Capturing an Audience Differently with Gamification and in-Game Advertising

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 Gamification, in-game advertising: Do these words ring a bell?

Gamification is when an activity or a task takes on a ludic nature to motivate people. Human beings have a natural predisposition to playing and being motivated by rewards. Gamification is based on this principle.

Let’s think of the gold stars and fun stickers that our elementary school teachers would give us to highlight our good behaviour and excellent results!

Widely used in the video game universe, gamification strategies can apply beyond the Web and mobile apps. Notably, businesses use them to generate interest and improve employee engagement and their sense of accomplishment. 

The same applies to advertising: used appropriately, the gamification of a brand or a product has many positive repercussions. It is an effective way for a brand to convey a message to its clients creatively and retain them.

In-game advertising

Adding advertising to entertainment is not a new phenomenon: think of the many ways that brands insert themselves in movies or television shows.

Example of product placement for Coca-Cola in the American TV show Friends.

Example of product placement for Coca-Cola in the American TV show Friends.

Whether they were designed for game consoles, computers or mobile devices, video games ads can take several forms: from dynamic and static banners to advertisements played within a game.

Generally, advertisements that are the most naturally integrated into a game and an integral part of the user experience are the ones that perform the best. These advertising experiences will most likely increase users’ engagement and retention rates. For example, some games imitate real life by advertising an actual product on a billboard in a virtual city.

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Another crucial point: the brand and the product need to align with the game’s universe. An advertisement for beauty products does not belong in a war game per se!

The importance of targeting strategies

Today, everyone owns a smartphone: people of all ages, genders, social classes, and levels of education have one. When a business resorts to mobile advertising, addressing an audience that is too broad rarely contributes to the success of a campaign. Indeed, this is the case for all types of digital advertising. Consequently, to reach and mobilize a target audience, you must know who you are dealing with and what kind of apps they use.

If you want to target mothers by advertising your product in games loved by teenagers, your campaign will fail. Thus, advertisers need to do the proper research beforehand.

What about gamification through advertising?

A study conducted by TapJoy revealed that users click on advertisements in games more often than they do on social media sponsored posts. 64% of surveyed consumers said they were more likely to be interested in an in-app advertisement with a reward than a sponsored post on social media.

For brands, the ludic aspect can take on different forms, and there are many amusing ways to attract and retain clients: point systems, promo codes, loyalty cards, gifts with purchases, premiums, etc.

Here is an example from a very well-known brand: this fun little video encourages consumers to subscribe to a PC® Mastercard® credit card, which will allow them to gain 100,000 PC Optimum™ points, redeemable for free merchandise or rebaits with purchases.

 In Canada, according to a Léger survey sponsored by Gameloft Montreal in 2020, 25 % of respondents said that they played more games, and the proportion is 28% in Quebec. The survey also revealed significant interest in mobile gaming.

After analyzing this recent data, we realize that exploiting this niche would be valuable for many brands.

Would you like to improve your clients’ interest and engagement towards your brand? Our team of experts is here to help! Do not hesitate to contact us to learn more about gamification through advertising.