American Intercontinental University
Professor Carol Sagers
March 31, 2013
The purpose of this paper is to identify issues that impact the marketing success of the video game industry and to address potential ways to overcome barriers and obstacles that hinder these companies. Economical restrictions are reviewed and how they play a key role in marketing development for video game products.
MARKETING IN THE VIDEO GAME INDUSTRY While the United States and global markets continue to stand at a relative dead lock after several years, the video game industry has continued to grow within the global marketplace. Consumers use video games for leisure activity or as a means to release stress. Consumers also play video games to fulfill their need for social interaction. Online game play has become a way of life for many in developed countries and civilizations. Most importantly, video games offer a fun and unique experience for the users. To remain competitive in the global economy, the video game industry must develop new technologies and platforms for users to enjoy. They must offer the products at the right price, sold at the right places, and use the most effective ways of promoting their products. The industry must also adapt to new technologies outside of its current setup which focuses on game consoles and PC’s. With the widely expanding use of smart phone technology, consumers are now engaging in small mini-game type games on their devices. The cell phone market is increasing rapidly and the amount of people that play games on their devices is also on the rise. It is expected that by the year 2014, nearly 35% of mobile phone users will actively engage in playing a game on their hand held devices. This is a threat to the gaming industry, because it encourages smaller game publishers and even individuals to enter the market and sell their own titles. The industry must recognize this and attempt to make their own claim on this market by offering console release games to be played on phones also or develop content which would compete with the cell phone gaming market. Another valuable concept for large video game publishers would be to develop relationships with companies that already have a strong foot in the door in the cellular based industry. The larger companies could offer the resources to develop better content and would result in profiting for both companies by developing a better product through cooperation. Another force dictating the success of the gaming industry is the development of their products in foreign markets. Publishers and game developers face the task of making their games to meet cultural principles that are outside of their developing country. For instance, a military based game marketed to the people of China should not represent China in a negative manner by making the Chinese the enemy within the game. Publishers must also put forth effort to make the game available in a variety of languages, especially if they intend to market a particular country like France in which the country primarily speaks French. These are both difficult obstacles for the video game industry because this would add a lot of development time to create their titles. A strategic approach to offset this would be to develop the content for a specific market and then license the game content to a developer in a different market to expand upon or change to suit the needs of their own market. This allows for both markets to become saturated with the product without needing to spend valuable time to alter the specific content of the game. The industry must also re-evaluate which age demographic and gender it is focusing its games on. During the early development of video games, products were largely targeting the younger individuals under the age of 18 and predominantly males as well. In the current stage of the industry, however, it is recognized that