Learning to play the game


The digital age has supercharged the gamer universe. However, video-game consumers have very specific characteristics, necessitating a ‘concierge’ tone in terms of marketing.

This is encouraging news for Walter Longo, former strategy mentor of Y&R Brazil, president of Grey Brazil and current BBL partner specialising in electronic-game events and projects. In Longo’s opinion, engagement marketing can use the video game to reach out to lost audiences.

Longo explains that the concierge model means that this target audience likes to be well treated and respected by agencies, consultancies, media channels and research institutes. Gamers already know their potential as consumers and require special treatment from the brands that want to approach them.

The followers of esports seek productive interactivity on a global scale. Ever wondered how many fans the League Of Legends has? Game metrics are not only calculated by the number of players, but also by the size of the audience that watches top gamers in action. Stadiums are already being built for gaming tournaments. These have no violence — the motto is that only the best wins.

According to Longo, last year's League Of Legends brought together 99.5 million unique users. In order to grasp the potential of esports, its revenue was $35.8bn, compared to $23.3bn in the home-video market and $11.9bn in cinema. "Gaming has already surpassed the cinema,” Longo says. “Netflix is already launching games and Google is following that trend.”

Engagement is the key word in the gaming environment. Unlike the millennials, the ‘perennial’ generation accepts generational ecumenism: all together and mixed together. Longo says perennials are not defined by age — they range from eight to 80. They are not systematic consumers of TV: they like brands with purpose and that embrace causes. And they like electronic games and interacting globally with players of any age.

"It’s a tribe that bets on epistemic diversity, because it reads more books, newspapers and magazines, and is open to knowledge,” Longo adds. “Perennials are not related by age, but by identity. Advertising — agencies especially — needs to pay attention to this new civilisation.”

• Read the full article in the Lions Daily News Issue One, out now online and in print throughout the city of Cannes.

Harriet Palmer