When Monetization and User Experience Go Hand in Hand

Serving as Tapjoy’s Director of App Services, Ray Long comes to us by way of GSN and Hive7 before that. Ray has been a game designer for years, having worked on titles ranging from Knighthood to Wheel of Fortune. These days, Ray helps Tapjoy publishers figure out how to increase their fun factor as well as their business potential. We asked him to describe a few uncommon tactics that developers should be using more often to monetize their apps. Here’s what he had to say:

So, you’ve secured funding for your new gaming app. The game design is original, fun and full of promise. You have great social hooks and an expert ad network to drive acquisition. You have daily return bonuses and incentives to bolster retention and all the standard monetization routes like virtual goods and in-app payments. You’re just about ready to launch.

At this point you get the call from upstairs with that one question all investors have: “Are there any other ways we can monetize this app?” You cringe, knowing that excessive monetization can often ruin a perfectly good user experience. And yet, what if I told you there was actually a way you could monetize the app and enhance the user experience at the same time?

play

Let My Users Play!

Too often in mobile games, users are playing and enjoying the experience when one bad decision stops them dead (usually literally) and forces them back to the beginning. With the popularity of the infinite runner game this tendency has become more pronounced.

A few infinite runners such as Running Fred and Temple Run 2 have gotten the message and added checkpoints and the ability to continue through leveling and purchases. This philosophy, and its money-making strategy, can be applied to more games than infinite runners though. Any game that has a hard restart from a checkpoint or beginning of the level can benefit from the resurrect/continue option.

If there’s one lesson we can learn from the coin-operated video game world it is that users can get caught up in an experience and will pay to keep it going. Often in design it feels like the hard stops due to death are a missed opportunity to help players stay engaged and monetize them at the same time. Let your users ride that wave they remember from games like Contra and Ghouls ‘N Ghosts etc. and, instead of shoveling quarters into a cabinet, let them shovel payments into your account and keep that wave going.

love

Play It, Own It, Love It!

When the first Star Wars movie premiered, the story and the characters captured the imagination of the populace right from the start. The decision by George Lucas and his production company to keep the rights to the characters and their merchandising was a genius move.

This lesson can be applied to the mobile app market easier than ever with a very low cost to entry. In this modern world of print on-demand, you can offer users merchandise based on your property with little up-front investment. If your app has fun, engaging characters, or you are early enough in the process to incorporate them, do so and have a plan to market these characters through material channels. Companies like Zazzle can produce high quality clothing with your characters’ likenesses; CustomPlush.com can make plushies of your characters, and Figure Bang can make statues from them. Don’t underestimate the user’s desire to have a tangible representation of the apps and characters they love.

rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

A close relative to in-game resurrection that isn’t used often enough is the “undo.” The “undo” differs from resurrection as it’s not as effective in real-time games and isn’t used to come back from the dead but rather salvage a game from one ill-fated turn in turn-based games.

Often, turn-based games can be unforgiving, with one errant invasion or trade ruining a long, enjoyable experience. These challenges in turn-based games, particularly resource management and territory control games, are a prime opportunity to give users the joy of content exploration. If you give users the opportunity to rewind a turn and try a different strategy they’re more likely to be experimental, invest themselves in the content you’ve provided and be loyal to your product.

The “undo” or “rewind” should never be used in PvP games, as the potential for abuse is way too high of a risk. The potential monetization of the rewind in PvP is not worth alienating the other player. Be prudent where you implement the undo, price it accordingly, and you can have a real monetization winner on your hands.

cash

Cash Out

Monetization in the mobile space is an ever evolving process with new models appearing as the platform is shaped by many forces.

From store policies and user preferences to market regulations and technological leaps, the mobile games arena represents an ever-changing world, and the best advice I can give app developers is to stay well informed and to never stop pushing the envelope. Just make sure you push the envelope in favor of a positive experience for your users as well as your profit margin.
Serving as Tapjoy’s Director of App Services, Ray Long comes to us by way of GSN and Hive7 before that. Ray has been a game designer for years, having worked on titles ranging from Knighthood to Wheel of Fortune. These days, Ray helps Tapjoy publishers figure out how to increase their fun factor as well as their business potential. We asked him to describe a few uncommon tactics that developers should be using more often to monetize their apps. Here’s what he had to say:

So, you’ve secured funding for your new gaming app. The game design is original, fun and full of promise. You have great social hooks and an expert ad network to drive acquisition. You have daily return bonuses and incentives to bolster retention and all the standard monetization routes like virtual goods and in-app payments. You’re just about ready to launch.

At this point you get the call from upstairs with that one question all investors have: “Are there any other ways we can monetize this app?” You cringe, knowing that excessive monetization can often ruin a perfectly good user experience. And yet, what if I told you there was actually a way you could monetize the app and enhance the user experience at the same time?

play

Let My Users Play!

Too often in mobile games, users are playing and enjoying the experience when one bad decision stops them dead (usually literally) and forces them back to the beginning. With the popularity of the infinite runner game this tendency has become more pronounced.

A few infinite runners such as Running Fred and Temple Run 2 have gotten the message and added checkpoints and the ability to continue through leveling and purchases. This philosophy, and its money-making strategy, can be applied to more games than infinite runners though. Any game that has a hard restart from a checkpoint or beginning of the level can benefit from the resurrect/continue option.

If there’s one lesson we can learn from the coin-operated video game world it is that users can get caught up in an experience and will pay to keep it going. Often in design it feels like the hard stops due to death are a missed opportunity to help players stay engaged and monetize them at the same time. Let your users ride that wave they remember from games like Contra and Ghouls ‘N Ghosts etc. and, instead of shoveling quarters into a cabinet, let them shovel payments into your account and keep that wave going.

love

Play It, Own It, Love It!

When the first Star Wars movie premiered, the story and the characters captured the imagination of the populace right from the start. The decision by George Lucas and his production company to keep the rights to the characters and their merchandising was a genius move.

This lesson can be applied to the mobile app market easier than ever with a very low cost to entry. In this modern world of print on-demand, you can offer users merchandise based on your property with little up-front investment. If your app has fun, engaging characters, or you are early enough in the process to incorporate them, do so and have a plan to market these characters through material channels. Companies like Zazzle can produce high quality clothing with your characters’ likenesses; CustomPlush.com can make plushies of your characters, and Figure Bang can make statues from them. Don’t underestimate the user’s desire to have a tangible representation of the apps and characters they love.

rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

A close relative to in-game resurrection that isn’t used often enough is the “undo.” The “undo” differs from resurrection as it’s not as effective in real-time games and isn’t used to come back from the dead but rather salvage a game from one ill-fated turn in turn-based games.

Often, turn-based games can be unforgiving, with one errant invasion or trade ruining a long, enjoyable experience. These challenges in turn-based games, particularly resource management and territory control games, are a prime opportunity to give users the joy of content exploration. If you give users the opportunity to rewind a turn and try a different strategy they’re more likely to be experimental, invest themselves in the content you’ve provided and be loyal to your product.

The “undo” or “rewind” should never be used in PvP games, as the potential for abuse is way too high of a risk. The potential monetization of the rewind in PvP is not worth alienating the other player. Be prudent where you implement the undo, price it accordingly, and you can have a real monetization winner on your hands.

cash

Cash Out

Monetization in the mobile space is an ever evolving process with new models appearing as the platform is shaped by many forces.

From store policies and user preferences to market regulations and technological leaps, the mobile games arena represents an ever-changing world, and the best advice I can give app developers is to stay well informed and to never stop pushing the envelope. Just make sure you push the envelope in favor of a positive experience for your users as well as your profit margin.
Serving as Tapjoy’s Director of App Services, Ray Long comes to us by way of GSN and Hive7 before that. Ray has been a game designer for years, having worked on titles ranging from Knighthood to Wheel of Fortune. These days, Ray helps Tapjoy publishers figure out how to increase their fun factor as well as their business potential. We asked him to describe a few uncommon tactics that developers should be using more often to monetize their apps. Here’s what he had to say:

So, you’ve secured funding for your new gaming app. The game design is original, fun and full of promise. You have great social hooks and an expert ad network to drive acquisition. You have daily return bonuses and incentives to bolster retention and all the standard monetization routes like virtual goods and in-app payments. You’re just about ready to launch.

At this point you get the call from upstairs with that one question all investors have: “Are there any other ways we can monetize this app?” You cringe, knowing that excessive monetization can often ruin a perfectly good user experience. And yet, what if I told you there was actually a way you could monetize the app and enhance the user experience at the same time?

play

Let My Users Play!

Too often in mobile games, users are playing and enjoying the experience when one bad decision stops them dead (usually literally) and forces them back to the beginning. With the popularity of the infinite runner game this tendency has become more pronounced.

A few infinite runners such as Running Fred and Temple Run 2 have gotten the message and added checkpoints and the ability to continue through leveling and purchases. This philosophy, and its money-making strategy, can be applied to more games than infinite runners though. Any game that has a hard restart from a checkpoint or beginning of the level can benefit from the resurrect/continue option.

If there’s one lesson we can learn from the coin-operated video game world it is that users can get caught up in an experience and will pay to keep it going. Often in design it feels like the hard stops due to death are a missed opportunity to help players stay engaged and monetize them at the same time. Let your users ride that wave they remember from games like Contra and Ghouls ‘N Ghosts etc. and, instead of shoveling quarters into a cabinet, let them shovel payments into your account and keep that wave going.

love

Play It, Own It, Love It!

When the first Star Wars movie premiered, the story and the characters captured the imagination of the populace right from the start. The decision by George Lucas and his production company to keep the rights to the characters and their merchandising was a genius move.

This lesson can be applied to the mobile app market easier than ever with a very low cost to entry. In this modern world of print on-demand, you can offer users merchandise based on your property with little up-front investment. If your app has fun, engaging characters, or you are early enough in the process to incorporate them, do so and have a plan to market these characters through material channels. Companies like Zazzle can produce high quality clothing with your characters’ likenesses; CustomPlush.com can make plushies of your characters, and Figure Bang can make statues from them. Don’t underestimate the user’s desire to have a tangible representation of the apps and characters they love.

rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

A close relative to in-game resurrection that isn’t used often enough is the “undo.” The “undo” differs from resurrection as it’s not as effective in real-time games and isn’t used to come back from the dead but rather salvage a game from one ill-fated turn in turn-based games.

Often, turn-based games can be unforgiving, with one errant invasion or trade ruining a long, enjoyable experience. These challenges in turn-based games, particularly resource management and territory control games, are a prime opportunity to give users the joy of content exploration. If you give users the opportunity to rewind a turn and try a different strategy they’re more likely to be experimental, invest themselves in the content you’ve provided and be loyal to your product.

The “undo” or “rewind” should never be used in PvP games, as the potential for abuse is way too high of a risk. The potential monetization of the rewind in PvP is not worth alienating the other player. Be prudent where you implement the undo, price it accordingly, and you can have a real monetization winner on your hands.

cash

Cash Out

Monetization in the mobile space is an ever evolving process with new models appearing as the platform is shaped by many forces.

From store policies and user preferences to market regulations and technological leaps, the mobile games arena represents an ever-changing world, and the best advice I can give app developers is to stay well informed and to never stop pushing the envelope. Just make sure you push the envelope in favor of a positive experience for your users as well as your profit margin.
Serving as Tapjoy’s Director of App Services, Ray Long comes to us by way of GSN and Hive7 before that. Ray has been a game designer for years, having worked on titles ranging from Knighthood to Wheel of Fortune. These days, Ray helps Tapjoy publishers figure out how to increase their fun factor as well as their business potential. We asked him to describe a few uncommon tactics that developers should be using more often to monetize their apps. Here’s what he had to say:

So, you’ve secured funding for your new gaming app. The game design is original, fun and full of promise. You have great social hooks and an expert ad network to drive acquisition. You have daily return bonuses and incentives to bolster retention and all the standard monetization routes like virtual goods and in-app payments. You’re just about ready to launch.

At this point you get the call from upstairs with that one question all investors have: “Are there any other ways we can monetize this app?” You cringe, knowing that excessive monetization can often ruin a perfectly good user experience. And yet, what if I told you there was actually a way you could monetize the app and enhance the user experience at the same time?

play

Let My Users Play!

Too often in mobile games, users are playing and enjoying the experience when one bad decision stops them dead (usually literally) and forces them back to the beginning. With the popularity of the infinite runner game this tendency has become more pronounced.

A few infinite runners such as Running Fred and Temple Run 2 have gotten the message and added checkpoints and the ability to continue through leveling and purchases. This philosophy, and its money-making strategy, can be applied to more games than infinite runners though. Any game that has a hard restart from a checkpoint or beginning of the level can benefit from the resurrect/continue option.

If there’s one lesson we can learn from the coin-operated video game world it is that users can get caught up in an experience and will pay to keep it going. Often in design it feels like the hard stops due to death are a missed opportunity to help players stay engaged and monetize them at the same time. Let your users ride that wave they remember from games like Contra and Ghouls ‘N Ghosts etc. and, instead of shoveling quarters into a cabinet, let them shovel payments into your account and keep that wave going.

love

Play It, Own It, Love It!

When the first Star Wars movie premiered, the story and the characters captured the imagination of the populace right from the start. The decision by George Lucas and his production company to keep the rights to the characters and their merchandising was a genius move.

This lesson can be applied to the mobile app market easier than ever with a very low cost to entry. In this modern world of print on-demand, you can offer users merchandise based on your property with little up-front investment. If your app has fun, engaging characters, or you are early enough in the process to incorporate them, do so and have a plan to market these characters through material channels. Companies like Zazzle can produce high quality clothing with your characters’ likenesses; CustomPlush.com can make plushies of your characters, and Figure Bang can make statues from them. Don’t underestimate the user’s desire to have a tangible representation of the apps and characters they love.

rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

A close relative to in-game resurrection that isn’t used often enough is the “undo.” The “undo” differs from resurrection as it’s not as effective in real-time games and isn’t used to come back from the dead but rather salvage a game from one ill-fated turn in turn-based games.

Often, turn-based games can be unforgiving, with one errant invasion or trade ruining a long, enjoyable experience. These challenges in turn-based games, particularly resource management and territory control games, are a prime opportunity to give users the joy of content exploration. If you give users the opportunity to rewind a turn and try a different strategy they’re more likely to be experimental, invest themselves in the content you’ve provided and be loyal to your product.

The “undo” or “rewind” should never be used in PvP games, as the potential for abuse is way too high of a risk. The potential monetization of the rewind in PvP is not worth alienating the other player. Be prudent where you implement the undo, price it accordingly, and you can have a real monetization winner on your hands.

cash

Cash Out

Monetization in the mobile space is an ever evolving process with new models appearing as the platform is shaped by many forces.

From store policies and user preferences to market regulations and technological leaps, the mobile games arena represents an ever-changing world, and the best advice I can give app developers is to stay well informed and to never stop pushing the envelope. Just make sure you push the envelope in favor of a positive experience for your users as well as your profit margin.
Serving as Tapjoy’s Director of App Services, Ray Long comes to us by way of GSN and Hive7 before that. Ray has been a game designer for years, having worked on titles ranging from Knighthood to Wheel of Fortune. These days, Ray helps Tapjoy publishers figure out how to increase their fun factor as well as their business potential. We asked him to describe a few uncommon tactics that developers should be using more often to monetize their apps. Here’s what he had to say:

So, you’ve secured funding for your new gaming app. The game design is original, fun and full of promise. You have great social hooks and an expert ad network to drive acquisition. You have daily return bonuses and incentives to bolster retention and all the standard monetization routes like virtual goods and in-app payments. You’re just about ready to launch.

At this point you get the call from upstairs with that one question all investors have: “Are there any other ways we can monetize this app?” You cringe, knowing that excessive monetization can often ruin a perfectly good user experience. And yet, what if I told you there was actually a way you could monetize the app and enhance the user experience at the same time?

play

Let My Users Play!

Too often in mobile games, users are playing and enjoying the experience when one bad decision stops them dead (usually literally) and forces them back to the beginning. With the popularity of the infinite runner game this tendency has become more pronounced.

A few infinite runners such as Running Fred and Temple Run 2 have gotten the message and added checkpoints and the ability to continue through leveling and purchases. This philosophy, and its money-making strategy, can be applied to more games than infinite runners though. Any game that has a hard restart from a checkpoint or beginning of the level can benefit from the resurrect/continue option.

If there’s one lesson we can learn from the coin-operated video game world it is that users can get caught up in an experience and will pay to keep it going. Often in design it feels like the hard stops due to death are a missed opportunity to help players stay engaged and monetize them at the same time. Let your users ride that wave they remember from games like Contra and Ghouls ‘N Ghosts etc. and, instead of shoveling quarters into a cabinet, let them shovel payments into your account and keep that wave going.

love

Play It, Own It, Love It!

When the first Star Wars movie premiered, the story and the characters captured the imagination of the populace right from the start. The decision by George Lucas and his production company to keep the rights to the characters and their merchandising was a genius move.

This lesson can be applied to the mobile app market easier than ever with a very low cost to entry. In this modern world of print on-demand, you can offer users merchandise based on your property with little up-front investment. If your app has fun, engaging characters, or you are early enough in the process to incorporate them, do so and have a plan to market these characters through material channels. Companies like Zazzle can produce high quality clothing with your characters’ likenesses; CustomPlush.com can make plushies of your characters, and Figure Bang can make statues from them. Don’t underestimate the user’s desire to have a tangible representation of the apps and characters they love.

rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

A close relative to in-game resurrection that isn’t used often enough is the “undo.” The “undo” differs from resurrection as it’s not as effective in real-time games and isn’t used to come back from the dead but rather salvage a game from one ill-fated turn in turn-based games.

Often, turn-based games can be unforgiving, with one errant invasion or trade ruining a long, enjoyable experience. These challenges in turn-based games, particularly resource management and territory control games, are a prime opportunity to give users the joy of content exploration. If you give users the opportunity to rewind a turn and try a different strategy they’re more likely to be experimental, invest themselves in the content you’ve provided and be loyal to your product.

The “undo” or “rewind” should never be used in PvP games, as the potential for abuse is way too high of a risk. The potential monetization of the rewind in PvP is not worth alienating the other player. Be prudent where you implement the undo, price it accordingly, and you can have a real monetization winner on your hands.

cash

Cash Out

Monetization in the mobile space is an ever evolving process with new models appearing as the platform is shaped by many forces.

From store policies and user preferences to market regulations and technological leaps, the mobile games arena represents an ever-changing world, and the best advice I can give app developers is to stay well informed and to never stop pushing the envelope. Just make sure you push the envelope in favor of a positive experience for your users as well as your profit margin.
Serving as Tapjoy’s Director of App Services, Ray Long comes to us by way of GSN and Hive7 before that. Ray has been a game designer for years, having worked on titles ranging from Knighthood to Wheel of Fortune. These days, Ray helps Tapjoy publishers figure out how to increase their fun factor as well as their business potential. We asked him to describe a few uncommon tactics that developers should be using more often to monetize their apps. Here’s what he had to say:

So, you’ve secured funding for your new gaming app. The game design is original, fun and full of promise. You have great social hooks and an expert ad network to drive acquisition. You have daily return bonuses and incentives to bolster retention and all the standard monetization routes like virtual goods and in-app payments. You’re just about ready to launch.

At this point you get the call from upstairs with that one question all investors have: “Are there any other ways we can monetize this app?” You cringe, knowing that excessive monetization can often ruin a perfectly good user experience. And yet, what if I told you there was actually a way you could monetize the app and enhance the user experience at the same time?

play

Let My Users Play!

Too often in mobile games, users are playing and enjoying the experience when one bad decision stops them dead (usually literally) and forces them back to the beginning. With the popularity of the infinite runner game this tendency has become more pronounced.

A few infinite runners such as Running Fred and Temple Run 2 have gotten the message and added checkpoints and the ability to continue through leveling and purchases. This philosophy, and its money-making strategy, can be applied to more games than infinite runners though. Any game that has a hard restart from a checkpoint or beginning of the level can benefit from the resurrect/continue option.

If there’s one lesson we can learn from the coin-operated video game world it is that users can get caught up in an experience and will pay to keep it going. Often in design it feels like the hard stops due to death are a missed opportunity to help players stay engaged and monetize them at the same time. Let your users ride that wave they remember from games like Contra and Ghouls ‘N Ghosts etc. and, instead of shoveling quarters into a cabinet, let them shovel payments into your account and keep that wave going.

love

Play It, Own It, Love It!

When the first Star Wars movie premiered, the story and the characters captured the imagination of the populace right from the start. The decision by George Lucas and his production company to keep the rights to the characters and their merchandising was a genius move.

This lesson can be applied to the mobile app market easier than ever with a very low cost to entry. In this modern world of print on-demand, you can offer users merchandise based on your property with little up-front investment. If your app has fun, engaging characters, or you are early enough in the process to incorporate them, do so and have a plan to market these characters through material channels. Companies like Zazzle can produce high quality clothing with your characters’ likenesses; CustomPlush.com can make plushies of your characters, and Figure Bang can make statues from them. Don’t underestimate the user’s desire to have a tangible representation of the apps and characters they love.

rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

A close relative to in-game resurrection that isn’t used often enough is the “undo.” The “undo” differs from resurrection as it’s not as effective in real-time games and isn’t used to come back from the dead but rather salvage a game from one ill-fated turn in turn-based games.

Often, turn-based games can be unforgiving, with one errant invasion or trade ruining a long, enjoyable experience. These challenges in turn-based games, particularly resource management and territory control games, are a prime opportunity to give users the joy of content exploration. If you give users the opportunity to rewind a turn and try a different strategy they’re more likely to be experimental, invest themselves in the content you’ve provided and be loyal to your product.

The “undo” or “rewind” should never be used in PvP games, as the potential for abuse is way too high of a risk. The potential monetization of the rewind in PvP is not worth alienating the other player. Be prudent where you implement the undo, price it accordingly, and you can have a real monetization winner on your hands.

cash

Cash Out

Monetization in the mobile space is an ever evolving process with new models appearing as the platform is shaped by many forces.

From store policies and user preferences to market regulations and technological leaps, the mobile games arena represents an ever-changing world, and the best advice I can give app developers is to stay well informed and to never stop pushing the envelope. Just make sure you push the envelope in favor of a positive experience for your users as well as your profit margin.
Serving as Tapjoy’s Director of App Services, Ray Long comes to us by way of GSN and Hive7 before that. Ray has been a game designer for years, having worked on titles ranging from Knighthood to Wheel of Fortune. These days, Ray helps Tapjoy publishers figure out how to increase their fun factor as well as their business potential. We asked him to describe a few uncommon tactics that developers should be using more often to monetize their apps. Here’s what he had to say:

So, you’ve secured funding for your new gaming app. The game design is original, fun and full of promise. You have great social hooks and an expert ad network to drive acquisition. You have daily return bonuses and incentives to bolster retention and all the standard monetization routes like virtual goods and in-app payments. You’re just about ready to launch.

At this point you get the call from upstairs with that one question all investors have: “Are there any other ways we can monetize this app?” You cringe, knowing that excessive monetization can often ruin a perfectly good user experience. And yet, what if I told you there was actually a way you could monetize the app and enhance the user experience at the same time?

play

Let My Users Play!

Too often in mobile games, users are playing and enjoying the experience when one bad decision stops them dead (usually literally) and forces them back to the beginning. With the popularity of the infinite runner game this tendency has become more pronounced.

A few infinite runners such as Running Fred and Temple Run 2 have gotten the message and added checkpoints and the ability to continue through leveling and purchases. This philosophy, and its money-making strategy, can be applied to more games than infinite runners though. Any game that has a hard restart from a checkpoint or beginning of the level can benefit from the resurrect/continue option.

If there’s one lesson we can learn from the coin-operated video game world it is that users can get caught up in an experience and will pay to keep it going. Often in design it feels like the hard stops due to death are a missed opportunity to help players stay engaged and monetize them at the same time. Let your users ride that wave they remember from games like Contra and Ghouls ‘N Ghosts etc. and, instead of shoveling quarters into a cabinet, let them shovel payments into your account and keep that wave going.

love

Play It, Own It, Love It!

When the first Star Wars movie premiered, the story and the characters captured the imagination of the populace right from the start. The decision by George Lucas and his production company to keep the rights to the characters and their merchandising was a genius move.

This lesson can be applied to the mobile app market easier than ever with a very low cost to entry. In this modern world of print on-demand, you can offer users merchandise based on your property with little up-front investment. If your app has fun, engaging characters, or you are early enough in the process to incorporate them, do so and have a plan to market these characters through material channels. Companies like Zazzle can produce high quality clothing with your characters’ likenesses; CustomPlush.com can make plushies of your characters, and Figure Bang can make statues from them. Don’t underestimate the user’s desire to have a tangible representation of the apps and characters they love.

rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

A close relative to in-game resurrection that isn’t used often enough is the “undo.” The “undo” differs from resurrection as it’s not as effective in real-time games and isn’t used to come back from the dead but rather salvage a game from one ill-fated turn in turn-based games.

Often, turn-based games can be unforgiving, with one errant invasion or trade ruining a long, enjoyable experience. These challenges in turn-based games, particularly resource management and territory control games, are a prime opportunity to give users the joy of content exploration. If you give users the opportunity to rewind a turn and try a different strategy they’re more likely to be experimental, invest themselves in the content you’ve provided and be loyal to your product.

The “undo” or “rewind” should never be used in PvP games, as the potential for abuse is way too high of a risk. The potential monetization of the rewind in PvP is not worth alienating the other player. Be prudent where you implement the undo, price it accordingly, and you can have a real monetization winner on your hands.

cash

Cash Out

Monetization in the mobile space is an ever evolving process with new models appearing as the platform is shaped by many forces.

From store policies and user preferences to market regulations and technological leaps, the mobile games arena represents an ever-changing world, and the best advice I can give app developers is to stay well informed and to never stop pushing the envelope. Just make sure you push the envelope in favor of a positive experience for your users as well as your profit margin.
Serving as Tapjoy’s Director of App Services, Ray Long comes to us by way of GSN and Hive7 before that. Ray has been a game designer for years, having worked on titles ranging from Knighthood to Wheel of Fortune. These days, Ray helps Tapjoy publishers figure out how to increase their fun factor as well as their business potential. We asked him to describe a few uncommon tactics that developers should be using more often to monetize their apps. Here’s what he had to say:

So, you’ve secured funding for your new gaming app. The game design is original, fun and full of promise. You have great social hooks and an expert ad network to drive acquisition. You have daily return bonuses and incentives to bolster retention and all the standard monetization routes like virtual goods and in-app payments. You’re just about ready to launch.

At this point you get the call from upstairs with that one question all investors have: “Are there any other ways we can monetize this app?” You cringe, knowing that excessive monetization can often ruin a perfectly good user experience. And yet, what if I told you there was actually a way you could monetize the app and enhance the user experience at the same time?

play

Let My Users Play!

Too often in mobile games, users are playing and enjoying the experience when one bad decision stops them dead (usually literally) and forces them back to the beginning. With the popularity of the infinite runner game this tendency has become more pronounced.

A few infinite runners such as Running Fred and Temple Run 2 have gotten the message and added checkpoints and the ability to continue through leveling and purchases. This philosophy, and its money-making strategy, can be applied to more games than infinite runners though. Any game that has a hard restart from a checkpoint or beginning of the level can benefit from the resurrect/continue option.

If there’s one lesson we can learn from the coin-operated video game world it is that users can get caught up in an experience and will pay to keep it going. Often in design it feels like the hard stops due to death are a missed opportunity to help players stay engaged and monetize them at the same time. Let your users ride that wave they remember from games like Contra and Ghouls ‘N Ghosts etc. and, instead of shoveling quarters into a cabinet, let them shovel payments into your account and keep that wave going.

love

Play It, Own It, Love It!

When the first Star Wars movie premiered, the story and the characters captured the imagination of the populace right from the start. The decision by George Lucas and his production company to keep the rights to the characters and their merchandising was a genius move.

This lesson can be applied to the mobile app market easier than ever with a very low cost to entry. In this modern world of print on-demand, you can offer users merchandise based on your property with little up-front investment. If your app has fun, engaging characters, or you are early enough in the process to incorporate them, do so and have a plan to market these characters through material channels. Companies like Zazzle can produce high quality clothing with your characters’ likenesses; CustomPlush.com can make plushies of your characters, and Figure Bang can make statues from them. Don’t underestimate the user’s desire to have a tangible representation of the apps and characters they love.

rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

A close relative to in-game resurrection that isn’t used often enough is the “undo.” The “undo” differs from resurrection as it’s not as effective in real-time games and isn’t used to come back from the dead but rather salvage a game from one ill-fated turn in turn-based games.

Often, turn-based games can be unforgiving, with one errant invasion or trade ruining a long, enjoyable experience. These challenges in turn-based games, particularly resource management and territory control games, are a prime opportunity to give users the joy of content exploration. If you give users the opportunity to rewind a turn and try a different strategy they’re more likely to be experimental, invest themselves in the content you’ve provided and be loyal to your product.

The “undo” or “rewind” should never be used in PvP games, as the potential for abuse is way too high of a risk. The potential monetization of the rewind in PvP is not worth alienating the other player. Be prudent where you implement the undo, price it accordingly, and you can have a real monetization winner on your hands.

cash

Cash Out

Monetization in the mobile space is an ever evolving process with new models appearing as the platform is shaped by many forces.

From store policies and user preferences to market regulations and technological leaps, the mobile games arena represents an ever-changing world, and the best advice I can give app developers is to stay well informed and to never stop pushing the envelope. Just make sure you push the envelope in favor of a positive experience for your users as well as your profit margin.
Serving as Tapjoy’s Director of App Services, Ray Long comes to us by way of GSN and Hive7 before that. Ray has been a game designer for years, having worked on titles ranging from Knighthood to Wheel of Fortune. These days, Ray helps Tapjoy publishers figure out how to increase their fun factor as well as their business potential. We asked him to describe a few uncommon tactics that developers should be using more often to monetize their apps. Here’s what he had to say:

So, you’ve secured funding for your new gaming app. The game design is original, fun and full of promise. You have great social hooks and an expert ad network to drive acquisition. You have daily return bonuses and incentives to bolster retention and all the standard monetization routes like virtual goods and in-app payments. You’re just about ready to launch.

At this point you get the call from upstairs with that one question all investors have: “Are there any other ways we can monetize this app?” You cringe, knowing that excessive monetization can often ruin a perfectly good user experience. And yet, what if I told you there was actually a way you could monetize the app and enhance the user experience at the same time?

play

Let My Users Play!

Too often in mobile games, users are playing and enjoying the experience when one bad decision stops them dead (usually literally) and forces them back to the beginning. With the popularity of the infinite runner game this tendency has become more pronounced.

A few infinite runners such as Running Fred and Temple Run 2 have gotten the message and added checkpoints and the ability to continue through leveling and purchases. This philosophy, and its money-making strategy, can be applied to more games than infinite runners though. Any game that has a hard restart from a checkpoint or beginning of the level can benefit from the resurrect/continue option.

If there’s one lesson we can learn from the coin-operated video game world it is that users can get caught up in an experience and will pay to keep it going. Often in design it feels like the hard stops due to death are a missed opportunity to help players stay engaged and monetize them at the same time. Let your users ride that wave they remember from games like Contra and Ghouls ‘N Ghosts etc. and, instead of shoveling quarters into a cabinet, let them shovel payments into your account and keep that wave going.

love

Play It, Own It, Love It!

When the first Star Wars movie premiered, the story and the characters captured the imagination of the populace right from the start. The decision by George Lucas and his production company to keep the rights to the characters and their merchandising was a genius move.

This lesson can be applied to the mobile app market easier than ever with a very low cost to entry. In this modern world of print on-demand, you can offer users merchandise based on your property with little up-front investment. If your app has fun, engaging characters, or you are early enough in the process to incorporate them, do so and have a plan to market these characters through material channels. Companies like Zazzle can produce high quality clothing with your characters’ likenesses; CustomPlush.com can make plushies of your characters, and Figure Bang can make statues from them. Don’t underestimate the user’s desire to have a tangible representation of the apps and characters they love.

rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

A close relative to in-game resurrection that isn’t used often enough is the “undo.” The “undo” differs from resurrection as it’s not as effective in real-time games and isn’t used to come back from the dead but rather salvage a game from one ill-fated turn in turn-based games.

Often, turn-based games can be unforgiving, with one errant invasion or trade ruining a long, enjoyable experience. These challenges in turn-based games, particularly resource management and territory control games, are a prime opportunity to give users the joy of content exploration. If you give users the opportunity to rewind a turn and try a different strategy they’re more likely to be experimental, invest themselves in the content you’ve provided and be loyal to your product.

The “undo” or “rewind” should never be used in PvP games, as the potential for abuse is way too high of a risk. The potential monetization of the rewind in PvP is not worth alienating the other player. Be prudent where you implement the undo, price it accordingly, and you can have a real monetization winner on your hands.

cash

Cash Out

Monetization in the mobile space is an ever evolving process with new models appearing as the platform is shaped by many forces.

From store policies and user preferences to market regulations and technological leaps, the mobile games arena represents an ever-changing world, and the best advice I can give app developers is to stay well informed and to never stop pushing the envelope. Just make sure you push the envelope in favor of a positive experience for your users as well as your profit margin.

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