Facebook unveils App Event Optimization

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Competition is rife for mobile app developers, and many spend significant sums of money driving installs of their apps.

The world’s largest social network, Facebook, is one of the most popular marketing channels for app developers looking to drive installs of their apps, but getting consumers to install apps, while often costly, is not the biggest challenge they face.

Numerous studies confirm that many apps are never even used when installed, and those that are used tend to suffer from significant attrition. Just how big is the retention challenge? According to data from mobile intelligence firm Quettra, the average Android app loses nearly 80% of its daily active users after just three days. That number jumps to 95% after three months.

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In an effort to help app developers address the problem, Facebook has unveiled App Event Optimization, a new feature for its App Ads offering that allows app marketers to target their ads to users Facebook has identified as being more likely to take a specific action once they have installed an app.

According to Facebook, “The value of using app event optimization is that, beyond new installations for your app, you will also acquire people who are likely to take a specific action that is of value to your app or business. For example, if it is important that people make purchases in your app, then you can optimize for the add to cart event with your mobile app install ads.”

App Event Optimization supports 14 app events, including App Launched, Added Payment Info, Completed Registration, Rated, Spent Credits, Unlocked Achievement and Viewed Content. Facebook gathers data on these events when app developers integrate App Events into their apps using Facebook Analytics for Apps. App developers must integrate App Events before they can use App Event Optimization.

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As with App Ads optimization for installs, which focuses on targeting ads to users most likely to install an app, App Ads that use App Event Optimization are charged on an impression basis.

Understanding users is crucial to mobile success

App Event Optimization is a powerful tool for app developers, but to get the most out it, developers must first develop a good understanding of their users.

While some of the events Facebook can target are in an of themselves KPIs, as it relates to retention, for instance, app developers must first correlate retention with the events Facebook can track. Additionally, app developers may also find value in calculating the lifetime value of users who perform certain actions.

With that data, developers can not only target the right events with App Event Optimization, but implement sensible bidding strategies.

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