Imagem Kelly Kang

Tried-and-True Ways to Keep Up with the Ad Monetization Industry

By Kelly Kang | April 4, 2022

Kelly is a Senior Director at Pixel United, overseeing advertising strategies and ad monetization. She is a 10+ year mobile and digital advertising industry veteran who has held ad monetization leadership positions at Zynga and Glu. Kelly spent the last few years at Pixel United, helping accelerate its ad monetization growth and innovate its advertising ecosystem.

Learn more about Mobile Hero Kelly.

Mobile advertising is a fast-paced industry. Keeping up with trends and changes can be tricky, but it’s also what makes mobile advertising exciting. You need to absorb an uncomfortable amount of information fast to adapt effectively. This also means that organizations, leaders and ad monetization stewards often develop gaps in their knowledge that may impact their success.

When we switched from mediation to traditional waterfalling, many organizations were not agile enough to change. It took time for us to find the optimal way to manage the traditional waterfall model. Once I became a domain expert, in-app header bidding started ramping up. Now, we are facing the impact of iOS 14. Through all the changes, I’ve learned a few lessons that have kept me going—even when new challenges seemed insurmountable.

1. Never Stop Learning

This is easier to say than to implement. Learning new things can be tricky—especially when your job is already demanding. After being in this industry for 12+ years, I still find new ways to grow and optimize. There will always be new ad units and ad tech in the future—so having a “growth mindset” is a must.

Having a “growth mindset” in the industry means continuously developing by experimenting and tackling new challenges. Beyond the tech changes, privacy regulations will make the work of marketers more complex. To stay relevant, you’ll need to learn constantly—be it keeping abreast of developments in the industry or acquiring new skills.

The pandemic has been a difficult time for companies across the globe, but it has also accelerated investment in online education and certificate programs. Upskilling is more accessible now, and content-sharing—practically non-existent when I started in mobile advertising—is now its own industry. There is no excuse not to learn new things when you have new courses and information at your fingertips.

2. Always Optimize—Never Set It and Forget It

You can always pause at an optimal point—but why stop there when there are gains to be had? I often see marketers run one or two A/B tests to find the optimal spot. They then feel comfortable putting their campaigns on autopilot. But the key to success for monetization professionals is what they do after they reach the optimal stage. Whenever you can, make change and experiment to challenge the status quo. Focusing on innovation will help you stay ahead of the curve.

For instance, if the frequency cap of 3 per day is optimal for the quarter, don’t just settle and run on autopilot. Consider the frequency cap as the MVP (Minimum Viable Product). Continue to A/B test, and adopt the changes that show results. If you keep experimenting, you’ll find more changes to implement—if you stop, your revenue will likely decrease.

3. Harness the Power of Your Network

Networking might sound cheesy, and it can be awkward when you attend random events. But by engaging in new conversations and remaining open about the value you offer, you’ll build valuable long-term relationships. In fact, you’ll be surprised at how helpful those contacts can become. A network strengthens your reputation—and a good reputation can be a priceless asset in this industry. Foster new relationships, enhance business connections and share your ideas and challenges. Gaining a different perspective will help you remain competitive and successful.

That’s a wrap! Want to learn from others like Kelly? Join the Mobile Heroes Slack Community to connect.