Southeast Asian marketers spent over US $ 244 million on user acquisition and remarketing efforts last year, accounting for around 8% of global marketing spend which totaled US $ 3 billion. US dollars in 2020. According to AppsFlyer’s 2021 State of Finance App Marketing report, marketing spending in the region is primarily driven by trends in demand for fintech applications, with around 65% of marketing budgets allocated to user acquisition through non-organic installations.
Of the $ 244 million spent on user acquisition, the report found investment apps to be the most aggressive, forming more than 65.5% of inorganic installations in Southeast Asia. The pandemic has also led to more users in Southeast Asia using loaner apps, accounting for 58.3% of inorganic installations in the region. Meanwhile, Financials comes last in all categories with nonorganic installations of 37.3%. This can be attributed to the fact that many users in Southeast Asia have switched to contactless payments due to social distancing measures.
Global demand for fintech applications in Southeast Asia has increased over the past year, with Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam in particular showing higher demand in the first quarter of this year compared to 2020. Thailand saw demand increase by 8.5% in the first quarter of 2020 to reach Q2 2020 despite lockdowns, while Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam saw a drop in demand. demand between 6.6% and 34% during the same period. These three countries saw demand rebound from the third quarter.
Changing demand trends in the region have caused marketers to react similarly; in all four countries, marketers cut spending by 46% in Q1 2020 through Q2 2020, in response to lower demand. The Philippines and Thailand saw the most significant drop in marketing spend, with budgets reduced by 35%. The report also found that marketers in Indonesia and Vietnam were less cautious, choosing to increase their ad spend from Q2 2020 to Q3 2020. Meanwhile, Indonesian marketers increased their spending by 31 % while Vietnamese marketers increased their spending by 52%.
Meanwhile, mobile fraud in Southeast Asia remains high, especially in the financial sector. According to AppsFlyer, this is mainly attributed to its high pay rate and scale that attracts scammers. However, this trend is slowly changing and, according to the report, significant improvements have been made to anti-fraud solutions, resulting in a 20% drop in the fraud rate in Southeast Asia between Q1 2020 and Q1. 2021. years, when financial services applications saw a 48% drop in fraud rates.
AppsFlyer’s report tracked 2.7 billion app installs in Asia-Pacific between Q1 2019 and Q1 2021, out of 4.7 billion app installs globally. The report also examined 600 million inorganic installations and 1,230 applications in SEA markets, including Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. Financial applications for the report have also been separated into different categories, such as digital banking, traditional banking, financial services, lending and investing.
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