More than 10 million people play World of Warcraft (WoW) for nearly fifteen hours a week, but the game was previously an untapped focus for brands. While some brands have targeted the game’s audience, for the first time ever, a brand is entering into the World of Warcraft.
World of Warcraft, Activision Blizzard’s massive multiplayer online role playing game (MMORPG) borders on a worldwide phenomenon. With an expansion pack adding more content in November, WoW shows no signs of slowing down. While most games may occupy a gamer’s attention for 60 hours, WoW players measure their game time in days.
Considering the media consumption habits of these primarily 16-24 year old males, it would make sense for marketers to be involving themselves with the World of Warcraft. But there’s a major obstacle. The world is one of fantasy – of magic and dragons – not of real world brands. So while there has been a considerate amount of successful branding surrounding the game in “out of game advertising” such as Toyota’s viral video or South Park’s Emmy award winning “Make Love not Warcraft,” brands haven’t entered the game.
Until Bejeweled. Popcap just sponsored an integration of their highly successful casual game Bejeweled into the World of Warcraft environment. Particularly interesting is that this was done without participation by Activision Blizzard, the creators and maintainers of World of Warcraft. Perhaps an explanation is in order. Continue reading “World of Adcraft”