In the wake of the news of the upcoming MySpace Games channel, I wanted to highlight the quality and engagement potential casual games can add to the site. Deep Focus CEO Ian Schafer called run-of-site ads on social networks “among the worst performers,” and said ads in and around casual games have potential to be more effective as games foster a captive audience, and there’s less to compete with.
Ad effectiveness in casual games on MySpace has been and will be proven before the channel even launches in 2008. “MySpace is all about depth of engagement by connecting users,” said Daniel Stein, CEO and founder of EVB, a creative agency with clients including Adidas, 2K Sports, and VO5.
“It makes perfect sense to use multiplayer games to take this concept to the next level. As brands look for ways to be relevant to the digital consumer, multiplayer gaming is going to make a lot of sense for an advertiser.” EVB will soon launch a multi-platform campaign for client VO5 which includes a partnership with MySpace as a gateway to a game.
Will a games channel provide a clean environment for CGM-shy brands to advertise? “I would say probably not, but that’s fine. Social networking isn’t a clean or controlled environment, which makes it cool and interesting. Whenever the user controls or creates an experience, there is always unpredictability. Brands that presently utilize MySpace as part of its digital marketing already understand this and likely embrace it.”
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