How To Use Influencers to Market Your Game
27/08/2021 Written by The Game Marketer
Video game marketing has changed, and influencers are now more accessible than ever before. Gone are the days where you had to rely on expensive ad campaigns to reach your target audience; today, influencers have become the go-to method of marketing video games and cover every variety of gaming genre and playstyle.
This blog post is going to teach you how influencers can increase video game sales by sharing their opinions with their communities. We'll cover what influencer marketing is, why it's so effective for video game marketing, and how you can find influencers in your niche!
What are influencers and why do they matter to marketers
Influencers can be thought of as any person with a following— influencer marketing looks to harness the influence of these individuals for brands.
What influencers do and what they represent varies from niche to niche, but their marketing power is undeniable. For example, in 2016 roughly 84% of influencer posts on Instagram resulted in an average increase in follower count, engagement rate or sales conversion. And though influencer marketing costs less than running advertising campaigns, it still has a higher return on investment at 3x higher than broadcast ads alone! Not only does influencer marketing permit game companies to reach players while maintaining an authentic dialog with users - but it also gives them social proof and recognition among other things. So really the biggest question becomes why not use influencers?
Why influencer marketing is effective for video games
The gaming industry has seen a huge rise in influencer use recently, and with good reason. Gaming influencers are well-placed to promote products because they have genuine credibility within their community— gamers already trust influencers' opinions. This means that gamers will be much more likely to listen when influencers recommend certain games or give them positive reviews! And what's even better is many of these influencers cover games for the costs of a review key-- so if you want your game featured on an influencer's channel but don't want to pay up front then this might be the right type of publicity campaign for you!
How to find the right influencer for your game?
In influencer marketing, influencers represent specific niches. They have a following and usually receive very popular (as in, millions of views per video). So, one way to find the right influencer for your game is to look at which influencers play similar games, particularly ones that are in your genre. Alternatively, you can search for games like yours on social media and then locate the influencer that lists it as their favourite game.
There are many tools that exist now to make influencer research easier than ever before. Some of these allow users to filter by type of influencer, reach, and many other categories to find your perfect influencer. You can also try using Google Trends' "Influencers" feature, which shows the top 100 most influential people on social media based on their reach and amplification rate. Target specific groups within influencers by niche or content and make sure you actually watch their content to see if it aligns with your game and brand.
There are other tools as well that draw influencers and content creators to you, such as Woovit. Here you can post your game, and have it advertised to thousands of influencers who are looking for interesting games to play and stream.
Finding the right gaming influencers who are relevant to your brand is essential. You should look at additional metrics such as engagement not just followers, along with a manual revision of their relevance to you. When picking candidates for this role, study what ideas they contribute on social media; it might turn out that people with fewer followers have gathered a core audience in their circle that's more relatable than those accounts with high follower numbers but less engagement or relevancy.
What is the difference between traditional and influencer marketing?
Traditional advertising can be expensive, complicated and hard to track, influencer marketing when done correctly can be less than half the cost of traditional advertising for the same reach. In addition, influencers are generally more authentic and genuine than standard advertisers. They have a following who wants to know their opinions about video games before they make investment decisions; influencers also provide social proof which in turn reduces risk for companies. They are also promoted more easily on blogs and social media or at gaming conventions because they already have a built-in network within their niche or industry which means you will be able to reach them much easier!
How do you contact influencers?
The influencer marketing space is evolving so rapidly that it's been difficult to keep up with influencers. It's a good idea to create a spreadsheet of influencers you would like to work with and potential reasons for contact. Then, conduct research on each influencer by viewing their content and website before reaching out. Contact influencers by following standard etiquette rules you would in reaching out to anyone for the first time, be respectful and clear about why you are contacting them. You might decide that an email, twitter, or Discord invitation are appropriate routes depending on your message and desired response time outcome. Many contact creators have business email addresses listed on their profiles which are specifically for enquiries like yours. If they do have an email listed as for "business enquiries" this should always be your first choice. However, don’t be surprised if you don’t get a response straight away or at all. Influencers like journalists get a lot of emails and don’t always check them every day. In addition, larger influencers may have managers or agencies that represent them that you will have to deal with first.
What are the pros and cons of working with influencers?
The pros of influencer marketing are that influencers tend to have higher engagement rates than other media, influencers aggregate audiences and bring them closer to your brand, being able to watch influencers before reaching out means you can more easily determine who is a good fit for your game's audience - the cons are that not all influencer outreach will result in an agreement. Like any outreach you might have to contact hundreds of influencers to get just a few bits of coverage. In addition, there is no guarantee that their video will have any impact on your sales. In fact, we suggest you stay away from working with very large influencers if you have a niche game as their content tends to be more focused on general entertainment. However, influencers with a smaller yet high-engaged following can work well if they align with your game and players. Finally, some influencers can charge very high fees to work with them and costs of over $10k per video are not uncommon for someone with over a million followers.
Summing up using influencer marketing to promote your game
If you're looking for influencers to market your video game, make sure that they are relevant to your type of game and audience. You should also study their content before reaching out so that you can be clear about why you want them as an influencer - this will help ensure a better response rate in addition to making it easier for influencers with small but engaged audiences to agree. Influencer marketing is less expensive than traditional advertising which means it's definitely worth considering for all games no matter the budget as many content creators will cover games for free if they find it interesting.
If you still need more help with your video game influencer strategy, why not contact us and we can give you a free consultation.