Erin (Haoran) Sun

Manager, User Acquisition and Ad Monetization


wbgames

Q&A with Erin

Erin serves as Manager of User Acquisition and Ad Monetization at WB Games. As an unabashed perfectionist with a healthy penchant for taking risks, she specializes in global media buys and works on the top-grossing mobile title, Game of Thrones: Conquest.

Erin first got her start in mobile gaming at a publishing startup in 2014, working on everything from marketing to business development and PR. She eventually moved to Kabam, where she led their global media buy on Facebook and TikTok, before arriving at WB Games in 2019.


Read Erin’s blog: “Women in Mobile: Bosses of the Industry – Erin Sun @ WB Games


In your own words, tell us about the apps that you manage?

I’ve worked on numerous mobile games spanning a wide range of genres including strategy, fighting, action, slots, fantasy, RPGs and more. I currently work on Game of Thrones: Conquest, a mobile strategy game based on the popular HBO series.

How did you get started in mobile marketing?

I was looking for a summer internship while pursuing my Master of Science in New Media Studies when I received a call from the founder of a small mobile gaming startup. He had more than a decade of gaming experience while I had yet to even play my first mobile game. To my surprise, he said he believed I would have a talent for mobile marketing and offered me a full-time job as a UA manager.

The thought of entering a field I knew nothing about was intimidating but I decided to take the risk and see what I could accomplish. I went from playing zero mobile games to playing new games each week, researching competitors’ growth strategies, writing press releases and working on business development. Six years later, I can confirm that the phone call was a blessing and I made the right choice. The fast-paced and (let’s be honest) high-pressure startup environment not only pushed me to rapidly develop my skills, but greatly influenced the type of career-woman I’d become.

What do you like most about mobile marketing?

I find mobile marketing fascinating because it perfectly marries technology and art into a field that is constantly changing. On one hand, you must be data-driven to effectively navigate a saturated and competitive market. On the other hand, you have to keep in mind that it’s real people who are playing your game. It’s just as important to understand human psychology and how to communicate with your audience.

Furthermore, you need to be creative in your marketing approach to even stand out in the first place. The task of balancing and fine-tuning these elements for each individual mobile game is a challenge I very much enjoy.

What does it take to succeed in mobile marketing?

Be willing to take calculated risks. Once you have a deep understanding of your product, your audience and the market, you can further stack the odds in your favor by being early adopters of the latest technology, dissecting upcoming trends for opportunities and using creative to your advantage.

What strategies work best to convert installs into engaged app users?

A great app with great content is always the best way to engage users. That being said, no user is exactly alike, so constantly delivering the right content to the right audience – both in-game and through marketing channels – is the most effective method in keeping users engaged.

In the past year, what is one tip you can share which made the biggest performance difference for your UA strategy?

One of the biggest factors in driving a successful UA strategy is having a deep understanding of your partners’ most advanced ad technology and products. All mobile marketers should be staying appraised of new updates or algorithm changes and exploring how best to utilize their latest offerings. Volunteer to beta test so you can communicate your specific needs to your partners, and have them build the solution into their product for you.

What’s your top tip when it comes to mobile ad creative?

My top tip would be to have an evergreen creative campaign live at all times. This allows you to keep refreshing creatives which in turn, helps uncover new winning assets to serve in various UA campaigns.

What is your go-to resource for keeping up with the mobile ad tech industry?

  1. Industry friends – Working in a silo is one of the biggest blockers of progress. I encourage all mobile marketers to form connections with marketers in different verticals in order to learn cross-industry strategies that can inspire their own projects.
  2. Mobile industry community – You don’t have to be active on LinkedIn or attend every mobile conference, but you should have a go-to group of peers, experts and mentors you can rely on as a resource for advice, education or even a sanity check.
  3. Partner product updates – Understanding your partners’ vision for their products could be a good indicator of upcoming industry trends, and getting a jump on these early can significantly boost your mobile marketing strategy.

READ ERIN’S BLOG

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