Matt Choi

Performance Marketing Manager

Pocket Gems

Q&A with Matt

As a lifelong gamer, Matt Choi played a wide variety of titles ranging from casual mobile games to eSports. After a brief professional career in Starcraft II and League of Legends, Matt turned his passion for gaming into a career. Matt started off in data analytics at Collegiate Star League but quickly pivoted into mobile marketing where the space offered more potential. He is currently a part of the performance marketing team at Pocket Gems, focusing on user acquisition and retargeting for the mobile game Episode.

Read Matt’s blog: “How eSports Gaming Prepared Me for a Career in Mobile Marketing


In your own words, tell us about the app(s) that you manage?

Episode is an interactive storytelling platform that allows users to create and share their stories. With hundreds of thousands of stories available across every imaginable genre, I am always able to find intriguing stories.

How did you get started in mobile marketing?

Truthfully, getting a “traditional” job never really interested me since professional gaming and trading–my two “jobs” at the time–were plenty exciting and lucrative. Analyzing data and quickly adapting to new challenges is something that has always been fun to me. However, these were two fairly independent career paths and I yearned for something more social and collaborative.

I wanted to work on something that was analytical and challenging, with a mix of something new (in this case, creative). I came across a performance marketing role at Pocket Gems and applied out of sheer curiosity. My background and experiences were definitely unusual, so I am grateful that they gave me an opportunity to showcase my skills.

What do you like most about mobile marketing?

I thrive in the fast-paced nature of mobile marketing. Since the ecosystem is constantly evolving, there are always opportunities to pick up something new. What works right now might not work tomorrow, so staying on top of trends is especially important. I also like that the results from my work are quantifiable – I love knowing that my work is making a visible impact.

What does it take to succeed in mobile marketing?

In my opinion, successful pro-gamers and mobile marketers share many of the same traits: a competitive spirit, an unrelenting drive to improve, and a willingness to take data and transform it into something actionable. A great mobile marketer is willing to take calculated risks and is constantly iterating and improving from their mistakes!

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

For a community as diverse as Episode’s, it is hard to pinpoint just one specific reason why users engage with the app. We want to prove to users that there is value past “just the app,” whether through unique creatives, specialized onboarding experiences, or community interactions in and out of the app.

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

One of the things that have helped me improve dramatically is taking a step back and assessing the current ecosystem for the largest opportunity. As data-driven individuals, it is easy to get lost in your own processes. Looking at the big picture from time to time and seeing how your pieces fit in the puzzle is important and can illuminate some pretty large growth opportunities.

What advice can you offer marketers to successfully re-engage mobile app users?

Successfully re-engaging mobile app users involves understanding (1) new user motivations for installing and engaging and (2) why aged users lapse. Make sure that your re-engagement campaigns are timely while also effectively addressing the two points above. The longer a user is left alone after churning, the more unlikely they are to return.

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

Seeing a personalized ad is more relatable and interesting than a broad, generic one. People are less likely to deem your ads “annoying” if they are personalized.

I love to break down the ads I see: what do I like or not like about it? What would I change to make this more actionable? I take those ideas and try to utilize them in our own ads.

What advice can you offer to help marketers combat mobile ad fraud?

Firstly, find a reliable MMP with strong anti-fraud technology. Additionally, set realistic campaign benchmarks so if performance deviates too far from the baseline, you are able to quickly identify the offending campaign and investigate.

What are your top 3 go-to resources for keeping up with the mobile ad tech industry? *

My top resources for keeping up with the latest trends include the ever-reliable Google, industry newsletters, and webinars.


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