Game Marketing Agencies in the Russian Market
Even developers with their own marketing departments work with advertising agencies.
The services of an agency are most often required when developers are entering a new market or implementing spot advertising campaigns that require extra expertise, the production of advertising materials, or a narrower professional focus.
There are two main types of agency, full-service agencies and specialized agencies, which differ according to the number of functions they can perform. Specialized agencies can be divided into several subcategories depending on the game promotion tools they use. Below, Vadim Tylik, CEO of RMAA Games and a game marketing expert, discusses how each of these types of agency operates in the Russian market.
Full-service agencies provide a full range of advertising services and typically execute large orders on a turnkey basis. Developers of AAA games can afford to work with full-service agencies, although major developers often use their own internal advertising agencies for this purpose.
The services provided by these agencies include:
- strategic planning and development of a results-oriented marketing strategy-acquisition (of new gamers), retention (of old ones), and winback (of gamers who stop playing)
- producing adverts (creating video and radio commercials, banners and other advertising products)
- developing campaigns, elaborating them in detail, and implementing them
- analyzing the effectiveness of advertising in a given market.
For games with lower advertising budgets, the best option for promotion is to work with specialized agencies. Which agencies specifically depends on clients' business objectives.
However, large developers might use the services of specialized agencies too, for example when entering a new market, or when they require more focused services such as media placement of adverts or organization of collaborations with streamers.
Creative agencies develop a creative concept for an advertising campaign and present a distinctive vision for a product.
Creative advertising decisions can lead to more exposure if an advertising story goes viral. These agencies can help a game stand out from its competitors and their ordinary, unsolicited ads.
Media buying agencies
If a game requires billboards or digital OOH, radio, TV or online ads to be placed, and if the creative side of things is already in place, media buying agencies can be the best choice. «Media buyers can also provide the following services:
- development of strategies for advertising campaigns across various media
- selection of media for placement and media planning
- publication of promotional content
- determination of KPIs for advertising campaigns and analysis of their efficiency
- identification of the media target audience
- preparation of a report upon completion of the advertising campaign.
For game promotion, PR agencies can arrange traditional media collaborations and communication with game bloggers and streamers. They also handle reviews and forums for gamers and developers and organize participation in industry events.
Influencer marketing agencies
The principal task of these agencies is to ensure that streamers promote games effectively. They develop creative activations, select streamers and communicate with them, oversee the process of running ads, and measure their efficiency.
Influencer marketing agencies often own the exclusive rights to sell advertising spots with bloggers. The primary role of these agencies is to sell ad placements with streamers, whether these are gaming ads or ads for any other type of brand (FMCG, banks, appliances etc.).
It’s not just influencer marketing agencies who can organize collaboration with streamers: PR and full-service agencies can too. The key benefits of this are integration of advertising campaigns involving streamers into the general game promotion concept in the market and the ability to pick a specific game blogger to work with.
PR agencies aim to use a creative concept to make advertising campaigns as impactful as possible (maximizing ROI), unlike influencer marketing agencies, which simply ensure that the required number of adverts runs.
There are also agencies that offer marketing services to brands from specific industries only: tourism, pharma, and gaming.
The Russian market also has players that only work with the gaming segment. The advantage of these agencies is their expertise and experience working with game brands in the Russian market.
When selecting an agency for cooperation, we recommend going for companies that provide a full range of services, from marketing research to development and implementation of marketing strategies using various tools. The agency should also have in-house teams for every task, as RMAA Games does. RMAA Games specializes in the promotion of games created by foreign developers in the Russian market, providing media buying, digital marketing, game PR, and influencer marketing services. It also carries out research and analytics focused on the Russian game market.