Mintegral Webinar: How ironSource, AppLovin, MoPub, and Fyber See the Future of In-App Bidding

We invited our partners at ironSource, AppLovin, MoPub, and Fyber to discuss in-app bidding: current state, key advantages, and what the future holds for this new technology.

Vali Scorus, Content Marketing Manager2020-06-18

We recently hosted our exclusive webinar called “Driving Programmatic Growth with In-App Bidding” where we were joined by our friends at ironSource, AppLovin, MoPub, and Fyber for an in-depth look at in-app bidding, how it can help the industry, and where we see it going.

The webinar was moderated by Shobeir Shobeiri, Senior Director of Business Development at Mintegral, and we talked about in-app bidding with the following experts:

  • Nimrod Zuta, VP Product at ironSource
  • Dan Sack, Vice President of Platform, MAX by AppLovin at AppLovin
  • Jayme Farrell-Ranker, Group Product Growth Manager at MoPub
  • Adam Corrado, GM, Fairbid, at Fyber

Let’s see what our speakers had to say about in-app bidding and how publishers can benefit from this technology.

What is the current state of in-app bidding?

According to Dan Sack from AppLovin, ad networks are at different adoption stages: while some are already using in-app bidding, some are looking to implement this technology in the near future. He mentioned that a lot of their publishers are generating revenue using hybrid models (mediated networks & bidding networks), adding that between 40% and 60% of revenue earned by publishers on MAX comes from SDK bidders.

What are the key benefits to in-app bidding?

There are several benefits that our speakers mentioned:

  • Reduced operational overhead: managing waterfalls is tedious and time expensive, costs publishers a lot of resources (time, money, people) which can be invested into areas like expanding their team or working on new/better product features
  • Reduced latency: the real-time, parallel auction model specific to in-app bidding is significantly smoother compared to the process of sending and receiving ad requests in sequence
  • Reduced transaction costs: fewer blockers between programmatic buyers and publishers means lower transaction costs
  • Higher ARPDAU: the highest bid wins the impression, as the publisher inventory is open to all participants, maximizing publisher ad revenue
  • Increased transparency: with more data around who is bidding, the price of each impression, and more, publishers get access to extremely important insights that can help them further optimize their campaigns

With ARPDAU becoming more widely accepted as the true metric publishers should be looking at, in-app bidding contributed to significant ad revenue increases for publishers who implemented this model. According to Jayme Farrell-Ranker from MoPub, they’ve seen ARPDAU increases both across regions and across verticals – some publishers saw increases of 50% or more. Nimrod Zuta from ironSource highlighted the fact that even if publishers won’t see massive ARPDAU increases straight away, the sheer reduction in operational overhead will more than make up for the transition from waterfalls to in-app bidding.

Any key concerns around in-app bidding?

According to Adam Corrado from Fyber, a key concern publishers have is timing. Most publishers are asking if the market is ready, and whether they are adopting it too early or whether now is the time to make the transition. On Fyber, around 70% of transactions are executed programmatically, which points to how more and more key players have already adopted this technology.

Nimrod Zuta from ironSource added that another concern from publishers is the risk associated with the transition to in-app bidding. For those who have partnerships in place, changing technologies when things are working fine might look intimidating, but some are already working on the transition with good results and he believes others will follow shortly.

What does the future hold for in-app bidding?

It’s safe to say that in-app bidding will drive the industry forward. The vision is to grow the ecosystem so that more ad networks are bidding, which will help publishers generate more ad revenue. Nimrod Zuta from ironSource noted that publishers and developers have the power to drive in-app bidding adoption. By working with ad networks that support in-app bidding, they help grow the adoption rate and the entire industry will benefit as a result.

Jayme Farrell-Ranker from MoPub mentioned that it’s important for publishers to have transparency so they can see the value of in-app bidding versus the waterfall model, if they want to set up direct deals. She sees that this year and in 2021 a bigger percentage of revenue will come from ad networks that support in-app bidding. However, the traditional waterfall model might not completely disappear, so it will be important to empower publishers to decide how to monetize and which partners to use.

Any advice for those wanting to switch to in-app bidding?

One key approach that all publishers interested in this technology should take is to reach out to their partners to get a better understanding of in-app bidding and how it can benefit them. Just like with any big decision, A/B testing is important and this should be done first to see if in-app bidding is the right solution for them, before gradually moving away from the waterfall model.

Q&A

Q: How does the first-price auction model work in an in-app bidding ecosystem?

A: Most partners who have adopted in-app bidding are already using the first-price auction model, and publishers have full transparency in terms of seeing how much ad networks bid. It is expected that first-price auction will become the standard buying mechanism for the industry by the end of the year.

Q: How many bidders are enough?

A: The number is relative and depends on many factors, as well as the publishers themselves and their goals. Rather than focusing on a specific number of network bidders, publishers should try to look for tier-1, very significant buyers, and make sure that their inventory can be sold for its maximum value, something that in-app bidding can help with.

Mintegral is your key in-app bidding partner

Mintegral has been working with some of the biggest players in the industry, including:

We are firm believers that in-app bidding is the future and we look forward to seeing how the industry can grow thanks to this new technology.

About in-app bidding

In-app bidding is the next step in terms of app monetization. This advanced programmatic bidding technology allows multiple ad sources to bid simultaneously on the publishers’ in-app inventory. The highest bid wins the ad impression, so by using this technology, publishers can maximize their ad revenue. Read more about in-app bidding to find out how you too can benefit from it.

The whole webinar is available for free on the Mintegral YouTube channel so if you would like to watch it, you can do that below:

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Vali Scorus is Mintegral's Content Marketing Manager, responsible for digital and social media content. Vali has over 10 years of experience covering the gaming industry.
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