Advertising in Games: Advergaming Applications in the Tourism Industry

Advertising in Games: Advergaming Applications in the Tourism Industry

Evrim Celtek (Gaziosmanpasa University, Turkey)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-8125-5.ch004
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Traditional marketing communication techniques are of diminishing effectiveness and marketers have developed creative applications to attract consumers. Advergames can be seen as an attractive and new marketing tool that increases product, brand and company awareness. Advergames are a form of branded entertainment that features advertising messages, brand logos, brand products and trade character in a game format. The purpose of this chapter is to provide an understanding of the qualities and potentials of the advergames as an advertising and marketing communication tool for the tourism industry. First, an overview of the various definitions of advergaming is provided, as well as a review of existing literature regarding its effectiveness. The study next examines the advergaming applications in the tourism industry using SWOT analysis. The study concludes with a discussion of the needs, challenges and opportunities faced in marketing tourism products by advergaming.
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Online Games, Online Game Types And Online Gamers

Online Gaming is defined as ‘Gaming that require the use of a PC and internet connectivity, either played online or downloaded and played online later, capable of supporting either single player or multiple players (eTechnology Group, 2007, p. 6; Steiner, 2008).

Online games can be classified based on the number of players (eTechnology Group, 2007, p. 15; Steiner, 2008, p. 4):

  • Based on the number of players the different types of online games are Single Player, Multi-Player, Massively Multi Player Games (MMOG’s) and Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games (MMORPG’s). Single player games are where the user plays against the system. Multi Player games are based on the bandwidth and the type of the game, many players can play it simultaneously, where their geographic location does not pose a constraint on playing against others. MMOG is an extension of Multi-Player online games, these games can be played by hundreds often thousands of players at the same time. The number of players that an MMOG can support depends on the server. MMORPGs (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games) are further extension of MMOGs. These games are designed to go on and are not dependent on who comes and who leaves. These games are complex virtual worlds where each player assumes a virtual character often called an “Avatar”- An online role. Players band together and form clans and exhibit all the characteristics of the real world.

By analyzing their principal purposes, games can be classed into one of three wide-ranging categories (Alvarez & Michaud, 2008):

Key Terms in this Chapter

Marketing Communication: Marketing communications is the “promotion” part of the “marketing mix” or the “four Ps”: price, place, promotion, and product. It can also refer to the strategy used by a company or individual to reach their target market through various types of communication.

In-Game Placements: Brand/logo placement inside an existing game. A brand is placed in a game such that it is an integral part of the game and creates many opportunities for the consumer to interact with it. A good example is the logo of Honda painted on a car in a racing game. The advertiser pays a fee for the in-game placement.

Advergame: Games developed especially for a brand with deep integration of the brand into the game. A game is specially built around a brand, aimed to develop association and strong recall for the brand. An example is a game built around the bottle of a soft drink brand. The advertiser underwrites the entire cost of game development.

ADVERGAMING: Advergaming is the use of interactive gaming technology to deliver embedded advertising messages to consumers.

On-Site Advertising: Banner ads on gaming sites and gaming pages of portals. It is internationally the most common revenue model, though not the largest source of revenue. In this model the advertiser’s pay for placing their advertisement (usually banner ads) on the website. Games are monetized by advertising units sold around the game.

Online Gaming: Defined as ‘Gaming that require the use of a PC and internet connectivity, either played online or downloaded and played online later, and is capable of supporting either single player or multiple players.

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