Minimal resources, maximum return

Singular provides all your MMP needs in one affordable package with attentive support so that we can move quickly and optimize as best we can to achieve and maintain product market fit. The combination of Singular and Udonis has helped us to achieve our goals with limited resources and an aggressive mission.
Daniel Feld
Marketing and Product Owner @ Playsome
  • 115%+
    Growth in ROAS D180 in a year
  • ~275%
    NET ROAS after 3 years lifetime
  • 400%
    Improved scale on iOS in a year

What is Playsome?

Playsome was founded at the end of 2019 by a small group of gaming industry veterans, as is usually the case in Helsinki, with such a rich gaming history. The company is focused on creating Role-Playing Games.

Friends & Dragons is globally available on iOS and Android. With great reviews on both app stores.

That’s what we’re really passionate about. We want to create these deep, engaging games that keep players captivated for more than 10 years with meaningful and engaging gameplay every day.
  • Founded
    2019
  • Friends & Dragons
    1 Title
  • Employees
    12
  • Installs
    750K

The Playsome Challenge

Friends & Dragons is a fantasy hero-collecting RPG puzzle game; the first game released by Playsome.

Daniel was hired to run the user acquisition, general marketing, and product management for Playsome. He also owns the design and life operation tasks for the company. “There is full collaboration and flow between the numbers, the business, and the marketing. I think, for a company like ours a unified position, with a complete overview of what the product and marketing does and how it interacts, is the only way to succeed. I have a full-funnel view of our user behavior and can really focus on the life operations of the game.”

When Daniel first joined, the company had just received seed funding, meaning that they had a very short runway to prove the game and its product market fit. They gave themselves 6 months.

The team hit their goals within that initial 6 months, were able to secure their next funding round. “Then we staffed up a little bit, continued developing the game, and that’s when the IDFA deprecation hit and we had to start juggling a whole new world of marketing.

It’s become harder and harder to acquire our audience. But we know there is a whole community of people who love these games and wants to engage and play. That’s why we’re here, to cater to this audience.

Of course, when it comes to proving worth to investors, everything is in the numbers.
“In the beginning we had the most basic setup you can imagine. We were only running on one channel, so had no MMP, and were really only concerned with click through rates, conversion rates and retention rates. Our analytics stack was built by a friends’ company in Helsinki and could prove the most important metrics for us.”

Initially, showing great retention was vital for investor confidence and to secure further funding. “We went to market quickly and with a solid product. Focused on proving our day 30 retention to be competitive and ideally over 10%. A promising signal of success to have an engaging and equally important: a monetising game.”

The next step for Playsome was to prove mass marketability, day 180 retention, and then day 360 retention and long term cohort development. “You have to prove deep monetization and LTV improvement year over year.” Daniel explains that for the company, improving the life operation naturally led to improving monetization. “When we started, we had an event every 2 months or so. Today, we have an event every 2 weeks and a sales event, every 3 or 4 days – and that is with 12 people in the company.”

The Playsome team is super focused on building best-in-class live operations that allow for on-the-fly changes and optimizations, as needed. Tech and tools, as well as process needs to support the agile and fast paced development. Any new addition to their operations, may that be tech or a new agency partner needs to thoroughly fit into the system.

As the events started to grow, so too did the need to expand to additional marketing channels, and with that, the team.

Udonis proved the right partner to help expand the team’s resources, while Singular brought the right measurement view so that we could track our performance and ensure that we were growing in a way that was sustainable and not overreaching.
Key challenges for the Playsome team

Limited Resources
1 person team for marketing, product and design

Time Sensitivity
Low runway to prove product market fit

IDFA Deprecation
Harder to acquire new users

Accurate Measurement
Expansion into additional channels necessitated a close performance view

Why Udonis?

“Initially, I was looking for somebody to supply creatives to us,” says Daniel.
“Back in 2016, it already became clear that having strong creatives is the only way to succeed with the big marketing networks. Over time, creatives have remained the biggest influence you can have, but creative fatigue has also taken hold.”

For Playsome, having new creatives every day was their strategy but as a 1 man team, Daniel needed an agency partner that understood creative production, creative management, and creative refresh was key to their success strategy.

As an early-stage start-up with low resources, I love that we can run on autopilot with an expert agency who knows what they’re doing and do not need any guidance from me. It’s a dream come true.

“Luckily for me, thanks to recommendations from friends in the industry, I found Udonis. We started to work together, and it very quickly became apparent that they fully understand our game. They fully understand the creative level that is needed. They fully understand the Playsome mission. It took roughly a week until we had the first creatives on the table, and from the first set, I’ve never had to comment on a single thing. They just got it and got us.”

Why Singular?

Knowing that by expanding marketing into additional channels they would need an MMP, The search was on.

Daniel had worked with Singular’s cost aggregation tool during his days at Rovio and was familiar with the granular creative tracking that Singular provided. Having identified creatives as one of the most crucial levers in the UA journey, Singular stood out as the tool that could best meet their needs.

After doing some additional due diligence through recommendations and receiving warm responses, Playsome chose to work with Singular as their MMP.

The Singular Solution

“Singular is a very lightweight, easy-to-use, tool to run all things that are needed for user acquisition. It was easy to set up, easy to add the SDK, and easy to integrate. We also really enjoy the different dashboards and how simple they are to use,” Daniel shares. He notes that the core use case is the basic MMP functionality.

We have two different UA channels that we use. We needed to have that all that data in one place and Singular, is that source of truth for us. On top of that, of course, the creative tool really helps us to keep up with our creative performance, and all this data feeds back into our own internal tool.

Day-to-day, it’s Udonis that really runs the show for Playsome on Singular.

Mihovil Grguric, CEO of Udonis, shares, “Essentially, it’s really the simplicity of of usage, that makes Singular so valuable for us. No complexity, and data accuracy. What we see we know is the actual truth, which is key when you’re dealing with data. In the past we dealt with other attribution solutions where we had to spend 70%+ of our time just trying to figure out if the data was accurate before even diving into the user acquisition. So the top two benefits of Singular for us at Udonis would be data accuracy followed by simplicity of use.”

He notes that the Udonis team all have backgrounds in mathematics and like their data linear. “Singular is like a very powerful pivot table and gives us the exact view that we need.”

They also really enjoy Singular’s API. “We want to look at data whatever way we want to and Singular replaces the need for a BI Analyst for smaller companies.”

Udonis + Singular = Success for Playsome

The team at Playsome live and breathe the company and its mission. Their passions are aligned and there’s a lot of silent and loud agreement on on how to drive the business forward.

But it took them a lot to get there. Daniel says, “We are very strict with our hiring process and finding the right fit for the right people – that includes the external partners we choose to work with.”

Udonis and Singular have been the winning team for Playsome.
While Singular’s creative reporting was a major factor in Playsome choosing them, it’s Singular’s SKAdNetwork solution that has taken center stage.

The new SKAdNetwork framework and conversion schemas are complicated but Singular has made them really easy to understand with regular communication and training and a tool that is easy to adopt. We have tapped into the team at regular intervals and also enjoy the clear documentation that they’ve provided.

Playsome saw some promising success with SKAN 3 and are now in the throes of getting to grips with SKAN 4.

Daniel explains that when it comes to finding the right conversion models, it all starts with implementing basic best practices, thanks to knowledge provided by the Singular team, and then just testing, testing, testing.

Top 3 Tips

Do not staff up unnecessarily
It’s paramount to find a good UA partner for a small company in the process of proving your game and product market fit. You do not need a full internal marketing team.

Be agile and work quickly
You might need to kill the game, and go back to the drawing board. You might need to change things on the fly. Be flexible.

Work with partners who get your business
You don’t have time to dig into every detail. Find partners who know what you need and are easy to work with.

“Our biggest successes have literally been with the most basic setups. And I’m a big fan of that. And then running tests as much as we can to improve the performance on that.”

Talking about Playsome’s success to date, Mike notes that while Playsome is classified as a small company, he always refers to it as a small-big company owing to the level of expertise and talent of the team. “Anybody from the outside would think it’s a 100-person company.”

What is Udonis?

Udonis was founded in 2015 with a simple mission – effectively advertising businesses online. Hundreds of thousands of marketing dollars went into generating revenue for traditional businesses before we decided on a niche in 2018. That niche was the booming mobile game market.

Since then, they have been acquiring users for some of the biggest mobile gaming companies in the industry, as well as for hundreds of minor studios. They are most proud of those that went from small to multi-million businesses with the help of our marketing, such as Tastypill or Playsome.

What is Singular?

Singular powers marketers to drive fast growth by uncovering accurate, granular, and timely ROAS insights with next-gen attribution and analytics. Leading marketing teams from Lessmore, LinkedIn, Rovio, Microsoft, Lyft, Twitter, EA, and more rely on Singular to get a complete view of their marketing performance and ROI. Singular is the solution to drive faster growth for your apps by combining mobile attribution with the industry-leading cost aggregation, including thousands of integrations, easy set-up, accurate and flexible analytics, plus automatic loading directly into your BI tools. For more information, visit singular.net

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