Erkay Uzun

Erkay Uzun, CEO at Unico Studio, discusses the growth of Programmatic UA

Erkay Uzun
Unico Studio’s Forward Looking Approach Keeps Them Ahead of the “Game”

With your experience, what tips you would give to advertisers to help navigate the programmatic side of UA?

Programmatic UA has been growing fast. Managing all UA campaigns manually is a big task - particularly if you are targeting a huge audience in many countries. Programmatic UA with well crafted algorithms helps run successful campaigns without all the manual work. For example, at Unico, we manage campaigns in 60 different countries. This requires a lot of localization and programmatic UA makes life a lot easier for our team.

I'd recommend that advertisers carefully select their programmatic advertising platforms. They should look for platforms that are better fit for them. Not all will work smoothly - and some will require manual adjustments. We have seen very good ROAS results with Appreciate transparent platform.  

Put on your futurist hat and think about how mobile advertising will change in the next 2-5 years? What changes do you foresee in the mobile ecosystem.

The mobile advertising market will continue to grow in the coming years. We'll see more and more Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning based solutions deployed for programmatic buying and selling. Privacy concerns will continue to shape the mobile ad ecosystem. Apple's recent changes are here to stay! This will require the whole industry to find a new normal despite fundamental changes and disruptions. 

Performance metrics, like CTR, CVR, 1-DAY, 3-DAY, 7-DAY, etc., are something UA folks have relied on, but they don’t always tell a complete story. Can you share a story of where a media source had metrics that were unusual and didn’t match true performance?

We have seen creatives return high CTR, but then result in very low long term value. Since then we look at the complete end- to end funnel. Sustainable ROAS has been more critical when evaluating campaigns than one-off high metrics. Another factor for Unico is our in-app engagement. We focus constantly on retention as once we acquire users, it’s a lot more difficult to keep them than to acquire them. 

Sticking with metrics - tell me a metric that isn’t universally available that you’d really love to have.

The biggest help would be a universal campaign quality metric that takes into account the whole end-to-end funnel. If there was a metric that quantified all metrics - from CTR to conversions to ROAS - and gave a quality index, that would help evaluate true campaign success.

Let's try a lightning round. Separately give me quick thoughts on each of these: 

1) App Store Optimization 

A low converting store - or worse, one where they get drawn to a competitor’s listing - can severely damage UA efforts. We do constant A/B testing, even in all the different languages, to give a comprehensive, global approach to app store and keyword optimization. 

2) Investment in New UA Methods 

We don’t limit ourselves to social media or adwords. In fact, we are keeping ourselves open to new UA methods like influencer marketing and pre-installs. We’ve seen great success with these long-term methods. As long as we can measure the success of a channel, we’re willing to give it a look.

3) Programmatic UA 

Programmatic UA will be the future. All advertisers should get ready for it.

4) DSP Differentiation 

Each DSP has it’s own strengths and weaknesses. Some have more stability than others, but through DSPs we’ve found ways to reach audiences of different kinds of apps. Inventory and working algorithms are also key factors.

5) iOS 14

It’s like “walking in the dawn”. Campaigns are run in a new normal without benchmarks or historical data giving an uncertainty of impact. Since the initial roll-out is so small, it’s still early to make definitive conclusions.

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