More Cause Marketing Mashedup With Games in 2012

One trend I expect to see more of in 2012 is the mashup of cause marketing and video/computer games.

Certainly the market is huge.

The Entertainment Software Association reports that 72 percent of American households play computer/video games. And it’s not just teens and preteens. The average game player is age 37. And while video/computer game players are more likely to be male than female, across the board 42 percent of players are female (which is about the same gender mix as the NFL's audience).

That it’s a 60:40 male to female strikes me as a positive for some businesses and causes. Men can be a hard audience to reach, especially if you can’t afford the premiums that come with sponsoring professional sports or buying sports television airtime.
  • Cause marketing has already been successfully undertaken by Zynga, makers of Farmville and Mafia Wars on behalf of the victims of the Haiti Earthquake of 2010. In 2011, they did another relief effort on behalf the victims of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami.
  • Last year at this time Diet Coke produced a ‘Capture the Flag’ game that generated funds for the American Heart Association’s Heart Truth effort.
  • GamesThatGive.net allows you to play common video games like Solitaire, Sudoku, and Blackjack for free, while making a sliver of a donation to one of a number of nonprofit charities.
  • General Mills fruit snacks brands had a game that allowed you to donate a free XO laptop computer to school children in Africa based on performance in a game associated with the promotion.
Those examples notwithstanding, there’s a lot of room for growth and innovation here folks.

Contact me if you need some help figuring out how to make video/computer games and causes work well together.
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