivani and Aditi hosting the Ultimate ASO Geek Challenge.

The team also hosted a fun and interactive quiz for the audience – the Ultimate ASO geek challenge! Attendees were quizzed on topics, such as how keywords impact ASO and the kind of visibility it has, and different types of app and game screenshots and their impact on conversion rates. At the end of the quiz, the team also gave away a free ASO Health Check to the top 5 winners.

Casual gaming: Serious profits

We had Tejas Shah, Head of Revenue and Distribution, share his success story for Games2Win through casual gaming apps.

App Marketing Conference India 2023
Tejas Shah discusses his journey with Games2Win.

Relating the success journey of his app, he said how casual gaming apps – that had no involvement with gambling or fantasies – helped Games2Win become one of the top mobile game publishers with 500+ million downloads and 5+ million active users. Talking about the different game genres that have been popular for a long time, he used interesting examples of Hot Wheels, which is now popular in the form of driving games, or Barbie toys that are now more popular through dress-up games.

Growth engines for a successful app marketing strategy

This successful marketing strategy involved 3 things – app store optimization, monetization, and analytics – which helped Games2Win grow over the past years. Using ASO and different features of ASO like localization, A/B testing, and cross-promotion of the different games supported their growth. He helped visualize this with an example of how their company saw a change in the trends of their store listing after localizing a game in Turkey. Initially, there was a dip in conversion rates, but it resulted in improvement of that game’s visibility that gave them an opportunity to further increase their downloads. In fact, even a simple change in the background color of an icon in an app’s ASO strategy can help improve their visibility and conversion rates.

Finally, he had some wonderful insights to share on how monetization can help with app growth:

  • Mediations can help analyze data better, help to keep a check on ad quality, and work with a wide variety of networks.
  • Global networks – Having a presence everywhere without having a sales team everywhere leads to better fill rates, coverage, improved AD ARPDAUs and revenue.
  • High value lines to see if they work well on the users you have. There is a good chance that these might help improve your CPM and revenue drastically if done right.
  • Adding new placements in your app/game to test additional revenue opportunities.

Conclusion

The App Marketing Conference 2023 in India, hosted by AppTweak, sponsored by RevX and Adjust, was a tremendous success! The event ended on a high note with an after-party, where we presented awards to winners of each category judged by a jury, with drinks and snacks. You can go ahead and access the recordings of all the speaker sessions on the App Marketing Conference 2023 website.

Let us know your thoughts about the event!

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Rachana Pinto
by , Sales and Marketing Intern
Rachana is currently a Sales and Marketing Intern at AppTweak. She is observant and loves to learn through experiences and understand new trends in the market.