Old is new: In-game advertising returns for a COVID-19 world
As we look for new ways to connect with audiences in our new home-bound environments, the UK Government has unlocked the use of in-game advertising to connect with the increased use of gaming platforms since global audiences have been ordered to stay home to save lives.
- The UK Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is using in-game advertising to get that message in front of a younger audience of video game players.
- Using video games for public health messaging has taken on added urgency as officials urge citizens to avoid unnecessary trips and large gatherings to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
- In-game advertising is not new and really hit our screens in the mid 2000s. However it is presenting a real opportunity to get in front of influential brand decision makers while they are at home and shopping online.
- In Australia, if we look at console and PC gamers there are over 4.9million gamers with over 70% aged 25-54.
I remember taking out my first in-game advertising spot in the early 2000s for the Victorian Government’s Transport Accident Commission. We were targeting young male drivers with messages to get them to be safer on our roads. While at the time the brand effectiveness was strong, the reach was ultimately what slowed this down.
Today it’s a different story. Now, there’s better internet connectivity of devices, better gaming experiences and an increased pool of gaming platforms catering to more people. The channel is proving to be a viable option to drive key messages to highly-engaged audiences, and with scale across the country. In the current climate, when you also consider our need to practice social distancing and to self-isolate, this channel is re-emerging as one to be seriously considered on brands’ media plans.