Case Studies In-App Advertising Video Advertising

World of Warcraft: In-app Advertising


Online gaming


In-app advertising

World of Warcraft, part of the Activision Blizzard Group with a turnover of $6.5bn, is a powerful force in the gaming industry. The role-play game has been around for many years and is constantly reinventing itself with new add-ons, but the brand is reaching saturation. Advant was commissioned to help reach new audiences outside of traditional communities using image and video assets.


  • Increase brand awareness and drive qualified traffic
  • Deliver a positive Return on Ad Spend (ROAS)
  • Identify lookalike audiences that fit key Blizzard titles
  • Increase awareness for game launches and upgrades
  • Drive incremental growth from outside of the typical Google YouTube and Facebook ecosystem


Activision Blizzard, the company behind epic games such as Overwatch and Call of Duty, approached us with a brief to increase brand awareness and traffic for one their most famous brands: World of Warcraft.

The role-playing game has been around for many years and is a powerful force in the online gaming industry, however, despite efforts to constantly looking to reinvent itself with new and exciting add-ons, the brand is reaching saturation.


As  WOW had lots of content it made sense to use a media plan that could leverage that content. As with any brand awareness campaign when running video advertising we’re looking to ensure the following goals:

  • Brand safety
  • Completion rate
  • Viewability
  • CTR

With this in mind, we turned to in-app game advertising, more specifically, rewarded video advertising. Rewarded video advertising can be hugely successful, and we recently also used it as part of Shore Projects‘ media strategy. We also wrote a blog post about it here.

One of the main benefits of this type of advertising is that we can deliver very high completion rates (the average is as high as 95%). On top of this, videos are 100% in view with 100% share of voice AND yields CTRs in the region of 4% on average. Basically the holy grail of video metrics!

The CPMs are much lower than VOD platforms so naturally this made huge sense and would give Blizzard excellent awareness for their marketing investment.


The implementation of the campaign included an effective full-funnel retargeting solution that allowed Blizzard to own the data.

Our team then negotiated the best contracts on behalf of Blizzard for media buying and ad-serving and drove re-engagement via sophisticated retargeting strategies, taking into consideration upper funnel behavioural signals and factoring in recency windows from an initial site visit.


  • 8.6% Click-through rate vs a YouTube average of 0.33% CTR vs a pre-roll industry average CTR of 0.59%
  • 98% Audible and viewable on complete (AVOC) vs the industry for pre-roll which is just 22.5%


Advant Technology worked with paid and organic search specialist SEM International who managed the client relationship from their HQ in California where Blizzard is also based. Here’s what CEO Michael Bonfils had to say:

“Advant Technology continues to be our programmatic advertising partner of choice because of the results they deliver.  I don’t know another agency that can deliver 98% audible and viewable on completion and with a CTR of 8.6%. The campaign was a great success and helped deliver a big sales boost for Blizzard and their title World of Warcraft”


What made Advant succeed with this campaign was to look outside the box and find a gaming audience that gave the biggest ROI. Advant looked at a range of channels but knew that in-game rewarded video advertising would be both highly targeted but also deliver high reach with moderate investment levels.

It’s this type of thinking that sets us apart from you’re your average agency who would probably have just whacked the budget on Facebook or Google without too much thought of going further than the norm.


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