KANO/APPS is a Victoria BC mobile and social game developer that has been very successful with game distribution on Facebook and is on the verge of launching a new game for iOS distribution. Go2mobi interviews KANO/APPS CEO Tim Teh for Village Gamer.
Tell Us about KANO/APPS
KANO/APPS  focusing on mid-core to hardcore RPGers, KANO/APPs develops free-to-play strategy games. Mob Wars: La Cosa Nostra is one of our more popular games.
Our smaller, niche audience provides more focused opportunities for in-game monetization. Since we’re free-to-play, about 95% of monetization occurs through in-app purchases, such as vanity items & power-ups.
We develop strategy games rather than “casual games.” Our users invest a lot of time into playing the games, and so, with the popularity of tablets and other screens, it makes sense to launch a mobile version of our game. Mobile gives us the opportunity to provide more engagement for our users.
We’re getting ready to launch a game called Free Rider HD  on mobile for iOS.
Free Rider HD is the sequel to one of the most played online games of all time with over 500 million plays and +1 million player drawn tracks.
We are doing the development work, while Ira provides the intellectual property (IP). For game developers a great strategy is to partner with someone with established, compelling IP. Of course, for startups this can be risky depending on the IP partner because there may be revenue expectations, and it can be tough to determine how successful your game will be.
What has been the biggest change since you started making games?
In the past it was challenging and expensive to develop games for different platforms. The challenge at the time was we could not respond quickly to user needs in order to optimize acquisition and monetization.
However, now with better devices and utilizing HTML5, it’s easy to update quickly across multiple platforms.
How do you acquire new users?
For desktop we typically work with partners such an online games hosting websites that help us to publish our games and worry about distribution so that we can focus on game development.
We started out on desktop at the dawn of Facebook. We have experienced a ton of success working with several desktop portals including Kongregate and Armor Games.
What do you think is the key mobile advertising for game developers?
For user acquisition on mobile a tool that can identify users by demographic and by OS would be important. We’re looking for relatively affluent, English-speaking users on iOS. So a tool that provides that degree of precision would be important.
Tim Teh is CEO of KANO/APPS has launched a number of new titles in 2014, and will launch even more in 2014. Check out the amazing trailers for some of their games here .
Mobile Advertising Insights for Game Developers
Mobile advertising provides an additional tool to drive user acquisition.
With mobile advertising, there are tactics and strategies that optimize and dramatically lower the cost of acquisition. An approach for a developer like KANO/APPS might look like the following:
- Create initial modest test campaigns targeted at iOS users in their target countries.
- Target one at related games and APPS likely to be played by folks who would like their new game.
- Target another campaign targeted at people frequenting mobile sites with related content.
- Run the campaigns for a short while, gathering enough data to provide insights.
- Look at performance by iOS version, iOS device, region, app placements, site placements and other factors.
- Taking the just the highest performing pockets from the targets noted above, create new campaigns targeting just those pockets. For instance, there may be specific iOS versions and devices that dramatically outperform others, or there may be specific targeted APPS that work very well.
- Get to work on optimizing those campaigns and scaling them up further as performance dictates.
Go2mobi  is a Mobile Audience Targeting Platform and used by many different kinds of performance based advertisers, brands, and agencies around the world. The company is based in Victoria, BC.