Gaminghas become perhaps the most popular hobbies and pastimes in the world in the 21st century. In 2022, there were a whopping 3.24 billion gamers all around the globe and that is a number that is only set to grow even further in the coming years.
The sophistication of video games has come a long way since the early days of arcades and Pong. The speed at which technology has advanced means that the games we play now display incredible true to life graphics, mechanics, impact engines and gameplay.
With many games consoles now supporting 4K and even 8K graphics this will soon become the norm and with VR capabilities becoming stronger we may be entering a new era of gaming.
A wide range of niches have become popular in recent years too. Strategy and sports simulator games have boomed and become huge in the eSports scene. Online casino games have also become major players, especially poker. The classic table game attracts millions of online players every day
With the industry making a huge shift to online play as opposed to land-based casinos, we see seeing around 1.6 billion people per year wagering on casino games with many generating $10 billion per day.
Mobile games continue to be the largest segment of the gaming industry with a market volume of US$172.10bn in 2023.
Be it casino or video games, the gaming industry has never been more competitive. Are you Xbox or PlayStation? Slotsor table games? RPG or 3PS? Whichever your preference, companies must go to great lengths to attract new players.
To do this they will deploy marketing strategies to keep their current player base and hook new ones. Lets take a look at some of the most popular marketing strategies deployed by gaming companies.
The late 2000s saw the rise of gaming contenton YouTube. Channels such as Machinima made videos using the classic FPS game Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 raking in millions of views.
The advent of twitch in 2011 saw this take off even more with thousands streaming themselves playing video games to their hundreds of thousands of viewers. This eventually led to ‘gaming influencers’ who have launched into near superstardom in recent times.
YouTubers and streamers such as Ninja and PewDiePieboast millions of subscribers and gaming companies have taken notice of all the noise surrounding them. Ninja for example has his own purchasable skin on Fortnite, one of the biggest online multiplayer games in the world.
These kind of tie ins serve to boost the profile of a game or console and help to keep it popular amongst a mainstream audience.
Creating Video Content
This one kind of fits in with the previous strategy, however it can be deployed directly by the video game company.
With streaming becoming so big in the last decade many video game companies use sites like YouTube as a great marketing tool. Video content is engaging for audiences and allows companies to clearly purvey whatever they wish.
According to WYZOwl, 94 per cent of marketers say using video content has helped increase user understanding of a product or service.
Furthermore, streamers playing a video game is essentially free marketing for video game companies allowing for an audience of hundreds of millions across all platforms.
Call Of Duty have created some of the most engaging content in the industry to a near cinematic level. They have also welcomed big name actors to their projects such as Kit Harrington and Jeff Goldblum.
Video game companies and even specific video games have a big presence on social media platforms. Here, they can engage directly with their player base and promote as well as help their players.
By creating a relationship with their audience through the likes of Twitter and Instagram they can stay in touch with their users interests and drive and maintain audience interaction.
For example, Raven Software who work on Call Of Duty’s extremely popular ‘Warzone’ online multiplayer mode use their Twitter platform to provide updates on their game to players. To date they have amassed over 800k followers.
The gaming industry is now one of the most lucrative in the world. Revenue in the Video Games segment is projected to reach US$221.40bn in 2023 and is projected to grow beyond that to $285bn by 2027.
The catalogues of gaming services such as Steam have grown stratospherically. In 2016 there were 4,369 new releases compared to 10,394 in 2021. This further proves just how competitive the industry has become and it is imperative that before these releases a strong marketing campaign is set up and ready to go as well as being worked on after the release.