App Retargeting Case Study: How Ouibus Took The Wheel with Flash Sales and Bold Creatives

5 min readFeb 28, 2019


In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue but it may surprise you to know that despite being remembered as the explorer who launched an Age of Discovery, he only ever managed to complete four trips in his lifetime. Perhaps because planning for his first voyage took almost a decade to prepare. Nowadays, it’s not unusual for people to travel four times a month and preparing for a trip across the globe is as easy as packing your bag and clicking ‘go’, making travel more accessible for everyone. So whether you’ve booked a taxi, stayed in a hotel, or arranged a tour in a new city recently, you’ve contributed to make the global travel industry worth an estimated $7 trillion dollars.

Much of the growth in the travel industry in the past ten years has been driven by mobile and especially apps, where major players like AirBnB,, and Uber lead the pack. The accessibility and ease of use of mobile apps represent big opportunities for brands. However, according to research from Google, 88% of travelers with smartphones would switch to another site or app if yours doesn’t satisfy their needs, presenting travel app marketers with a major challenge.

On top of that, travel apps face some seasonality woes that make keeping users engaged tricky. Travelers tend to plan their holidays at the start of the year to ward off the winter blues and sporadically throughout the rest of the year, meaning app uninstall rates for travel apps are high.

Appsflyer: App Uninstall Report

Marketers looking to keep users engaged and prevent uninstalls often turn to push notifications to let users know about price drop alerts, flash sales, and changes in flight schedules. But whilst push notifications have been proven to drive a positive lift in retention, only 45 percent of travel app users opt-in to push notifications. This means mobile marketers lose opportunities to engage over half their customer base.

So what’s a travel app marketer to do? How do you keep the wheels of your app spinning, year round to ensure users are engaged and converting in your app?

About Ouibus

Ouibus is one of the largest bus service providers in Europe, transporting more than 12 million passengers in the past few years, across France and Europe.

Unlike traditional coach services that operate in Europe, Ouibus promises an efficient and comfortable service to all passengers starting with a simple, UX-friendly app that allows travelers to book their trip in seconds. Comfortable seating with onboard WIFI and power outlets for every seat make traveling with Ouibus a breeze.

The Challenge

Like many travel apps, Ouibus were struggling to retain the valued users they had acquired with their user acquisition activities. In order to focus on retaining their hard won audience, Ouibus looked to Adikteev to develop a retention strategy that would keep users coming back to continue booking their journeys via the app.

The Strategy

To get started, Ouibus opted to take inspiration from their UA campaigns when building out their retargeting creatives.

We started the campaign with a mixture of static ads, videos and rich media, highlighting the latest discounts available and using event data to customize the ads to the various segments of users.

The variety of creatives shown ensured the messaging stayed fresh and early results were promising.

As the campaign developed, The Adikteev account management and creative team began to think about how to optimize the campaign with a new creative strategy.

After brainstorming with Ouibus, Adikteev developed an Interactive ad with a scratch card element which displayed popular routes when the user engaged with it. After the ad was deployed, Ouibus saw an instant improvement on performance.

Continuing on from their success, Ouibus launched a series of Flash Sales — a two day offer period where users can see prices slashed across all the routes in Europe. Like many retailers who work with Flash Sales, Ouibus needed specific creatives for the campaign to highlight the offers and drive those incremental purchases.

The Adikteev Account Management team advised Ouibus to split the campaign into a pre-phase, running phase and analysis phase to ensure the campaign could be optimized on the fly to maximize their returns.


During the week of the Flash Sales, the amount of orders increased, and Ouibus saw a 27% increase in revenue thanks to their campaign. As the campaign grew, Ouibus saw a continuous uplift in the number of purchases attributed to the campaign.

Incremental lift in number of purchases, month-on-month

The positive results prompted Ouibus to allocate more spend to their retargeting campaigns and work exclusively with Adikteev to continue the successful partnership and continue driving incremental purchases.

What Does This Mean for Travel App Marketers?

Travel is an extremely competitive industry meaning users will happily uninstall your app and install your competitor’s if they’re not satisfied with your offer. You’ll need to develop hooks that keep users coming back for more. Flash sales are a great tool to reduce the cost of customer acquisition while fostering loyalty and increasing the likelihood of repeat purchases.

Using interactive ads in your retargeting campaigns will also help to make your app stand out from the crowd, by allowing you to remind users of your unique value proposition in an engaging way.

If you’re interested in discussing your retargeting strategy or want to know more on the topic, contact your dedicated account manager or shoot an email over to




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