Articles

Playing with the King

In ad campaigns, advergaming, Uncategorized on September 28, 2009 by gingercatmom

There’s a box of video games upstairs in my house that contains the games that are rarely played. I cringe as I think of the allowances spent on high-priced racing and fantasy games…but in between these I found a long-forgotten purchase: Burger King “Big Bumpin”. What were we thinking when we bought that one?

Bumpin with the King

Bumpin with the King

“Big Bumpin” is just one of three advergames introduced at BK during the holiday season in 2006. With no major movie tie in to drive kids’ meal purchases (think Star Wars, Rugrats, Pokemon) Burger King built their own entertainment vehicle with the creation of three X-Box games. At just $3.99 a pop, the Burger King Xbox series was wildly popular–and affordable. But where are they now?

Advergaming can take a variety of forms. Games can be downloaded from websites to mobile devices. They can be played online via a company’s website. Consumers are willing participants in this marketing experience–they are willing to play a game and in the case of Burger King’s venture, they were even willing to pay for the game itself. Advergaming takes another form when the branded product figures prominently in the game (such as in the form of a shoe brand, automobile or even a food item that can’t be missed throughout the game experience). It’s an effective way to reach the coveted youth market-especially young males.

The key to a successful advergame lies in the game itself. It has to be fun–and make the player want to do it again. There might be revenue generated by sale of branded games, but how much marketing value is generated if the game is just purchased, played a time or two and then relegated to the “Island of Misfit Toys!”

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