Bubble Pop!

Players find a new favorite game. Bubble Pop! uncovers new insights in U.S.

To drive U.S. expansion for its classic bubble shooter game, Korean publisher and developer Bitmango wanted to capitalize on App Store intent. Armed with insights from Apple Search Ads, Bubble Pop! Puzzle Game Legend increased reach, retention, and revenue.

The Results

5.7X increase in daily U.S. installs in a year.
24% higher Day-7 retention than similar platforms in U.S.
2X higher lifetime value than players from similar platforms in U.S.
33% higher average revenue per user in U.S. than similar platforms.

The Challenge

In a crowded, mature gaming market like the U.S., the Bitmango team needed to boost app discovery to expand their fanbase and grow revenue. Driving high-quality acquisition would require reaching gamers actively looking for similar boredom-busting games. Another key business objective for the Bubble Pop! publisher: measuring their acquisition campaigns accurately and tracking efficiency beyond the initial download.

We reached more engaged and loyal players in the U.S. with Apple Search Ads. They have better retention and 2x higher lifetime value than players from other ad platforms.

So-Hyun Choi,
Business Development Manager at Bitmango

The Solution

Drive acquisition by improving keyword coverage.

The Bitmango team launched discovery campaigns with Apple Search Ads, using Search Match to uncover new, relevant search terms in the U.S. They actively moved high-performing keywords to brand, category, and competitive campaigns as exact match. With this keyword strategy, the team scaled awareness to the broadest audience possible.

“We discovered casual gamers on the App Store don’t search for specific apps but instead consider apps that generally met their needs,” says So-Hyun Choi, Business Development Manager at Bitmango. “Keywords related to similar apps unexpectedly drove high install volume and retention rates. The U.S. players we acquired with Apple Search Ads also had higher lifetime value.”

Optimize bidding to capture the right audience.

To further refine their understanding of the U.S. market, the Bitmango team actively tracked campaign performance at the keyword level. They adjusted bidding on top performing keywords, helping them drive install volume as well as efficiency.

“It’s important to increase our customer base at a low cost, but it’s more important to get the right players. When we found the keywords with high tap-through rates and high conversion rates, we increased our maximum target cost per tap on these terms. This optimization helped us attract users who were a better fit for our app,” says So‑Hyun Choi.

Maximize efficiency by monitoring retention.

To ensure they were accurately tracking post-install efficiency, the Bitmango team specifically analyzed retention performance at the keyword level. The team found that Apple Search Ads drove 24 percent higher retention from players seven days after they installed the app compared to users from other platforms in the U.S. Based on these insights, they increased bids aggressively on the search terms that drove the highest retention.

“With this approach, we increased downloads significantly in the U.S. and were able to recalculate long-term value from these players. In fact, we found players acquired through Apple Search Ads have 2x higher lifetime value than users from other ad platforms,” says So‑Hyun Choi.

Company snapshot

  • Bitmango
  • Games category
  • Launched in 2011
  • Based in Pangyo, South Korea