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App Climbs App Store Ranking from #253 to #5 in 10 Days with Facebook Mobile Ads

Written by: Cheryl Morris, VP Marketing

From gaming to ecommerce, app developers are increasingly recognizing the power of the Facebook mobile News Feed to fuel app discovery and distribution.

One of Facebook’s core draws for mobile advertisers lies in its extensive reach. Rather than navigate multiple ad networks and exchanges to hit volume and distribution goals, app developers can turn to one channel that offers the opportunity to reach over 600 million people worldwide. Couple this unprecedented reach with Facebook’s rich targeting data and ad units designed specifically to drive mobile app installs, and Facebook becomes a mobile advertising channel impossible to ignore.

We recently worked with a mobile app developer in the ecommerce space that achieved significant scale on Facebook mobile, surpassing expectations in ad spend and impression volume while meeting cost and performance targets. All was achieved during a time leading up to the holidays, when demand for ad inventory is traditionally at its highest of the year.


The app developer’s goal was to maximize distribution and climb the ranks of the Apple App Store leading up to the holidays. This would place the app prominently in front of millions of current and new tablet and smartphone owners outfitting their devices with apps during the holidays.

The developer leveraged Nanigans’ Facebook advertising software to spend its budget as quickly as possible to drive installs and ultimately reach this goal, all while maintaining their cost and performance goals. 


Nanigans and the mobile app developer devised a strategy that focused on the three core elements to any successful advertising campaign — creative, targeting and optimization:


Mobile app install ad units were leveraged for the campaign. Facebook designed these specifically for app developers, featuring rich creative based on the app’s settings, a strong “install now” call to action, and social referrals such as the number of people who have used the app.

Targeting & Optimization

Targeting was restricted to iOS device owners, and geographically to the United States. Targeting was first employed to reach the developer’s core segment of females over the age of 22. To reach a larger audience, over 900 unique segments were created through a city-specific strategy coupled with broader age, gender and interest targeting.

Throughout the 10-day campaign period, the advertiser optimized to reach audiences with low cost-per-clicks and who generated high install rates.


Within just 10 days, the mobile app developer was able to move from an app store ranking in the mid-200s to within the top five.


In reaching this goal, the developer achieved far greater volume than expected in terms of ad spend and impression volume delivered:

  • Over $325,000 in ad spend, with daily spends exceeding $90,000 on multiple days
  • Delivered more than 32.5 million ad impressions, and more than 8.5 million in one day

Performance & Cost

The above volume was achieved while keeping performance and cost metrics within the app developer’s target ranges – all during the time leading up to Christmas, when demand for ad inventory is traditionally at its highest of the year:

  • CTRs averaged 0.74%, and were as high as 1.50% in core segments
  • Install rates averaged 10.11%, and were as high as 33.33% in core segments
  • CPCs averaged $1.35, and were as low as $0.50 in core segments
  • Average CPIs were within the developer’s target range, and as low as $5.50 in core segments

Interested in leveraging Facebook to scale your mobile app? Contact us today!

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