young man smiling at phone with GEO engagement growth rate
Mobile Data , Mobile Games

New UA Opportunities: Where Should You Grow Your Mobile Game?

The mobile gaming market is evolving at a speed that doesn’t allow teams to rely on or recycle their UA strategies for too long. 

To secure a quality user base, it’s essential to understand where growth is happening right now. The latest Mobile Games Index highlights the most recent shifts in user engagement around the world – as well as which mobile gaming publishers aced the engagement game.

Whether you’re a well-equipped team or you’re working in lean teams with limited resources, our team at adjoe has collected this engagement data to help you seize these new UA opportunities.

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North America: #1 Region for Engagement Growth

North America saw the biggest uplift in engagement with mobile games last year – it turns out the region is fertile for finding engaged users within certain gaming genres.

We were especially curious about this engagement surge in the adventure, casual, and strategy game genres. 

Daily engagement with adventure titles alone has grown by almost 60 percent since 2022 – users played their favorite adventure titles for an average of 30 minutes every day. 

Complex hybrid adventure titles continue to draw long engagement times – especially, from younger audiences – with advanced features such as augmented reality, virtual live events, and customization. However, classic adventure titles such as Bermuda Adventures Farm Island, Jurassic World Alive, and Unsolved Mystery Games have revealed that many adventure players still seek more traditional experiences.

bar graphs showing engagement growth rate in North America for mobile games

There is also ample space for strategy games to grow in the North American region. 

The genre is often considered a challenging genre to grow due to its complexity and niche appeal. Yet a significant increase in engagement with strategy games in North America suggests there may be new UA opportunities here. 

Strategy game studios should take notes from some of the leading strategy titles: 

  • Clash Royale and Clash of Clans by Supercell
  • Viking Rise and Doomsday: Last Survivors by IGG.COM

Players clocked in the longest hours in these titles over the past year. Why? We can only assume that this is to do with these publishers continuing to release regular content and feature updates, such as meta-elements, to keep users engaged.

North America is an expensive target market for mobile games. If your team invests time and money into geotargeting within the region, they should be doing it right, with the verticals that are growing in terms of engagement from users.

Africa: #2 Region for Engagement Growth

Africa has long been emerging as a major market of interest since 2022. Our data identifies Africa as the second-fastest-growing region in terms of daily engagement across genres.

Some experts in the industry argue that, at the rate of mobile adoption in Africa, the region may soon surface at number one in our engagement rankings, making it a hotbed of new UA opportunities in the mobile gaming landscape. 

But if your team wants to compete successfully with every other UA team that has identified Africa as their next venture, you will need to pinpoint where exactly the most promising opportunities lie.

So, here it is: Daily app usage in Africa is growing the most in casual, word, and card games. Players, however, currently spend the longest time engaging with board games for an average of more than 27 minutes daily.

bar chart showing mobile game engagement growth in Africa

That it’s these particular genres users are engaging most with comes down to the types of devices used in Africa – and OS versions. Most gamers in the region use Android devices, often with older versions of the OS. This heavily impacts mobile gaming experiences.

Board and card games, for instance, are less resource-intensive and are able to deliver a smoother UX on older devices with which users can (and are willing to) engage for longer. 

Genres such as role-playing games require more advanced graphics and processing power. We can see that daily engagement with RPG titles in Africa is far lower than the average daily mobile game engagement time of 15.3 minutes. That’s why, for now, it could pay off to focus on verticals such as casual, word, and card games if you’re targeting the African market.

Europe: #3 Region for Engagement Growth

Last but ranked number three on our list of regions with promising new UA opportunities: It’s Europe. 

The region is ranked number one for total daily engagement times across all ten mobile game genres at 23.2 minutes on average. European players showcase diverse tastes and deliver long engagement times across all genres, making it one of the safest regions for UA teams to target.

So, which genres fare well here?

  • Adventure (average daily engagement of 28 minutes): The benchmark for a successful adventure title in Europe is a good story, with rich narratives, complex characters, and interactive environments, as proven by titles like Manor Matters from Playrix, June’s Journey from Wooga, and Bermuda Adventures from Belka Games.
  • Casual games (average daily engagement of 25 minutes): Users in Europe are spending almost 50 percent longer in these games compared with 2022. Titles like Homescapes and Gardenscapes by Scopely and Candy Crush by King have consistently performed well.
bar chart showing engagement growth rate in Europe
  • Strategy games (average daily engagement of 24 minutes): Europe is also, like North America, home to fans of strategy games. Leading titles like Clash Royale and Clash of Clans by Supercell continue to set engagement-related benchmarks in this region as well.

Europe is a safe target market for mobile games – it is also home to more data privacy regulations than Africa and North America. This sounds like an obstacle for UA teams, but regulations such as the GDPR keep the market regulated and focused on quality. The most successful gaming publishers will continue to build trust and obtain user-consented data from their European users to grow an engaged and loyal user base for their titles over the long term.

Pivot to Where Player Engagement is Growing

All UA strategies have an expiration date because the target market for mobile games is constantly shifting.

That’s why your team needs to stay informed and pivot toward the latest geotargeting trends; this context will be the backbone of your next UA strategy. 

Working with growth managers is now nonnegotiable – with them, you can work smarter, not harder, to identify fertile regions for growing your app and entering new markets – as the publishers mentioned in this article have done successfully.

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