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Brands engage with gamers

Why in-game advertising and game tie-ups should matter to marketers.

3 min read

MarketingMarketing Strategy

marketers target gamers


More brands are entering the gaming space, which was once seen as a niche market. As the sector gains in popularity, however, marketers are looking to make headway in the sector and are working on creative ways to get noticed by gamers.

“​​Despite the stigma around it, gaming revenues still exceed film, music and theater combined – and the smartest marketers have developed highly integrated strategies to be relevant to this essential demographic,” R3 co-founder Greg Paull told Ad Age. “This sector has enjoyed massive increases through COVID and it’s now at a tipping point for brand engagement going forward.”


Omnicom launches gaming unit as sector heats up

In recognition of the growth for marketers in this space, the Omnicom Advertising Collective, which is made up of creative agencies from within the holding company, unveiled a new gaming unit this week named LevelUp OAC. The service will be led by GSD&M and The Marketing Arm and comprise between 35 and 70 staff, which can be added to with talent from other agencies as needed, according to this Ad Age report. 

The unit marries GSD&M’s expertise in virtual reality, augmented reality and in-game advertising with TMA’s experience in content, influencers, gaming brand strategy and experiential activations. 

“LevelUp OAC brings together our most passionate and seasoned talents in the gaming space and offers a single source solution for brands who want to engage with gamers in an authentic, 360-degree way,” said James Fenton, CEO of the Omnicom Advertising Collective, per this Little Black Book article


Brands make a gaming play

Over recent months, SmartBrief has covered how brands are innovating in the space, such as the release of Snapchat’s first augmented reality game, “Ghost Phone,” or the collaboration between PepsiCo and Pizza Hut on the AR game, “Score with Pogba.”

Irish Spring teamed with gaming influencer FaZe Santana earlier this year to create a livestream gaming shower experience on Twitch, ClickZ reports. The campaign from Burson Cohn & Wolfe poked fun at gamers missing showers due to their intense play and showed FaZe Santana taking a shower while still being able to play videogames. 

A behind-the-scenes YouTube video shows the first-of-a-kind gaming shower being put together and the Twitch livestream attracted a peak audience of 17,000, with the wider campaign garnered more than 695 million earned impressions. 

“By homing in on a specific demographic and any insight that informs how they think, you’re able to create something genuine and sincere,” Marco Carreon, vice president of brand solutions at Burson Cohn & Wolfe, told ClickZ. 

“Gaming will be central moving into 2023,” Carreon predicted.

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