The days are slowly getting longer and the sun is extending its stay; spring is almost here. The longer days and warmer temps are highly coveted during the cold winter months, but the beginning of spring brings another excitement for many — March Madness. Last year, the annual NCAA college basketball tournament reached over 97 million US viewers, 180 countries, and hit a 28 percent increase in streams on mobile devices.¹ Cyclical events like March Madness often hit a sweet spot for entertainment and streaming apps. Even the Super Bowl at the beginning of this month, which had a decrease in viewers from 2018, saw a 31 percent increase in people streaming the game.² While popular sporting events continue to increase viewership, specifically on mobile, how can marketers strategize around these hit entertainment events to drive conversions and downstream events?

Consumer spend on entertainment apps is expected to grow by 520 percent by the end of 2019, due to in-app subscriptions in video streaming apps. Cyclical events are a driving force behind the growth of ad spend in the entertainment vertical, because where there are eyes, the ad dollars will follow. More mobile viewers tuning in to events like the Super Bowl, March Madness, the World Cup, you name it, are driving increased engagement with these streaming apps, and should be key audiences for marketers to target.³

Leading up to March Madness, plan your UA spend around the event, and continuously increase your budget during the tournament. Budget increases during these big events help drive more users to your app, so hit them with ads while they are searching for an app to stream the games. For example, we drove an increase of 4x traffic volume for a typical weekend featuring an NCAA football playoff game while working with a popular streaming app. Remember to strategically use keywords in your Search Ads, product page, and promotional text relevant to what users will be searching for in relation to this event. Making your product page more playful with an updated seasonal app icon, screenshots, and copy can also drive conversions by increasing your likelihood of getting featured in the App Store. In addition, consider giving users a free trial to encourage more subscriptions for the remainder of the tournament. Include these deals in your promotional text to further entice users.

Before you fill out your bracket, plan your marketing strategy around cyclical events like March Madness to fully take advantage of the increase in mobile viewers. Hitting these streaming-heavy events, and increasing your budget to do so, will drive more conversions and downstream events. Interested in refocusing your mobile marketing efforts? Get in touch with the mobile experts of AdAction today!

Sources:
1. https://www.ncaa.com/news/basketball-men/article/2018-04-13/2018-ncaa-tournament-and-final-four-viewership-attendance
2. https://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/wireStory/super-bowl-reaches-1007-million-viewers-2018-60840719
3. https://www.appannie.com/en/insights/market-data/2019-in-mobile-5-things-to-know

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