Why You Need To Start Advertising In Games

Advertising in games is a ripe opportunity for brands to capitalize on their target audience. Learn more about in-game ads, different types of gamers, and more

Games are big business. Along with raking in billions, games have never been more popular. That's why advertising in games is a viable and lucrative method of marketing your brand to your customer base.

Let's explore the concepts of advertising in video games, different types of gamers, and the opportunity to advertise in a game.

All About Advertising In Games

group of people reacting to adverting in games while playing a console

Advertising in games refers to the practice of incorporating commercial messages or promotions for products or services within a video game.

This can take a variety of forms. For example, displaying banner ads within a game or having characters use or wear real-world products. You can even include branded content as part of the game's environment or storyline.

Advertising in games can be a way for companies to reach a large and engaged audience and provide a source of revenue for game developers.

However, it can also be controversial, as some players may feel that the presence of advertising disrupts their enjoyment of the game or that it is intrusive. As a result, advertising in games is often carefully balanced to ensure that it does not negatively impact the player experience.

Some In-Game Advertising Statistics

Here are a few interesting statistics about in-game advertising:

  • The mobile gaming market is the largest market for in-game advertising, accounting for over half of all in-game ad revenue.
  • The average click-through rate (CTR) for in-game ads is 0.1%, which is higher than the average CTR for display ads (0.06%) and search ads (2.8%).
  • Advertisements in games have a high level of engagement, with over 80% of users reporting that they have noticed in-game ads and over 50% saying that they have interacted with them.
  • In-game ads can be highly effective at driving brand awareness and recall, with over 70% of users reporting that they remember the brand advertised in the game.
  • In-game ads are particularly effective at reaching younger audiences, with over 60% of users under the age of 25 reporting that they have noticed in-game ads.
  • The most popular types of in-game ads are banner ads, followed by interstitial ads and video ads.
  • In-game ads are often used to promote movies, television shows, and other forms of entertainment. But they are also used to promote products and services in various industries.

In-Game Advertising Examples

Here are a few examples of in-game advertising:

  • Product placement. This is when a brand's product or logo is placed within the game environment, such as a can of Coca-Cola on a table in a virtual restaurant. This can be a more immersive and subtle way to promote a brand, but it may not be suitable for all games or all brands.
  • Branded content. This is when a brand sponsors a feature or event within the game, such as a branded racetrack or tournament.
  • Interstitial ads. These are full-screen ads that appear between levels or after completing a task in the game. They can be more interruptive than banner ads but can also be more effective at driving engagement.
  • In-game banners. These small banner ads appear on the screen while the game is being played. They are relatively unobtrusive and can be effective at driving brand awareness.
  • In-game offers. These are special deals or discounts offered to players during gameplay, such as discounts on in-game items or bonuses for purchasing a product.
  • In-game rewards. These are rewards or bonuses given to players for completing specific tasks or achieving certain milestones in the game. A brand may sponsor these rewards.

Using Blended In-Game Ads

Blended in-game ads can be an effective way for a company to drum up interest in its brand for several reasons. First, in-game ads can reach a large and engaged audience, as many people spend a significant amount of time playing games. This can help the company increase brand awareness and reach a wider audience.

In-game ads can also be targeted to specific demographics or interests. This specificity allows the company to reach a particular audience more likely to be interested in its products or services.

Additionally, in-game ads can be more immersive and engaging than traditional forms of advertising. They are integrated into the game rather than displayed as a standalone ad.

This can help the company create a more memorable brand experience for its target audience.

Finally, in-game ads can be measured and tracked in a number of ways. Primarily, the ads allow the company to see how effectively the ads are driving interest in its brand and whether they are meeting its desired goals.

Different Types Of Gamers: Who Should You Advertise To?

two gamers playing online games

There are many different types of gamers that brands can interact with. The most appropriate type will depend on the brand's specific goals and target audience.

Here are a few common types of gamers that brands may consider interacting with:

  • Casual gamers. These people play games for leisure and enjoyment but do not necessarily spend a lot of time or money on gaming. Casual gamers may be more receptive to unobtrusive in-game ads that do not interrupt their gameplay experience.
  • Hardcore gamers. These people are passionate about gaming and spend significant time and money on it. Hardcore gamers may be more receptive to in-game ads that offer them additional value, such as in-game items or unique content.
  • Mobile gamers. These are people who play games on their smartphones or tablets. Mobile gaming is the largest market for in-game advertising, and mobile gamers may be more receptive to ads tailored to their mobile devices and gameplay experience.
  • PC gamers. These are people who play games on their personal computers. PC gaming is a smaller market than mobile gaming, but it is still significant and may be a good fit for certain brands.
  • Console gamers. These people play games on dedicated gaming consoles like the PlayStation or Xbox. Console gaming is a larger market than PC gaming and may be a good fit.

The best type of gamer for a brand to interact with will depend on the brand's specific goals and target audience. It may be necessary to try different types of in-game ads and analyze their performance to determine which is most effective.

What Are Mobile Game Whales?

Mobile game whales are a type of mobile gamer who spend a significant amount of money on in-app purchases and other microtransactions within mobile games. These players are often referred to as "whales" because they contribute a disproportionate amount of revenue to the game compared to other players.

Mobile game whales are typically a tiny percentage of the overall player base, but they can contribute a significant amount of revenue to the game.

It's not uncommon for a mobile game to have a few hundred or even a few thousand whales who contribute most of the game's revenue.

Brands may be interested in interacting with mobile game whales because they are more likely to make in-app purchases. These gamers may be more receptive to in-game ads that offer them additional value, such as in-game items or special content.

It’s vital to keep in mind that mobile game whales may be a difficult audience to reach. They are a small percentage of the overall player base and may be more resistant to traditional forms of advertising. Again, there's no one-size-fits-all approach. 

But it is possible.

Should I Use Advertising In Games As A Marketing Strategy?

man playing online game with in-game ads

In-game advertising can be an effective marketing strategy for some companies, but may not be best for some businesses. It is essential to consider whether in-game advertising aligns with your overall marketing goals and target audience.

If your target audience includes many people who play games, in-game advertising could be an excellent way to reach them. In-game ads can effectively drive brand awareness and recall, particularly among younger audiences.

However, it is important to remember that in-game advertising can be expensive, and there may be more cost-effective options for some businesses. Not all games are suitable for in-game advertising, and finding a game that aligns with your brand and target audience may be challenging.

Ultimately, the decision to use in-game advertising as a marketing strategy should be based on carefully evaluating your marketing goals, target audience, and budget. It may be worth considering as part of a larger, multi-channel marketing strategy, but there are better options for some businesses.

Need some pointers for your next digital marketing campaign? Are you interested in some advertising in video games? Sprinkles Media can help you plan and execute advertising and marketing campaigns.

It doesn't matter whether it's in-game ads on virtual billboards or banner ads on mobile games. We can help you create a cohesive, in-depth ad campaign that will have eyes on your brand.

Why Sprinkles Media?

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