The Gaming Industry: How Competitive Is Video Game Marketing?
by Game Marketing Genie, on 06-Jul-2018 15:52:46
The gaming industry has grown by leaps and bounds since the turn of the millennium, with advancements in technology playing a huge role in the growth. Since the era of Game Boy by Nintendo and Snake by Nokia, video games have evolved to become a dynamic form of entertainment appreciated worldwide. According to David Mack of the World Economic Forum LLC, the gaming industry has improved remarkably from the 90s with the number of gamers in 1995 a mere 100 million compared to the present day figure of 2.6 billion gamers worldwide.
You would expect that these impressive figures are made up of pre-teen and teenage boys as these are the age groups that we have come to associate with video games but that is not the case anymore. The same publication by the World Economic Forum puts the average age of gamers in the U.S. at 35 years. This means that adults as old as 40 years old are playing video games in their homes or on their mobile devices and PCs just as much as their young kids. More men play video games than women but the percentage of female gamers will shock you as a study by the Entertainment Software Association put the figure at 31% of the total adult gamers in the U.S. Impressive isn’t it.
The revenue from gaming activities has been impressive as well and it exceeded the $100 billion mark for the first time in 2017. Newzoo’s Global Games Market Report shows that the more than two billion gamers worldwide generated revenues of $108.9 billion in 2017 which was a 7.8% increase from the figures posted in the previous year. And if that is not enough, the same report expects the global gaming market to grow at a steady rate of 6.2% CAGR to reach $128.5 billion in revenues in 2020.
All these metrics appeal to you as a developer but unfortunately, the revenues from your gaming app are not that impressive. You used the best tools and technology to develop your app and your game’s story and game play are just as impressive but this has not been enough to get people interested in your app.
You reach out to other developers that you know and you find out that they are experiencing the same problems. So what could be the problem?
Why it’s hard to penetrate the market
The reason you are finding it hard to penetrate the market with your gaming application is that the gaming market is highly competitive. With the impressive figures posted above, everyone wants a piece of the gaming cake and this has seen the number of gaming applications that are available to consumers increase remarkably. According to Kyle Orland of Ars Technica, there are over 800 million registered games on Steam and this represents the competition that developers face.
Consumers, therefore, have a wide variety of games to choose from and this makes the gaming industry a buyers/gamers market as opposed to a developer’s one. They can choose from a variety of games and drop those that are not impressive without blinking an eye. This makes penetrating the market difficult as you will have to compete with millions of other games that are just as impressive. The shocking revelation on these gaming figures is the percentage of games that have not been played at all.
Kyle Orland continues to say that, “Right now, I can tell you that about 37% of the roughly 800 million games registered to various Steam accounts haven’t been loaded a single time.” Yes, you heard that right. About 295.2 million games on Steam have not been loaded on a computer and your precious little game could be making up these statistics and this could be the reason why there is very little interest in your game and your gaming revenues are low even when the whole industry is profitable.
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The mobile gaming niche
Ever since the launch of the iPhone in 2007, mobile gaming has grown to become the dominant player in the gaming industry. The report further explains that mobile games surpassed console and PC games in terms of revenues in 2016, generating $46.1 billion compared to $33.5 billion and $29.4 billion for console and PC games respectively. The revenue from mobile gaming is also expected to maintain a steady rise in future, and is slated to hit the $120 billion mark by 2022.
The portability aspect of mobile games is what makes them quite appealing to the current smartphone generation as it allows users to play their favorite games wherever they are, without having to set up complex gaming equipment. Of course, mobile games are less involving and complex for the hardcore gamer, but the number of casual gamers is rising faster than hardcore gamers according to technology journalist Cassie of GameSparks.
“Casual gamers play games mainly to pass time such as when they are in class waiting for the next class or when riding the subway train and since these are everyday activities, the number of people with games on their mobile phones is quite high”, she says.
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The number of mobile gaming apps available for download
There are hundreds of thousands of games available on the iOS App Store and Google Play alone. These are the games that you are in competition with when you launch your mobile gaming app and this makes penetrating the gaming market and gaining a healthy following among gamers very difficult.
While you've got to outrank your competitors, you've got to be able to find them first. For all the tips you need to know, read our 5 Steps to Identify Your Competitors on App Stores.
Competition with other forms of entertainment
Games, however, are not just competing with other games for the market share. They are also competing with other forms of entertainment that usually take up people’s spare time including socializing, attending festivals, watching movies, reading novels and more. The game that you develop should, therefore, be interesting and captivating enough for it to make it at the top of the list of the spare time activities that people opt for.
How to beat the competition
Given that the revenue potential is immense and the gaming industry is expected to grow further, it is understandable that there is a huge interest in the industry. The lack of regulation has lowered the barriers of entry into the industry but this has raised the barrier for market penetration as there are more games to compete with.
To beat the competition, you, first of all, have to make your game interesting for it to become the preferred spare time activity among the masses. When people are not busy with other things, gaming should be the only thing on their mind and this is only possible when your game is both interesting and captivating.
Your game should, therefore, be creatively designed and the gameplay should flow smoothly and the characters well developed. This strategy will not only help you edge other spare time activities but it will help you beat the competition in the market as well.
“Content is the most important factor in the U.S., but in China, distribution is king. Of course, you have to have a good game, but if you don’t have a good distribution system, it becomes a really tough market”, said Randy Lee, head of business development for Tencent America LLC in reference to what it takes to make it in the U.S. and Chinese gaming markets. With the volatile customer habits and intense competition in the industry, you need to combine these two aspects to make your game a success.
The ultimate guide to game marketing
Hope you enjoyed this article! For more insider game marketing information, check out The Ultimate Guide to Game Marketing: Everything You Need to Know.
To achieve great gaming content, your team of developers and creative designers should use the best design tools and be versed in the latest design development techniques. For your product distribution, you will need to partner with a firm with game marketing experience to push your game and Game Marketing Genie is your trusted game marketing strategy partner.
With a clear understanding of the gaming market and more, GMG will work through your goals and develop a marketing campaign that will take your game before the people that matter. Other than this, we will advertise your game on the right platforms so as to generate interest in your game and to get people to download it.
We understand that you have put in a lot of resources to develop your game so our mission is to make sure that you make as much revenue as possible by creating a marketing plan that is unique only to your product. With a team of game creatives and ROI optimization specialists, we have what it takes to mount a market penetration strategy that will make your game the talk of the town.
If you are just launching your game or you are looking for a better game marketing strategy after your game performed poorly in the market, contact us for a free consultation on the best marketing strategy for your game or check out our services.