3 must-have features of a successful advergame

On May 16, 2019 11:53:46 AM

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An advergame can achieve some remarkable results for your business. On the other hand, an advergame can also have minimal, or even negative effects on your brand. After 18 years of combined experience, we’ve boiled it down to three features that an advergame must have to be successful:

 1. Fun

First thing’s first, your advergame has to be fun. There are too many games and other forms of media out there for consumers to waste their time on a boring, poorly made game. Consumers today have an attention span of just 8 seconds, so they’re not going to invest their time in something that doesn’t appeal to them.

It’s crucial to work with a gaming studio that’s worked with brands before and knows how to make a game that’s both fun and educational. The combination of fun and education optimize your game and make it mutually beneficial between your brand and the consumer.

Angry Birds has shown how a fun game will keep players hooked on your brand — Angry Birds averages over 200 million minutes of gameplay a day. Players are still captivated by the game a decade later because mobile games provide a unique, delightful experience to the player, each session.

People love variety, and the same game can provide that to a player for an endless amount of time.

Reward your players

A feature that’ll make your game even more enjoyable to the player is a reward system. Most advergames reward players with a discounted product. It’s a great way to incentivize players, and they feel significant when they receive something in exchange for their efforts. 

But, you don’t have to continue to distribute discounts to keep players engaged with your game. You can reward players with virtual goods, which are sometimes more valuable to players than physical prizes. Some individual players spend hundreds of dollars on virtual goods because it allows them to personalize their gaming experience.

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Players can earn these virtual goods by visiting and purchasing from your store. Players have an inherent nature to want to collect as many goods as they can so they can flaunt it to their friends. Fortnite, a free game, made over $3 billion in 2018, mainly by selling virtual skins.

Games can connect with any individual, and they also help bring people together. You want to leverage that to make your game as fun as possible.

People love to compete against themselves and against friends. Leaderboards and badges reward players with the credit they deserve for their hard work and skills. Then, adding a share feature to your game allows them to show off their accomplishments to their friends.

People will naturally see another person’s high score and want to beat it. Soon, you’ll have a whole community of people competing to be the best at your advergame.

2. Representative of your brand

An advergame is a fantastic marketing tool. But the key to a great advergame is that it doesn’t feel like a marketing tactic to consumers.

Avoid obvious advertising

If you take the basic product placement route, where you place your products in a game that’s not associated with your brand, you risk your brand’s likability. Product placement rarely works out well, because it can take away from the player’s experience and leave a bad taste in their mouth.

Nearly 70% of consumers don’t trust advertising, so instead of forcing it upon them, advertise your products seamlessly. The key to doing that is making a game that’s representative of your brand and allows players to interact with your products. To effectively do this, avoid using an advergame that uses a generic format.

Instead of taking players to a game that just so happens to have your products in it, take them to a world that’s centered around your brand.

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Don’t think that your industry or company values limit you in your ability to make a game that accurately reflects your brand. Experienced game studios will get to know your company and use unique colors, music, and other game features to increase brand awareness.

Games also have the ability to communicate your brands core values; they're not just a silly pastime. Super Mario BP Oil Spill demonstrated the ability of games to effectively communicate serious messages to people of all ages and demographics. Games speak a language of their own, and they’re versatile enough to communicate the message your brand wants to echo.

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3. A business goal in mind

Lastly, a successful advergame must be made with a business goal in mind. There are multiple business goals that games can achieve, but they need to be organized and prioritized to make sure your game delivers the results you need.

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Your business goals should be discussed with whoever’s producing your game. The game will then be built to ultimately lead players to take the actions you desire. Games have a powerful ability to influence consumer behavior; you just need to leverage it appropriately.

For instance, if your business goal is to increase foot traffic in your stores, you can allow players to access special game modes and power-ups, or administer additional game credits, when they play in your store locations. The name of the game is mutual benefit. You want to elevate the player’s experience while getting something for yourself.

A fun game that reflects your brand appropriately and drives consumers to take the actions you want is a tool that can benefit your brand greatly. Unfortunately, these features aren’t as simple as 1, 2, 3 to execute, and many game studios will trick you into thinking they are.

If you want a better idea of how you can achieve your business goals by delighting your customers, request a free demo.

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