Zynga‘s GagaVille, a special expansion of FarmVille that pays homage to pop star Lady Gaga, went live today.
GagaVille is a special setting within Zynga’s popular social game where users can get exclusive access to Lady Gaga’s upcoming album, Born This Way. If users buy a $25 Zynga Game Card, which can be used to buy virtual goods in Zynga games, they can get access to the album for free before it is released on May 23. There are a number of other promotional deals too. The move shows that social media can team up with celebrities to create joint marketing partnerships with little cost or effort.
Zynga is the world’s largest social game publisher with more than 250 million monthly active players, while Lady Gaga has sold more than 10 million albums. The alliance with Gaga is an attempt to drive awareness of both into the stratosphere.
This kind of marketing promotion shows that Zynga’s social games are novel enough to attract celebrity star power. In the attention wars, such tie-ins will help Zynga rise above other social game companies and get better fan recognition.
Zynga has created a Gaga-inspired farm inside the game that will showcase Lady Gaga’s style and themes from her albums and videos. It will have things like crystals, unicorns and sheep on motorcycles.
From May 17 to May 19, players can unlock and stream a new, unreleased track once a day. From May 20 to May 23, players can unlock and stream a significant portion of the songs from the new album, plus special bonus remixes.
Users in the U.S. and Canada can get $25 Zynga Game Cards at Best Buy that include a free download of the Born This Way album plus exclusive bonus tracks, redeemable on May 23. There’s also an exclusive Lady Gaga unicorn for FarmVille players. Zynga will also have a contest and will give seven winners a day “On the Set With Gaga” during the artist’s next music video shoot.
In Zynga’s Words With Friends mobile game, there will be a Words With Gaga contest. If a player plays the special Gaga word of the day, they will be entered to win tickets to a concert on Lady Gaga’s next tour, plus a signed copy of Born This Way. Users will be picked randomly from May 17 to May 26 in the U.S.
Zynga is also partnering with Lady Gaga to offer exclusive virtual items across 10 games. Players can log into Zynga’s meta rewards platform, RewardVille, to redeem zCoins for exclusive, limited-edition Gaga-inspired virtual items. Those items are available in CityVille, FrontierVille, FarmVille, Mafia Wars, Zynga Poker, Café World, Treasure Isle, YoVille, PetVille, and Vampire Wars.
FarmVille players and “little monsters,” as Lady Gaga calls her fans, will get a chance to listen to new songs via streaming powered by Clear Channel’s iHeart Radio player.