Social casino game-maker Product Madness says it’s beating the wider industry downturn by diving deeper into player data and syncing UA campaigns with brand marketing.
Where other firms targeting high value players have been hit hard by platform privacy policies, Product Madness VP of strategy, bizdev and head of Madness Ventures Zvika Pakula says his company has “beat the market”.
A peek at the firm’s Appmagic numbers suggests that Product Madness revenue has mostly held up after a big COVID bump in early 2020. Monthly revenue hovered around $35-40m for much of 2021 and the first half of 2022, though these numbers softened at the back end of last year.
“The policies that came from Apple and then Google made a big impact on the industry for sure,” Pakula told us. “But I will say that in order to cope with it, you need to develop more data analytics capabilities – and this is why when you’re a relatively new game or a new studio, this would be a barrier.”
“The second thing we’ve had is more brand-related media buying, like TV campaigns, measured and aligned with user acquisition,” Pakula continued. “When you have mature games like we have, a lot of it is engagement with existing users and how this kind of media activity impacts the existing users. And a lot of it is in the products themselves.”
“It’s not one silver bullet that gives you the ability to cope with it,” he continues. “one is having more sophisticated UA and the second is to build more capabilities to manage the games in a more segmented and more engaged way. It’s a full philosophy – this combination gives us the ability to beat the market.”
Where local rival Playtika is halting new game launches until the market recovers, Product Madness continues to rigorously test and tweak new titles, but will release them only when they are confident of success.
Pakula says a new game takes “two to three years” to develop, test and launch, and Product Madness has multiple games in development through its internal teams. It also has its Ventures arm, which helps bring other developers’ “luck-based” games to market.
“This is the philosophy that we’ve been using the last two years,” continues Pakula. “So I think when we came to this current market, we already had is approach and philosophy in place – it has not changed.”
Where some mobile firms like Scopely and Playtika have used off-platform webshops to dodge Apple and Google’s 30%, Pakula says it’s not a signifiant part of Product Madness’ business yet. But it could be if Apple and Google are forced to open up their stores.
“This is will be driven by more environment change,” he says. “It will be very helpful if the pressure from the regulators continues because it’s like a closed garden and you are locked within it.”