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In-game advertising hits Kiwi screens
Posted on 18-May-2009 17:02. | Tags Filed under: News.

In-game advertising hits Kiwi screens
Kiwi brands are about to grace some of the world’s most travelled cyber-territory as in-game advertising hits New Zealand this month, following highly-successful roll-outs internationally.

Frucor is using in-game billboards and posters in Xbox 360 and PC games to launch a new energy drink called INK targeted at young men.

The ads feature in 24 Xbox 360 and PC games and run for six weeks during May and June. They’re also appearing on TV, in cinemas and online.

The in-game advertising system enables Xbox 360 and PC gamers to see New Zealand-centric advertising for the first time in their console games.

This visualisation technology comes from Microsoft-owned Massive Incorporated which feeds the ads into each player’s gaming session through their existing broadband connection.

Xbox New Zealand’s Tom Hunt says: “Instead of flashing past an ad for some product that’s of no interest, gamers can now feel more at home with a local product such as INK. This could be in the form of a billboard in a car racing game or a sponsored replay in a sports game.”

Frucor’s Iaan Buchanan says this new medium enables the brand to reach the elusive 15-24yr old market.

“Teaming up ad content with the relevant audience and the right medium is critical. For Frucor and INK, the benefit is in selecting games that are relevant to the brand’s target market. For example, INK has chosen gaming titles based on the attitude ‘the absence of fear’ which enables us to place the product within highly relevant content that expresses that core brand idea.”

Massive Inc. Regional Sales Manager, Brian Neal adds that in-game advertising brings marketing to a whole new level. This technology also enables brand managers to ‘geo-target’ ads to regional or world-wide markets.

Massive Inc. campaigns have run in the US, the UK, Europe, Canada, Korea and Australia with automotive and entertainment brands prominent amongst advertisers.

Frucor’s media agency for the INK in-game advertising campaign is OMD New Zealand.
“We are delighted to be working with Massive Incorporated on executing a market first media innovation in New Zealand for Frucor,” says Chris Riley, Director of Digital – OMD New Zealand.

“Reaching the gaming audience has always proved challenging for advertisers – especially the core male 18-24 demo. The increasing popularity of gaming has eroded the time this key audience now spends with traditional channels. It’s a major breakthrough for OMD, to now be communicating with this important demographic whilst they are highly engaged and receptive to relevant brands and messaging.”

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