Mobile App Icons - Winter Holidays, Christmas

Winter has come. Mobile game publishers and developers are embracing the red and white spirits of the Holiday season. Santa hats, clown-nosed deers, profusion of snowflakes, polar bears sharing liquid, fizzy sugar bombs with their younglings. The time for the yearly unhealthy extravaganza is upon us. And the time to update mobile games icons on the App Store, too. Celebrate, minions, celebrate, for your wallets shall succumb to the hypnotizing power of red, green, and white colors. Check out the collection of app icons we collected to see what we mean. Note: this was done on behalf of my employer Tilting Point, in a state of rigorous sobriety.

Mobile App Icons Collection - Winter Holidays and Christmas case studies

Original blog post published on Tilting Point’s blog:

Open up the App Store this week and you will see more holiday themed app icons than ever before. Take a look at our collected image of holiday app icons and you’ll see dozens of icon updates across many genres of games. Are app developers just in a festive mood, or are there tangible benefits to following this trend?

As Tilting Point monitors trends and changes in the app markets, we noticed an increase in the number of holiday app icon updates this year, with even more holidays being included, such as Halloween and Valentine’s Day. Developers and publishers are doing this for a number of reasons:

  1. It may help the app get re-featured individually in the app stores as a new update when coupled with content.
  2. App stores have included special feature categories for apps around holidays, which we noted through the entire month of October for Halloween-themed apps and app updates.
  3. Updating also has an impact on retention as it re-engages inactive players, especially when coupled with new in-game content.

The changes are not only limited to app icons and game content. The holidays give publishers and developers a chance to refresh their ad creative as well, so look for updated, seasonally themed banner ads and mobile user acquisition ads as well.

Seasonal icon updates are another aspect of the modern reality of games as a service and tend to be concentrated on free to play games. Today’s mobile games change and evolve over time and app icon refreshes are a big part of the ongoing marketing effort required of app developers and publishers today.