Editor's Note: This article was originally published in November of 2014, but has been completely updated with the latest mobile app ads and trends as of April 25th, 2017.
Looking to up your mobile app ad game but not sure where to start? We’re providing the inspiration you need with these 7 examples of brands with mobile app ads that are crushing it. We love these mobile app ads because of their creativity, design, or unusual approach.
Take a look at these grand master mobile app ads and tell us what you think about them in the comments!
Drizly has a pretty strong marketing strategy in general – in Boston we had a few months when their print ads were plastered all over the subway cars!
Drizly also knows how to get pretty creative with their cross promotions and partnerships. Take a look at this fantastic Instagram ad below, in which Drizly promotes a new episode of the reality TV show The Bachelor.
If you know anything about The Bachelor and its audience, you know that they love wine. I’m not sure it’s even legal to watch the show without a glass of wine within 5 feet of you – check your local ordinances.
Drizly sniffed out this prime opportunity for partnership; they used an ad that highlights an already popular show and is bound to capture the attention of Bachelor fans, while also offering a discount to new users so that they’ll have a nice glass of Pino in time for the show.
Think about what kind of creative partnerships you can make that will help promote your app in unique ways!
Most freemium users like myself know only one kind of Spotify ad – the kind that pesters you to go premium and eliminate unwanted ads during your jam sessions.
However, this Spotify ad on Instagram takes a fun approach to get users in the app and excited by celebrating new musical artist and library expansions, while also serving as a nice nod to true Beatles fans.
Of course I use the term “new artist” just in reference to Spotify’s catalogue. There’s nothing much “new” about The Beatles, other than in the minds of teenagers who, with each generation, discover how great “that old band from the 60s” really is.
Spotify’s ad is unique in that it takes the time to celebrate a specific aspect of its service, rather than the concept of the music-streaming service as a whole.
Thrive Market is an ecommerce store specializing in healthy, natural foods that are shipped from your online cart to your IRL doorstep.
In this great mobile app ad example below, they use Facebook’s ad platform to showcase some of their best products, using the mobile app ad as a virtual storefront – we think that’s pretty clever!
Sun Basket is a healthy food subscription service (in the same vein of Hello Fresh, Blue Apron, and the crop of other similar services that have popped up recently), delivering pre-measured ingredients and recipes that allow you to whip up dinner dishes without dealing with common grocery struggles.
Sun Basket offers a pretty enticing Instagram ad, with a series of delicious meals flashing before your eyes – meals that you could make, with just a little bit of help and encouragement!
The bright, colorful looking meals make this mobile app ad hard to pass up. Plus, the short and sweet text, using emojis for emphasis, drives home some of the key advantages of Sun Basket. We say this ad is extra well done (with dressing on the side)!
MilesIQ takes an inception-style approach to their mobile app ad, giving us a first-hand look at what their app might look like on our very own desk.
Tracking your miles is a bit like eating your vegetables – it’s not very fun, but it sure is good for you (or, more specifically, your taxes). With tax season still haunting our bank accounts, MileIQ’s mobile Instragm ad is a subtle reminder to do better next year, with the help of their app.
It’s all tied together with a nice little testimonial in the text, helping to give the extra push a user might need to install the app.
Fly Wheel is another app with an Instagram ad I was impressed by. The bright pink colors are captivating, but what really made this ad a home run for me was the text – “double your freelance revenue” – which seemed to specifically target me, a freelancer!
I can’t say for sure whether Fly Wheel has other variations of this ad for different audience segments, but it’s probably a safe bet (and if they haven’t set that up yet, they now know what their next marketing step should be)!
Anyone scanning through posts on Instagram will probably pause on words that target their specific career or interests – whether that’s “dog lover,” “mom on the run” or “freelancer.”
Segment your audiences and craft tailored ads for them to see big returns!
BetterHelp’s illustration-style ad pops out from the crowd and provides a dual purpose – it helps fight against the taboo that still surrounds mental health while offering a solution (albeit a mysterious one).
BetterHelp doesn’t make it notably obvious what it’s providing – is it an awareness campaign? Some kind of mental health service? You need to click through to find out (for those curious – it’s an online counseling service app).
While it certainly won’t make sense with most industries, I think in this case, BetterHelp’s withholding of information works. It’s already dealing with a relatively hush-hush topic, so requiring users to click through before providing more info actually uses that air of mystery to its advantage.
What mobile app ads have you seen recently that blew you away? Share your favorites in the comments and let us know!
Thanks for signing up. Look for your first email shortly!
We’ll reach out shortly to schedule a time to talk.