The video game industry is a booming market, with over 3 billion people playing video games across the globe, according to a new report by DFC Intelligence. The paper found that almost half of the play on their computers, whereas only a small percentage, surprisingly, play on gaming consoles, like the Playstation and Xbox. The researchers also saw that the mobile gaming market was rising quickly in regions, like Europe and Asia.
The Popularity of Video Games in 2020
Apart from players, the gaming industry also has a large viewer base. The world championship for League of Legends, had over 100 million viewers across the globe, making it officially the most popular e-sport in the world. Game streamers are also seeing thousands to millions of viewers every day on platforms like Twitch, Facebook Gaming, Youtube Gaming, and more. They often manage their communities with human moderators or digital ones, like the nightbot app.
NICKMERCS, a Call of Duty: Warzone streamer gets about 50.1k viewers on average. One of the biggest streamers in the world, Ninja, garnered over 98,000 viewers in his return to Twitch. These streamers also have millions of loyal followers and streamers.
How Brands are Taking Advantage of the Industry
With the number of players and viewers that video games get, it’s no surprise that the biggest brands are penetrating the industry. Some companies, like Gucci, create mini-games that advertise their products. Others collaborate with the developers themselves, like Louis Vuitton’s recent collab with League of Legends. The former created LoL-themed clothes, and the latter created LV-themed skins for one of their characters. Some businesses also partner with streamers to advertise their logos and even products on stream.
How to Market Your Brand in the Gaming Industry
Here’s what you need to know about using this industry for your marketing efforts.
Start With Streaming
Think of streamers and e-sports players as your run-of-the-mill influencers. They have a huge following with different demographics and psychographics depending on their niche. For example, Ninja primarily streamed Fortnite during the prime of his streaming career. This game is popular with kids, primarily preteens and teens. As such, brands that these types of gamers usually consume, like energy drink company Redbull and athleticwear giant Adidas, sponsored him.
When looking for streamers, take note of the games that they regularly play. Does it attract mostly kids, like “Minecraft” or “Fortnite”? Or do they have a mature viewer base, like with “Counter-Strike” or “NBA 2K”? Are they attracting mostly male or female viewers? Make sure their viewers are part of your target audience. Alternatively, you could also sponsor an e-sports team and have your logo featured on their jerseys and player streams.
Make Your Own Interesting Game
Nike recently advertised their Epic React line of running shoes through a variety of mediums. They even released a Super Mario-style video game for it: “Reactland.” It was a three-minute game that customers could play when testing out the Epic React shoes on the treadmill. Apart from the main gameplay, the game allowed customers to create their own avatars for it. They could also easily share clips of their gameplay on social media.
What’s great about creating a game for your brand is that you don’t really need experience in game design or development to create one. You can collaborate with experts to make an interesting concept and outsource your game development to another an established company.
Tournaments big and small are loved by fans and players alike. If you want to catch the attention of tournament viewers, sponsor the events they watch, like what Mercedes-Benz did with the League of Legends World Championship. According to research by McKinsey, people who view and play LoL are likely interested in business and fast cars, so it’s the perfect event for the company to be a sponsor of. If the game doesn’t have a budding scene yet, your company can host an invitational tournament. Like with streamers, it’s all about finding a game that your target audience is interested in. ;
Advertise on Mobile Games
While the consensus for most online ads is that they’re annoying, advertising on mobile games is actually a good idea. Mobile gamers are receptive to ads, according to a report by Lucid. The researchers surveyed over 265 people. About 70% of them stated that they tapped on an ad in a mobile or computer game before. Again, look for games or a niche of games that your target market is likely to play and work with developers to get your ads on them.
The gaming industry is bigger than ever, with over 3 billion active gamers across the globe. Games are also more accessible than ever with mobile phones and computers getting more and more powerful throughout the years and independent developers are on the rise. If you want to use this booming industry to market your products and services, consider these suggestions. With the right sponsorships, ads, or even original games, your brand can reach and engage billions of people worldwide.