Thought Leadership
Alibaba on the Global Mobile App Promotion Market


Mandy Kang
Senior Overseas Business Manager
Alibaba / UC Union



Alibaba is one of the largest multi-national Chinese conglomerates in the world, known for being the biggest eCommerce player in the East. Can you share more on your role as Senior Overseas Business Manager for Alibaba / UC Union?

UC Union is platform of Alibaba mobile business group, which dedicated to global traffic monetization, free traffic exchange and promotion of apps among other services.

Monetization –UC Union provides for partners with long-term and stable orders of mobile business group of Alibaba, such as the world’s second mobile browser-UC Browser, first third-party application aggregator- 9apps in India and Indonesia, Alibaba Cross border e-commerce platform AliExpress, etc; while UC Union also provides massive high-quality orders to partner, so that all partners have lot of choices and earning more.

User acquisition–UC Union as an international traffic cooperation platform, relying on organic products and the traffic resources, such as global market share of over 20% of mobile browser UC Browser application and daily distribution volume of over 20 million applications shops 9apps, to help advertisers’ easy access to high-quality user to complete the goal.


What do you think are some of the biggest challenges in mobile user acquisition today?

  • brand protection by placing his un-wanted advertisements on websites or in the context of the Bad (brand safety);
  • the visibility of the advertising message – options that allow you to track the actual display of the banner and the time of his stay in the region of visibility (viewability);
  • Fraud at placing and carrying out of advertising campaigns (anti-fraud).


There are so many ad networks and vendors to work with. How do you decide which ones to eventually run a test campaign with? How do you even find all these vendors or all their contacts?

We accept all types of promotion methods and channels, we will only be based on the final determination of the effect of the promotion and then pay for it. For we have a built a strong anti-fraud and user quality monitoring system, the promotion of all the publisher will be monitored by it. As to how to find the publisher, first of all we are Alibaba’s international platform, has a brand awareness among the site owners and ad netowrks, publisher, which wishes to promote reliable and stable offer, will contact us on their own initiative.

Secondly, We also have professional BD team and we’ll go using a variety of tools and techniques to look for different platforms, different sites, and different developers, to look for potential and high-quality publishers.


What are some emerging markets that every advertiser should be watching closely? (eg. India, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Ukraine, Russia, etc)

We pay more attention to India, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Ukraine, Russia, because the high speed of development of mobile internet. Lots of countries haven’t lot of the base of PC users, so the mobile internet is a good chance to expend for mobile product with high quality, but with lower brand awareness in the PC internet time. Also in those countries it’s more easily to form a user habit for new mobile product in those countries. It’s new time for them to enter a new world via mobile, not computer. So they are more open to receive the new product, to try it, then stay with it.


What are some ad formats that have worked best for driving installs of the UC Union app? (mobile video, interstitials, outstream video, playable ad units, incentivized burst campaigns?)

As I mentioned above, we will pay base on the final result, so a different publisher, they can choose the best way to promote according to their own traffic, to get their best revenue. And because we have rich offers, different channels can choose the most suitable for them on our side. In this case, so we can not say what the best form of advertising performance, we can only say that all forms of advertising can be found here for cooperation.


Ad fraud is one of the biggest problems in mobile advertising today, with many networks selling fraudulent clicks and installs to advertisers. How do you quickly identify if a network you are working with is sending you fraudulent traffic?

We have very strict controls and penalties to the fraud traffic, we can see it in corresponding report (attachment or links)

1) professional statistics monitoring system. We set this professional and accurate statistical system to monitor all traffic from all marketing channels.

2) global + region targeted promotion monitoring

  • Social Media Monitoring
  • keyword search Monitoring Network +
  • the use of third-party platform to monitor channel marketing materials

3) call center collection + customer assistance cooperation


There are now over 3M apps on both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. However, many of these long-tail apps are ‘Walking Zombie’ apps that don’t have many users or make almost no revenue. How do you see the number of apps increasing / decreasing over the coming years?

UC Union provide both user acquisition and monetization platform for the app developers.

We can use traffic from our own product and our partners’ traffic with high quality to help them expend their apps.

Also we have our own advertise SDK to help the app developers to monetization their apps, to get more revenue. In a word, it’s a benign and open ecosystem, we hope we can grow together with more partners and share our resource together with each other.


What are your thoughts on ad network inventory rebrokering?

We expend our business with our partners, include ad networks, site owners, mobile developer, media buyers. We owe our achievement to our partners. They distribute our applications with all method they have, include the rebrokering offers to other partners.

But with the development of our business, we will share more attention to our brand image, to the quantity of our promotion, not only the quality. As I have mentioned in the question of “challenges in mobile user acquisition“”,So we want to more control with our creative and the ad places of our promotion.


Lastly, what is your take on the future of global mobile user acquisition?

Well, in the future, we will keep expend our mobile promotion, we hope we can together with our partners to do that. Not only large quality traffic we will buy from them, but also we will togher with them to get our trustful traffic.

To reach this goal, we have set up two foundation, first of all, we have double budget in user acquisition. So partners don’t need to worry about the cap of promotion, we don’t set any cap for it.

Also, we update our monitor system to detect the fraud. Now we can provide the daily notification email to our partners. I think it’s also good for our partners to avoid the finance lose, when they cooperate with other advertisers, they can provide more trustful traffic to advertiser. And at the other hand, it’s good for the whole traffic ecosystem, you know, some of ad network lost truth of advertisers. In this year, with budget cuts of the advertisers, now the competitor will be even strict for ad network.



If you have interest to cooperate with UC-Union, you can connect with Senior Business department:

The first business of Alibaba Group, ( is the leading platform for global wholesale trade serving millions of buyers and suppliers around the world. Through, small businesses can sell their products to companies in other countries. Sellers on are typically manufacturers and distributors based in China and other manufacturing countries such as India, Pakistan, the United States and Thailand.

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