If you are tasked to come up with an innovative marketing strategy for your game, you might be a little bothered by the title of this post. First of all, do not despair. Bloggers may be better marketers, but then again they have an entirely different type of ‘product’ to advertise than your typical brand manager. Their goal, if they wish to monetize and grow their own brand, is to sell their personality and the unique content they create. They’re quite similar to musicians in that sense. And just like most musicians, most bloggers will fail at gaining a huge following and becoming social media sensations. Yet there are still many who have succeeded – and they didn’t need a PR posse to do it. So, what makes bloggers such great marketers and how can your brand benefit? BlogsRelease CEO Eti Nachum explains!
They know video
Marketing through video is the subject of the latest buzz in the industry and was the topic of many debates at the NAB Show, Social Media Marketing World, and a multitude of blogs. Vloggers have already been on this trend since practically the birth of YouTube. The newest opportunities for video – such as the content-magnet of Facebook Live (Contently) – will now bring brands face to face with their consumers. For the games industry this knowledge is particularly important and relevant.
They know their consumers
Even with sponsored posts, bloggers know how to spin it to make the endorsement feel less like an ad and more like a suggestion from a friend. And that’s the key since 92% of consumers trust the advice and recommendations of people they know over brands (Nielsen). For younger audiences this is even more true. Nowadays, American teens trust YouTube personalities (including gamers like PewDiePie and Markiplier) far more than even celebrities because they view them as more relatable (Variety). Bloggers, even those with millions of followers, are more accessible than your average celebrity spokesperson. If the blogger is familiar, their audience will believe that the product they’re sponsoring is one they would recommend anyway.
They are masters at social
Despite the familiar refrain from marketing blogs to cross-purpose content in a smart way and change strategies for different platforms, the urge to just copy/paste and be done with it is often too great to resist. To bloggers, however, the multi-platform approach comes naturally. A gaming blogger will put his reviews on YouTube, feature his favorite merchandise on Instagram, snap moments of his personal life on SnapChat, and use Twitter to promote his posts and regularly socialize with readers.
They do it cheaply
Marketing yourself is quite a challenge, especially if you don’t have a big budget for a PR team and the resources to buy publicity. So how do bloggers do it? Simple. They produce quality content and rely on word of mouth. It’s the classic marketing technique beautifully presented. Looking at blogger influencers, marketers can regain perspective on what marketing really boils down to: if people like it, they will talk about it. No complicated algorithms required.
So, what’s next?
Can a brand achieve the same level of trust and credibility as a familiar and beloved blogger? Probably not. Every day marketing technology is making it easier and easier for brands to learn more about their consumers, what they want to see in their advertising, and how they want to see it; However, even with social media engagement and an evolving approach, brands are still not at the level of the bloggers. That’s why influencer marketing is so effective. Harnessing the power of influencers with all their credibility and established goodwill can be massively beneficial to gaming brands, and comes with many benefits (including exposure to new audiences, a way to circumvent adblock technology, an SEO boost, and a continued presence online).
For more insights into games marketing make sure to visit Casual Connect USA (18-20 July, San Francisco).