To capitalize on the mobile game boom, publishers are expanding into lucrative international markets. For insights into what it takes to build a global audience, mitigate risk and more, join experts from Riot Games, 2CV, and Facebook Audience Network in this VB Live event.
The number of active gamers is on the rise globally, increasing from 60% to 71% in the last three years. And it’s not just in developed western and Asian markets. In growing markets like Brazil, Turkey, Vietnam, Argentina, and Russia, 75% of the population has played a mobile game in the last month.
With the advent of 5G and cloud, and the diversity and growth of gamers into almost every demographic across the world, the global mobile gaming ecosystem is offering publishers the opportunity to amplify their game reach and scale, and increase revenue.
But there are big challenges to surmount, and essential questions to tackle. Here are just a few to consider:
Not every game can be simply translated and launched into a new market. Being aware of cultural differences and addressing them head on can mean the difference between a game that booms and a game that bombs. Players respond best to a custom game experience that feels like it was made for their market, not badly shoehorned into it. You need to consider more than just language: look and feel, tone and content, and more are all important to help your audience engage with your game seamlessly.
You need to be mindful of implicit cultural or geographic biases in your content, consider dialect, not just language, and make sure you’re aware of any cultural and language nuances.
To improve the chances of your mobile game launch and drive growth for your game, consider the timing of your release. You can leverage cultural moments to drive growth for your game, or “Bold Beats”: an update or moment associated with your game that you can maximize with a dedicated media strategy.
For example, when a mobile game’s IP is being advertised or discussed broadly, say for a movie premiere that features the same characters as the game, that game becomes highly relevant to an audience that’s already interested in that franchise or property — and you can capitalize on that buzz.
Releasing major updates or features that will attract new players is another way to boost the profile of your game and make its launch in a new market more attractive. It can mean new characters or new skins, or in-game events that capitalize on a cultural moment like Lunar New Year or Valentine’s Day.
To maximize the size and breadth of your customer base when you launch globally, you need to consider how you target your customers. Gamers discover new games and purchase them in very different ways across the world, and it could be very different from your home market. For instance, 57% of mobile gamers look for new games in the app store, while 31% go by word of mouth. Know which channel your target audience is most likely to be engaged with before you launch your game.
All monetization models are not created equal. When you export your mobile game, you can’t just export your monetization strategy; you have to adapt it based on the game type, genre, user profile, geography, and more. Changing your approach depending on the type of game and user profile opens the way for a hybrid model (IAA+IAP) to maximise impact across game genres and international markets.
But remember, your audience’s response to in-app ads and in-app purchases will vary by market. For instance, in Brazil, 83% of players are happy with seeing ads in exchange for not having to pay to play a game. And a hybrid model works very well for a sports game in the U.S., but not for a strategy game in Turkey.
To learn more about expanding into international markets, including a deep-dive into insights around monetization strategies and audience attitudes across the world and more, don’t miss this VB Live event.
Don’t miss out!
From a NA/LATAM lens, this session will cover:
- What is influencing publisher motivations to expand internationally?
- What should publishers ask themselves when looking to expand?
- What are the key insights and trends publishers can leverage when planning to expand?
- Martin Bradley, Research Director, 2CV
- Márcio Freire, Publisher Solutions Manager, LATAM & Scaled, Facebook Audience Network
- Jennifer Poulson, Head of Publishing & Product, SEA, Riot Games (moderator)