By Robert Palma, VP mobile video sales, BrightRoll
In-game advertisers will continue to play a huge role in the mobile ecosystem and revenue growth for years to come, driven primarily by mobile’s rapid growth and consumers’ willingness to pay for mobile games. According to a recent Nielsen study, 64 percent of smartphone users downloaded and used a gaming app in Q2 2011. Additionally, 93 percent of app downloaders (those who have downloaded an app within the past 30 days) are willing to pay for the games they play. In contrast, only 76 percent of downloaders are willing to pay for news apps. This is a huge opportunity for marketers to get their message in front of a captivated audience.
The counter argument I’ve heard from marketers is that in-game ads have the potential to cause a bad user experience because video ads before or during a game are “intrusive” and no brand manager wants public backlash or negative reaction. Correct me if I’m wrong but, by the same standards, aren’t TV commercials “intrusive”? The biggest brands in the world spend a majority of their advertising budgets creating and airing TV commercials. Until 2000, when TiVo hit the market, there was no way to skip commercials, yet there was little lasting public backlash or negative sentiment toward these brands.
Marketers should embrace mobile and view the medium for what it is: another platform to promote their products and services to more than 75M users, who may not be TV viewers. Smartphones, with their multi-functional capabilities, are no longer just phones, they have become an indispensible part of life and are used to connect, communicate and entertain. According to the CTIA, an international nonprofit organization that represents the wireless communications industry, 26 percent of US households are mobile-only. In-game mobile video is a valuable channel for brand marketers to reach desired audiences. A simple first step for video advertisers who want to advertise with in-game ads is to repurpose TV assets, ideally edited down to 15-second slots. Leveraging existing TV video assets across multiple platforms yields greater efficiencies and will increase overall brand metrics & awareness.