Amplify SF 2023: AI Takes Center Stage
As August began winding to a close, a slew of gaming and non-gaming app publishers descended upon the tech-centric metropolis of San Francisco. They convened at the LUMA Hotel, a new, ultra-modern vacation spot that doubles as a welcoming convention hub. At Amplify SF 2023, AI advancements took center stage, and we also curated content for gaming and non-gaming clients.
Here’s a playback of the day and some of the incredible insights that came from it.
Amplify SF Opening remarks with Idil Canal
The day began with insights from Idil Canal, AppLovin’s General Manager of Ad Tech. Canal reflected on her previous talk at Amplify Berlin, emphasizing how AI has significantly impacted the ad tech landscape. She specifically discussed AppLovin’s four-year journey in AI, contributing to its robust user acquisition platform, AppDiscovery.
AI advancements in AppDiscovery with Hussein and Alex
AppLovin gaming and non-gaming growth experts Hussein Zayan and Alex Li walked us through the latest AI advancements that are accelerating substantial growth for our customers. But first, they set up the conversation by addressing challenges in the industry that led us to this point, namely:
Lengthy learning phases: Learning periods can take roughly 6-8 weeks to optimize signal towards the KPIs your business depends on.
Expensive testing: This, combined with inefficient and costly testing budgets, can make positive ROIs much more difficult to achieve.
Scaling with confidence: Even after performance began trending in the right direction, advertisers can find it difficult to drive significant volume to achieve growth.
AppDiscovery implemented new AI advancements to address these industry challenges that took on two big pain points for our advertisers: Speed and Adaptability and Scale and Automation.
This all culminated in some great success stories from developers like Goodroid, DealDash, and Peak, and a summary of the advice they are giving to advertisers looking to capitalize on the latest AI efficiencies for their UA campaigns with AppDiscovery:
- Set realistic goals
- Adjust campaigns for global geo coverage
- Eliminate capping
- Set a global and open budget
- Try a multi-campaign type approach (Ad ROAS, IAP ROAS, Blended ROAS)
Captivating AI-driven creatives with SparkLabs
Next, we heard from Jessica Dolan (Director) and Mike Cruz (Director of Creative operations) from AppLovin’s in-house creative team SparkLabs. They showcased AI for marketing and how far artificial intelligence has come in the industry, from the “early days” (circa 2017) of TTS-based generative AI like play.ht, to the cultural phenomenon brought on by AI art and text platforms like Dall-E, MidJourney, and ChatGPT.
They spoke of the importance of keeping up with these ever-changing trends in AI as a business solution, as they are certain to become a fixture across all industries, and how SparkLabs is putting AI to use to see already incredible results.
They went on to list the benefits of using AI for static and dynamic ad creatives:
- Higher production output, less budget
- Increased efficiency
- Optimized production pipeline
- Smart, data-driven editing
These benefits proved true for popular apps like Picsart, Wordscapes, Project Makeover, and more, all of which are seeing their production costs lower and creative output soar thanks to implementing AI in their creative ad strategy.
Gaming and Non-Gaming roundtable sessions
The middle of the day was devoted to offering attendees an unprecedented opportunity to dive deep into specific topics via a series of roundtable sessions split between gaming and non-gaming tracks. Here’s a snapshot of some of these discussions:
- Top-of-mind Challenges for Gaming Leaders – Hussein Zayan
Hussein led a nuanced discussion about the state of the gaming industry, focusing on the impact of AI, quarterly requirements, and collaboration with AppLovin.
- Harmonizing IAP and In-App Ad Strategies – Saloni Gangal
Go more in-depth with Saloni on the harmony of IAP and IAA here.
- How You’re Solving for Measurement – Andrey Kazakov (VP Demand & Non-Gaming)
Andrey and his table discussed challenges and strategies around measuring performance, emphasizing UA strategy, LTV, and privacy issues.
- Exploring New Channels of UA Growth – Alex Li
This session focused on expanding UA growth channels beyond the traditional routes, covering areas like CTV and preload strategies.
- Making the Most of Campaign Optimizations – Kris Nyberg
Kris Nyberg explored optimizing campaign types and user flows, especially in the context of different platforms.
Idil & Scopely VP of UA Eric Ma on Monopoly GO!
Our final panel of the day came when Idil Canal sat down with Eric Ma, Senior VP of User Acquisition at popular mobile game studio Scopely, to chat through how Scopely is achieving stronger UA and testing different strategies to create the best possible pathways toward success for all of their titles.
This manifested itself in the wild success of their title Monopoly GO!, which has been recently named one of the most popular apps of 2023.
Regarding the success of Monopoly GO!, Eric credits the game’s deeply social nature and the emotional appeal of the Monopoly brand. Challenges in scaling the game were met through data-driven approaches and strategic partnerships. AppLovin’s AI-driven tools have played an important role in Scopely, enabling more efficient marketing spend and rapid scaling. Eric advises other developers to focus on product KPIs, understanding social density, and thoughtful optimization events for long-term success.
Amplify SF comes to a close
Throughout the entirety of the day, there were breaks for lunch, coffee, and connecting with one another. After the final panel with Idil and Eric, attendees were welcomed to an exciting night at the SF Giants – Atlanta Braves game at Oracle Park.
It was another fun, insightful, and unforgettable Amplify for us and our amazing partners, and we deeply look forward to the next time we see them (and you!) at our next Amplify event.