There will be 179.6 million monthly gamers in the US this year—meaning more than half of the US population will identify as digital gamers by the end of 2022.
Gamers are now nearly synonymous with everyday consumers, and it’s time for advertisers to pay attention. Advertising in video games, also known as in-game advertising, will help you tap into a growing and engaged audience.
This upward trend points to the growing opportunity to reach engaged audiences through video game ads. In-game advertising leverages programmatic to enable ads to appear in mobile, computer, and video games. With blended in-game, ads are seamlessly integrated, so they don’t interrupt gameplay.
What Are In-Game Ads
Blended in-game ads appear on in-game objects such as billboards, walls, jerseys, and more during gameplay. The goal of blended in-game advertising is to insert ads that get noticed while not interrupting the player’s enjoyment of the game.
They are non-intrusive, highly-viewable and drive high brand recall. Blended in-game ads can be delivered through programmatic advertising on gaming consoles, mobile devices, or on PCs.
Blended in-game inventory can be run at scale across impactful suppliers and platforms around the world.
What Are Two Common Blended In-Game Ad Units
The most common formats that are leveraged in a blended in-game ad campaign are display and video ads. Let’s break them down:
In-Game Display Ads
Display ads are typically a designed image or a photo combined with copy. They should be eye-catching enough to attract the attention of a gamer, and they should deliver a quick message.
Since display ads are often small, it’s important to clearly communicate a single message with a strong call to action (CTA). Note that CTAs cannot be clickable, so be sure to communicate concisely to the user how they can engage with your brand further.
Blended In-Game Video Ads
Video advertising is a great way to create an emotional connection to your brand. Since it’s a visual medium, it’s important to focus on a narrative that demonstrates your larger brand story.
Rather than telling the audience why you’re the best product or service for them, show them how your values align with theirs.
4 Benefits of Advertising in Video Games
In-game advertising offers an opportunity to reach a growing and diverse audience. But, this isn’t the only benefit of leveraging this channel.
1. Reach a diverse audience of gamers.
There isn’t a “one size fits all” for a typical gamer. Gaming audiences are incredibly diverse in their demographics. For example, a 2021 study showed that 55% of gamers identified as male, and 45% identified as female, and that most gamers range in age across a few generations (Source: Anzu, Q4 2021).
Gamers are diverse in their consumer purchasing habits, too. Some may be working professionals with expendable income, who are interested in the latest tech products. Others might be parents who are open to back to school messaging. The bottom line is that the gaming audience is diverse in their demographics, interests, and purchase intentions.
2. Leverage in-game ads to build brand awareness.
In-game advertising helps you reach your target user in a non-disruptive, highly-viewable environment. You’re able to connect your brand with a captive audience who is unlikely to be multitasking, which increases the likelihood of brand recall and awareness.
Building brand awareness is a valuable benefit of in-game ads because it helps you get closer to achieving a range of business objectives and goals. Brand awareness can expand your audience, increase website traffic, increase brand affinity, and drive consumers further down the purchasing funnel.
3. Reach influential users who are playing video games.
Gamers are savvy and influential. According to Anzu research, 51% of gamers advise others and 47% influence others. And, 46% try to be the first to know about new stuff, like emerging tech and new fashion.
Advertising in video games enables you to reach influential gaming audiences in an emerging industry. And, gamers have spending power; those who play 10+ hours a week have 2x more disposable income than non-gamers.
4. Explore new programmatic advertising strategies.
In-game advertising provides the opportunity to test unique ad formats that are exclusive to in-game environments. Plus, you can reach new audiences through emerging technologies.
With this format, it’s important to optimize your ads for the gaming environment in order to maximize exposure and capture the attention of users. Creatives should be tailored to an in-game environment, so that the messaging fits within an in-game context.
Start Advertising in Video Games
Are you ready to get into the game? By leveraging in-game advertising, you can reap the many benefits of this growing channel. You’ll reach a diverse and engaged audience, with an opportunity to build brand awareness.
Advertising in video games is on the rise, and so now is the time to add it to your media mix. Get ahead of the game by testing in-game advertising strategies, now!
Reach out to your StackAdapt Representative or request a demo to learn how you can start advertising in video games.