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1
Lifetime Value
The long tail of mid-core mobile games
1
S A N F R A N C I S CO 2 0 1 7 | # G D C 1 7
Tammy Levy
Director...
Publishing 2
Director of Mobile Product
Tamara Levy
Publishing 3
Kongregate
Web Platform
100,000+ Uploaded Games
Mobile Publisher
30+ Games
100M+ Downloads
4
Games that grow
The two ends of the funnel
Publishing 5
Build Games That Can Grow
Goal: ROI Positive
Higher LTV
Strong Game Mechanics
Lower CPI
Approachable Art
Posi...
Publishing
UA Costs by Theme and Genre
CPI widely vary based on the game’s theme theme, art style and genre
Casual: Low CP...
Publishing
UA Costs by Theme and Genre
CPI widely vary based on the game’s theme theme, art style and genre
Known IPs: Low...
7
Core design decisions drive core KPIs
(There are always exceptions)
Incremental / Clicker
AdCap
RTS
Star Squad
CCG & RPG...
8
KPIs by Genre
Mode: most frequent behavior
genre # of games d1 d7 d30 aprdau
ltv (180
days)
CCG & RPG 7+ 35% 10% 3% $0.3...
8
KPIs by Genre
Mode: most frequent behavior
genre # of games d1 d7 d30 aprdau
ltv (180
days)
CCG & RPG 7+ 35% 10% 3% $0.3...
8
KPIs by Genre
Mode: most frequent behavior
genre # of games d1 d7 d30 aprdau
ltv (180
days)
CCG & RPG 7+ 35% 10% 3% $0.3...
8
KPIs by Genre
Mode: most frequent behavior
genre # of games d1 d7 d30 aprdau
ltv (180
days)
CCG & RPG 7+ 35% 10% 3% $0.3...
Publishing 9
Impressions
Installs
Return Rate
Early Retention
Elder Engagement
LTV
Funnel Optimization
Every step matters
Publishing
Funnel Optimization
Every step matters
10
Impressions
Installs
Return Rate
Early Retention
Elder Engagement
LTV
11
Looking beyond early KPIs
After all, LTV is lifetime value
12
Player Retention
12
Time in Game
retention
13
Early Retention
Comparison: Raid Brigade has much stronger d1-d7 retention
13
Raid Brigade
Tyrant
Unleashed
genre ARPG ...
Publishing 14
Elder Retention
Looking beyond d30
Raid Brigade
Halves every 30 day period
8% retained from d30 to d180
45%
...
Publishing 15
Elder Retention
Looking beyond d30
Tyrant Unleashed
Similar starting point (d30)
Players who retain after d3...
Publishing 16
Looking Beyond
d1 - d30 doesn’t tell the whole story
Raid Brigade
d1 = 36%
d180 = 0.24%
Tyrant Unleashed
d1 ...
17
Look beyond d30
17
18
Lifetime Spend
18
Desire to Spend
arpdau
19
Lifetime Spend
Comparison: Tyrant’s LTV is more than double
19
Raid Brigade
Tyrant
Unleashed
genre ARPG CCG
d1 36% 22%
...
Publishing 20
Comparing d30 LTV
Tyrant 10% higher due to stronger ARPDAU
Publishing 20
Comparing d30 LTV
Tyrant 10% higher due to stronger ARPDAU
$1.56
$1.42
Publishing 21
Comparing d180 LTV
Tyrant LTV grows faster
$4.71
$1.97
Publishing 22
Rate of Growth
Slope => How fast does LTV grow?
Publishing 22
Rate of Growth
Slope => How fast does LTV grow?
1. Linear Regression
2. Slope
Publishing 22
Rate of Growth
Slope => How fast does LTV grow?
slope =
0.005
1. Linear Regression
2. Slope
or just use exce...
Publishing 23
Rate of Growth
The longer players stay => the larger their investment
slope =
0.02
Publishing 24
Comparing Growth
Tyrant Unleashed vs. Raid Brigade
slope =
0.02
slope =
0.005
Publishing 25
Comparing d180 LTV
Different games, different growth patterns
CCG2
RPG
Idle
CCG1
CCG3
CCG1 3x CCG3
26
LTV Growth can accelerate after d30
26
27
Lifetime Value
27
* =
Player Value
ltv
Time in Game
retention
Desire to Spend
arpdau
Publishing 28
Projecting LTVs
Simple LTV calculation
Area under the retention curve
Player Lifetime
ARPDAU
Player Value by...
Publishing
Accuracy
Similar to retention
Use the monetization curve
29
Projecting LTVs
Use retention and monetization curv...
Publishing
Accuracy
Similar to retention
Use the monetization curve
29
Projecting LTVs
Use retention and monetization curv...
Publishing 30
Projecting LTVs
Daily revenue comes from players of all ages
Publishing 31
Projecting LTVs
Spend patterns vary by game and genre
Highest spend on d0
Some growth after d80
Upfront Spen...
Publishing
Flat ARPDAU
6 mo. LTV: $1.60
32
Projecting LTVs
Example A: Upfront Monetization
1
Publishing
Flat ARPDAU
6 mo. LTV: $1.60
32
Projecting LTVs
Example A: Upfront Monetization
ARPDAU Curve
6 mo. LTV: $1.36
1...
Publishing
Flat ARPDAU
6 mo. LTV: $2.02
33
Projecting LTVs
Example B: Deep Monetization
1
Publishing
Flat ARPDAU
6 mo. LTV: $2.02
33
Projecting LTVs
Example B: Deep Monetization
ARPDAU Curve
6 mo. LTV: $2.62
1
2
34
Spending curve to project LTVs
34
35
Live servicing is crucial
Maximizes long term KPIs
Publishing 36
Content Cadence
New content, regularly
Limited time packs and bundles
IncreaseIncrease
Publishing 36
Content Cadence
New content, regularly
Limited time packs and bundles Increase revenue baseline
IncreaseIncr...
Publishing
Higher price points offset fewer purchases
37
Target Different Player Types
Different approaches, similar lifts...
Publishing 38
Limited Time Events
Adding content without hurting core play modes
Publishing 38
Limited Time Events
Adding content without hurting core play modes
Publishing 38
Limited Time Events
Adding content without hurting core play modes
Publishing 39
Monetization Growth
Competitive Events: Players are more likely to monetize
Publishing 40
Servicing Elder Players
Live PvP released as one year celebration
Publishing 40
Servicing Elder Players
Live PvP released as one year celebration
Publishing 41
Long Term Retention
Look beyond d30
Key Takeaways
Projecting LTV
Use the spending curve for
more accurate LT...
Publishing 42
Thank you
@KongregateDevs
developers.kongregate.com/blog
tammy@kongregate.com
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GDC Talk: Lifetime Value: The long tail of Mid-Core games

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Are you maximizing the life in lifetime value? Using genre-specific predictive models developed from the Kongregate portfolio, we demonstrate how and why post-D30 retention can be key to increase your revenue. Through case studies, you'll learn strategies to boost both early and late revenue, as well as game core loop modifications to drive better player investment in the long run.

Published in: Data & Analytics
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GDC Talk: Lifetime Value: The long tail of Mid-Core games

  1. 1. 1 Lifetime Value The long tail of mid-core mobile games 1 S A N F R A N C I S CO 2 0 1 7 | # G D C 1 7 Tammy Levy Director of Product
  2. 2. Publishing 2 Director of Mobile Product Tamara Levy
  3. 3. Publishing 3 Kongregate Web Platform 100,000+ Uploaded Games Mobile Publisher 30+ Games 100M+ Downloads
  4. 4. 4 Games that grow The two ends of the funnel
  5. 5. Publishing 5 Build Games That Can Grow Goal: ROI Positive Higher LTV Strong Game Mechanics Lower CPI Approachable Art Positive ROI LTV > CPI > =
  6. 6. Publishing UA Costs by Theme and Genre CPI widely vary based on the game’s theme theme, art style and genre Casual: Low CPIs Mid-Core: Medium CPIs Core: High CPIs 6
  7. 7. Publishing UA Costs by Theme and Genre CPI widely vary based on the game’s theme theme, art style and genre Known IPs: Low CPIs Fantasy: Medium CPIs Sci-Fi: High CPIs Casual: Low CPIs Mid-Core: Medium CPIs Core: High CPIs 6
  8. 8. 7 Core design decisions drive core KPIs (There are always exceptions) Incremental / Clicker AdCap RTS Star Squad CCG & RPG BattleHand Arcade Tiny Sea Adventure Runner Bullet Boy KPIs by Genre Genres have performance “bands”
  9. 9. 8 KPIs by Genre Mode: most frequent behavior genre # of games d1 d7 d30 aprdau ltv (180 days) CCG & RPG 7+ 35% 10% 3% $0.30 - $1.00 $1.5 - $5.0 RTS 4 40% 20% 10% $0.10 - $0.20 $1.3 - $3.5 Idle / Incremental 5+ 45% 25% 15% $0.08 $1.5 Runner 5 35% 8% 1% $0.03 $0.10 Arcade 5 20% 5% 1% < $0.01 $0.02 8
  10. 10. 8 KPIs by Genre Mode: most frequent behavior genre # of games d1 d7 d30 aprdau ltv (180 days) CCG & RPG 7+ 35% 10% 3% $0.30 - $1.00 $1.5 - $5.0 RTS 4 40% 20% 10% $0.10 - $0.20 $1.3 - $3.5 Idle / Incremental 5+ 45% 25% 15% $0.08 $1.5 Runner 5 35% 8% 1% $0.03 $0.10 Arcade 5 20% 5% 1% < $0.01 $0.02 8
  11. 11. 8 KPIs by Genre Mode: most frequent behavior genre # of games d1 d7 d30 aprdau ltv (180 days) CCG & RPG 7+ 35% 10% 3% $0.30 - $1.00 $1.5 - $5.0 RTS 4 40% 20% 10% $0.10 - $0.20 $1.3 - $3.5 Idle / Incremental 5+ 45% 25% 15% $0.08 $1.5 Runner 5 35% 8% 1% $0.03 $0.10 Arcade 5 20% 5% 1% < $0.01 $0.02 8
  12. 12. 8 KPIs by Genre Mode: most frequent behavior genre # of games d1 d7 d30 aprdau ltv (180 days) CCG & RPG 7+ 35% 10% 3% $0.30 - $1.00 $1.5 - $5.0 RTS 4 40% 20% 10% $0.10 - $0.20 $1.3 - $3.5 Idle / Incremental 5+ 45% 25% 15% $0.08 $1.5 Runner 5 35% 8% 1% $0.03 $0.10 Arcade 5 20% 5% 1% < $0.01 $0.02 8
  13. 13. Publishing 9 Impressions Installs Return Rate Early Retention Elder Engagement LTV Funnel Optimization Every step matters
  14. 14. Publishing Funnel Optimization Every step matters 10 Impressions Installs Return Rate Early Retention Elder Engagement LTV
  15. 15. 11 Looking beyond early KPIs After all, LTV is lifetime value
  16. 16. 12 Player Retention 12 Time in Game retention
  17. 17. 13 Early Retention Comparison: Raid Brigade has much stronger d1-d7 retention 13 Raid Brigade Tyrant Unleashed genre ARPG CCG d1 36% 22% d7 13% 7% d30 3% 3%
  18. 18. Publishing 14 Elder Retention Looking beyond d30 Raid Brigade Halves every 30 day period 8% retained from d30 to d180 45% 58% 67% 48%
  19. 19. Publishing 15 Elder Retention Looking beyond d30 Tyrant Unleashed Similar starting point (d30) Players who retain after d30, stay for a long time 40% retained from d30 to d180 66% 84% 88% 79%
  20. 20. Publishing 16 Looking Beyond d1 - d30 doesn’t tell the whole story Raid Brigade d1 = 36% d180 = 0.24% Tyrant Unleashed d1 = 22% d180 = 1.1%
  21. 21. 17 Look beyond d30 17
  22. 22. 18 Lifetime Spend 18 Desire to Spend arpdau
  23. 23. 19 Lifetime Spend Comparison: Tyrant’s LTV is more than double 19 Raid Brigade Tyrant Unleashed genre ARPG CCG d1 36% 22% d7 13% 7% d30 3% 3% arpdau $0.40 $0.63 ltv (180d) $1.9 $4.7
  24. 24. Publishing 20 Comparing d30 LTV Tyrant 10% higher due to stronger ARPDAU
  25. 25. Publishing 20 Comparing d30 LTV Tyrant 10% higher due to stronger ARPDAU $1.56 $1.42
  26. 26. Publishing 21 Comparing d180 LTV Tyrant LTV grows faster $4.71 $1.97
  27. 27. Publishing 22 Rate of Growth Slope => How fast does LTV grow?
  28. 28. Publishing 22 Rate of Growth Slope => How fast does LTV grow? 1. Linear Regression 2. Slope
  29. 29. Publishing 22 Rate of Growth Slope => How fast does LTV grow? slope = 0.005 1. Linear Regression 2. Slope or just use excel’s slope formula
  30. 30. Publishing 23 Rate of Growth The longer players stay => the larger their investment slope = 0.02
  31. 31. Publishing 24 Comparing Growth Tyrant Unleashed vs. Raid Brigade slope = 0.02 slope = 0.005
  32. 32. Publishing 25 Comparing d180 LTV Different games, different growth patterns CCG2 RPG Idle CCG1 CCG3 CCG1 3x CCG3
  33. 33. 26 LTV Growth can accelerate after d30 26
  34. 34. 27 Lifetime Value 27 * = Player Value ltv Time in Game retention Desire to Spend arpdau
  35. 35. Publishing 28 Projecting LTVs Simple LTV calculation Area under the retention curve Player Lifetime ARPDAU Player Value by Day *
  36. 36. Publishing Accuracy Similar to retention Use the monetization curve 29 Projecting LTVs Use retention and monetization curves
  37. 37. Publishing Accuracy Similar to retention Use the monetization curve 29 Projecting LTVs Use retention and monetization curves
  38. 38. Publishing 30 Projecting LTVs Daily revenue comes from players of all ages
  39. 39. Publishing 31 Projecting LTVs Spend patterns vary by game and genre Highest spend on d0 Some growth after d80 Upfront Spend Lowest spend on d0 Spend doubles from d0 to d90 Deep Monetization
  40. 40. Publishing Flat ARPDAU 6 mo. LTV: $1.60 32 Projecting LTVs Example A: Upfront Monetization 1
  41. 41. Publishing Flat ARPDAU 6 mo. LTV: $1.60 32 Projecting LTVs Example A: Upfront Monetization ARPDAU Curve 6 mo. LTV: $1.36 1 2
  42. 42. Publishing Flat ARPDAU 6 mo. LTV: $2.02 33 Projecting LTVs Example B: Deep Monetization 1
  43. 43. Publishing Flat ARPDAU 6 mo. LTV: $2.02 33 Projecting LTVs Example B: Deep Monetization ARPDAU Curve 6 mo. LTV: $2.62 1 2
  44. 44. 34 Spending curve to project LTVs 34
  45. 45. 35 Live servicing is crucial Maximizes long term KPIs
  46. 46. Publishing 36 Content Cadence New content, regularly Limited time packs and bundles IncreaseIncrease
  47. 47. Publishing 36 Content Cadence New content, regularly Limited time packs and bundles Increase revenue baseline IncreaseIncrease
  48. 48. Publishing Higher price points offset fewer purchases 37 Target Different Player Types Different approaches, similar lifts Lower price points generate more purchases
  49. 49. Publishing 38 Limited Time Events Adding content without hurting core play modes
  50. 50. Publishing 38 Limited Time Events Adding content without hurting core play modes
  51. 51. Publishing 38 Limited Time Events Adding content without hurting core play modes
  52. 52. Publishing 39 Monetization Growth Competitive Events: Players are more likely to monetize
  53. 53. Publishing 40 Servicing Elder Players Live PvP released as one year celebration
  54. 54. Publishing 40 Servicing Elder Players Live PvP released as one year celebration
  55. 55. Publishing 41 Long Term Retention Look beyond d30 Key Takeaways Projecting LTV Use the spending curve for more accurate LTVs LTV Growth LTV can accelerate after d30
  56. 56. Publishing 42 Thank you @KongregateDevs developers.kongregate.com/blog tammy@kongregate.com

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