Nine insights into loyalty for mobile gamers


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What’s on the frontier for Mobile in 2013? The merging of mobile gaming and loyalty.

In a new report by Dark Matter Inc. and Wave Collapse titled, The Nine Insights into Loyalty for Mobile Gamers, developers, agencies and brands gain insights into the loyalty behavior of mobile gamers and more importantly, how that behavior can be monetized. The research examines the key behavioral differences between mobile gamers that ‘pay to play’ (Paid Mobile Gamers) and mobile gamers that only play free games (Free Mobile Gamers). Highlights include cross-platform gaming patterns, differences in purchasing behavior, and the effects of loyalty across additional, non-mobile sectors.

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Nine insights into loyalty for mobile gamers

  1. 1. The Nine Insights into Loyalty for Mobile Gamers A Joint Research Project November 26, 2012Friday, November 16, 12
  2. 2. OBJECTIVE Mobile gaming is the single most popular category in mobile applications. With over 250 developers, 37m gamers in the U.S.1 and 129,538 mobile games in the iTunes app store alone2, the overall market size is simply massive. In fact, Juniper Research recently projected that the global mobile games market will be worth $18.3 billion by 2016. Given the ultra-competitive nature of this market, developers, brands and agencies must invest in gamer loyalty programs in order to stay ahead of their competitors and drive revenue. 1. Source: Newzoo Research and Analytics Mobile Gamer Study 2012 2. Source: Reported Directly from Apple iTunes as of September 2012Friday, November 16, 12
  3. 3. METHODOLOGY ‣ Online survey with 1,515 respondents conducted between October 9-11, 2012 ‣ All respondents were between 18-74 years of age and smartphone owners (iPhone, Android, Windows, or Blackberry devices) ‣ 75% of respondents played games on their mobile phone (1,137). Of these, they were classified into two groups based on how much they typically pay for mobile games Group 1: Free mobile gamers (typically only play free mobile games) – 766 respondents Group 2: Paid mobile gamers (typically pay something for mobile games) – 371 respondentsFriday, November 16, 12
  4. 4. INSIGHT 1: GAMERS’ EXPERIENCE GOES FAR BEYOND THE GAME ITSELF. EXPLANATION: Q: WHICH OF THESE THINGS HAVE YOU DONE? Paid mobile gamers, especially, are 60% engaged with game-related content 51% 48% outside of the game environment, 42% 41% 45% which implies a deeper connection to 30% 30% the gaming experience. 30% 27% 30% 24% 14% 15% ACTION: Make sure that your loyalty strategy Played a game the day it was released Purchased an expansion pack Read a wiki/ 0% compensates for all aspects (or additional content) for a game community board about a game Im playing Downloaded an app to help me with a game Im Posted to a wiki/ community surrounding a mobile game. playing board about a game Im playing Free mobile gamers Paid mobile gamersFriday, November 16, 12
  5. 5. INSIGHT 2: MOBILE GAMERS MAKE GAMING A PART OF THEIR LIVES Q: HOW WELL DOES THIS DESCRIBE YOU? EXPLANATION: (TOP2 BOX AGREEMENT) Paid mobile gamers place value on 58% 56% 54% 60% the experiences the game provides. 45% 44% Opens the door for more 40% 42% 45% opportunities for developers. 30% 30% 15% ACTION: Encourage discovery, sharing, and I am always searching for new games to I can discuss games I play in I have my 0% deeper relationship within game titles. play detail with favorite game people developers My friends and I play the same games Free mobile gamers Paid mobile gamersFriday, November 16, 12
  6. 6. INSIGHT 3: PAYING FOR GAMES (OR NOT) IS CONSISTENT ACROSS PLATFORMS Q: HOW MUCH DO YOU TYPICALLY PAY FOR EXPLANATION: GAMES ON EACH PLATFORM? 100% Paid mobile gamers are more likely to 94% 86% 82% pay for games across platforms, while free mobile gamers are more likely to 75% only play free games across platforms. 56% 47% 50% 38% 25% 10% ACTION: 7% Most popular price range for both 0% Social Network Tablet $0 On the computer $0 mobile and tablet gamers is $1-5 $0 Console $0 Free mobile gamers Paid mobile gamersFriday, November 16, 12
  7. 7. INSIGHT 4: PRICE OF GAME DIRECTLY IMPACTS INTEREST IN LOYALTY PROGRAMS. EXPLANATION: Q: HOW INTERESTED ARE YOU IN A FREQUENT PLAYER PROGRAM? As the price of the game increases, 52% 60% the interest in a loyalty program decreases, suggesting that a loyalty 41% 45% 36% program alone isn’t enough to justify a higher priced game. 25% 27% 30% 17% 18% 13% 15% ACTION: When developing a loyalty program Interest in loyalty for Mobile Game that costs $1.99 Interest in loyalty for Mobile Game Interest in loyalty 0% for gamers, consider segmenting by that costs $4.99 for Mobile Game Interest in loyalty that costs $6.99 for Mobile Game that costs game price. $14.99 Free mobile gamers Paid mobile gamersFriday, November 16, 12
  8. 8. INSIGHT 5: SIMPLY BECAUSE A GAMER ISN’T PLAYING DOESN’T MEAN THEY AREN’T LOYAL. Q: HOW LIKELY Q: WHICH OF THESE DO YOU ARE YOU TO PLAY CONSIDER YOURSELF TO BE A EXPLANATION: A GAME THAT IS... LOYAL CUSTOMER? 66% 70% 72% 80% Paid mobile gamers are loyal to the 54% 68% game itself and the game experience. 51% 53% 60% 43% 35% 36% 40% 30% 19% 19% ACTION: 18% 20% 10% 6% Developers must focus on storyline, 0% 0% content and rewards to keep From a developer/ Part of an active community of Game developer Game genre Wiki/community boards Store/ purchase engagement high. company I like players games from IMPLIED LOYALTY STATED LOYALTY Free mobile gamers Paid mobile gamersFriday, November 16, 12
  9. 9. INSIGHT 6: NOT ALL GAME GENRES ARE SUITABLE FOR LOYALTY PROGRAMS Q: WHICH TYPE OF GAME WOULD YOU BE EXPLANATION: MOST INTERESTED IN BEING A PART OF A FREQUENT PLAYER PROGRAM? Interest in having a specific game 60% genre be a part of a loyalty program 51% 47% 46% 45% is highest for the most popular game 41% 43% 41% 39% 45% genres for each group. 34% 33% 36% 31% 28% 27% 24% 26%30% 24% 22% 15% ACTION: Paid Gamers most interested in loyalty 0% program for Action Genre, Free Gamers Action Adventure Strategy Puzzle RPG Arcade FPS Simulation Mystery most interested in Puzzle Genre. Free mobile gamers Paid mobile gamersFriday, November 16, 12
  10. 10. INSIGHT 7: LOYALTY PROGRAMS CAN ENCOURAGE PLAY DURING SLOW TIMES Q: WHICH OF THESE WOULD YOU CONSIDER EXPLANATION: DOING IN ORDER TO EARN POINTS? 60% Most common time to play games 52% (across all devices) is during 45% weekday evenings. Slowest time is 36% on weekends. 25% 27% 30% 17% 18% 14% 13% 15% ACTION: Offer incentives for completing levels or Gamers that would consider completing certain levels of the Gamers that would consider completing 0% gaining achievements during specific game to earn points Gamers that would certain achievements consider spending Gamers that would consider of the game to earn certain dollar amount posting/contributing to a points slow time periods. on games to earn community to earn points points Free mobile gamers Paid mobile gamersFriday, November 16, 12
  11. 11. INSIGHT 8: FREE GAMERS LESS LOYAL IN ALL CATEGORIES BEYOND MOBILE GAMING EXPLANATION: Q: HOW LOYAL ARE YOU TO THIS COMPANY THAT IS PART OF THIS FREQUENT PURCHASER PROGRAM? Although Free and Paid gamers (TOP2 BOX AGREEMENT) belong to about the same number of 77% 75% 82%90% 76% loyalty programs on average, Free 73% 74% 70% 69% 69% mobile gamers are less loyal to 62% 59% 62% 57% 56% 63% 57% 68% companies than Paid mobile gamers. 45% 23% ACTION: Focus loyalty program primarily on Airline Hotel Restaurant 0% Paid mobile gamers. Gas station Credit card Retailer Game Related Store Bank Free mobile gamers Paid mobile gamersFriday, November 16, 12
  12. 12. INSIGHT 9: COMMON WANTS FOR MOBILE GAME LOYALTY PROGRAM EXPLANATION: FREE MOBILE GAMERS PAID MOBILE GAMERS Rank Order of Wants for Mobile Rank Order of Wants for Mobile Game Loyalty Program Game Loyalty Program For both Free and Paid Mobile gamers, earning points to redeem for products is the most 1. Earning points to redeem 1. Earning points to redeem important ‘want’ for a loyalty program. for products for products 2. Free real world items 2. Free in-game items However, Paid mobile gamers rank receiving Free in-game items as more important than Free mobile 3. Free in-game items 3. Free real world items gamers; Free mobile gamers find free real world 4. Rewards based on levels 4. Rewards based on levels items more valuable. Points to the value that Paid passed passed mobile gamers place on the gaming experience. 5. Receive discounts on 5. Receive discounts on products products Both groups are less excited about programs that 6. Rewards based on 6. Rewards based on base rewards on their ability to earn achievements achievements earned achievements earned in the game.Friday, November 16, 12
  13. 13. KEY TAKEAWAY 1: KEY TAKEAWAY 4: Dedicated loyalty mobile gaming Loyalty programs not only encourage programs have distinct business playing new games, but increasing value, but targeting the right mobile gameplay of games that have already gamers is key. been downloaded. KEY TAKEAWAY 2: KEY TAKEAWAY 5: If you can’t monetize a gamer on one Important to remember that the platform, you likely won’t be able to game experience goes far beyond on any platform. the game itself, marketing is crucial. KEY TAKEAWAY 6: KEY TAKEAWAY 3: Mobile gamers most loyal to game Don’t try to monetize gamers all at titles, which makes investing in the once. Important to think about game itself critical. customer lifetime value. Focus on moving gamers up the pricing ladder.Friday, November 16, 12
  14. 14. Thank You.Friday, November 16, 12