Ask the Developer: GMO Media on boosting revenue 30% with native video ads

Tatsuo Sakamoto
Apr 13, 2018

AppLovin is a global brand and platform, which means we have the opportunity to work with developers from different markets all around the world. In our Ask the Developer series, we speak with developers to learn their strategies, best practices, and expert insights.

GMO Media’s prepics (iOS | Android) is a wildly popular app among junior high and high school girls in Japan. It’s part of a social network called Prican which has been around for over 11 years. Prepics lets users communicate via customizable photos and images. And much like developer GOODROID, GMO Media is using native video ads with good results.

We spoke with Marino Suzuki, Community Media Division Leader of GMO Media, to talk about prepics’ monetization strategy.

AppLovin GMO Media

How does prepics monetize? What monetization method has worked best?

We monetize primarily with both programmatic ads and direct relationship advertising with partners. The design of the app, including the positioning of the ad units, has not seen any significant changes since it was updated three years ago. We generally tune the existing ad placement by testing several ad network operators and checking their levels of performance, or by trying new formats such as native video advertisements.

(Editor’s note: Native video ads are video ads that are presented in the native format. For example, a user scrolling through their feed will see video ads integrated into the timeline. This type of ad format is particularly popular in Japan and expected to grow globally.)

Of all the different ad types, why did GMO Media decide to implement native video ads?

We take extra care not to disturb the user’s in-app experience with ads. Using native video ads allows us to show advertisements in a natural way that’s best suited to our users’ needs, and we decided to implement them based on the assumption that we could increase our advertising effectiveness.

What kind of effect did you see as a result of implementing native video ads?


By implementing AppLovin’s native video advertisements, we saw an 11% increase in revenue on iOS and a 30% increase on Android compared to when the app was just using banner and interstitial video ads. We believe that not obstructing the user experience and distributing highly effective native video ads led to the increase in revenue.

Lastly, what are your plans for GMO Media?

We have started to conduct surveys and interviews with our users to find out the latest trends. We’ve received great feedback about our studies and some companies have reached out to request that we conduct market research for them. We hope to conduct more of these studies to provide insight about the latest trends among teenagers.

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