High Impact Creatives, Mobile App Growth

Ad Creative AI with SparkLabs: Key Insights

Doug Borghese
Oct 5, 2023

SparkLabs — AppLovin’s in-house creative team — shared how they’re growing their usage of AI technology to help produce winning ad creatives during our Amplify events in 2023. Ad creative AI tools are helping them level up their creative operations and drive deeper creativity while saving massive amounts of time in iterating and testing different ads.

Here is a summary of what they shared with some of the world’s leading publishers at Amplify this year.

Benefits of ad creative AI in marketing

AI is already having a substantial effect on marketing. It’s not hard to understand why.

  • Faster, informed content generation and decision-making: Not only can AI whip up nearly endless content iterations, it can also analyze the performance once it goes to market and optimize future strategic decisions for that content in real time when it launches.
  • Automation over repetition: AI increases efficiency by cutting out repetitive manual tasks across multiple processes, eliminating resource drain in favor of automated task completion.
  • Improved marketing ROI: AI tools can also help you learn and distill customer insights and find the optimal channels to run your AI-fronted campaigns, resulting in a much better return on investment for your different marketing campaigns and initiatives.

Ad creative AI in practice

Here’s an example of a video ad from a CTV campaign for Lion Studios’ hit game Wordle!, created by SparkLabs and shared at Amplify Barcelona and San Francisco:

Along with some live-action footage, a combination of AI tools was used to create this video ad.

Iterating across these different tools allowed SparkLabs to test various voice, video, music, art, and animation styles quickly for fast marketability testing of multiple variations of ads.

The video above led to the highest install rates in this particular CTV campaign, accounting for a 6.3% lift over, and equal ROAS with, the previous top performer.

Answering your burning questions

At Amplify, the audience had some great questions on the best way to apply AI to their own creative and marketing processes. Below are the main takeaways from that discussion.  

  • Best practices when using AI – Generative AI is so new that the legal frameworks for using it are still being drawn. For SparkLabs, it’s important to use tools that are cleared for commercial use. Additionally, we use AI tools for inspiration and/or edits, and avoid using 100% of the raw output.
  • AI should not take the place of humans – The truth of the matter is AI has limited utility without a human co-pilot. Direction from humans is necessary to get the output you need. Furthermore, not experimenting and testing with AI leaves you one step behind in industry innovation. Stay future-forward; try AI.
  • AI accelerates concept ideation to launch time: Sparklabs injects AI into different parts of the production workflow to reduce operational inefficiencies, allowing for more rapid marketability testing and acting as an idea-to-reality generator for creatives that still require a human touch and industry expertise.

Additional advice for effective AI usage

So, how did SparkLabs quickly and effectively test and launch high-performing ads like the one shared in the previous section? Here’s their advice:

  • Hone your prompt chops – Learn the “language” of your AI tool (don’t worry, it isn’t overly difficult!), provide plenty of context, and iterate.
  • Give AI time to learn – Getting the right output depends on how often and how specifically you use some of these tools; keep at it, and you’ll eventually be spinning gold.
  • EXPERIMENT – Twist all the knobs and press all the buttons; learn what works, and don’t be afraid to break and rebuild things. Invest a little time now to learn how to use these AI tools, and you’ll reap the benefits later
  • Work with SparkLabs! – SparkLabs is an AI-enhanced creative team helping brands across the globe achieve higher user engagement and acquisition with data-driven, trend-setting ad creatives. Speak with your AppDiscovery representative to get started with the best mobile and CTV ad campaigns in the market, and learn more here!
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