Leveraging Alternative App Stores to Advertise Cryptocurrency Trading Apps in India:


Leveraging Alternative App Stores to Advertise Cryptocurrency Trading Apps in India: Roadmap for 2022

Cryptocurrency apps

Cryptocurrency apps are the upcoming fighters in the battle ground

The past 12 odd months have changed the dynamics of the cryptocurrency industry. Globally, while the number of Blockchain.com wallets reached over 70 million users by Q1 ‘21- a whooping jump of 28.27 million wallets from 2020 (Source- Statista 2021 report), the Cryptocurrency apps witnessed a meteoric rise in popularity. India is one of the biggest markets for cryptocurrencies in the Asia region and one of the fastest expanding in the world, growing 641% between July 2020 and June 2021 (Source- Chainalysis). Cryptocurrency brands are now looking at strategic ways to successfully target audiences and drive installs at a cost-effective price. Never has been a better time for cryptocurrency apps to leverage alternative app stores for tapping new audiences in a fraud-free ecosystem.


Cryptocurrency apps are fighting their biggest battle!

Cryptocurrency apps currently compared to other fintech apps have to abide by multiple restrictions imposed by leading app stores and companies. Let’s take a look.

Google at the start of 2021 released its Developer Program Policy for Android under which it prohibited apps that mine cryptocurrency on devices- permitting apps that remotely manage the mining of cryptocurrency. Apple’s App Store Review Guidelines among other restrictions states that for Cryptocurrency mining “Apps may not mine for cryptocurrencies unless the processing is performed off the device.” This for example includes cloud-based mining. The guidelines also explain that “Apps may facilitate transactions or transmissions of cryptocurrency on an approved exchange, provided they are offered by the exchange itself.” The social media giant, Facebook’s Business Help Center explains that there are requirements for eligibility to advertise cryptocurrency services on the platform. Hardware/software for cryptocurrency mining and cryptocurrency trading platforms are allowed with permission, while token sales are not permitted. With such restrictions in place, many crypto companies do not have access to the largest mobile inventory in the world.

Crypto brands that cannot meet these requirements are only left with mobile Demand Side Platforms (DSPs) and affiliate marketing to advertise their apps. However, these solutions present new issues. While DSPs are designed to automate the buying process, they are not immune to advertising fraud and not all publishers are testing their DSPs to identify fraud when it occurs. Affiliate marketing is also a popular marketing method, but it still offers limited reach and targeting capabilities in comparison to alternative app stores. Unfortunately, advertising fraud in affiliate marketing continues to be a major downfall and an eyesore for advertisers. The estimates of how much affiliate fraud costs the global economy each year vary—which may be because a certain amount of fraud goes either undetected or unreported so totals have to be estimated. At one point, Uber discovered that $100 million of its $150 million marketing budget was being wasted on marketing fraud. Another marketing method, Collaboration with YouTube influencers, is becoming more and more popular among today’s blockchain-oriented startups and entrepreneurs. Popular YouTube influencers make a point of talking about a crypto brand to their subscribers in a synchronized manner. They work towards convincing the crypto space members, blockchain enthusiasts, and investors, that the solution under consideration is on the top of the crypto news and market.


Smartphone OEM* (Alternative app stores) advertising comes to the rescue…

Companies such as Xiaomi, HUAWEI, Vivo and Oppo, and OnePlus distribute apps directly to customers using their own independent stores. Smartphone OEM (original equipment manufacturer) and their alternative app stores allow advertising of financial products that have certain certifications, allowing them to access an otherwise untapped inventory. Let’s understand how OEM advertising provides sophisticated solutions for mobile financial products.

  • Specific targeting capabilities: OEMs are known for low Click Per Installs (CPIs) and high engagement rates, but they also enable brands to unlock incremental user growth. This is in addition to the targeting capabilities marketers expect from traditional app stores.
  • User-level data: OEMs offer access to user-level data while remaining GDPR compliant.
  • Worldwide Inventory: OEM inventory includes users from all over the globe, allowing brands to target lookalike audiences in new regions and scale their business.
  • Ability to work on different campaign models: OEMs allow crypto brands to work on several campaign models, such as CPI (Cost per Install), CPR (Cost per Revenue), and CPA (Cost per Action). Importantly, this enables trading apps to leverage CPR campaigns.
  • Safety due to non-fraudulent inventory: OEMs offer a fully fraud-free user-acquisition ecosystem because there are no additional layers between the budget holder and the OEM. Moreover, reach advertising placement is fully controlled by the OEM.


The 2022 outlook

As per a leading market survey, millennials as investors are probably more crypto-forward than others- this group is as bullish as ever about the space, despite recent volatility in the market. Of the 83% of millionaire millennials that own crypto, 53% have at least half of their wealth tied up in digital assets. Meanwhile, almost a third have at least 75% of their wealth in cryptocurrency.

The current trend of what investors with larger portfolios and a higher level of comfort in the space are doing gives an interesting perspective on possible outcomes for this industry. Millennials are one of the most crypto-friendly groups of people in the world and their current plans on how they will be investing in 2022 is a sign that they believe a good year could be in store. The ability of cryptocurrency brands to reap the most out of OEM stores could play a decisive role.


Ashwin Shekhar, Co-founder and Chief Revenue Officer (CRO), AVOW

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