Tag Archives: advertising

24’s Still Here, But 23… Not So Much

Did Glaceau VitaminWater jump the gun with its recent advertising campaign? Sure, Kobe and LeBron is the new hot rivalry in the NBA.  But was this ad displayed too soon?  Not only does this commercial feature inexcusably horrible dialogue, but it is now basically irrelevant with the Magic eliminating the Cavs from the NBA playoffs.  Yes,  Kobe and LeBron will go at it again next year.  But hey, Glaceau – anyway you can get Dwight Howard in there for LeBron?  I’d even settle for some Turkoglu action!

And Nike, you aren’t off the hook either, but I have already went at you in the last post. (See below).

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Where Copyright Infringement Happens…

 

 

You Decide.

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The NBA. Where Creative Happens…

I found this in my inbox today and had to post it. I might have to become a Cavs fan until Lebron arrives here in New York.  Enjoy.

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The Wait is Over! Video Game Professional

So folks, updates to the site have been slow this week (at least you have that awesome MLB 09 review to read over and over again).  But this is all for good reason – I am no longer an intern, but a full-time video game professional!  That being said, I look forward to continuing this blog and I have big things coming up (can anyone say podcast, videos, etc.?).  Of course, a lot of these updates will occur on weekends now, because, well, I have a job 🙂 .    Oh, and all views on this site are my own!  Thanks for all those who supported me in and out of the industry as I searched for full-time work in the industry I love.

For now, enjoy some Kanye, who was a major influence in getting me through the dry spell.

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New Killzone 2 Interactive Ad: Game Advertising Perfected?

Hey, it’s been a bit of a rough PR week for Sony. We all know by now that the PS2 is the target of a long-rumored price break originally thought to be intended for the PS3. While a $99 PS2 would have been awesome back in 2002, it’s fairly easy to say that Sony has some work to do in convincing the gaming public that PS3 is a great platform for… wait for it… wait for it… gaming.

Today, Sony takes an excellent step in the right direction.  Releasing over the PSN network today,  Behind the Bullet is a free download which essentially turns a 30-second commercial into a three minute interactive experience.  The Bullet Journey ad, featured for a while now on U.S. television, follows the path of a bullet during a battle between the ISA and Helghast (yes, I am a huge Killzone 2 fan, so it may get a little nerdy soon).  The ad, a joint project between Guerrilla Games and Deutsch,  is impressive not only in how it manages to display the scope and drama of a battle in Killzone 2, but also for the fact that it uses the Killzone 2 in-game engine entirely.  No CGI folks, so we don’t have to rehash any E3 arguments.  Let’s not go there.

Now players get to take control of the advertisement through the download on PSN.  Viewers of the ad will be able to manipulate the camera to follow the bullet.  In addition, the interactive ad will feature highlighted scenes and commentary from the director and visual artitsts involved on the project.  Breaking through the clutter of traditional advertising, Behind the Bullet lets users become part of the ad.  This creates a whole new level of immersion, and in a day and age where user-generated content is all the rage, Behind the Bullet lets the viewer become the director.  This form of interactive advertising promotes a level of user engagement that fits very well with the gaming audience it intends to reach.

Are there any flaws to this approach in advertising?  Well for one thing,  this ad is more targeted for those who already own a PS3.  After all, you need to have access to the PSN in order to view it.  This may not sell consoles immediately, but it should help promote Killzone 2 and extend its user base.  This in turn should help boost the positive word-of-mouth marketing already going for Killzone 2.  And since Killzone 2 is a PS3 exclusive, ultimately Sony has to hope Killzone 2 is the “killer app” that will push PS3 off shelves.  In a market crowded with excellent games and under tight economic constraints, games no longer have to launch as system-sellers.  The “Halo effect” perhaps is a phenomenon that died last generation.  Now, more planned-out, longer campaigns, such as the launch of the Behind the Bullet over a month after the release of the game, can be more effective in promoting and selling games and consoles.

I could easily see sports video games taking a similar approach in interactive advertising in the future.  Who wouldn’t love to follow the pigskin as in lands in the hands of a receiver for a Superbowl-winning touchdown grab?  In any event, I’m excited to download this today and try it out for myself.  Killzone 2 has been just as compelling to play as any sports game this generation, and my hunt to secure a 1:1 K:D ratio (uber-nerdiness time) is all but .02 away from success (for those not so good at math, it is at .98 right now).  I don’t need to be sold on Killzone 2 and PS3, but many in the gaming world still do.  Sure the PS3 is not $99, but Sony is trying new things with advertising, something that anyone in this industry can respect and in my opinion, emulate in the future.

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FYI: MI6 Video Game Marketing Conference Hits SF Next Week

For anyone who doesn’t know yet, San Francisco hosts the MI6 Video Game Marketing Conference on April 8. The website does a better job at summing up what the conference is all about than I could, so here’s an excerpt.

With a focus on how marketing drives the fundamental monetization of Video Game IP, The 4th Annual MI6 Conference will explore new and innovative ways game publishers, studios, and consoles are increasing revenues across traditional and non-traditional spectrum.

From driving retail and digital sales, to brand partnerships and integration; from hard-core to casual gaming, MI6 will arm game marketing professionals with the ideas, inspiration and information to help their companies maximize the value of their products.

And check out this awesome list of panelists:

Quincy Smith: CEO, CBS Interactive
Kai Huang: President and Co-Founder, RedOctane
Christoph Hartmann: President and Founder, 2K
John Pleasants: President of Worldwide Publishing and COO of Electronic Arts

Oh yeah, and Rob Corddry will be hosting MI6! FTW!

corddryMI6

Yours truly, fresh off and still somewhat recovering from GDC, is going to attempt to make it out to MI6. For anyone remotely interested in video game marketing, this seems like a great opportunity to explore the business behind the sports games we love.

For more info, check out: MI6 Conference

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In-Game Advertising in Sports Video Games… Why It Works.

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This is a topic I have been meaning to write about for a while. As revenue models are changing throughout all industries, in particular, the video game industry seems to be very successful at finding new ways to generate the dough. The rise of DLC and microtransactions signals that companies are aware that no longer does the opportunity for increased revenue stop when a a product goes gold and is shipped out. Similarly, with the surge in popularity of online gaming on consoles, it has become easy for a company to release new content for purchase (and even easier for consumers to download).

While I am torn in my feelings on “DLC” and “microtransactions” (from a business perspective, it is genius.. from a consumer perspective, why should I pay for something that should have been included in the original game or released for free in a patch), one form of revenue that I am not opposed to is in-game advertising. Sure, if I am playing Fallout 3, I might not want to see a blown-up “Pepsi” machine as I am trying to take down some Super Mutants in the D.C. area. But in-game advertising is effective in other genres, and in particular, in sports video games.

Do I mind seeing a replay in Madden brought to me by “Subway $5 footlongs” (mmm. Subway…I digress). Absolutely not! If I were watching an NFL game on TV, I would be expecting to see sponsors everywhere. On billboards, on the field signage, before commercial breaks.. hell, I wouldn’t be shocked if Mr. Ocho Cinco himself chomped down on a footlong after scoring a touchdown (if he ever gets into the endzone again).. the point is advertising is everywhere in professional sports. The fact that it is now included in sports video games only makes the sports video gaming experience that much more authentic.

If I am playing Fifa, I love seeing signage along the borders of the field. Similarly, seeing “NBA – Where Amazing Happens” along the benches of players in NBA 2K9 (shout out to NBA Creative Services!) is nothing short of the experience I expect from watching the game on television or attending it live. In-game advertising just works. In addition, it is a great way for sponsors to become aligned both with sports brands and video game brands. See, everybody wins!

As much as President Obama (don’t worry, I am not going to get political.. although one of my life goals is to get into a pickup game with the Presidential baller) continually tells parents to “have children put down the video games”, even he recognized the potential in in-game advertising. If you played Burnout Paradise during Obama’s campaign, you probably sped down the highway and caught a glimpse of Barack on a billboard or two.

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So, in conclusion… keep the ads coming. They are effective in many ways. And now I am going to go grab some Subway (rough economy, $5 is a great deal).

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