How can brands engage in gaming?

Gaming is the next frontier for brands says Nabil Moutran, Founder & CEO of DIVISION.

In the dynamic realm of modern entertainment, gaming has emerged as a commanding force, surpassing even the combined revenues of the music and movie industries.

This meteoric rise has not only redefined the entertainment landscape but has also transformed the way brands connect with their audiences.

To delve into the strategies and best practices that allow brands to navigate this exciting domain, Campaign Middle East sat down with Nabil Moutran, Founder & CEO of DIVISION, a pioneering media house that champions the gaming marketplace.

Nabil shares his insights on the evolving relationship between brands and gaming, shedding light on the remarkable potential for engagement, the impact of changing perceptions, and the metrics that drive success in this burgeoning landscape.

Gaming has enjoyed a monumental rise in the past few years, with revenue from gaming now exceeding that of the music and movie industry combined. How do you see this growth impacting the relationship brands have with gaming?

We believe that gaming is the next frontier for brands. As gaming moves from a nascent “shiny new toy,” brands will solidify their gaming strategies and determine what gaming means for them and their customers. It’s simple; brands always seek to engage where their customers spend time. This is why social media dominated advertising spend in the last decade. While there are leaders in this space, more brands will find what works for them, and that’s where DIVISION comes in.

We offer brands the ability to engage in gaming with minimal investment and a range of solutions to consider.

When you talk to clients (agencies and brands), what are the main attractions for them to engage in gaming?

The cultural relevance of gaming, shifting from a niche hobby to a mainstream phenomenon, is a key factor. This shift allows brands to connect emotionally with the gaming audience. Our campaigns with gamers are crafted with authenticity and relevance, creating a deeper impact on the customer.

The main excitement for our clients arises from the engagement levels we achieve. For instance, while social media engagement is often measured in seconds, our solutions lead to engagement times in minutes. In 2023, our average brand engagement surpassed 4 minutes.

Gamers have often carried a certain stereotype. Does this affect the types of brands that are looking to engage in the gaming space?

The stereotype of gamers has evolved over the years. While outdated stereotypes may persist, the perception of gamers has become more diverse and inclusive. In the past, negative stereotypes linked gamers with social isolation and a narrow demographic. However, the gaming community’s growth has challenged these notions. This changing perception encourages a wider range of brands to engage with gamers.

Are there any misconceptions that you have to often debunk when conducting campaigns with your clients?

After extensive interactions with agencies and brands, there are three main misconceptions we consistently address.

Firstly, gamers are not limited to teenagers in their bedrooms anymore. Gaming has entered mainstream entertainment, evident from consumption data on platforms like Twitch. Secondly, brands seeking to engage with the gaming audience should do so with a consistent investment strategy.

Ad-hoc approaches yield limited results. Thirdly, relevance and authenticity are crucial for success. Connecting the right brand with the right gamer, empowering them to deliver the message authentically, garners higher reach and engagement compared to traditional marketing.

Could you share insights into the key performance indicators (KPIs) or metrics that advertisers should consider when measuring the success of their partnerships with the gaming community or activation?

At DIVISION, we collaborate with various industries, from finance to luxury. KPIs vary based on the industry and campaign objective. Typically, we measure metrics like audience reach and time watched.

We gauge the time the brand is visible to unique viewers. We also provide lower-funnel measurements like click-through rates. We work closely with brands to establish clear KPIs before campaigns launch, ensuring real-time measurement.