How to Advertise a Mobile RPG? Practical Tips for Getting More Users in 2023

How to Advertise a Mobile RPG? Practical Tips for Getting More Users in 2023

by Andrea Knezovic

Wondering how to advertise a mobile RPG? Trying to figure out how to acquire more users?

Don’t stress, you have come to the right place – we specialize in mobile game marketing.

In this guide, we teach you everything you need to know about advertising a role-playing game and making it a success.

We cover:

  • Top role-playing games and publishers
  • Practical tips for advertising a role-playing game
  • Ad examples from top mobile RPGs
  • The most important RPG statistics

Top 10 Mobile RPGs

Google Play

Here are the top-grossing free role-playing games on Google Play in the US. (SensorTower, free data)

  1. RAID: Shadow Legends (Plarium)
  2. MARVEL Strike Force (Scopely)
  3. Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes (Electronic Arts)
  4. Hero Wars (Nexters)
  5. Game of Sultans (Mechanist Internet Technologies)
  6. Epic Seven (Smilegate Metaport)
  7. Game of Thrones: Conquest (Warner Bros.)
  8. Fate/Grand Order (Aniplex)
  9. Mighty Party (Panoramik Games)
  10. Cookie Run: Kingdom (Devsisters Corporation)

Apple App Store

These are the top-grossing free role-playing games on the Apple App Store in the US. (SensorTower, free data)

  1. Pokemon Go (Niantic)
  2. Cookie Run: Kingdom (Devsisters Corporation)
  3. Genshin Impact (miHoYo)
  4. State of Survival Walking Dead (KingsGroup International)
  5. Rise of Kingdoms (Lilith Games)
  6. Puzzles & Survival (37 Games)
  7. Star Trek Fleet Command (Scopely)
  8. Evony (Top Games)
  9. Top War: Battle Game (Topwar Studio)
  10. Age of Z Origins: Tower Defense (Camel Games)

advertising tips for role playing games rpgs marketing

Practical Tips for Advertising a Mobile RPG in 2022

Since this is a highly competitive market, RPG publishers need to put a lot of effort into advertising.

No matter how good your mobile RPG is, there’s no way of getting to the top charts without a smart advertising campaign.

In the following sections, I go through tips and tricks you can use to effectively market your mobile role-playing game.

Target Audience Research: Understand Who Is Playing Role-Playing Games

In general, gamers who play role-playing games are skilled and experienced. The quality of the game is very important to them and they have high expectations.

Most people that play role-playing games fall into the category of either mid-core or hardcore gamers.

Let’s explain each one.

Hardcore Gamers

Hardcore gamers are all in when it comes to mobile games. They follow all the latest releases and gaming news, play for many hours a day, and are very serious about the games they play. Put simply, a hardcore gamer is the total opposite of a casual gamer.

Since hardcore gamers are so invested in the mobile games they play, they’re willing to spend money to acquire in-game content necessary for faster progress.

Mid-core Gamers

Mid-core gamers are also very skilled, but they don’t spend as much time playing as hardcore gamers do. However, when they do play, they take it very seriously. Mid-core gamers usually stick to their favorite genre or game.

Many of them are actually former hardcore gamers who don’t have a lot of time to play.

When advertising your role-playing game, make sure to keep these characteristics in mind because this is your target audience. It makes no sense to create an ad campaign that caters to casual gamers because they are not the majority of your audience.

mobile game video ads

Attention-Grabbing Video Ads Are Crucial for the Success of Any Mobile RPG

When it comes to advertising role-playing mobile games, video ads are the best way to go about it. It is hands down the most effective way to acquire more users for your mobile RPG and get it to the top charts.

However, creating video ads that convert users is an art in and of itself. There’s a lot that goes into it.

If you’re new to creating attention-grabbing video ads, here are a couple of tips to get you started.

First, take a look at your competitors’ video ads – it’s one of the best ways to learn what works and what doesn’t. (I analyze video ads from top mobile RPGs later in the article, so make sure you stick around).

The next step is to identify the key features of your game and your USP. Think what will make users download your game – is it the unique characters and worlds? Perhaps it’s the captivating storyline or engaging gameplay?

Whatever it may be, make sure to highlight it in your video ad. The purpose of a video ad is to showcase how incredibly good your game is and what makes it better than all other mobile RPGs.

Finally, you need to create multiple variations of your video ads – 2 or 3 won’t cut it. Then you test them and analyze which ones got you the most users. Once you weed out the video ads that don’t convert and create even more variations of the ones that do work, you’ll have a tried and true recipe for creating effective video ads.

However, if you’re struggling with creating video ads that actually convert users, you might want to think about outsourcing it. You don’t need to have a video ad expert in your team – there are websites where you can order video ads for mobile games online.

ecample of in-app rewarded video ads for mobile games

Advertise Your Role Playing Game in Other Mobile Games

Another strategy you can use to advertise your mobile RPG is to advertise in other games. Since many publishers use in-game ads as their monetization method, this is a great opportunity to advertise your game.

Here’s how it works.

The publishers of games you want to advertise in are looking to fill their ad space with relevant ads in order to maximize their ad revenue. You’re placing ads for your game inside other similar games, thus reaching an audience that’s highly likely to be interested in it.

However, you should know that targeting such a specific audience is not cheap. Once you go very narrow with your target audience, the user acquisition tends to become very pricey. So keep that in mind.

Another strategy is to cross-promote your role-playing game. If you have several titles published, you can advertise your mobile RPG inside your other mobile games.

Once again, you’ll be putting your role-playing game in front of users who are already playing your other games and are very likely to be interested in it.

app store optimization graphic

Take App Store Optimization to the Next Level: Advanced ASO Tips

As you probably know, app store optimization is crucial for the success of your role-playing game. The App Store is the number one place where users discover new games so it’s worth your time to put some effort into ASO.

Not only that, but app store optimization is a free way to get your role-playing game in front of new users. It should be an important part of your overall user acquisition strategy.

However, basic ASO strategies can only get you so far. You need to take it one step further in order to rise above the competition.

Game Title and Game Description – Being Smart About Keywords

Let’s start with the name of your game.

Utilize the available space for the name – make sure to include relevant keywords and words that describe your game to create excitement e.g. Epic Role Playing Game.

However, don’t just stuff a bunch of keywords for the sake of it. Both Google Play and Apple’s App Store might reject your submission if you do that. There needs to be a balance between keywords, descriptive words, and branding.

The same goes for the description and keyword fields – it’s all about optimizing keywords, but being smart about it.

When choosing keywords, consider if they relate to your mobile RPG, and are users searching for it? Moreover, notice what other games show up for those keywords, and is the search volume low or high.

role playing games icons rpg app store optimization

Creating a Winning Icon is a Mix of Art and Science

When it comes to icons, they’re crucial because it’s the first glimpse of your game. Stylistic choices are often influenced by current icon trends as well as data acquired by testing icons.

For example, there are tools that tell you what’s the best style and color scheme for RPG icons.

If you take a look at these icons from top RPGs, you’ll notice that most of them feature the main character. It makes sense considering game characters are the emphasis of role-playing games.

The key is to design the icon in a way that’s unique, but still in line with current RPG trends. There’s a reason why many icons look similar – they’re based on the complex analysis of the psychology behind the design.

Localize Your RPG to Get Ahead of the Competition

Finally, if you want to take your ASO to another level, you should localize your role-playing game. That includes translating the game itself as well as localizing your app store page.

This is a crucial step if you want to reach a global audience and expand your user base.

However, you shouldn’t localize just the keywords and description, but the visual aspects of your app store page as well.

Different stylistic and design choices have different effects in different markets. The appeal of certain design elements and color schemes varies across cultures and countries. Visual trends are also different.

For example, game screenshots in Japan and Korea use much more dramatic and intense design elements than US screenshots.

personalization role playing games

Bonus Tip

Here is a bonus tip for advertising mobile RPGs from Kaspar Tiri, Named Forbes 30 Under 30, a co-founder of a company called Wolf3D.

“Large publishers have traditionally spent millions of dollars marketing games in online ads, billboards, and TV commercials. There’s a shift happening in the mobile games advertising space where most of the traffic is driven by user-generated content and personalization.

From the user-generated content side, early users on Reddit or Discord and influencers on social platforms like Twitch are driving the game discovery. Most major games today like Fortnite, PUBG, or Apex Legends were primarily marketed via Twitch streamers in the early days.

Personalization in e-commerce has been a standard practice to drive traffic for years. Today, we see more and more gaming companies adapting personalization. Especially RPG games, where users come to fulfill their fantasies. The latest achievements in AI and computer vision have unlocked the potential to create personalized game characters based on a selfie.

If we combine the personalization and UGC, developers can create small experiences inside or outside of the game itself, allowing the users to generate short videos of themselves as their favorite RPG game character based on a selfie.

Those videos are shared online which in return drives traffic by other people who want to have the same experience. Marketers are constantly looking for thumbstopper ads – imagine opening a Facebook or Twitter and seeing a video of your friend as a character of the new RPG. Put your customers in the ad.

The same concept has been successfully used by many products outside the gaming industry. LinkedIn is using your profile pictures as a targeted ad (“Picture yourself with this new job”), Facebook using your friends’ names promotes a variety of goods and services to you and your network of common friends, or Disney superimposing the consumer’s face on a Disney figurine’s body.”

video ad examples for mobile role playing games rpg

Mobile RPG Advertising: Video Ad Examples from Top Role Playing Games

Here’s the thing.

You might be just one great video ad away from acquiring a million users and reaching the top charts.

Yes, video ads are that powerful.

If you look at any successful mobile RPG, you’ll notice their video ads are carefully crafted to attract new users and keep existing users playing.

That’s why it’s worth your while to familiarize yourself with video ads from top RPGs and learn what makes them so effective.

You’re in luck because I have done that job for you – I have analyzed and dissected video ads from these successful role-playing games: AFK Arena, Marvel Strike Force, and Raid: Shadow Legends.

AFK Arena Video Ad Breakdown (Lilith Games)

Video ads for AFK Arena use a formula that’s prevalent in ads for many other game genres. Basically, it’s both a strategy and a trend that can be noticed in many video ads.

It’s characterized by including short puzzles and match-3 type visuals instead of the regular gameplay. However, characters from the game are included so users still get a taste of the game.

The thing about this style of video ads is that it’s very effective and grabs the attention of the users. So think about how you can translate this style to your RPG.

This AFK Arena video ad has a different approach – it’s more like a game trailer. Users get a sense of the unique world of AFK Arena, its characters, and game mechanics.

The outro of this video ad is also very interesting. It includes the AFK Arena logo and their catchy slogan – AFK and chill. Reminds you of Netflix and chill, doesn’t it? That’s why it’s a very smart move.

This is a good example of branding and utilizing pop culture.

The outro also includes a search box with “AFK Arena” typed inside it. It’s a cool detail that invites users to search for this game and download it from the app store.

Besides the visual aspect of this ad, the audio also plays a big part. There’s no music, but there’s a narrator with sound effects from the game.

Including a narrator’s voice in a video is quite an effective strategy. Not only does it provide additional information about the game, but it also guides users through the ad and emphasizes the CTA.

At the end of AFK Arena’s ad, you can hear “AFK Arena: Play now for free”. That makes the CTA so much stronger and more effective than if it was just written on the screen.

Marvel Strike Force Video Ad Breakdown (FoxNext Games)

Marvel Strike Force is a free-to-play, turn-based RPG packed with exciting combat and stunning visuals. The ads reflect that.

The video ad you can see above is all about showcasing that epic combat and all the action and fun that accompanies it.

In Marvel Strike Force, users can assemble their squad and fight against other superheroes and villains – it’s one of the main features of the game. Precisely that is depicted in this video ad and it gives users a really good taste of the gameplay.

This video ad focuses on presenting the powerful Marvel superheroes in action – Deadpool, Captain Marvel, Wolverine, and Invisible Woman. Since these famous characters are one of the main reasons users are drawn to this RPG, it’s a smart move to dedicate a video ad to showcasing all of them.

You can use the same strategy for your mobile RPG. Identify the main features and characters of your game and make it the starting point for creating video ads.

Raid: Shadow Legends Video Ad Breakdown (Plarium Global, Ltd)

Raid: Shadow Legends is a realistic fantasy RPG full of legendary warriors and epic boss battles.

The key USP of this mobile RPG are the graphics – the heroes are in 3D and fully rendered.

So it’s no surprise that Plarium’s video ads reflect that same visual quality. While most mobile game ads are short and simple, video ads for Raid: Shadow Legends are really intricate, visually stunning, and have high production value.

That in and of itself is very attention-grabbing.

The video ad you can see above has everything – real gameplay, info about the characters and the story, dynamic action scenes, visual and sound effects, music, narration, captions, etc.

Granted, if you’re an indie developer or a small game studio, that level of production is probably unattainable. However, a lot can be done with a smaller budget as well.

Simple video ads can be very effective as well.

Here’s the thing.

If your mobile RPG is good and you create video ads that show users what makes it fun to play, success is inevitable. It’s that simple.

Mobile Role-Playing Game Statistics You Need in 2022

Now you know how to advertise a mobile RPG, so the next step is to put all of these tips and strategies into action and start acquiring users.

But this is only the beginning of the journey. Once you start building your user base, it’s crucial that you consistently track and analyze the performance of your role-playing game.

That brings us to the final piece of the puzzle – RPG statistics.

These statistics are essential because you can use them as a benchmark against which you can compare your game and judge how successful it is. You will gain valuable insight into how the role-playing genre performs when it comes to key metrics like user retention and average session length.

Ready to get into some numbers?

(Data source: GameAnalytics)

Mobile RPG User Retention Statistics

User retention statistics tell you the percentage of users that keep playing after a certain period of time (most commonly after days 1, 7, and 28).

This is one of the most important statistics for mobile RPGs.

day 1 user retention statistics for role playing games in 2021

Day 1 User Retention Statistics for Mobile Role-Playing Games

Here’s some good news – RPGs have a good day 1 user retention.

Day 1 retention for the top 2% of RPGs was above 50% throughout 2020, which is excellent. It peaked in June at 53.53%.

For the top 25% of games in the RPG genre, day 1 retention was between 29.24% and 30.61%. 

The median 50% of role-playing games retained between 18.61% and 21.39% of players after day 1. 

For the bottom 25% of RPGs, day 1 retention was the highest in March (13.92%) and April (13.94%). It hit the lowest point in October (12.64%). 

In general, day 1 user retention of 35% or more is considered good, so that’s what you should be aiming for. If it’s less than that, you need to identify why users stop playing after day 1 and work on improving your game.

day 7 user retention statistics for role playing games in 2021

Day 7 User Retention Statistics for Mobile Role-Playing Games

Day 7 user retention tells you how many players return after a week of playing. Naturally, it’s lower than day 1 retention.

What’s interesting about day 7 retention for the top 2% of RGPs is that it was the highest towards the end of 2020. It peaked in November at 25.35%.

It was the opposite for the top 25% of RPGs, where day 7 retention was the highest in the first three months of 2020. 

The same happened with the median 50% of RPGs – day 7 retention was the highest in January – 3.6%. 

The bottom 25% of RPGs have a very low day 7 retention – between 1.23% and 1.38%. 

day 28 user retention statistics for role playing games in 2021

Day 28 User Retention Statistics for Mobile Role-Playing Games

The top 2% of RPGs had the highest day 28 retention in January 2020 at 15.40%. 

The top 25% games in the RPG genre had significantly lower day 28 retention, even though these are still successful games. It ranged between 2.35% in October and 2.59% in January. 

The median role-playing games had the highest day 28 user retention at the beginning of the year – 0.86% in January. As the year went on, it steadily dropped. 

The bottom 25% of RPGs barely retained any players after a month – 0.02% and 0.06%.

How to Improve User Retention?

Here are some tips from Aaron Smith from Ilyon®, a free-to-play games developer.

“The end goal of every mobile gaming platform should be to reach the ‘loyalty stage’ with as many users as possible. At the loyalty stage, a user is devoted to the game’s brand and user retention typically stabilizes.

In order to get to this point, however, there are several important features that mobile games can utilize to increase the likelihood that a user will stay engaged long enough to reach this crucial milestone.

Perfect the first session experience.

A user’s first session should incorporate a tutorial that is highly engaging, interactive, aesthetically pleasing, glitch-free, and easy to use. Start ‘rewarding’ the user immediately, whether it’s with a practice level that is over-simplified and easy to beat or free tokens for completing the tutorial or registering their email address.

Customize your notifications.

Mobile users receive push notifications and app emails constantly. Make sure your notifications stand out by using fun, branded phrases, an enticing call-to-action, emojis/graphics, or in-app incentives.

Users will quickly lose interest if they don’t feel an ongoing sense of progress. Create the experience of rapid and achievable progression by implementing smaller stages marked by rewards rather than large stages that take a while to complete. Continually update the storyline and unlock new content as the user progresses.

Encourage social interaction by rewarding users who link their game to their social accounts. Create ways for users to engage with their friends via the game, whether it’s through a personalized leaderboard, in-app messaging, or rewards for sharing scores on social media.”

average session length statistics for role playing games in 2021

Average Session Length Statistics for Mobile RPGs

Average session length is another important statistic, and it tells you how long users play a game. It is measured from the moment when the user opens the game to when the session is closed.

Average session length for the top 2% of RPGs was incredibly high – it went up to 94 minutes and 11 seconds in July. The lowest ASL was 62 minutes and 39 seconds in February, which is still very good. 

However, there’s a big drop-off when we compare the top 2% to the top 25% of RPG games. For the latter, ASL ranged from 11 minutes and 14 seconds to 12 minutes and 10 seconds.

For the median 50% of games, it was half that, ranging from 5 minutes and 57 seconds to 6 minutes and 49 seconds. 

And for the bottom 25% of games, it was even lower – between 3 minutes and 17 seconds and 3 minutes and 33 seconds.

arppu statistics for role playing games in 2021

ARPPU Statistics for Mobile RPGs

ARPPU refers to average revenue per paying user.

You’ll be happy to hear that mobile role-playing games have the highest ARPPU out of all mobile game genres.

As expected, ARPPU for the top 2% of RPGs was quite high in 2020 – from $65.96 to $86.56. However, that kind of revenue is only reserved for the very best role-playing games. 

The top 25% of RPGs had significantly lower ARPPU throughout 2020 – from $15.77 to $20.01.

For the median 50% of RPG games, it was even lower – it ranged between $6.30 and $7.65.

The bottom 25% of games in the RPG genre earned very little per paying user – between $0.97 and $1.36.

arpdau statistics for role playing games in 2021

ARPDAU Statistics for Mobile RPGs

When it comes to average revenue per daily active users, role-playing games are also at the top.

Average revenue per daily active user for the top 2% of RPGs ranged between $2.52 and $3.30. 

For the top 25% of games, it was lower – between $0.25 and $0.30. 

ARPDAU for median role-playing games in 2020 ranged from $0.03 and $0.05. 

The bottom 25% of RPGs barely get any revenue per daily active user. In 2020, it was between $0.003 and $0.006.

conversion rate statistics for role playing games in 2021

Conversion Statistics for Mobile RPGs

Conversion data is the percentage of users who made a purchase that day.

Between 10.77% and 14.36% of users made a purchase in the top 2% of role-playing games. 

For the top 25% of RPGs, that number was significantly lower. Those games managed to convert between 2.07% and 2.37% of players in 2020. 

The median 50% of role-playing games converted between 0.83% and 1.03%. 

The bottom 25% of RPGs had even lower conversion rates in 2020 – between 0.32% and 0.40%. 

Final Thoughts on Advertising Mobile RPGs

It’s time to hear what do you think about advertising mobile role-playing games? Which part do you find the hardest? Do you need any help?

Let us know in the comments below!


About Udonis

Udonis is an independent full-service mobile marketing agency that acquired more than 200,000,000 users for mobile games since 2018.

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