Advertising in Mobile Games

Did you know that… almost 150 million Americans play mobile games and the best way to reach them is through rewarded video ads?


Mobile games and their use in the US is more common than you would think. About 65% of American adults play video games, and the majority use their smartphones to do this. 

If you thought gamers were only 14-year-old teenage boys, you thought wrong. The use of mobile games has risen in recent years, and will most likely continue to grow, reaching a wide audience, from Boomers to Millenials. Mobile gamers actually make up almost 90% of digital gamers, which now encompasses all genders and generations, shifting beyond the younger audience to people of all ages. And they are, surprisingly, especially popular amongst women; in fact, almost half of today’s gamers in the US are women. What might also take you by surprise is the fact that mobile gaming is massively engaging users with brand ads, and what’s more is they are being positively received by the gaming community. 

So, with such a wide target audience, the key is for advertisers to know how to address them. Tapjoy’s recent research, titled “The Modern Mobile Gamer: Advertising Preferences Revealed” helps brands create a strong mobile gaming strategy for their adverts, by helping them to understand their target audience and reach out to them through appropriate games and apps. The report gives insight into the profile of modern US mobile gamers, their habits and their wants and needs. The trick to engaging with mobile gamers is to identify, not only the right games to use as an advertising platform, but also the right style of advert that is welcomed by gamers. Results showed that rewarded ads are the most popular, since they enable users to unlock premium content and free upgrades. Out of all rewarded ads, videos are their favourites. Funny videos and adverts for ‘Movies & Entertainment’ are among the most favoured content, followed by ads for ‘Food & Restaurants’, ‘Retailers’, ‘Fitness & Healthcare’, and ‘Local Services’; while ads displaying sexuality or celebrities definitely seem to be a no-go for gamers. 

Rewarded video ads are now extremely valuable not only for app developers, but also for brand advertisers and even for gamers themselves. The engagement rate of these ads definitely stands out and confirms this, showing that they may well be the best form of marketing strategy to consider in future for engagement with mobile users.

Stepping into the future with voice SEO

Did you know that.. there’s such a thing as voice SEO?


According to PwC, 65% of 25-49 year olds use voice assistants daily and with this ever-rising popularity in devices such as Amazon Echo, Google Assistant, Cortana and Siri, it makes sense that Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is now being carried out for voice searches. The optimisation of keywords and phrases for searches of this nature is now just as important (and could even soon be more important) than standard SEO for keyboard searches. Whilst it is true that most standard SEO techniques are still relevant since voice searches are converted into text before returning results, there are some key differences between keyboard searches and voice-activated searches that make voice SEO important to consider. 

Firstly, and perhaps most obviously, searches carried out using voice assistants are phrased differently to text-based or typed searches. When asking questions to voice assistant devices, users naturally use more conversational terms and phrases. This means it is important for businesses to ensure that their online content reflects this natural, conversational tone of voice, not only in terms of keywords but also in terms of semantics and context, in order to be returned as a relevant search result that answers users’ questions.

It is also important to note that the most common use of voice assistants is to search for local amenities, stores and businesses. The increasing use of voice search to find out what time the local takeaway shuts, or where the nearest hairdresser is, means that now is the time for businesses to focus on their local SEO. This can include making sure that they have an up to date “Google My Business” page as well as building up online reviews to increase visibility on Google Search and Maps, in turn, making them more likely to appear as a search result. 

Finally, don’t forget that when using voice search, users are often not returned a selection of results as they are with keyboard searches. Unless the voice assistant includes a screen, users expect a single, verbal response to their query. The most relevant option is selected by the voice assistant and if there is a “featured snippet” this will always be the result chosen to be read out. With this in mind, it is more important than ever to be aiming to reach that “Position Zero” on search results. 

With ComScore predicting 50% of all searches in 2020 to be voice-activated, and the BBC set to launch their own voice assistant, Beeb, next year, it is time to step into the future with voice SEO. For more advanced tips, check out Search Engine Watch‘s six essential factors to consider in voice search optimisation.

Interview with Fons Trompenaars

Our renowned advisory board member answers cross-cultural comms questions with years of experience and key insights.

Creative Culture is very proud to count Fons Trompenaars as one of its Advisory Board members. He is one of the leading figures in the world when it comes to cross-cultural management.

He has spent over 30 years helping Fortune 500 leaders solve and manage their business and cultural dilemmas to increase global effectiveness and performance.

Fons is internationally recognised for his work as a consultant, trainer and motivational speaker. He is the author of various books, including “Riding the Waves of Culture, Understanding Cultural Diversity in Business” which sold over 120,000 copies and has been translated into 16 languages.

Fons is regularly listed as one of the world’s most influential management speakers and has been awarded various prestigious international prizes for his work. He has been featured in Thinkers50, the well-known global ranking of management thinkers, since 2011 and was inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2017. This Hall of Fame salutes people  who have made a lasting and vital impact on how organisations are led and managed.

Today, Fons is sharing his thoughts on cross-cultural communications.

CC: Looking at the next ten years, what do you see as the key cultural challenges multinational companies will face in the future?

FT: I see two major challenges:

  1. There are ever-increasing definitions of diversity. Once, diversity could easily be categorized by nation, religion, gender, age groups.  Here’s an example: I was in Miami a couple of weeks ago and I saw a sign that read “We speak English here”.  However, this isn’t true, as plenty of people in Miami speak Spanish. Another example:  52% of people living in Amsterdam don’t have Dutch parents. We need to know these things and approach them appropriately to avoid all the wars we have around us – wars of religion, wars of cultural differentiation, gender, and generation. We have ways to digitally support cross-cultural communications. It is a complex challenge; for example, if a young Ghanaian male is talking to an older American female – what might cause a problem within their communications?  We need to reveal the dynamics between national culture, generation and gender. We need greater insights as to how to deal with those different categories and identities around the globe. We can’t do this with a ‘when in Rome, do as the Romans do’ mentality. Instead, we need to pay attention to segmenting target audiences and better understanding their behaviours.
  2. We need to get rid of the idea that opposite value sets are mutually exclusive. They can co-exist provided that multicultural teams know how to understand various values and perspectives. Dilemma thinking and learning to combine these sets of values is the future. While it can be perceived as counter-intuitive because it challenges our instincts, it is very effective in the multi-cultural environments that we have created.

CC: Why did you decide to join the Advisory Board of CC?

FT: The Advisory Board is composed of really interesting people, with great experience at an international level. I was also keen to offer some of my insights and experience to a younger player in the cross-cultural communications field. The more we are to raise awareness about the challenges and opportunities in the market, the better multinational companies will handle these subjects in the future.

CC: When you look at your own industry, organisation, career or clients – where do you feel the greatest potential lies to improve the understanding of cross-cultural communications?

FT: We need to be further aware of how much we are tunnelling ourselves in culturally biased models and paradigms. We need to go beyond them and apply dilemma thinking to all disciplines in which cultural differences play a role.

CC: What would you like to see the Advisory Board develop further and how might it add more value?

FT: A keen interest in developing CC as applying new ways of thinking in the international marketing and communication arena.

CC: From your own perspective, what would be the 3 do’s and don’ts of cross cultural communications?



  1. Self-awareness: we are all full of cultural biases and it is only by being conscious of them that we can be successful in a cross-cultural environment
  2. Intercultural competence development based on dilemma reconciliation (and combining opposite sets of values)
  3. Implementing implicit processes in organisations in order to communicate at a higher level (like combinations of high and low context approaches)


  1. One-way communication: sharing opposite values and point of views are the key to successful relationships
  2. Keeping cross-cultural intelligence at the conceptual level: practice makes perfect
  3. Practicing based on gut feel and ignoring basic theories