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Pocket Gems Surfaces Winning Ad Creative On Facebook And Scales Mobile Campaign 500% With Nanigans [Case Study]

Written by: Juliana Casale, Director of Marketing

The talented in-house advertising team at Pocket Gems knows that finding the right creative can make all the difference in mobile advertising campaign success. With Nanigans advertising automation software, they are able to iterate, test, scale, and measure the return on ad spend that different creatives generate, quickly and efficiently.

Pocket Gems

The Benefits of Keeping It Fresh

Pocket Gems debuted its “Choose Your Own Story” mobile game, Episode, in 2014, presenting players with thousands of animated stories where their choices matter.

In order to keep user activity steady over time, Pocket Gems has leveraged its in-house creative team to invent and design fresh image concepts and videos. When the game developer launched a mobile app install ad campaign featuring a specific image creative for a new Episode theme, performance exploded on Facebook.

Pocket Gems Episode Ad Creative

The single-image mobile app install ad above performed well not only in terms of engagement, but users who installed the app made a significant number of in- game purchases in just two days.


Click-through Rate


Conversion Rate


Day 2 Yield

Tools For Success

The ability to track and analyze data is crucial to optimizing performance. By utilizing Nanigans’ real-time tracking, Pocket Gems monitored the revenue driven from the new ad on Facebook, and was able to easily adjust budgets accordingly. Aware they had a hit on their hands, Pocket Gems quickly scaled daily spend on the mobile app install ad campaign by 500%.

Meanwhile, automated creative testing in Nanigans ensured that top-performing images like the one pictured above remained active while underperformers were paused down automatically.

Iteration and Expansion

Savvy advertisers know how to take a good ad and run with it.

After seeing the huge success of its initial mobile app install ads using a single static image, Pocket Gems’ in-house advertising team decided to expand Nanigans’ automated creative testing to an additional ad unit. They applied the top-performing concept and other romance-related images to Facebook’s interactive carousel ad format.


Carousel mobile app install ads are perfectly suited to a narrative-based game like Episode. Dropping images into Facebook’s scroll-friendly template, Pocket Gems was able to illustrate story arcs and entice users to find out what would happen next.

Performance from the carousel mobile app install campaign was again impressive, with Day 2 Yield for the top creative reaching 60%. After confirming that carousel ads could bring in high-value users, Pocket Gems iterated on similar stories, allocating 73% of their Facebook ad spend to carousel concepts in one day.

Pocket-Gems-Episode-GameThe Story Continues

The ability to easily identify high-performing users and monitor their behavior isn’t just important for campaign optimization; it also provides mobile developers with a glimpse into what their best audience finds most engaging about a game.

Pocket Gems believes that its creative resonates so well because it tells a story, reflecting a sense of romance and drama that appeals to Episode’s core demographic, while simultaneously reflecting the choice-based gameplay within the app. With Nanigans’ powerful creative testing automation and in- app revenue attribution, the mobile game developer is able to tailor its ad campaigns precisely to player interests, while maximizing return on ad spend.

Armed with the knowledge that their most valuable users prefer romantic storylines, Pocket Gems can continue to align new concepts with the original image that led to success, and apply the insights gained from advertising Episode to other titles—keeping the cycle of improved performance going.

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