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Dubit & Disney from the MRS Children 2010 Conference

Dubit & Disney from the MRS Children 2010 Conference



Dubit and Disney presented 'Trends in Online Entertainment for Kids - The Rise and Rise of Online Gaming' at the Market Research Society 'Children : Seen 7 heard' conference on 27th January 2010.

Dubit and Disney presented 'Trends in Online Entertainment for Kids - The Rise and Rise of Online Gaming' at the Market Research Society 'Children : Seen 7 heard' conference on 27th January 2010.



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  • INITIAL NOTE: The accompanying notes are based on the presentation delivered at the Market Research Society’s annual Children: Seen and heard 2010 conference, organised by Research conferences. Good morning to everyone, it’s nice to be here Today we’ll be talking about games, more precisely about online games This last decade was marked by an incredible rise in the importance of games compared to other forms of entertainment. They are now officially the fastest growing form of entertainment. Who hasn’t heard of Call of Duty, GTA or Word of Warcraft? Millions of people play games all around the world – games have never been so fun and entertaining But games are not just fun – their uses have expanded greatly: from brand engagement to education, games are even used in therapy – we will discuss opportunities and barriers and present you with our insight and recommendations. But before we tell you more about games let’s quickly introduce the organisations we work for…
  • Dubit is a full agency with an unique blend of Research, Marketing and Interactive teams, all under the same roof We’re one of the top European agencies specialising in youth and children and our vast array of work includes projects on areas such as media tracking, games research, public policy research, word of mouth campaigns and the design and production of virtual worlds and games. Dubit Research Team and Interactive Team have been working together in the development of research and insights about games, virtual worlds and how to engage with children and youth online. We have an extensive knowledge of the games market, business models and opportunities, as well a deep insight onto gamers, achieved through the regular tracking of gaming trends and gamer behaviours and preferences; through the testing of new games at design and beta stages; and through designing marketing strategies for successful launches of new gaming titles.
  • Method Just a quick note on methodology: the main source of data used in this presentation is taken from research undertaken by Dubit, in partnership with Disney, between December 2009 and January 2010. This included: A pan-European survey of kids’ online gaming in 8 EU countries A more detailed survey of UK children and focus groups with kids and parents in 3 European countries And focus groups with children and parents from the UK, France and Spain The samples used were drawn from online panels, thus they are of kids with access to the Internet What we’ll be presenting today is the result not just of the findings from these recent surveys, but more importantly of the insights generated by over 10 years of experience as a business researching and creating social games and virtual worlds, networking with major players in the industry and closely following major developments in the gaming world.
  • About Disney online
  • Let’s look at what we will be covering in this presentation
  • First we will see how kids are spending their time with the main forms of broadcast media. We will then take a closer look at TV watching and at what their doing Online . Media Convergence will be a recurring theme, and we will explore its special importance in linking TV and the Internet We will then drill down and explore what kids are doing online, by looking at Communication and Networking and Online Gaming – the main focus of this presentation – where we will be looking at Trends, Formats and the Monetisation of games. The presentation will include the identification of opportunities , barriers and recommendations .
  • Let’s start with an overview of broadcast media
  • The data is taken from OFCOM’s MEDIA LITERACY TRACKER 2009 The chart shows that: kids spend most of their time watching TV the overall consumption of media increases as they get older the time spent on the Internet rises exponentially for the older age group Kids as young as 5-7 - who often can hardly read - are using the Internet The qualitative stages of research have shown that children are being introduced to the Internet at an early age, typically 3-4 years of age, through parents, and using TV Channels’ websites such as Cbeebies (the main gateway) and Disney – these are child-friendly websites provided by brands that are trusted by parents. Media Convergence and Methodology Implications Please note that there is some overlap between different media platforms – for example, listening to the radio online counted towards the total hours listening to radio, but also towards Internet use; gaming could also be on games consoles or online, using the Internet; and so on… This overlap of these platforms is a striking illustration of how different media are converging: the same content can be accessed through a growing number of different platforms and gadgets and for kids content seems to be more important than platform . For instance, when you ask a kid ‘did you watch TV today?’ they might say yes when they were never near a TV set - they might have used one of the many on-demand TV services available on the Internet. Importantly, kids can now watch their favourite characters on TV, on mobiles, on children TV’s website – for them the most important is that they’re watching the characters they love. From a research methodological perspective this convergence is very important since the intermingling of formats and platforms make our job a lot harder! Add to this Multi-tasking – when kids are both watching TV, listening to music and playing games - and you have a true challenge for research! Surveys that track the consumption of new media simply through questions are becoming increasingly complex, especially for children, and rely on memory or the ability of children and parents to rationalise and split what they do into neat separate boxes. At Dubit we believe that the best way to tackle these issues is trough the use of an in-depth mix of quantitative / qualitative methods, using media diaries and in-house ethnography, something we’re currently developing.
  • Let’s now look at children’s TV channels
  • We can see how gender and especially age are significant factors Disney – favoured by girls; Cartoon Network – favoured by boys; this is linked to the strong presence of specific characters that appeal more to specific genders, e.g. Hannah Montana and the Disney Princesses for Disney. The 13-14 group differs radically from the rest with E4 jumping to the top of the table (52% say it’s one of their favourite 3 channels) – this ‘transitional’ age group, nearer to the teenage stage, reveal media consumption choices in tune with their developmental stage and a growing interest in socialising, real characters and the search for less ‘childish’ content.
  • Let’s now look in more detail at media convergence between TV and the Internet – stats from our recent studies are used to illustrate this
  • Let’s now look at the new ways in which kids are watching TV – or rather watching ‘moving images’: whether ‘normal’ TV or a video on their favourite TV channel website. The Internet is used to watch TV shows on demand by more kids than digital/satellite on-demand TV (55% vs. 38%) Younger kids respond more promptly to on-air calls to action to go online - 44% of 7-8s – our studies reveal that they typically go onto websites of the TV channels they love to watch, often to follow their favourite characters. TV channels have been expanding their online content: kids can watch series online; do activities; play games with their favourite characters. Characters seem to be the most important element – previous research done by Dubit for Showcomotion 2008 has shown that characters and shows have more resonance than specific channels Kids love to keep in touch with their characters, and the Internet allows them to have a more active role – they can impersonate their characters in games, they can edit episodes and upload fan drawings – they are no longer just consumers but can also become content creators and active players In our focus groups we found out that kids are starting to use the Internet when they’re 3-4, helped by their parents, very often using Cbeebies Children’s TV/entertainment websites are usually the first point of introduction of kids to the Internet – media convergence in action again NOTES Why Cbeebies? BBC reputation Free No adverts Child-friendly interface Fun + Educational
  • Let’s now look at what kids are doing online…
  • The main points to take from the chart are: Gaming is the main activity for all but the older group. Overall 83% of 7-14 year-olds play games online - 30% play games everyday; 70% play at least a few days a week Younger kids are also watching videos, mostly on the TV websites they like, with their favourite characters (as we’ve seen the ‘glue’ between TV and online media convergence) Socialising becomes more intense as kids grow older and gain independence and a sense of identity; social tools in the web become more important as they get older – there is a great rise in the use of Chat and SNSs. However, as we will see, fun and socialising are increasingly being mixed... Depending on their age, kids don’t use Social Networking Sites simply to ‘socialise’.
  • Let’s now take a look at Online Communication and Networking We use figures from our studies, complemented by qualitative research
  • One-third of ids as young as 9-10 are using SNSs; one-third have a MSN account and one-fifth claim to have a Facebook account. Through the qualitative research we have found that many kids are using their parents’ or older siblings’ accounts, whilst in fewer cases they do have their own profile and simply lie about their age when signing up; for many there were doubts about the age limit. The fact that many kids are registering – in spite of the age limits – raises interesting questions about regulation and the provision of alternative online ‘spaces’ where they can socialise. In the qualitative stages we’ve asked them what they’re using SNSs for – especially for the younger ones the main reason to use them seemed to be ‘to play games’; lots of kids knew Farmville and other titles, and were often playing on mum’s farms or with siblings. They also used SNSs to keep in touch especially with family and close friends, by looking at photos and chatting. The figures for the use of IM and SNSs for the older age group 13-14 speak for themselves – their use is massive: for example, 86% have a Facebook account. They use SNSs to keep in touch with friends and also, as we will see, to play games. As for IM, some of the older kids have large numbers of ‘friends’ online, which some seem to ‘collect’, but they typically communicate with those people they know from real life.
  • Let’s now drill down into our main focus – Online Games – starting with main trends and preferences… The data used here is taken from Dubit’s Euro Games Tracker (7-10s, January 2010) and a more detailed study of UK kids’ media consumption (7-14s, December 2009) The focus here is on the UK.
  • This chart provides an overview of the main online games played by young people aged 7-10 in the UK. It shows that kids play a variety of titles but also that there is a strong concentration in the top titles – Club Penguin for example is played by 44% of kids who play any games – note that percentages shown are for ‘online gamers’.
  • We’ve asked two main questions here: a) which websites do you use to play games? And b) which of these individual titles / games do you play. Starting with the younger kids… Let’s have a look at the websites they’re using to play games… Surprise, surprise! TV channels websites – mostly for what is often termed casual gaming – again media covnergence As for individual titles, Club Penguin clearly dominates the tables, with Moshi Monsters, another virtual world, following behind; then two ‘pink’ titles: Barbie Girls and Stardoll. The most successful title, Club Penguin, provides an offer for both genders. Younger kids are mostly playing single player games on TV channels’ websites, but as they grow an appetite for communicating and socialising with others they go onto the more ‘social’ experiences – typically their first online networking experiences happen through games, and increasingly through playing on virtual worlds. Let’s now look at figures for the older age group…
  • SNSs games and casual flash games websites clearly dominate the preferences of the two age groups Club Penguin and Facebook’s Farmville and Café World are the most popular individual titles. Flash games websites are especially popular with boys and girls tend to use SNSs to play games slightly more than boys CBBC continues to be a reference for 11-12s and Club Penguin hangs on in the top three even for 13-14 year-olds … Something we have not mentioned yet is the ways in which kids get to know about new games… Friends are by far the most important reference across all age; TV shows are an important source for the youngest; Older kids use gaming websites and search online
  • Let’s now have a look at w hat we can learn from kids’ gaming preferences…
  • The most popular games and gaming websites we’ve seen above – and for the purpose of analysis - fall into 3 main categories: Casual games – essentially fast, single-player often Flash games – accessed through gaming websites, like Cbbc for younger kids, and Miniclip for older As for the most popular individual gaming titles, these fall into: Virtual Worlds – like Club Penguin ‘ Socially Networked’ games – like those played through SNSs or through ‘online communities’ such as Stardoll. The common points between Virtual Worlds and SN Games are: Profiles Avatars Homes Pets Chat Minigames Again we see a strong convergence – illustrated by the diagram – this time of formats, between social networks and online games. SNSs and application developers are investing heavily on the games offer on SNSs; whilst on the other hand games are becoming increasingly ‘social’, by offering communication and socialising tools. And even ‘casual’ games, and games that are essentially single player in nature, are becoming increasingly social. Miniclip, for example, are investing in the social capital that games have to offer – they’ve introduced player ‘profiles’, through which you can create your own profile, challenge other players, compare top scores, enter competitions and gain recognition through digital ‘medals’; there is also a Players’ Forum. Another example of this is Blizzard’s re-launch of what has been labelled Battlenet 2.0, a gamer off-game portal where you will also be able to build a profile, network, create groups, challenge others, and so on… Let’s now look at kids’ preferences, but from another perspective…
  • The diagram shows kids’ preferences in terms of game design and game features. They were asked what they thought was most important to make a good game. The chart shows that the social side of games is definitely important – especially for older kids – but also that features such as having good characters and good game mechanics (levels, challenges, missions and quests, etc.) are absolutely essential in creating a successful game. Let’s now see how Disney’s online gaming offer fits within this universe of games
  • See slides
  • See slides
  • See slides
  • Let’s now look at commercial opportunities and now games are being monetised.
  • The main three business in use by the games industry are: Micro-transactions (selling of virtual goods) Membership (or subscription) Advertising (in-website, in-game) Which of these is the best option? That’s a question which requires an analysis of your own brand, your target population and the games or websites that you intend to monetise, and obviously knowing what your audience’s behaviour. Let’s look at what kids are doing – do they pay? Would they like to pay for membership / virtual goods? – see figures above. Parents of kids 7-12 typically have the final say but there is a huge jump towards having more autonomy for 13-14 year-olds, allied to higher allowances / pocket money.
  • We have also asked those who do not pay for any games / goods whether they would like to… Data is taken from Dubit’s Euro Game sTracker As we can see in the chart (green means YES), there are significant slices of kids who would like to pay for online games - in the UK alone, 25.9% represent over 600k kids! We also asked kids why they were not paying for games….
  • Results vary across countries, but the common theme is that parents are the main ‘barrier’ to paying for online games. We carried out qualitative research to understand what parents think about this….
  • This slide shows a screen shot of an online group with parents, taking place in Dubit’s Clickroom, a virtual focus groups and viewing facility. Note: a short 3 minute video-clip of this focus group, focusing on parental reactions to paying for online games, is available on request The main findings from the qualitative research are discussed in the next slide
  • Perceptions Value for money of paid online games vs. tangible goods Most parents are still apprehensive about paying for onine content – either for them or their kids. Parents find it easier to justify spending £10 on a DVD that their kids watch 10-15 times than spending £5 on an online game that they can play every day of the month. The justification for ‘not paying’ is often ‘irrational’ when it comes to discussion of value for money, and after reflection some parents to admit that online games may indeed offer good value for money when compared to other forms of entertainment, e.g. cinema or DVDs. Easiness of payment methods - fears of using credit card Membership cards as a good alternative Lack of knowledge about differences between paid / unpaid Especially in terms of safety measures, for example by not knowing that some virtual worlds offer high-level safety features, e.g. 24/7 moderation Generational gaps – ‘virtual’ vs. ‘real’ Parents who are also gamers find it easier to relate to their kids’ requests to pay for online games; for many others, the ‘virtual’ is not really ‘real’, so it is a waste of money Free games available If there are free games, why pay?
  • For a more detailed list and tailored recommendations get in touch with us – we offer a full games research and consultancy service
  • Note: a short form report based on this presentation will be soon available on request; Dubit will also be releasing data from its recent Euro Games Tracker in 8 EU countries

Dubit & Disney from the MRS Children 2010 Conference Dubit & Disney from the MRS Children 2010 Conference Presentation Transcript

  • Trends in onlineentertainment for kidsThe Rise and Rise of Online Gaming
  • 40 LEEDSLONDON … yuh o n c it o t c n et y iv inig ts a g, cete m d s h, t t y ra , e ia re iv
  • MARKETINGRESEARCH INTERACTIVE yuh o n c it o t c n et y iv inig ts a g, cete m d s h, t t y ra , e ia re iv
  • QNQL rsac eerh flev e g n y tn wh eh o g u sr a e c in u e it t n l y l ic c o
  • Overview – Disney Online EMEA The definitive marketing portal for Disney’s products and services • Entertainment destinations x 23 across the Region • Web-only content focusing on video, games and activities • Premium services include Club Penguin, Toontown and, coming soon, Pixie Hollow and Cars • Offices in UK, France, Italy, Spain and Budapest
  • The wider context… and focus
  • Children’s Broadcast Media Consumption Online TV Media Convergence Communication & Networking Trends Online Gaming Formats MonetisationCasual GamingSN GamingVirtual Worlds
  • Children’s Broadcast Media Consumption Online TV Media Convergence Communication & Networking Trends Online Gaming Formats MonetisationCasual GamingSN GamingVirtual Worlds
  • Time spent per week 5-7 8-11 12-15 20 18 17 16 16 14 14 14hours / week 12 10 10 8 7 7 7 6 6 6 5 4 4 2 0 TV Radio Internet Games
  • Children’s Broadcast Media Consumption Online TV Media Convergence Communication & Networking Trends Online Gaming Formats MonetisationCasual GamingSN GamingVirtual Worlds
  • Children’s TV: Favourite Channels 44% 7-8 9-10 11-12 13-14 41% 40% 53% 30% 24% 36%
  • Children’s Broadcast Media Consumption Online TV Media Convergence Communication & Networking Trends Online Gaming Formats MonetisationCasual GamingSN GamingVirtual Worlds
  • Multi-platform62% of 7-14s watch videos on the InternetUse the Internet to watch TV shows on demand 55%38% watch TV using digital/satellite on-demand TVHave been to websites after on-air call for action 40%60% play games with favourite TV characters
  • Children’s Broadcast Media Consumption Online TV Media Convergence Communication & Networking Trends Online Gaming Formats MonetisationCasual GamingSN GamingVirtual Worlds
  • Online Trends100%80%60%40%20% 0% 7-8 9-10 11-12 13-14 Games Videos Watch TV Chat SNSs
  • Children’s Broadcast Media Consumption Online TV Media Convergence Communication & Networking Trends Online Gaming Formats MonetisationCasual GamingSN GamingVirtual Worlds
  • Chatting & Social Networking chatting online 28% MSN account 31%9-10s using SNSs 33% Facebook account 21% chatting online 81% MSN account 70%13-14s using SNSs 87% Facebook account 86%
  • Children’s Broadcast Media Consumption Online TV Media Convergence Communication & Networking Trends Online Gaming Formats MonetisationCasual GamingSN GamingVirtual Worlds
  • Online Games – UK Kids Dubit Euro Games Tracker, 7-10s (January 2010)
  • Younger Kids 7-10 Gaming Around 9 in 10 play games on the Internet; of these… 7-8s 56% 50% 32% 38% 15% 12%9-10s 46% 33% 32% 49% 21% 19%Note: % of all gamers
  • Older Kids 11-14 GamingAround 8 in 10 play games on the Internet11-12s 38% 48% 41% 42% 33% 22%13-14s 60% 56% 40% 46% 25% 21%Note: % of all gamers
  • Children’s Broadcast Media Consumption Online TV Media Convergence Communication & Networking Trends Online Gaming Formats MonetisationCasual GamingSN GamingVirtual Worlds
  • Gaming Trends: Types of GamesCasual • ProfilesVirtual Worlds • Avatars • Homes • Pets • ChatSN Games • Minigames Social Networks with Social Online games with gaming dimension Gaming networking features
  • By os 5% 8 3% 17r ys 1y 4rs 4% 6 2% 4Lvl& det e ee avn r s us Gl irsCacr hr t s aeP y gint t r l aa soh s a eC awh t r le ht it oh p yr e a s
  • Disney’s Casual Games • Up to 250 games in the catalogue • Up to 50 new games a year • Top games at 35,000 gameplays per month • 11 million page views a month across EMEA • Top games: Cars, Up, Bolt, Mickey
  • Disney’s Virtual WorldsEntertainment unique to the medium of connected interactivity
  • Club Penguin Performance:Proposition: •Largest MMOG in western market by•A snow-covered virtual world where consumer spend in the Western marketkids can interact, play games and let place in 2008their imaginations soar in a safe, ad- •Top global MMOG by unique visitorsfree, online playground. (May 09)Target audience: •The leading MMOG in the UK, representing 19% market by spend in•6-14 (7-11); boys and girls 2008Languages: •Top UK kids web destination with 19%•English, Portuguese, French, of all kids traffic in Oct 09Spanish •News: Children’s “Best Website” BaftaPrice (monthly): 2009•$5.95, £3.95, €4.95
  • Children’s Broadcast Media Consumption Online TV Media Convergence Communication & Networking Trends Online Gaming Formats MonetisationCasual GamingSN GamingVirtual Worlds
  • Business Models Mic ro- What kids are doing Members hip (% of total)trans ac tions • 11% pay for subscriptions • 13% buy virtual goods Advertis ing 13-14s Increased autonomyOf those who pay: • 76% up to £5/month in membership • 88% up to £5/month in virtual goods • 11-12s biggest spenders in both
  • Would consider paying? Dubit’s Euro Games tracker (7-10s, January 2010)100%90%80%70%60%50%40%30%20% 25.9 27.0 24.810% 16.2 18.0 18.6 7.8 10.8 0% UK France Germany Holland Sweden Finland Norway Denmark
  • Why not paid for games? 7-10s European Study (January 2010)
  • ‘Parental reactions: paid content
  • ‘Commercial’ BarriersPerceptions• Value for money of paid online games vs. tangible goods• Easiness of payment methods - fears of using credit card• Lack of knowledge about differences between paid / unpaid• Different levels of kids’ allowances and autonomy• Generational gaps – ‘virtual’ vs. ‘real’• Free games availableSome touch points• More active than watching TV / DVDs• Some educational value – even if not ‘educational’• Web savvy and gaming parents easier to reach• Safe socialisation environment• Brand reputation
  • And to wrap up…• Research your audience: kids and parents• Make it social, customisable, allowing progression• Review suitable business models• Consider eventual changes in regulation• Include good safety mechanisms• Invest in viral / word of mouth marketing• Engage in continuous dialogue with kids and parents
  • Claudio FrancoResearch ManagerJulie AdairDirector, Online Product Operations