For mobile game marketers, mobile retargeting on CTV channels is fast-emerging as an innovative and effective avenue for re-engaging top players.

According to eMarketer, US CTV programmatic display ad spend will reach $24.44 billion in 2024. This will represent 23.1% growth over 2023 spend.

What’s more, an increasing amount of CTV ad dollars are going to upfronts, a series of presentations made by major TV players to draw advertiser commitments. Historically, TV upfronts have been a key indicator of advertising spend trends. However, in recent years, traditional linear TV Upfronts have seen a decline in relevance as advertisers seek more flexibility in their video ad budgets, and focus more spend on CTV.

Advertisers spent $8.66 billion on Upfront CTV video ads during the 2023 season. This is projected to rise to $11.76 billion in 2024. Altogether, Upfront CTV spend is forecast to make up about 40% of all CTV spend.

CTV Advertising: A Game-changer for Mobile Games

There is significant overlap between gaming and CTV audiences. In fact, according to AdExchanger, 73% of gamers rely mostly on streaming services like CTV for their television viewing — versus linear TV channels. This has created a "CTV imperative" for game developers to reach a highly engaged gaming audience.

What’s more, nearly 70% of CTV content consumers play video games on a regular basis. While this does not isolate mobile gamers in particular, it does show an affinity for games in general across CTV audiences.

CTV for Mobile Retargeting Campaigns

Because of a large overlap between gaming and CTV audiences, there is great value in retargeting on CTV channels.

According to Verve Group, retargeting on CTV earns 12x higher engagement than non-CTV channels. It also costs 32.2% less to re-engage lapsed gamers and achieves a 13x higher ROAS than other channels.

The Benefits of CTV Retargeting for Mobile Games

  • Showcase on the Big Screen: CTV advertising allows mobile game apps to showcase stunning graphics and gameplay on bigger screens. This captivates users and increases the likelihood of users re-engaging with the app.
  • Optimize Revenue Opportunities: CTV advertising offers revenue optimization strategies with ad formats that facilitate in-app purchases or subscriptions being seamlessly integrated into CTV campaigns.
  • Cost-effective Targeting: While the average CPM (cost-per-thousand impressions) for CTV advertising can range from $35 to $65 (which is higher than the median CPM for linear TV ads which falls between $10-$15); targeting capabilities and completion rates are higher. This means higher CPMs are offset by more powerful targeting and engagement capabilities, driving app installs and revenue and making CTV ads a cost-effective option for mobile game marketers.

A Mobile Game CTV Retargeting Case Study

YouAppi's CTV retargeting product has already demonstrated remarkable success in the field, as illustrated by our recent case study in the US mobile gaming market. Faced with the challenge of re-engaging inactive users amid intense market competition, a gaming app client in the classic card game vertical turned to YouAppi's innovative solution for help.

Challenge: The client needed to bridge the gap between mobile and CTV, targeting their inactive mobile players on CTV channels at a competitive rate. The client’s KPIs included a return on investment (ROI) goal by Day 7 of the campaign and an average cost per registration (CPR) goal.

Solution: Leveraging the power of YouAppi's CTV App Sync, we implemented a strategy focused on cross-screen tracking and data-driven insights. This approach enabled us to capture the attention of inactive users on the big screen and successfully re-engage them on mobile. To do this, our team targeted 3-30 day inactive users with the app installed using first party data.


Campaign in Numbers:

  1. Increased unique app reopens by more than 15%
  2. Delivered excellent D7 ROI of more than 230%
  3. ROI delivered was 450% over client’s initial benchmarks

Other Benefits:

  1. Audience Reengagement Across Screens: Our CTV ads were highly successful in re-engaging inactive audiences, demonstrating CTV's effectiveness in attracting attention and leading to measurable impacts on mobile app performance.
  2. Real-Time Cross-Screen Optimization: The campaign leveraged real-time insights to measure impact and effectiveness, allowing for dynamic adjustments and optimizations to maximize results.

This case study exemplifies the strength of YouAppi's CTV retargeting product in re-engaging audiences across screens and the product's ability to scale app performance rapidly.


CTV advertising is proving to be an invaluable strategy for mobile game marketers, offering a unique opportunity to captivate a highly engaged audience where traditional methods are losing ground. With CTV programmatic ad spend on the rise and a significant overlap between CTV audiences and gamers, mobile games can achieve unparalleled visibility and engagement by tapping into CTV channels.

  • Rapid Growth in CTV Ad Spend: US CTV programmatic display ad spend is projected to hit $24.44 billion in 2024, marking a significant 23.1% increase from the previous year.
  • Gaming and CTV Audience Overlap: A striking 73% of gamers predominantly use streaming services over linear TV, and nearly 70% of CTV consumers regularly play video games, highlighting the deep connection between these audiences.
  • Enhanced Engagement Through Retargeting: CTV retargeting boasts 12 times higher engagement than non-CTV channels, costs 32.2% less for re-engaging lapsed gamers, and achieves 13 times higher ROAS.

The advantages of CTV advertising for mobile games include the ability to showcase immersive game visuals on larger screens, optimize revenue through strategic ad formats, and achieve cost-effective targeting despite higher CPMs.

Transform Your Mobile Game with YouAppi's CTV Retargeting Solution

Elevate your mobile game to new heights by leveraging YouAppi's advanced CTV retargeting solution. Our strategy has proven to re-engage audiences effectively, drastically improve app performance, and significantly enhance ROI.

  • Bridge Mobile and CTV: Successfully re-engage inactive mobile audiences on CTV without compromising on privacy or frequency capping.
  • Substantial ROI Increases: Experience up to 235% improvement in ROI and a 55-60% increase in app reopens in less than 24 hours.
  • Audience Reengagement Across Screens: Our CTV ads have demonstrated exceptional success in captivating inactive audiences and driving significant mobile app re-engagement.

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