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Boosting return on app spend by 10% with AppsFlyer and Affle

gradeup success story square

15%

Increase in video engagement

10%

Increase in ROAS

Background

India’s Gradeup was established in 2015 as a subsidiary of Times Internet.

It is an online exam preparation platform that helps its 30 million registered members find jobs in the government sector by providing study materials, notes, preparation tips, online coaching and mock tests.

Gradeup offers its students free content as well as different pricing tiers for access to premium features and content available on the web and mobile app. 

To boost user acquisition at scale, Gradeup utilizes Affle’s mobility as a service (MAAS) platform. AppsFlyer is Gradeup’s preferred measurement partner to provide advanced metrics for deeper insights on app installs.

AppsFlyer also lets Gradeup analyze metrics on in-app consumer behavior once an app has been downloaded.

Challenge

To continue to grow sustainably, Gradeup needed to optimize its campaigns for a lower cost per install (CPIs).

Furthermore, the team was tasked with boosting engagement metrics within the app to improve lifetime value (LTV). To meet its objectives, Gradeup needed to make sure that it had in-depth knowledge and insights into its user acquisition funnel to target high-quality users and boost the likelihood of conversion.

Gradeup was also seeking to improve user engagement on the app.

One of the key objectives was to keep users engaged with video views (free live / demo classes) aiming between 1 and 5 minutes for Day 1 and 10 minutes on Day 3.

Solution

To gauge the impact of optimizing its user acquisition (UA) and engagement campaigns, Gradeup defined clear success metrics based on the team’s insights from AppsFlyer attribution and in-app events tracking. As video consumption was a key indicator for the likelihood of conversion to paying users, campaigns were designed to drive video consumption from Day 1.

Gradeup used AppsFlyer’s server-to-server events APIs to directly send granular in-app events to Affle.

Gradeup configured these events to be sent to Affle via AppsFlyer’s postback solution allowing for granular measurement and remarketing based on unique identifiers for specific in-app actions, device IDs, as well as location data, OS version, and more. 

“With Premium inventory sources like direct Apps & OEM’s, we made sure that deeper funnel events (30 days video view percentage, etc.) were optimized and the client’s overall ROI was maintained. We ran the campaign on targeted audiences only and acquired interested users with the help of historic data. Hence, we managed to lift up the in-app postback events as per the client KPIs.” – Vipul Kedia, Chief Data & Platforms Officer at Affle

Affle’s MAAS platform enabled GradeUp to acquire quality users at scale through directly integrated publishers, along with DSPs and OEM channels, utilizing precision-targeting features and event KPI-based optimization. 

To further nurture UA campaign performance, the Gradeup team utilized Affle’s app discovery platform, Appnext, to identify OEM-inventory sources (e.g., Oppo, Vivo) as well as native app store ads to target high-intent audiences in the education vertical.

To improve deeper funnel metrics and scale revenue, Gradeup leveraged AppsFlyer’s Overview and Cohort reports to collate this data from Affle over different dimensions such as campaigns and Site IDs. In addition, AppsFlyer’s Cohort dashboard was analyzed to understand which days users were engaging with videos (daily breakdown of video consumption) and then remarket to them accordingly.

Tarnija Sarao, Associate Manager, Performance Marketing at Gradeup also noted that Appsflyer is a critical component of their performance marketing decision-making process, especially with app affiliates.

Protect360, AppsFlyer’s fraud protection solution, assisted the team in combating ad fraud and making educated decisions about expanding their paid media sources.

With a unified audience platform, MAAS has opened up diverse channels of user acquisition for them that identified their needs at various growth phases. They were able to quickly scale by leveraging the directly integrated publishers, DSPs and OEM channels and find high-intent users.

“Appsflyer gives us the knowledge we need to make informed marketing decisions and monitor the progress of our campaigns. We can measure, attribute, and analyse all sources to reach out to quality users with only one platform. Working with MAAS’ platform helped us to unify our app marketing efforts across different channels and achieve the event-based KPIs. With intuitive targeting capabilities, the MAAS platform was able to identify highly relevant users for us who would convert to premium users, thus improving our ROAS.” – Dhruv Kumar, Sr. Manager Performance Marketing at Gradeup

Results

Gradeup saw a 15% increase in video engagement by leveraging Site ID data to optimize campaigns along top-funnel and deep funnel events.

By configuring AppsFlyer’s server-to-server events APIs to directly send granular in-app events via postback to Affle, Gradeup improved on its video engagement, significantly hitting the industry gold standard of over 5% (of overall 5-minute video views).

“AppsFlyer is an important pillar of our marketing tech stack. AppsFlyer is our source of truth which helps in data driven decision making”. Attribution data from AppsFlyer allows us to maximize campaign performance and improve ROI.” – Ankit Gautam, AVP Brand and Marketing at Gradeup

Based on granular insights, Gradeup was ultimately able to scale on high revenue-driving sources on Affle to increase return on app spend (ROAS) by 10%.

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