Personalizing Player Touchpoints for 5x Better Results

Game developers strive to give players a memorable experience and, at the same time, need to monetize to bring in revenue. It can be a tricky balance to navigate between providing an optimal player experience while also effectively monetizing and attracting players.

Personalization throughout the player experience, especially when combined with data-driven strategy, is one way to increase revenue per message while delivering a better experience.

Before we dive into specific personalization strategies you can use, let’s start by exploring what personalization is.

Climbing the personalization ladder

Based on our work with game studios of all shapes and sizes, we’ve put together a Gaming Insights Data Science Report where we were able to identify four distinct levels of personalization and the effects on player engagement as you move through each level.

Demographic segmentation

The first level of personalization is a strategy many people are familiar with: demographic segmentation. This involves segmenting your audience based on one or more attributes from player profile data. Some of Leanplum’s clients can get as detailed as 2,000 user profile attributes!

Behavioral segmentation

The next personalization level is segmenting your audience by behavior. Behavioral segmentation has been proven to visibly increase your ROI by as much as double the revenue per message compared to demographic segmentation.

With behavioral segmentation, you can see behaviors by recency and frequency to compare a player’s lifetime value with their recent spend. Reviewing recent spend is especially helpful in predicting whether a player’s more apt to buy now and getting insights into their game preferences.

​​Leanplum has industry-leading behavioral segmentation capabilities, including recency and frequency segmentation with aggregations. For example, you can identify the players who previously spent over $100 a month, but have only spent less than $10 in the past two weeks.

Behavior-triggered delivery and in-app messaging

Even more powerful than behavioral segmentation is the ability to deliver in-app messages based on behavioral triggers, impacting the player journey in real-time. For example, you can follow up a bundle purchase with an offer for another bundle.

As we’ve seen through behavioral segmentation, recency can help you gauge whether or not a player would be keen to make a purchase now. By adding in the ability to affect the player experience in real-time through in-app messages, you can increase the revenue per message even more.

We have the most powerful out-of-the-box triggers on the market. For instance, you can send defeat offers to players who fail a level for the third time. You can A/B test these and even interconnect dozens of in-app messages and variables that control the gameplay and the store to deliver entire live events.

Message content personalization

Finally, you have content personalization. Content personalization deals with what’s being relayed to your players and customizing the content of your messages with identifying attributes, such as the player’s username or coin total. From the player’s perspective, the content feels individualized and custom-tailored to them.

Using all the layers of personalization combined, you can see a 3x increase in revenue per message. As you increase your level of personalization throughout the player journey by analyzing their behavior in the moment and engaging them with personalized content, you can improve your opportunities and overall monetization success — all while taking the player on a more meaningful, customized journey.

Personalization in action

Let’s take a look at ways to apply personalization throughout your player journey with examples from one of our longstanding clients, Sébastien Borget, COO and co-founder at Pixowl.

Lifecycle marketing

You can use CRM and lifecycle marketing to engage (or re-engage) players and maximize the player lifecycle.

Pixowl was able to engage players both inside and outside the app. They used social media campaigns, leveraging players’ game interests to show relevant social media content to them. They also used in-app messages to run contests that encouraged players to participate in social media campaigns that built their community and drew more players into the game.

LiveOps events

You can enhance the effectiveness of your LiveOps events and promotions through in-app messaging, push notifications, and emails.

In Pixowl’s case, in-app messaging helped one campaign produce the highest conversion rates. Running LiveOps events constantly in their city builder games, they found that extra care needs to be taken in communicating events to players. Pixowl saw a notable increase in player participation when combining in-app messages and push notifications for announcing when events begin. This combination helped them reach out to players who disabled push notifications on their phones.

Remote configuration of the in-game experience

By connecting with in-house back-end systems, Leanplum enables developers to control any aspect of the game by personalizing individual player configurations with A/B testing, segmentation, and personalization. You can apply this to managing campaign displays and even use it to affect gameplay, such as difficulty levels and rewards.

Pixowl used remote configuration to convert highly engaged players into paying players. They identified a segment of Snoopy’s Town Tale users who regularly participated in monthly events, but never made purchases. Using in-app messages to target this group with special discount offers or enhanced game packs, they encouraged these players to make their first in-app purchase.

Personalization made easy

A more personalized player experience benefits everyone by not only improving the player journey and increasing engagement, but also increasing monetization opportunities.

With so many variables to consider, personalization can sound like a daunting challenge that requires special skills and resources.

However, Leanplum’s goal is to make this as simple as possible with a user-friendly platform that allows you to personalize, test, and iterate enhancements to the player journey without requiring heavy developer resources.

Want to learn more? Check out some of our additional resources:

For app-first companies, Leanplum is the only solution that helps personalize and optimize all customer touchpoints, both inside and outside the app. Leanplum combines multi-channel Lifecycle Marketing with the ability to A/B test the Product Experience for complete, end-to-end personalization of the mobile journey. Break down organizational silos and eliminate point solutions to enable rapid growth.