Today's main Gamasutra feature and our latest responses to the Question of the Week took a look at in-game advertising, as it asked our audience of game professionals: “Do you think that in-game advertising is going to be important to the video game industry in the future? What business models and placement tactics for in-game ads make the most sense to you?”
A particularly impassioned response comes from Brian Robbins, Fuel Industries, Inc, who comments:
"Branded entertainment of all forms is going to become a large part of society within the next several years. With the rise in popularity of DVRs, brands are losing their most consistent and effective advertising medium: the television. We are already seeing the initial reaction to this, which is placing the same or similar ads into video games. These in-game ads may be appropriate in some cases, and a few studies have even indicated that they may actually increase the level of involvement and believability players have in the world.
However, it is only a stop-gap measure that will not have long lasting effectiveness. At the same time, we are seeing brands that are finally starting to realize that the best way to reach consumers is to create advertainment that people actually want to see and interact with. The best examples of this cause consumers to actively discuss, promote and spread the message to their friends. These come in all forms, from funny commercials and spoofs, to well-done branded websites, to high-quality advergames built around and fully integrated with a brand.
The question is not, will this be important to the video game industry, the question is how long will it take for advertainment to become the accepted standard in advertising. To question the game industry's involvement is irrelevant because the brands, and their marketing dollars, will become an integral part of all entertainment mediums."
You can now read the full Gamasutra feature on the subject
, including plenty more nuanced responses from video game industry professionals (no registration required, please feel free to link to the article from external websites).