Hello again dear bloggers!
First of all, I would like to wish all of you a great holiday season.
All the best from all of us here at Adsmarket!!!
In my last post, Virtual Currency – Media Types for Online Games Applications, we discussed virtual currency media, and the way it can positively contribute to gaming advertisers and business models. In this post, we will explore the biggest and, some say, the pioneer market for this media type – Asia.
A few weeks ago I had the great opportunity to attend Gstar in Busan, Korea. This conference was an excellent example/reminder for gaming advertisers
concerning the potential of VC and the Asian market place. It also lent decent proportions to the western world, and the fact that over here, we are seeing just the tip of the revenue iceberg.
Believe it or not:
The virtual goods industry in Asia is generating about $7 billion a year in revenue, about seven times the number in the U.S. This means one thing: call it incentivized traffic; call it virtual currency – IT WORKS.
Here are a few interesting facts:
The Asian population count now a days: 3,808,070,503 of which 738,257,230 are internet users, with a growth of 545.9 % for the past 9 years – and GROWING!This means serious business!!!
The Asian market is producing a significant volume of traffic, but there are drawbacks, to be fair. Due to barriers like language, currency/exchange rate, and user value, however; promoting online games/MMO campaigns and optimizing them is a challenge if you are not local or familiar with the local marketplace.
Even with these challenges, the general assumption is that volume will be high, and with the right content/game you can gain users that will spend more time playing and eventually – paying. Deeper research will show you that most developers/ games companies keep the marketing agenda for APAC in-house. The user value is outstanding, not to mention that demographic wise, this is targeting heaven.
The Fuss Over VC
Getting back to Gstar, after meeting with a few industry veterans, I was surprised to hear that they didn’t seem to understand why the western world is making such a big deal over virtual items and the way they are being distributed.
When I spoke with some of them about recent “industry-shattering” events, like when EA acquired Playfish (tiny cash deal…), Offerpal hiring a new CEO and Zynga launching Farmville.com , they didn’t seem to be excited at all…
“This has been our business model for years…” & “It’s only getting bigger by the year“ were only some of the comments I got back.
This made me wonder: Why is the western world still labeling virtual items as a negative feature? What is it about two different societies that can label this controversial traffic source as a godsend or a disease? In other words, what’s all the fuss about ???
From my experience working with large gaming advertisers for the last few years and monitoring the buzz surrounding the virtual currency platform, the issue is the way it’s being introduced to the user. And I don’t necessarily agree with it.
After all, how do advertising and marketing work? Consumer behavior is amazingly predictable, which is what advertising is based on. Simply put, the consumers who manage their spending and take the time to read the small print are probably thinking the same thing that my friends at GStar were. What’s the fuss about?
We should be happy that the affiliate marketing industry is growing and creating new opportunities for both users and publishers to benefit from. We know that each media type has its own arguments, and just like any competitive industry, the online space requires thinking outside the box.
The only reason to bash on it is if you are jealous that you didn’t think about it before…
If it hasn’t been said before (and it has), here’s some advice for every online consumer – check before you click, and there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.