Lately, I have noticed that more and more publishers are looking for YouTube “Influencers” to promote their game(s). This is especially noticeable in the Southeast Asia Region, namely Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand. Exactly how effective is this form of marketing? Let’s discuss!
When it comes to mobile games, the usual marketing channels are Social Media, online and in-app Advertisements or the traditional games media websites and gaming Youtubers. For bigger Publishers, they might even engage well-known celebrities to endorse the game. This is a very common practice in countries such as Korea, Japan, Taiwan and China. Publishers are banking on the celebrity’s fan base to bring in more Players into their game. Knowing that your favorite celebrity is playing the game will definitely entice you to join.
However, this form of marketing works well only if the country’s entertainment industry is big. In the case of Southeast Asia, the entertainment industry in the region is pretty small and there are only few big names that Publishers can look into to endorse their product. Furthermore, due to the difference in language and gaming habits, there are few Youtubers that produces Gaming content. Most of us are struggling to get even a thousand views.
The next best alternative? YouTube “Influencers” or Content Creators. In recent years, there is an influx of Influencers on YouTube. Most of these content creators produces mostly comedy videos. As these videos are relatable to our everyday lives, people love watching them. Over time, as the content creators grow and gather more followings, Publishers will naturally want to work with these content creators to attract more Gamers from their Followers.
Over the past few weeks, I have watched a few videos on YouTube and Facebook and coincidentally, these videos are introducing a game called Lords Mobile. Published by IGG, Lords Mobile is a real-time strategy game where Players get to build your own empire, collect Heroes, and battle to be the top! Recently, IGG just introduced a new Kingdom Clash Event called Kingdom Hunter. Attack your target Kingdom through occupying Wonders, killing troops, and destroying traps in your target Kingdom to earn bonus points. If you like playing strategy games, you can try downloading game here (Android) or here (iOS).
Some of you may wonder what are the differences between the Youtubers I mentioned above versus the Youtubers that produces gaming content. Well other than what the name implies, differences include the type of content they produce and their Follower base.
Unlike in the West where there are big Gaming Youtubers such as Pewdiepie, Vanoss Gaming or AngryJoeShow, Gaming Youtubers in Southeast Asia are pretty rare. Gaming Youtubers produces video that are mainly guides, news or parody based on the game. People who follow gaming Youtubers are more than likely Gamers themselves who are interested in the game. These are the group of people who are tend to be more informed with any upcoming games. The only popular Youtubers that I know, who produces mobile games content are probably YDCB from Singapore and Ushi Gaming from Indonesia.
In Southeast Asia, it is common for Youtubers to produce skit content on everyday lives. Occasionally, you would be able to see some sponsored content or product placement in their videos. Not only can these videos provide entertainment to their Followers, it can also promote a certain product subtly to the viewers. The followers from Youtubers that make comedy content are from many different backgrounds. This is a huge pool of potential Gamers that most Publishers would like to attract.
The problem with this sort of collaboration is that it tends to be only a one-time deal. Youtubers usually insert part of the game’s gameplay video onto one of their video and do a brief introduction on the game. However, most of them do not provide any guides or explanation on higher level gameplay. As a gamer myself, I would want to see that my favourite Youtuber is actually playing the game and is good with it.
To be honest, I would like people from the SEA gaming community to step up and produce more quality gaming content. As gamers yourselves, I’m pretty sure most of you would understand the game better and really create content that would be interesting and of use to the Player-base.