Metacafe Launches Video Game Hub

Online video site Metacafe has launched a video games hub that features trailers, reviews, news, interviews and walkthroughs for games.

The hub’s first sponsor is EA’s Need for Speed Shift, a racing game. The campaign includes prominent exposure within the hub, an interactive home page skin and a combination of custom and standard media across the site, targeted to contextually relevant content.

Users won’t actually play the game in the hub, but will rather go there to see trailers, editorial reviews, gameplay footage, interviews with game creators and walkthroughs of the games, according to Metacafe CEO Erick Hachenburg. The Video Games hub targets men 18 to 34. However Hachenburg notes Metacafe’s audience is about evenly split: 40 percent female and 60 percent male.

In a prepared statement, Tabitha Hayes, EA’s director of marketing, said, “Teaming with Metacafe as the charter sponsor of its new Video Games hub is an effective and efficient way for us to build further awareness for Need for Speed Shift.”

Based on the “voracious consumer appetite” for video game content, Hachenburg said Metacafe teamed up with two gaming media brands — IGN and GamePro — to provide the majority of content in the hub.

Most current advertising comes from EA. Future advertising will come from video game publishers and other brands eager to reach a young male demographic. Ad opportunities include sponsorships, pre-rolls, overlays, companion banners and branded entertainment integrations.

The gaming hub joins existing destinatinos for Movie Trailers, Music Videos and Sports Highlights that launched in April 2009, as well as for TV Clips, which launched in June 2009. Future hubs will be rolled out “based on consumer demand and advertiser interest,” Hachenburg said. Next up is a Lifestyle hub which he says will feature fashion, food, home and garden content. It is slated to launch in early 2010.

New content partners will be integrated into the new hub in coming weeks and months, Metacafe said.

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