Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki 2023

On September 12 and 13, Smadex retook Helsinki for the Pocket Gamer Connects conference. It is a packed and insightful event for the worldwide gaming industry, focusing on Nordic and Indie developers.

The Smadex team was busy at our booth, which continues to create a lot of attention everywhere we go (see pictures below!), but we did find time to attend some of the sessions and panels.

The Panels

The sessions were extremely good, from improving games monetization (IAP and IAA) to privacy, AI, Creatives, new regions, and many more topics.

We found the CTV session “Angry Birds on CTV” run by Rovio’s UA Manager Nutt Mongkol, especially insightful. Smadex is doubling down on CTV for gaming (as seen by the case studies we published recently), and we are always interested in learning more about our advertiser’s experiences with it. It was the first time I saw a presentation from a UA manager who understood the value of CTV as a performance channel and could break it down for his audience. I am very happy to see the progression in this area and excited to see its growth!

I did participate in a panel myself: “After IDFA: What’s next? Emerging Channels for Game Advertising”. It was an open conversation with Elsa Tung from GameInfluencer, Ville Heijari from Original Games, and Cyril Barrow from Village Studio Games, where we discussed which channels can work for gaming UA in a post-IDFA world.

With user-level targeting almost out of the picture in iOS and many challenges coming ahead with SKAN 4.0, it’s essential to understand how to leverage contextual targeting and which tools can help the most to measure and/or optimize performance. Without forgetting about testing Apple’s SkAdNetwork! We all agreed there’s no clear winner for performance without IDFA, but there are definitely some channels to keep an eye on, and testing is imperative.

I could share my excitement about CTV as an emerging great channel for gaming UA in an IDFA-less world, which is now also trackable and has proved to be incremental.

We also touched on other channels like TikTok, Influencers, CPE platforms, and using first-party data and creative optimization to optimize. It was an engaging discussion, and we could answer some audience questions afterward.

Summary of PGC Helsinki 2023

As a final note on the event, we enjoyed the Indie section, where we could play games by independent companies and vote our favorite. The original puzzle game Save the Zacks by Bytesize Technology was very fun to play, simple but well thought out. I’m sure they have great things ahead!

Thank you to the PGC team for organizing yet another great industry event. Until next time!