The outlook of Mobile App Advertising in the Europe and America Market of Q4 2020

7 min readMar 3, 2021


App Growing Global published “Outlook of Mobile App Advertising in European and American Market of Q4 2020” with global advertising data from July 1 to December 31, 2020, covering 19 global mobile advertising platforms including Facebook, Admob, YouTube, Unity, Line Japan, and Twitter. (This article refers to Europe and America in a narrow sense, including the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Canada, and the United States)

Referring to the Chinese Companies’ Overseas Revenue Rank in Q4 of App Annie, most of the Apps in the rank were mobile games. Among them, RPG, SLG, Puzzle and Casual Games were the majority. In terms of non-gaming apps, video and live apps were still the major products to export overseas. “BIGO LIVE” and “TikTok” saw big increases in overseas revenue, with the U.S. being the main users spending country. what about the advertising changes in the Europe and America mar? We will make further analysis below.

1. The Overall Advertising Trends in Europe and America

Compared with Q3, mobile game apps had about a 2–3% drop in both the number of Apps and the overall ads in Q4. However, the number of non-gaming apps and overall ads accounted for 49.04% and 43.99% respectively, which had gentle growth comparing to Q3.

In terms of mobile games Apps, Role-playing and Puzzle Games occupied the top position in the advertising market of Europe and America in the second half of 2020. However, compared with Q3, the proportion of the two types of games decreased by 2.89% and 6.30% respectively. On the contrary, Casual Games, which is easy and suitable for a wide range of ages, got the harsh increase in the second half of 2020, the proportion rose from 5.34% in Q3 to 9.58% in Q4.

In perspective of non-gaming Apps, book apps had advantages over others in proportion and growth. It can be seen that the advertising volume of book apps accounted for 16.36%, which increased about 5%. Though used to be in the middle of the data, the proportion of shopping apps decreased from 8.51% to 4.83% and news apps decreased from 5.30% to 2.20%.

2. Top-advertising Mobile Games and Creatives Strategy

2.1 Top Mobile Games

In the Hot-advertised Mobile Games Rank of Europe and America market, more than half of the games, including “Tap Color Lite”, “Tap Color”, “Word Connect” and “5 Differences Online”, had still maintained strong advertising purchasing power till the end of 2020. Most of these games were Casual and Puzzle games with core play methods such as elimination, dress-up and finding differences.

It is worth mentioning that in the Hot-advertised Mobile Games Rank in Q3 and Q4, almost half of the game companies are from China. For example, the Chinese company “Puzzle Saga Studio” used to be mentioned in our previous article. The two casual games, “Tap Color Lite” and “Tap Color”, featuring creative paintings, have been on the list in both quarters. Moreover, “Tap Color Lite” reached the top of Hot-advertised Rank in Q4 with more than 50k ads in Q4. Puzzle Saga Studio also became the leading player in terms of advertising efforts among Chinese companies in the European and American market.

2.2 Top mobile games Creative

In the creative decoration game “My Home-Design Dreams”, players participate in the transformation of the raw house. From bricks to furnitures it can be freely designed as you wish. This game has the absolutely free operation and various items for players, and the process can realize the sense of achievement of decorating simulation enthusiasts from 0 to 1.

Best casual game ever!Really love it so far I’ve decorated 9 rooms. Match cute cubes and win coins! (Source:App Growing Global)

This ad creative of word game “Word Connects” is mainly to raise some questions and lead the audience to answer. The game rules are simple and easy to understand, these questions are various and authoritative, and do not take up extra time. Words enthusiast can take full advantage of fragmentation time to detect and improve their word level.

▲《Word Connect》 Can you solve all the word puzzles?Train your brain and vocab for FREE! 5000+ levels await you in Word Connect!(Source:App Growing Global)

Finding differences game “5 Differences Online” attracts people through the persuasive styles of advertising(such as “only people with an IQ of 180 can find the differences” and “I promise that you will never find all the differences” ), which entice people to answer and join in the game, then realize the sense of achievement during the process of finding differences.

▲《5 Differences Online》 -Only people with IQ above 150 can find all objects! (Source:App Growing Global)

3. Top-advertising Apps & Creatives Strategies

3.1 Top-advertising Apps

In the Top-advertising Apps Rank of Europe and America market in Q4, most of the apps were reading and video social apps. Though popular in Q3, the proportion of news apps in the rank showed a declining trend in Q4. The news app “News Break: Local Stories”, developed by Particle Media Inc., a local company in the U.S., remained the top 1 in two consecutive quarters with a leading advertising volume. Besides, the same type of app “SmartNews: Local Breaking News” was also ranked 2nd for two seasons.

Among reading apps, “Readict — novels and more” from American company VitalTek, Inc. whose main novels are including love and adventure, ranked 4th in the Top-advertising Apps Rank in Europe and America market, while the audio reading app “Аудиокниги от Patephone” from Russia ranked 5th.

Different from the popular of exporting overseas mobile games, apps from Chinese companies are fewer in this list. The main exporting non-gaming apps were mostly social apps that had short videos and live as their core functions, including “TikTok” from Bytedance, “Kwai” from Kwai Inc., “Likee” and “BIGO LIVE” from JOYY. It is worth noting that “SHEIN”, a cross-border B2C shopping app focusing on women’s fast fashion from Chinese publisher, was also on the list.

3.2 Top Non-gaming Apps Creative

“SHEIN”, exporting from China, became one of the few popular shopping apps on the List. The style of advertising fits the European and American market and conforms to the local culture. “SHEIN” focuses on the fast fashion market for women, the clothing styles are mostly sexy, with various colors. Models in advertising videos are mainly Instagram-influenced-style, in line with the aesthetics of Europe and America.

▲《SHEIN》 Les Do Makeup x SHEIN Featuring the lovely Leslie Quezada, lighting up your holiday season in this luxe new edit! (Source:App Growing Global)

Through the built-in rich and interesting special effects, the short video social app “Likee” attracts users’ interests and stimulates their creative desires. For instance, some time ago the character transformation comic face special effects that were very popular.

▲《Likee》 Create your videos with hashtag # DoubleLife, you will have chances to become next..(Source:App Growing Global)

4. Suggestions on Ad Creative in the Europe and America Market

  1. Although English is the common language in Europe dominant language is France and Germany in most region. Game publishers need to pay attention to combine with the local official language when advertising.
  2. The Internet penetration rate in Europe and America is high, generally reaching more than 80%. The bulk of the advertising is pushed on Twitter, Youtube, Facebook and Instagram, which are the first choice for advertisers to promote.
  3. The economy, policy and culture of Europe and America are susceptible to the U.S., and American cultural industry has a strong radiating power worldwide. The Ameican local entertainment IPs such as Marvel, Hollywood and Disney still maintain world-class popularity, so overseas publishers can use these aesthetics to formulate localized marketing strategies.
  4. Avoid sensitive political topics such as racial issues, child pornography, gender and gender orientation in America. Meanwhile, Nazis and Hitler are taboo topics that must be avoided in Germany.
  5. In Europe and America, social media influencers are getting popular in Youtube and Instagram. Except for the regular advertisement channel, advertisers can partner with PR public relations, Internet celebrities, E-sports live, famous stars endorsements and other multi-channel for cooperations.




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