Fueling 1.5 Million App Downloads a Day, Tapjoy Pushes for Exclusivity With Publishing Program

Tapjoy, the little and increasingly pricey secret that many app developers use to power their way up the charts, said today that it’s launching a “self-publishing” program. Essentially, that means that the company is willing to offer tens of thousands of dollars in free credits in exchange for exclusive distribution rights to new mobile titles.

For background, Tapjoy is a pay-per-install advertising network: developers pay for enough app downloads so they can ideally crack the top of the iOS or Android charts, get visibility in front of consumers and then gain downloads from more valuable, long-term customers. Tapjoy gets these downloads for its advertisers by putting offer walls in hundreds or thousands of apps, which award gamers virtual currency if they download other apps. It usually costs north of $30,000 to break into the top 25, but it varies widely. If an app is good, it will be cheaper. If it’s poorly designed, it will fall off the charts quickly and no amount of spending will save it. The company’s network includes more than 7,500 Android and iOS apps and reaches 200 million customers (as measured by unique device IDs). It says apps that work with it earn more than $35 million a month.

At the beginning of the year, we wrote about how Tapjoy’s model resuscitated the company, which used to be known as Offerpal and was struggling with a less profitable landscape on the Facebook platform. But the field has dramatically changed in the last three months with about 10 new competitors rushing into pay-per-install advertising like Sponsorpay, OpenFeint and Adknowledge.

> Continue reading on Inside Mobile Apps.