Carter ThomasOwner at Gold Coin Kingdom LLC

Built and sold over 1,000+ iPhone and iPad apps (mostly games) as an iOS and Android marketer. Writer behind top mobile marketing blog Expert in ad networks, monetization, and mobile business models.

Recent Answers

Ironhide Studios partnered with Armor Games to publish on iOS. Killed it, obviously.

Thought they had such an amazing game that they should self-publish on Android. "Great products market themselves" type of thinking.

Launch was lackluster (at best) and had almost laughable results.

Talking to comparable game studios who were in talks with them, they missed out on a few million bucks by going self-publishing.

Just my 2 cents.


1. Go on LinkedIn
2. Find the 10 people you know that have friends/connections that are closely aligned with bank
3. Ask for introduction
4. Pitch the hell out of bank connection people
5. Offer them equity in company if deal closes
6. Have them close deal for you
7. Done

The power of the introduction in this world dwarfs anything else. Align yourself with the right people and you will have infinitely more success landing sponsors.

Good luck,


1. Project Management. Who to hire, how to get things done.

2. Basic accounting skills. If you can't run a P&L every 2 weeks, you're going to have a hard time growing/scaling.

3. Marketing. Great marketers are probably the hardest talent to hire....because they make companies all the money. Developers can be hired. Designers can be hired. HR can be hired. Everything can be hired. But strategic and creative people will want equity or huge incomes. If they don't, they're probably not that good.

In other words, you should be that person.

4. Be ruthless in your work ethic. You have to be better than everyone else who wants to make money.

5. Networking. In a bubble like mobile has, your ability to connect dots in social situations is worth more than almost anything else.

Good luck!


Real Talk: Mopub's support sucks, so I completely understand your hesitation. Here's what you need to know.

1. You're going to get medium to good fill rates in Tier 1 countries. US/UK/AUS/CA and maybe a few others in Europe and Japan. Other than that, expect to see huge variance (0%-90% depending on day). When you blend all that together, you'll never get 99% fill even with MoPub's marketplace. Just keep that in mind when you're pulling your hair out looking at your MP dashboard.

2. Setup Backfill/house ads in your mopub account to help solve this as much as you can. This will get your fill rate up, though for some reason it never seems to work as well as it should. Two options on this: 1 is that you cross promote your own games, 2 is that you use creative from a major game (Candy Crush etc) and wrap that creative with a custom affiliate link that you get from an affiliate market place. If you dont know what that is, check out OfferVault or NeverBlue and you'll see what I mean (basically they put their CPI bids on the open market and you can use that as you choose). This will make your backfill campaigns highly effective - I can often 3x the market eCPM by doing this on remnant inventory.

3. Mediate as many networks as you can. Sign up for all the networks that MoPub offers and use them to mediate with. Again, this isn't perfect, but could help. Make sure you keep eCPM floors at $0.05 with everything (not $0.01, that just destroys your eCPM with negligible effect on fill rates)

4. If you are in Games, MoPub is probably a good choice for now, but if you are ANYTHING else other game games, go to AdMob. Fill rates are infinitely better and your eCPM will be 5x. They also allow for mediation.

5. iOS will be much better than Android

6. Realize that high fill rates are often a farce and what ad networks sell you is rarely what you'll see. Don't get hung up on getting max fill rates and focus on how to surgically build a geo-targeted ad solution using one of these platforms. It's a lot easier than you think, often can be done in the custom setup of your account.

Good luck!


Short answer: You'll make more money with subscriptions, but you'll reach less people. The market is not shifting one way or another. You should combine both monetization pathways.

Long answer: You should approach this in a few ways:

1. See what you competitors do, both in the medical field and also in the information space that you're in. This means if you are offering a newsletter, find other industries that use newsletters and see how they are doing it. You will find that memberships are more about access and IAP are more about content.

2. MOST IMPORTANT: gauge where the value is in your offering. If the monthly subscription is access to a wealth of medical information, you should not do a subscription because most people will purchase it the first month, then cancel because they used it like an encyclopedia. This is better for IAP.

If you are doing a constant refresh, however, with high value adds for being a "member" then it's a great idea to do a membership because they're not only buying information, they're buying access.

That's the most important rule in membership marketing.

3. Be able to clearly define your value relative to a charge each month. The biggest problem is when someone sees that they have been billed monthly and ask themselves "why do I still have this?"

A good example would be a month you watch zero Netflix movies. You see the $9 charge and wonder why you still have it. But, the month that House of Cards comes out, that $9 is a no-brainer because you watched 15 hours of TV.

If you consistently provide value, the membership will be a slam dunk.

4. Similar to #2, membership is rarely a viable revenue model on it's own. You should treat it, especially in the medical field (high value demographic) as a way to prove your value, then provide exclusive access to premium content (In-app purchase). Your conversion rates will be 10x what they would be if you tried to sell that premium content to a non-member prospect and you'll be able to convert more non-members to being subscribers bc of the price point.

If you want to see how I do it, check out Bluecloud Select

Good luck! Stay healthy :)


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