On Thursday, May 11th, Smadex Growth Squad attended the first-ever App Growth Summit in Paris, France!

Experiencing the French app ecosystem was interesting, and albeit most of the panels were in French, Smadex maximized the learnings and opportunities we could get from the experts in the industry.

From best practices for improving your app user experience to tips for growing your user base and even a peak into privacy and SKAN, AGS panels, and talks contained the perfect mix of knowledge for the attendees.

The Panel

I joined the panel “All about Ads! Channel Insights & Media Mix Mastery”, where I could share my view on programmatic as a UA channel, along with industry trends and challenges, with the experts Arthur Cordier-Lassalle, Global Creative Director at Gameloft and Olivier Lemarie, VP Growth at PhotoRoom. We were moderated by Thomas Le Hardy, currently VP Marketing&Growth at Tonsser. I was thrilled to see Thomas as he’d been working at another company from the Entravision group years before, and I was very interested to hear about his journey since then. We could also catch up during the pre-event Speakers and VIP dinner, a cozy gather-up in a great French restaurant where we could loosen up before the event and get to know each other better.

My fellow panelists all hold several years of experience in UA and Marketing, which drove an exciting discussion that our audience appreciated since some of us got approached by attendees right after finishing the panel.

We started discussing our favorite paid media channels, Olivier was a fan of Meta for scaling, and Arthur agreed that SANs are the best for this. At the same time, I explained why I believe programmatic is one of the most complete channels to scale outside the walled gardens (Meta, Tiktok, Twitter) since it has access to all other available supply, in all the traffic types (in-app, mobile web, CTV, OOH) with all creative types (video, display, playables).

We also agreed that creatives are a key element to nailing a UA media mix strategy, along with good tracking and reporting. Arthur explained that at Gameloft, they are starting to put artists more in contact with the UA managers, so they understand how their designs impact user acquisition and are empowered to make decisions based on the outcome they see in the UA campaigns, which I found incredibly interesting and so needed!

Next up, we discussed the most challenging channels. Of course, programmatic was mentioned. Thomas had trouble scaling it in the past when he was doing arbitrage. I explained that while programmatic has many advantages, it might only be for some apps at some stages. You need a good analytics team that can process the insights you are getting from your programmatic campaigns and correctly calculate future metrics like your LTV. You need to find the right partner as well, someone you can share information with and them with you, someone who can help you set the right expectations and can handhold you through the optimization process, and who can manage the campaign for you if needed, as programmatic optimization can be time-consuming. And finally, you need to be ready for it in terms of time and investment you are willing to make to scale your user base there. But once you are ready for it, programmatic gives you incremental growth, so the challenges are worth it!

TikTok was also mentioned by Olivier and Arthur as a very challenging channel for them, especially when it comes to ad fatigue.

When talking about the nearest future of the UA landscape, we all agreed that the biggest changes that are coming are around privacy-centric measurement systems that are coming with SKAdNetwork and Google Privacy Sandbox. But also, the most spoken buzzword came in: AI! Especially for creative production. When speaking of trends, we mentioned CTV as the next big thing. I am very excited about its possibilities for UA!

And that was a wrap on our panel—great insights on a great environment.

AGS is always like a second home to us, and Paris was no different. Thank you, AGS team, for organizing, and looking forward to the next one!

Panel: All About Ads! Channel Insights & Media Mix Mastery