After two years of cancellations and postponement, the biggest event in mobile finally took place in Las Vegas, Nevada on June 6th 2022. Mobile Apps Unlocked (MAU) is the world's leading mobile growth marketing summit. The event brings the entire mobile apps ecosystem together for three days of networking, educational sessions, and live on-stage panels from industry leaders to share the latest trends and strategies in mobile growth. The all-female US YouAppi team combined with leadership from Israel convened in Sin City with a voracious appetite to drop some retargeting knowledge, learn from the sessions, and host meetings for the three long days and nights of MAU. But let's not forget the not-so-secret agenda of MAU... the EVENTS! Between the many meetings and sessions, the team hosted five events including a Tropic like it's Hot Cabana Kickoff, an exclusive VIP private Chef’s table dinner at Scarpetta, a rooftop happy hour under the Effiel Tower at Beer Park, a Good Day Sunshine cabana activation with our mobile friends at Adjust, and the crowd favorite, the Women in Leader(sip) brunch!
There is no question that MAU 2022 was full of mobile leaders. We overheard some interesting topics emerge during the panels and one on one discussions. To our surprise, user acquisition took a backseat. Growth folks were interested in talking about retargeting strategies and getting down to business to learn about what strategy makes the most sense for their brand. Retargeting has been a hot topic lately knowing that 25% of apps are uninstalled after just one launch. Statistics are nice but we noticed firsthand that many companies understand the importance of starting these campaigns earlier rather than later in their marketing initiatives. The foothold of many conversations was learning how to optimize retargeting strategies early in the game to retain top users at the beginning of their journey. Developers are no longer taking a back seat when it comes to gaining back lapsed users and are focused on retaining them early in their life cycle.
What kind of Vegas conference would it be if we didn't talk casinos? Casino games were making their bets throughout many of our conversations. Who doesn't love a good gamble? Casino games continue to grow in popularity and as regulations have been loosened around these practices, we're going to start seeing more sports betting apps double down in the app stores. Sports betting has been popular for quite some time, nearly doubling in popularity in 2021. However many casinos aren’t backing these apps just yet, but rather other app developers are developing these games on their behalf. It will be interesting to see if casinos will take the lead in creating these games alongside app developers and betting on becoming bigger players in gaming.
There’s always something new developing at Apple, and the talk of the new iOS 16 update was sprinkled throughout MAU. The new update will include new notification features as well as updates to messaging and the iPhone interface. But will these updates affect app marketers? After lots of discussions during the conference, it doesn’t seem like these updates will have a material impact on our retargeting or user acquisition campaigns. But in 2022, it’s always better to be prepared just in case. As for the iOS 14.5 updates, we are still seeing better than industry average results even with the ATT opt-in messaging!
iOS changes and the rise of privacy settings within apps have pushed many developers to focus on creatives and messaging. We overheard so many conversations brainstorming new ways to grab the attention of users including videos, gifs as well as popular social channels such as TikTok for their ads. We also heard that many are relying on influencers to draw brand awareness and attention to new features. These different tactics are extremely important when staying relevant in this ever-changing industry. Companies like Craftsman+ are killing it in providing creatives as a solution. Playable ads, rich media, and multi-variant testing creatives and messaging were such a hot topic. Asking for a friend, how many creatives does it take to get to the center of a user's mind?
Welcome Cabana Mixer with KIMARU
To kick off the conference, YouAppi hosted a welcome Cabana mixer with our friends at KIMARU. We beat the heat with cold drinks, lively conversations and of course, a few people ended up jumping in the private pool after saying hello to the team. Additionally, in true Vegas spirit, the team handed out poker chip giveaways along with a raffle entry for our guests to win big!
VIP Scarpetta Dinner
In the luxurious Cosmopolitan Hotel, YouAppi hosted a handful of our friends and clients for dinner at Scarpetta. Our guests enjoyed the private Chef’s Table and a wide variety of delicious Italian cuisine. The Chef’s table is an immersive private dining experience centered in timeless Italian tradition. Nestled between a spectacular display of the famous fountains and open view of Scarpetta’s bustling kitchen, the intimate VIP table was the perfect way to end day one of MAU.
Along with 12 top mobile sponsors, YouAppi joined the Five O’Clock Group at TopGolf Las Vegas for a privately held happy hour that took up most of the second floor. Mobile friends enjoyed drinks and a BBQ spread, while they hit some golf balls at their bay stations. The 150 guests rounded out the event with an organized competition, complete with prize money awarded to the top performing golfer.
Cabana Activation with Adjust
Good day, Sunshine! On day two of MAU, the temperatures soared to an even hundred, making our cabana the perfect place to reset, cool off and enjoy company before the sessions kicked off. With Tito’s as a sponsor, our guests enjoyed infused cucumber cocktails as well as fresh fruits and vegetables to fuel themselves for the rest of the afternoon. Tito’s branded swag items of bandanas, drink coozies, stickers and coasters were on display throughout the cabana, next to branded sunscreen and cute iridescent visors.
Beer Park Happy Hour
As much fun as the MGM is, it felt good to get out and enjoy new scenery on the beautiful Las Vegas Strip! Beer Park is a rooftop sports-bar complete with fans and misters to ensure that guests are not bothered by the weather while watching their favorite teams compete. We were joined by 30 other MAU attendees on Tuesday to take a break from the conference floor and enjoy mobile-themed drinks and eats while the Bellagio fountains performed their synchronized dance.
Women in Leader(sip) Brunch
Deemed the most popular event that YouAppi produced at MAU, the Women in Leader(sip) brunch was the perfect way to begin the last day of the conference. With over 100 women registering, this event brought together female professionals for stimulating business conversation, photobooth opportunities and of course, delicious charcuterie to graze while they customized their drinks at the hosted bloody mary bar.
Takeaways from MAU 2022
MAU looked a little different this year with more MAU-sponsored cabanas, dinners, parties, and happy hours than past years. The conference had great production value and after nearly three years since MAU 2019, they definitely came back with a BANG! It goes without saying that for the Mobile OGs and those new to MAU, the energy in each room was palpable. We have all been waiting with bated breath for MAU to happen again. Each event that YouAppi participated in had a palpable, unique feel; making the conference experience extremely well-rounded. MAU 2022 was a vibe and we are looking forward to next year and more in-person events to come in 2022!