It was a slow month in terms of spending for the mobile and video game industry, but that didn’t slow fan engagement with the industry’s ads. Spending only $37 million over the last 30 days, gaming brands have generated 43.8 million online views, 245,000 social actions and 324,000 searches through 3.5 billion TV impressions. Although Machine Zone was the clear winner over the past month, Nintendo also had an impressive run.
GamesBeat has partnered with iSpot.tv, which measures TV advertising in real time, to bring you a monthly report on how gaming brands are spending their ad dollars and which are generating the most digital response. Below are or the top five most-engaging gaming industry brands over the last 30 days.
Machine Zone crushed the competition with seven unique, star-driven creatives featuring Arnold Schwarzenegger and New England Patriots All-Pro tight end, Rob Gronkowski. Overall, the brand accounted for 35.7 percent of the industry’s engagement during the period, spearheaded by the “Mobile Strike: Fight” ad featuring Schwarzenegger that first debuted during the Super Bowl. This ad was the industry’s most engaging, generating more than 5 million online views, 7,000 social actions and 9,000 searches.
Advertising a slew of new titles, Nintendo finished in second among game companies over the past 30 days, accounting for 28 percent of the industry’s response.
Its best-performing ad, “Mario & Luigi Paper Jam: Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards,” brought together the newest edition of the Paper Mario franchise with the top children’s award show to great effect, topping out as the third-most-engaging spot of the month. Overall, Nintendo’s ads accounted for five of the top 10 most digitally engaging ads in this category.
Although it didn’t have quite as ambitious an advertising slate as Nintendo or Machine Zone, Ubisoft also unleashed a handful of commercials this month, advertising Far Cry Primal, a new edition of one of its most popular franchises, and much-awaited first-person shooter hybrid Tom Clancy’s The Division.
Ubisoft’s most engaging ad, “Far Cry Primal: YouTuber Reactions” (which also the ad with Ubisoft’s top spend last month), accounted for nearly 8 percent of the industry’s digital response this time around.
EA Sports accounted for 12 percent of industry engagement, propelled by a star-studded ad for its just-released UFC console title. “UFC 2: Finish the Fight: Ronda Rousey, Mike Tyson, Conor McGregor” taps three of the UFC’s most prominent fighters (though two have lost high-profile bouts in the past couple of months).
All are seen talking and fighting onscreen, scoring a knockout with fans who made it the industry’s second-most-engaging ad of the month. On the backs of three spots and $500,000 in estimated spend, EA sports generated 46 million impressions on TV, 1.14 million views online, 17,721 social actions and 8,133 searches.
The final spot in this month’s top five features a newcomer, Next Games. The brand, which makes mostly mobile games, has long advertised mostly on OTT and mobile. But this month it surfaced on traditional television outlets a couple of hundred times, promoting The Walking Dead: No Man’s Land, a mobile game based on the incredibly popular AMC series The Walking Dead. Next’s most engaging ad, “The Walking Dead: No Man’s Land: You Fight or You Die,” which has run mainly around airings of The Walking Dead & Talking Dead, has earned more than 120,000 views online.