In-Game Advertising

What Brands Can Learn From The Gaming Industry

April 6, 2023
3 Minutes

In recent years, the gaming industry has outperformed other forms of entertainment, such as music, art and movies. The global gaming industry is expected to surpass $200 billion in 2023 alone according to Statista.

As this new and exciting environment continues to mature and evolve, advertisers can expand their reach and connect with their audience through game advertising.

There are a lot of non-game related brands that have entered the gaming ecosystem to cash in on the hype and are reaping the rewards. 

In this article, we discuss strategies brands can adopt from the gaming industry to create engaging advertising campaigns and maximize their reach.

Gamification for Engaging Ads

Gamification is a strategic way to encourage users of an application, game or tool by incorporating game-like features or activities.

It is a great way to keep an audience engaged or encourage behaviors through a reward system. 

Many industries such as the online event space already make use of these tactics. Brands looking to advertise in the gaming ecosystem can increase the engagement of their ads by adding this element into the mix. 

This can be achieved by incorporating gaming elements in a non-gaming context or offering users a chance to win discounts or free-shipping through playable ads.

gamification - how much is the gaming industry worth
Source : efmdglobal

There are various gaming elements that can be incorporated into a brand’s marketing when building out advertising initiatives for the space, such as:

  • Leaderboards: Users can accumulate points by making purchases to reach a goal which will appear on a campaign leaderboard. The top positions of the leaderboard can be incentivized with prizes and additional rewards, which will increase competition and campaign engagement.

  • Badges and Achievements: Offer goal-focused rewards to make the experience more exciting and shareable.

  • Challenges: Brands can bolster engagement and revenue with specific groups by tailoring challenges to their specific needs and interests.

  • Progress Bar: Most social media websites have incorporated the profile completion progress bar, which can be considered the simplest form of gamification. The idea is to encourage users to complete campaign goals for additional rewards.

Case studies of successful gamification in advertising include brands like KFC, Duolingo, NikeFuel, Headspace, and Starbucks.

Build Strong and Engaging Communities

Communities have emerged as a vital aspect of social networking, especially in the gaming industry. 

Gaming ecosystems have successfully built highly engaging communities, such as the official r/gaming subreddit, which has over 35 million members, making it the 3rd largest subreddit on Reddit’s website.(Source: Subredditstats).

Building a strong and engaging community is crucial for any marketing strategy to succeed, regardless of the industry. Brands who want to build communities should consider:

  • Fostering a loyal fanbase that interacts with their content.
  • Leveraging the right influencers to boost community interest.
  • Using communities to collect feedback to improve initiatives.

Extensive community building allows brands to gain direct access to their target market and collect insights they can use to increase revenue and create brand advocates.

Creating Engaging Experiences Builds Audience Loyalty

Creating an engaging and positive brand experience is another way advertisers can learn from the gaming industry.

Publishers collect feedback and share updates through frequent channels, making it easy for their audiences to stay informed.

Brands need to connect with customers regularly to build meaningful relationships and create loyal customers. Incorporating community feedback and interactive engagement can result in improved user experiences which drives growth.

connecting with customers
Source: Shutterstock

Partner with Influencers for Targeted Reach

Gaming influencers are a valuable asset for brands in the social age. 

These influencers have built their own communities on platforms like Twitch, YouTube, TikTok, and Twitter and can be accessed to reach a more engaged and targeted audience. 

Brands can tap into these lucrative communities and connect to its target audience by partnering with and key gaming influencers whose brand align with its own. 

Many brands have already employed gaming influencers to reach these communities and have seen tremendous success. 

Moving forwards, brands will need to learn to diversify their influencer marketing strategies if they want to stay ahead in the game.

Maintain Consistent Branding for Memorable Experiences

The gaming industry is known for its strong branding, with many game companies developing highly recognizable brands. 

Games such as Grand Theft Auto, FIFA, Counter-Strike, and Call of Duty, which have created multiple products spanning decades without changing much in terms of branding. The in-game graphics, however, have received top-notch upgrades.

in game graphics
Source: Versionmuseum

Successful game brands often have a clear and consistent visual identity, which can include typography, imagery, color scheme, creative design, and much more. This helps to create recognition and establish a strong brand presence. 

Brands need to create a consistent visual and communication approach across channels to build a community and foster brand loyalty, even if they're not associated with gaming.

In Conclusion

There is a lot brands can learn from the extremely successful gaming industry and a highly engaging gaming audience.

Over the past few years, the gaming industry has made unparalleled growth, and we are starting to see brands starting to take notice. Many of these brands are joining it to leverage the immense potential up for grabs.

With iion, your brand can seize the opportunity to reach a highly engaging and diverse audience through games. With a suite of next-gen tools offered by iion, advertisers can catalyze growth and drive conversions. 

Now, advertisers can build extensive ad campaigns for a highly targeted gaming audience with total control in their hands.

Ready to expand your brand reach with game advertising? 

Connect With Us Today!


Question: What are the major lessons that can be learned from the video game industry?

Answer: As the gaming industry grows, other brands can learn more about gamification, building communities, offering an engaging experience, and tapping into the ecosystem with gaming influencers.

Question: What are the biggest gaming communities?

Answer: There are a variety of communities on the internet catering to gaming communities. On Reddit, the official r/gaming subreddit has over 35 million members, the League of Legends subreddit has over 6 million members, and the Overwatch community has over 4 million members.

Question: What strategies can companies use to promote themselves in games?

Answer: Companies can use a variety of strategies to reach the gaming audience. They can use in-game blended ads to blend into the gaming environment or display their products over the gaming interface through various ad formats, such as interstitials, rewarded ads, and video ads.

Question: How are brands use gamification?

Answer: Brands can use gamification and multiple elements to offer an engaging experience to users. These gaming elements include leaderboards, badges, achievements, challenges, and progress bars. Many brands, such as Nike, Starbucks, and Sephora are offering gamification to their users.

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