The mobile ad space is very competitive and folks tasked with user acquisition are always looking for new advertising channels to test. Every advantage to acquire quality installs at the lowest cost possible is always top of mind. This often means diversifying your portfolio of user acquisition channels and stepping outside of your comfort zone. Sometimes that means branching out to mobile networks, or it could mean trying to find new native ad platforms.

Our team is long-time fans of Quora. Admittedly, I’m proud of my 57k answer views on the platform (the SEO benefit is amazing). Plus there are very big names answering questions with over 100 million monthly active users. For comparison, Facebook has 2 billion users, so Quora clearly has a long way to go.

When Quora launched a self-serve ad platform, I couldn’t wait for the LightningAI team test it out. We started testing back in May, promoting a mobile app for a client with a paltry $30 daily budget. I remember the disappointment when Apple first launched search ads and was hoping this wouldn’t be another disappointing channel.

At the same time we began testing the app install campaign, we also started running an ad campaign on Quora promoting a desktop product called LaunchDarkly. The performance between the mobile campaign and desktop was night and day. With the desktop campaign, we couldn’t spend money fast enough. There were just so many more users accessing Quora from the desktop. We blew through our first $100 in less than an hour of launching the campaign.

Spurred by confidence in the desktop product, we kept persevering with the mobile app campaign. Now four months later, we’re finally starting to see a decent volume of impressions and app installs from Quora. Though the volume is not on the scale of Liftoff or Facebook, the CPM performance is remarkable. CPMs on Quora average $1 (yep, that’s one dollar) vs Facebook which is typically in the range of an $8 CPM.

Even though performance has improved, we haven’t quite perfected the Quora ad unit yet. Our click through rates are still hovering around 30%, which means my CPC is at $0.33. And assuming a standard click-to-install rate of 25%, CPIs are averaging $1.32, which we’re actually quite happy with (as is our client!).

You’re probably asking yourself, “How does the quality installs from Quora measure up to other channels?” Here’s the thing: We’re actually seeing 3x higher post-install conversion rates on Quora compared to other channels.

In other words, on Quora we spend less money to acquire better quality users. We were a bit nervous to write this article and let our fellow marketers in on the success we see on Quora — I love having Quora as my go-to secret for mobile ad buys 🙂

While Quora has a long way to go before you can really scale up your installs — you’ll have a hard time spending more than a few thousand dollars per day on the platform — the dollars that you do spend there can go a long way to acquiring quality users, especially compared to most other channels.