ASO & Organic Traffic
March 14, 2023

Cutting Ad Budgets without sacrificing UA Quality

Mobile app and game studios must be strategic in their ad budget planning to ensure they are not sacrificing quality user growth...

In today's fast-paced digital world, mobile apps have become an essential part of everyday life for many people. From social media to online shopping and gaming, there's an app for almost everything.

As a result, mobile studios are investing heavily in user acquisition to tap into their audiences. However, creating a successful mobile business requires more than just a great app. You also need a solid marketing strategy to reach and engage your target audience. One of the most critical elements of this strategy is advertising.

Advertising is crucial in driving user acquisition and engagement for mobile apps. It's also one of the biggest expenses for app developers and marketers. With increasing competition, advertising costs are increasing, making it challenging to balance ad spending with user growth and engagement.

The goal is to reach a large number of potential users while still maintaining the highest return on investment (ROI). To achieve this, businesses must be strategic in their approach to advertising, focusing on the most effective channels while cutting back on less effective ones.

In this article, we'll explore strategies for cutting ad budgets without sacrificing the quality of user acquisition campaigns.


  1. Understand your Target Audience
  2. Analyze your Ad Performance
  3. Quality over Quantity
  4. Remarketing
  5. Optimizing Ad Creatives
  6. Influencer Marketing
  7. Monitor, Adjust & Iterate
  8. Follow Best Practices

1. Understand Your Target Audience

When it comes to mobile apps and games, understanding your target audience is crucial for creating a successful ad campaign.


Knowing who your users are and what they need will help you determine the best channels for reaching them.

How to Understand your Target Audience?

Here are a few ways to better understand your target audience for these types of products:

  1. Demographic Data: Collect information about your target audience's age, gender, location, education, and income level. This will give you a good idea of your target audience and their interests and needs.
  2. User Behavior: Analyze the behavior of your current users. Look at how often they use your app, what features they engage with the most, and how long they spend using it. This information can help you tailor your ads to specific segments of your target audience.
  3. Psychographic Data: Study your target audience's values, attitudes, and personality traits. This information can help you create ads that resonate with your audience's values and lifestyle.
  4. App Store Data: Take advantage of the data available in app store listings. Review the user reviews and ratings to understand what users like and dislike about similar apps.

By combining this information, you can create a profile of your target audience and use it to create ads that are more likely to engage and convert them into paying users.

Monitoring your target audience

It is also important to continuously monitor and update your understanding of your target audience. As consumer behavior changes over time, your target audience may evolve, so it is essential to reassess and adjust your strategies accordingly regularly.

Once you have a good understanding of your target audience, it is important to segment them into different groups based on their behaviors and preferences. This allows you to create more personalized and relevant ads for each group, increasing their engagement and the chances of conversion.

By understanding your target audience, using tools to gather information, segmenting your audience, and continuously monitoring their behavior, you can create ads that effectively engage and convert your target audience.

This way, you can finally adjust your ad campaigns to improve their performance over time.

2. Analyze your UA Ad Performance

Once you clearly understand your target audience, it's time to analyze your ad performance.

Analyzing ad performance is crucial in determining the success of your advertising efforts. By monitoring key metrics such as click-through rates (CTR), conversion rates, cost per acquisition (CPA), and return on investment (ROI), you can get a clear picture of which ads are performing well and which ones are not.


One of the key benefits of analyzing ad performance is that it allows you to make data-driven decisions about your ad spend. By identifying which ads generate the most engagement and conversions, you can optimize your ad budget to focus on those producing the best results. This helps you to cut your ad budget without sacrificing the quality of your user acquisition campaigns.

Understand your Metrics & Goals

Understanding your goals and metrics is important to analyze ad performance effectively. This may involve setting up tracking and measurement systems that capture key performance indicators and provide you with detailed insights into your ad campaign.

Once you clearly understand your ad performance, you can use this information to make informed decisions about your ad strategy. For example, if a particular ad is not generating the desired results, you can adjust its targeting, messaging, or creative elements to see if it improves performance.

By regularly analyzing ad performance, you can make data-driven decisions that optimize your ad budget, and ensure that your advertising efforts generate the best possible results.

3. Focus on Quality Over Quantity

Regarding mobile advertising, sometimes quality is more important than quantity.

Focusing on quality over quantity in ad campaigns is crucial for cutting ad budgets without sacrificing the quality of your user acquisition campaigns. High-quality ads can effectively engage users, even with a smaller ad budget.

Rather than spreading your advertising budget across multiple channels, focus on the channels providing the best results. This will help you maximize your ROI while reducing your advertising costs.

This way, you can reduce your ad budget while still achieving your desired user growth and engagement. Remember to ensure success by prioritizing relevance, clarity, and visual appeal when developing your ad campaign.

4. Use Remarketing

Remarketing is a powerful tool for reaching users who have already shown an interest in your product or service.

Remarketing is a powerful technique that can help increase user engagement and retention in mobile apps and games. It involves reaching out to users who have already interacted with your app or game in some way, such as downloading it, making a purchase, or simply visiting the app store page. By targeting these users, you can improve the chances of retaining them as active users and encourage them to continue engaging with your app or game.


Push Notifications

One way to implement remarketing in mobile apps and games is through push notifications. Push notifications can remind users about the app or game and offer them incentives, such as rewards or exclusive content, to encourage them to re-engage.

For example, if a user hasn't used a mobile game for a few days, a push notification could be sent with a message like "Come back and play to earn a special prize."

Targeted Ads

Another way to use remarketing in mobile apps and games is through targeted ads. For example, if a user has abandoned an app or game mid-level, targeted ads could be displayed to remind them about the app and entice them to return and complete the level. By using targeted ads, you can ensure your advertising budget is spent on users who will most likely re-engage with your app or game.

Control your Timing

Another important aspect of remarketing in mobile apps and games is timing. It's important to send push notifications and remarketing ads at the right time, such as when a user is most likely engaged and has time to re-engage with your app or game. For example, if your app or game is primarily used during the evening, you may want to send push notifications or display ads in the evenings when users are more likely to have time to engage with your app.

By reaching out to users who have already shown interest in your app or game, you can improve the chances of retaining them as active users and encourage them to continue engaging with your app.

Through targeted ads and timing your remarketing efforts effectively, you can maximize the impact of your remarketing efforts and achieve your user engagement and retention goals.

5. Optimize Ad Creatives

Another way to maximize the impact of your advertising budget is by optimizing your ad creatives.

Optimizing ad creatives is important for cutting ad budgets without sacrificing your user acquisition campaigns. Ad creatives refer to the visual and text components of an advertisement. When these components are not optimized, it can result in low engagement, low conversion rates, and, ultimately, low return on investment (ROI).


Steps to optimize ad creatives:

  1. Test different ad formats - Experiment with different ad formats such as interstitials, banners, rewarded videos, and native ads to see which ones perform best for your target audience.
  2. Use high-quality visuals - Ensure that your ad creatives have high-quality visuals that are eye-catching and relevant to the target audience.
  3. Keep the messaging clear and concise - Keep the messaging in your ad creatives clear and concise so that it is easy for the target audience to understand and take action.
  4. Use emotional appeals - Emotional appeals effectively boost engagement and conversion rates. Consider incorporating emotional appeals in your ad creatives to tap into the emotional connection of your target audience.
  5. Personalize the ad creatives - Personalizing the ad creatives using the target audience's location, interests, or behavior can increase engagement and conversion rates.

By following these tips and continuously monitoring and adjusting the ad creatives, you can optimize your ad spend and achieve quality UA campaigns. Regular testing and optimization of ad creatives can help increase your ad budget's ROI and drive better results for your business.

6. Utilize Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is a cost-effective way to reach a large audience and drive user engagement. By partnering with influencers with a large following in your target market, you can leverage their reach to promote your app.

In other articles, we have covered some tips for game studios that want to start working with influencers, and even some of the worst mistakes of influencer marketing from mobile game studios.

Influencer marketing can be a more cost-effective alternative to traditional advertising channels, especially if you choose influencers who are a good fit for your product or service.


7. Monitor, Adjust & Iterate

To ensure the best return on investment for ad spend, it's important to monitor and adjust campaigns continuously. Data-driven insights and ad performance analysis can highlight improvement areas and inform optimization decisions. This can involve tweaking targeting, testing different creatives, or changing bid strategy.

One key aspect of monitoring ad performance is tracking the right metrics. The most important metrics will vary depending on the goals of each campaign, but common metrics to consider include cost per acquisition, return on ad spend, and the user LTV (lifetime value).

Use the data to make informed decisions.

Once data is collected, it's important to use it to make informed decisions.

ย For example, if a particular targeting strategy drives high acquisition costs, it may be time to try a different approach. On the other hand, if a creative element is performing particularly well, it may be wise to double down and create similar creative for other campaigns.

It's also important to avoid getting too fixated on short-term performance. User acquisition is just one piece of the puzzle โ€“ user retention and lifetime value are just as important, if not more so. As such, it's important to keep the bigger picture in mind and make decisions that will drive long-term success, even if they temporarily impact short-term performance.


Monitoring and adjusting ad campaigns is crucial to ensuring that ad budgets are being used effectively and efficiently. By tracking the right metrics, making informed decisions, and keeping the long-term in mind, businesses can cut ad budgets without sacrificing the quality of their user acquisition campaigns.

8. Cutting Ad Budgets while maintaining the quality of your UA Campaigns

In conclusion, mobile app and game studios must be strategic in their ad budget planning to ensure they are not sacrificing quality user growth.

By focusing on quality over quantity, optimizing ad creatives, analyzing ad performance, understanding the target audience, and utilizing remarketing techniques, mobile studios can effectively reduce ad spend while still acquiring high-value users.

Follow these best practices to attract high-quality users and keep them engaged, and you will find your way to long-term success and growth.

As the competition in the mobile app and game market continues to increase, developers need to stay ahead of the curve and make informed decisions about their ad budget to ensure they are getting the best return on investment.

It is important to continuously monitor and adjust ad strategies to ensure optimal performance and return on investment. By taking a data-driven approach to advertising, mobile app, and game developers can successfully grow their user base without sacrificing their bottom line.

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