Seventy percent of people under the age of 25 say they’d rather play a game than watch a video. In 2022 InsiderIntelligence.com estimated that more than half (54.2%) of the U.S. population were digital gamers. Mobile gaming was the largest segment, with 48.3% of the population (162.9 million people) playing games on their smartphones. Insider Intelligence goes on to predict that “mobile gaming ad spend will grow 10% in 2023 to $6.28 billion and continue to grow by 8% to 10%” over the next few years. What is your firm doing to take advantage the growth of gaming with market research?
Two critical areas to understand gaming with market research are gaming habits and player motivations. Gaming culture is quick to dismiss anything viewed as “inauthentic.” In addition to typical demographic information, enthnographic studies to understand player culture and behavior is critical. A/B testing to compare different game features and marketing strategies will determine what best resonates with players.
The gaming industry is unique as an entertainment medium where gamers connect with someone they’ve never met, may not speak the same language, could be in different time zones, probably have different abilities and yet they interact in real time, often for extended periods of time. This interactivity combined with the number of people that can be reached makes gaming with market research a critical need for most products.
Surveys and questionnaires can help get direct feedback from players but in-game analytics and user experience studies can better answer the questions of time on the game and in-game purchases. Playtesting along with market analysis opens the door to understanding trends, competitors and emerging technologies.
In-game advertising and in-game purchases are the most obvious ways to place your product in front of 150+ million gamers. Depending on the match of your product to particular gamers the growth of branded gaming tournaments and influencer partnerships could make sense. Custom game development featuring your brand’s products or services can have a big payoff. Games that are quick and easy to play dominate mobile gaming with 24% playing casual/puzzle games, 19% board/word and 18% playing card games. Developing a new game can be overwhelming but gamified marketing campaigns with quizzes, challenges and mini-games that incorporate your brand are doable.
From Pong on the Atari to Mario Kart on the Nintendo switch, gaming continues to grow and play a large part in American society. Is your company playing? Contact Smith Hanley Associates’ Market Research and Consumer Insights Executive Recruiter, Pierson Wofford at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Written with assistance from ChatGPT