For, YouTube Drives Success

Polina Haryacha is a Senior Brand Manager at Follow her on Twitter: @Pharyacha., an international video game publisher, announced Skyforge, Armored Warfare and World of Speed, its first AAA PC games in the US in 2014. During our pre-launch, we set out to drive brand awareness and beta subscriptions in niche gaming audiences through various channels. With 73 percent of gamers watching online videos, we decided to leverage the power of YouTube Influencers and started building long-term partnerships in this highly emerging space. In less than six months we achieved more than five million views on YouTube.

How did we do it Strategy. We established long-term relationships with each YouTube Influencer, allowing us to reach our core audience of online tank and MMORPG players. The Influencers published 150 videos on more than 30 video gaming channels, resulting in millions of views in five different languages. The conversion from views to beta signups reached a rate of 10 percent for some of our campaigns. Moreover, Influencer-generated videos appeared at the top of YouTube searches through branded keywords and generic terms. Influencer videos also outperformed our strongest competitors.

In this article, we will share some secrets we learned along the way.

Secure the Right Influencer
There are many factors to consider when choosing the right Influencer that go far beyond the number of subscribers and views. Does the channel cover your competition Does it publish relevant content on a regular basis How engaged is the channel’s audience on YouTube and other social networks How are the channel’s videos ranked in search How well are channel’s videos promoted in related/recommended videos

There is a lot to consider, but thankfully there are many paid and free tools that utilize YouTube APIs to provide key insights into channel performance. One of the free tools I especially like is a Chrome extension called VidIQ. VidIQ monitors the frequency of comments and shares, predicts video`s likelihood of promotion in Related Videos, Search, Recommended Videos, provides access to historical data on video performance and offers more insight into any YouTube video.


I previously covered other tools in greater details in my TechCrunch article entitled, “How to find the right YouTube influencer for your brand “

Think Small for Better Conversion
At first, it may appear that a popular channel with millions of subscribers would yield the best results; however, this is not always the case. Small and mid-sized Influencers often work with a highly targeted audience, resulting in higher conversion rates and quality traffic. Besides, smaller channels are highly motivated to get new content. They are willing to establish long-term partnerships and are much more flexible. For example, one of the videos published on a mid-size but hardcore channel resulted into 270,000 views, 52,000 leads, and 23,000 conversions within a couple of days. Another reason for expanding beyond big names is diversification: smaller channels often attract an audience that doesn’t follow the large established stars.

Aim for Partnerships, Not Views
At, we searched for Influencers who could become our long-term partners, leading to more views overtime rather than immediate gratification. There are several things that make a target channel a good long-term partner:

  • The channel has a highly relevant audience — in our case, the channels that cover our closest competitors
  • The channel has a sincere interest and excitement about your product
  • The channel has strong potential for growth — it doesn’t necessarily need to have a huge number of subscribers today, but it should demonstrate an ability to expand. (This is easy to evaluate by looking at historical data and trends.)
  • The majority of the channels we worked with showed significant increase in views and subscribers during the six months since we first made contact. Our content helped Influencers keep their audience engaged, as well as acquire new visitors. Their success is our success. Their surge in users also results in an organic surge in our users.

We learned that repeated experiences through multiple activations with the same Influencers not only allowed us to share news with active users and re-connect with lapsed ones, but also helped us reach new users as they join our partners’ channels.

Send An Email (Yes, It Works)
Each industry has its own expectations, and it’s worthwhile to learn about them. Mike Rose, who presented at GDC 2015, researched where YouTubers look to find information about new games. The top three places they look for information are the press, emails and social media.

“How YouTubers and Twitch Streamers Can Help Sell Your Games”, Mike Rose, GDC 2015

Mike also shared that although email is a popular way for YouTubers to learn about games, they surprisingly do not receive a lot of them. So don’t assume YouTubers’ email boxes are overwhelmed with proposals. Email is a great way for you to reach potential Influencers and get their attention.

Mike also researched what YouTubers look for in the first email from a developer/publisher. His findings are pretty straightforward, and can be used as a checklist for your pitch email.

“How YouTubers and Twitch Streamers Can Help Sell Your Games”, Mike Rose, GDC 2015

Promote Authenticity and Build Trust
I realize there is significant risk in approaching Influencers while a product is still in beta, as the Influencer could potentially highlight weaknesses in the product before it is finalized. We did provide some guidelines, asking Influencers to avoid featuring obvious bugs or uncompleted functionality during our first tests. That being said, we let Influencers voice their true opinions, even if they were not 100% positive. This approach allowed us to build trust with our growing community, and helped YouTubers remain true Influencers: independent opinion leaders for their audiences.

Stay Relevant
According to Google’s research, during the game pre-launch stage, fans mostly watch content released by the brand, such as announcements, gameplay demos, and launch videos. After launch, attention switches to more detailed information about the content and engaging with the game’s community. The most popular types of the post-release content are walkthroughs, how-to’s, game powered entertainment videos like Let’s Plays, parodies, analysis, and tutorials. We relied on these findings but went a step further, expanding content ideas. For example, we launched a “Top 10 Features” video with one of the channels, which kept the top search position for a long time.

Quick Tip: According to Tubular research, presented this year at VidCon, YouTube videos with “Top 10″ or “Top Ten” in their title get 531 percent more views/video.

Share the Love
YouTube channels need new viewers and subscribers just as your business needs new customers. Think of all the possible ways you can help your partners to achieve their goals, and by helping them you will help yourself. We started a weekly digest of user-generated content where we shared the latest videos across our owned social media channels. Uploading the best videos to your own YouTube channel is another win-win approach.

Integrate if Possible
Try to leverage the impact of Influencers across marketing and PR channels. We used multiple methods of integration, such as content re-distribution on owned social channels (community), publishing video on industry media outlets (PR), and inviting Influencers to company events. You can also use Influencers’ channels as a part of your media buys strategy. Or take it a step further and promote the most successful videos on YouTube using paid methods. All these strategies enhance relationships with Influencers and make partnerships mutually beneficial.

Keep Measuring
We gather a lot of data about each channel’s and video’s performance. This allows us to compare the success of particular Influencers, the type of content, timing, messaging, promotion approaches, etc. We track everything from video view to website visits and subscriptions. This helps us to make informed decisions about future campaigns and recruit the best talents for our brand. When researching brand penetration via an online panel, we asked our respondents about the first time they heard about our product. YouTube Influencers were among the top three options after friends and social networks. YouTube Influencers outperformed industry blogs and forums, as well as other traditional marketing/PR channels, demonstrating the power of YouTube Influencers and why they are key when launching a new game.

The Bottom Line
With 97.5 percent of all views for the top 20 game videos coming from fan-made videos, YouTube is now a primary online network for gamers. YouTube has the power to shape a game’s future and significantly impact the bottom line. To leverage this powerful network, focus on video and streaming Influencer strategies and adapt to this exciting new world where companies play a major role in facilitating consumer content creation.

Facebook Reacts To Reaching A New Landmark

Facebook has certainly produced big social numbers in the past, but now it s reached a pivotal point, with the announcement that it s hit a billion users in a single day.

Social Times reported on the story, which states that the site reached a billion connected users within the span of a single day. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and co-founder for the site, detailed his thoughts in this blog post:

We just passed an important milestone. For the first time ever, 1 billion people used Facebook in a single day.

On Monday, one in seven people on Earth used Facebook to connect with their friends and family.

When we talk about our financials, we use average numbers, but this is different. This was the first time we reached this milestone, and it s just the beginning of connecting the whole world.

I m so proud of our community for the progress we ve made. Our community stands for giving every person a voice, for promoting understanding and for including everyone in the opportunities of our modern world.

A more open and connected world is a better world. It brings stronger relationships with those you love, a stronger economy with more opportunities and a stronger society that reflects all of our values.

Thank you for being part of our community and for everything you ve done to help us reach this milestone. I’m looking forward to seeing what we accomplish together.

In addition, a post on the site repeated the life event. 1,000,000,000 People, Together: Today, for the first time, 1 billion of us connected and had the potential to connect and share ideas, thoughts and dreams. And no matter where we were, or what we did, we all did it together. This post on the site {link no longer active} also breaks down how vital the billion point really is.

Chief product officer Chris Cox also wrote {link no longer active} about reaching the milestone, thanking various employees and users in the process.

So, what does this mean for the site? Well, obviously, it indicates that social media is still as strong as ever, not only with advertisers and marketers, but also users. But it could also mark a turning point for it, indicating that an even larger audience could come on board in the months ahead, with the introduction of various new mobile devices (including the new iPhones being revealed next week) and other features that promise to make the social experience (and the advertising with it) more streamlined.

Congrats to Facebook now let s see where it goes from here, shall we

How ‘Disney Infinity’ Appeals To All Audiences

Disney Infinity 3.0 is now available in stores, and, as with previous games, it promises a hefty amount of gameplay options based on interactive toys as well as the popular Star Wars license. But its appeal is widespread, not only with older fans of the series and kids, but also male and female audiences.

GamesIndustry International recently spoke with Disney Interactive s video president of production John Vignocchi about the latest release in the series. He admitted that the developers behind the game (including Ninja Theory and Sumo Digital, working on particular sections of Infinity) underestimated the appeal of the game, figuring it would be around 70 percent male and 30 percent female.

It actually evened out. With Disney s IP treasure chest of powerful and strong female characters, we actually are seeing a split with Infinity that s more 50 percent boys and 50 percent girls, he explained.

With young Jedi Ahsoka Tano included in the game s Starter Pack, and other characters, like Princess Leia and a female lead from Star Wars: The Force Awakens, being introduced in the next few months, that female presence is stronger than ever.

Speaking with GuideLive, Vignocchi explained, “Infinity has become what’s known as the pivotal four-quadrant brand, which in the Walt Disney Company is something that speaks to males and females, old and young. We have as many non-parent adults and parents playing Disney Infinity as we do 6-12 year-olds and teens.”

And the appeal doesn t just lie with Infinity, either. Other games, like Skylanders SuperChargers and Lego Dimensions, could have such an appeal as well. In fact, Vignocchi even praised Dimensions, indicating that increased competition with these toy games would actually expand the market, rather than flooding it with unnecessary product.

The Star Wars franchise in itself has proven to be appealing to all sorts of groups, and marketing partners with the forthcoming The Force Awakens suggests that LucasArts is reaching out to more than one type of audience, with partners that not only include Subway and Verizon, but also make-up brands, like Covergirl and Max Factor.

Disney Infinity 3.0 is available now for various consoles.

Microsoft Announces Xbox One Elite Bundle

Microsoft is no stranger to producing successful results with its Xbox One system bundles, packaging them with a number of extras, including special editions with games such as Sunset Overdrive and Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. With its latest bundle, however, it doesn t just pack in a particular game it packs in a way to change how players could game.

Per its Xbox Wire page, the company has announced a new Xbox One Elite bundle, which features a number of tweaks that make it the most advance console it s sold to date. The system includes a 1TB hybrid SSD/hard drive, which optimizes system performance so you can get to the action up to 20 percent faster from energy-saving mode. In addition, it also comes with an Xbox One Elite controller, which was announced earlier this year at E3. With it, players can tweak their game performance with a number of customizable options, including interchangeable paddles, further customization with the Xbox Accessories app, Hair Trigger Locks and high-performance construction to provide an unparalleled experience every time you game.

This is one of the few instances where a company has sold a game bundle based more on hardware optimization than a special bundle, although Microsoft will still have those available as well, including specially designed systems based on forthcoming releases like Forza Motorsport 6 and Halo 5: Guardians, both due this holiday season.

In addition, if successful, this upgrade could very well be seen in all Xbox One consoles moving forward, since the additional hard drive space (compared to the usual 500GB that most systems come with) would be convenient for gameplay, and the promise of enhanced speed with loading could convince a few skeptics to give it a shot. The only question is the price, as the bundle will sell for $499 much higher than the usual $349-$399 the system has been selling for. Of course, the Elite controller by itself will be retailing for $149, so this bundle represents a pretty good deal.


How Scopely Hopes ‘The Walking Dead’ Scares Up New Revenues

Mobile game publisher Scopely is expanding beyond the success it-s had with casual mobile games since 2011, and into the core mobile gaming business. The company has partnered with Skybound Entertainment to launch The Walking Dead: Road to Survival on Google Play and the App Store. The free-to-play game is based on Robert Kirkman’s 10-year-old comic book franchise and offers an original storyline that runs in parallel and intersects with the events from the comics.

It’s a brand new take on The Walking Dead from a gameplay perspective, designed by Scopely to encourage gamers to work together to build a home base and progress through the storyline while building up their own character. Scopely has developed over six months worth of new content for the live game, which will introduce new characters, storylines, and other content to gamers.

Scopely has seen explosive growth of 19,556 percent from 2011 to 2014. In April 2015, Scopely formed a partnership with Hasbro, resulting in the successful launch of Yahtzee with Buddies for iPhone, Android and Apple Watch securing 1 million downloads in four days. This new partnership with Skybound targets both core gamers and the more mainstream fans of AMC’s The Walking Dead, which is based on Kirkman’s comics.

Walter Driver, CEO and co-founder of Scopely, explains how the company is going big with The Walking Dead: Road to Survival marketing and what impact core gaming will play moving forward in this exclusive interview.

What does The Walking Dead and this core gaming audience mean for the casual gaming audience you’ve established?

We will continue to invest in the casual mobile games category. This success has allowed us to scale our team from four co-founders to over 125 employees in our headquarters based in Los Angeles and now six game studios worldwide. We’ve focused on bringing in top game design, product management as well as business and operations talent across each of the genres we are focused on, including dozens of people who have worked directly on top-grossing games. The specialized, high-caliber talent we’ve been able to bring aboard has enabled us to diversify our portfolio with much higher probability of success.

The launch of these new titles will continue to fuel our rapid growth (we were just named ninth fastest growing company by Inc.5000 and have already seen revenue run-rate 3x since the beginning of 2015). Our upcoming product lineup will also enable us to reach new audiences and create more rich, immersive experiences that our players will hopefully love.

Scopely’s mission is to bring the very best in mobile entertainment to touchscreens and that vision has always included a mix of genres. You could think of it as building the HBO of touchscreen entertainment; our goal is to foster great talent and be the best partner to deliver quality experiences on mobile across different genres and audiences.

How important are Hollywood IPs when it comes to standing out in the crowded mobile free-to-play gaming space?

First and foremost, you always have to create a great game experience for your players. Second, you have to find ways to make sure that great experience is discovered by your players.


We’re seeing more TV advertising for Clash of Clans and Candy Crush and other big mobile franchises. What role does TV play for your company’s marketing?

The mobile games market is maturing and we are seeing new ways in which games are being supported by marketing. More to the point, mobile game marketing is becoming more sophisticated and challenging to do just right. And we are doing our part to raise the standard for world class launches with The Walking Dead: Road to Survival.

The maturation of the space requires new levels of sophistication which include moving beyond what the mobile industry has traditionally called “user acquisition.” Television advertising for mobile games is one manifestation of that maturation, but TV is just one tool in the toolbox to build an audience around a mobile game. It can be a force multiplier that drives tremendous word-of-mouth and brand awareness, but obviously it has to be done right. For a game like The Walking Dead: Road to Survival we invested in a dedicated TV campaign at launch because we like how TV allows us to reach millions of fans with an intense story and a unique creative approach that will really excite them and make them want to pick up their phone and search for Road to Survival on the App Store or Google Play. But you can’t just stop with TV media itself. Our creative was purposefully designed to drive viewing and social sharing on Youtube, Facebook, Instagram and more, to amplify the ROI and brand impact. TV is just one of over 200 distribution channels we’ll be marketing this game through.

Outside of television advertising, what differentiates the approach you’re taking with The Walking Dead game?

At Scopely, we believe in a bespoke approach. With each game we are very focused on first asking ourselves what makes this product special and how are those unique aspects of this game represented in our marketing and then fulfilled in the game itself. TV is part of the mix these days, but we are just as aggressive in designing plans that embrace digital, social platforms, viral content, influencers, CRM, and cross-promotion with partners.

We’ve really elevated our go-to-market strategy over the past 18 months, from our pre-launch campaign, to launch, to maintaining and supporting traditional as well and social and community channels throughout the game’s lifecycle. In a live game, the game itself and its live operations are also part of the marketing. Everything we do that touches the community has to be thoughtful — it has to delight and motivate our players. On any given day we run between four-six special events offering players unique stories, challenges, gameplay modes, and rewards to ensure players are just as excited coming back to the game after one day as they are after one year.

How are you incentivizing gamers to buy micro-transactions or invest in this free-to-play game?

Our main focus is to make a great game that people want to play. You can have a great experience playing our games for free and when our players spend in our games, it’s because they love the game and they care enough about the world we’ve created to want to spend money on their experience in it.

We’ve invested in every detail to make sure our players feel their time and/or money spent with us has real value. To get into the mindset of our core franchise fans, we immersed ourselves in the world of The Walking Dead, reading every issue of the graphic novel cover to cover, all of The Walking Dead Series novels (co-authored by Kirkman and Jay Bonansinga, who provided scripts for our game), even camping out at Comic-Con to interact with diehard fans firsthand and participate in the interactive Walking Dead Escape event. In the process of becoming super-fans we realized that while The Walking Dead may take place in the midst of a zombie apocalypse, what makes it special are the characters and the stories that unfold in their quest for survival. So we set out to make a mature, character-driven RPG unlike anything the market had seen before. We worked very hard to create content and features we as players would want. Players are able to buy new weapons and characters and participate in special events in order to augment their experience and deepen their gameplay.

How does The Walking Dead fit into your bigger picture for core gaming and succeeding in this crowded market?

Our approach is to build a portfolio of highly differentiated touchscreen entertainment experiences that become deeper and richer the more time players invest in them. We are doing everything possible to support The Walking Dead’s authenticity by delivering compelling content, listening to players, and making sure all of the decisions made around the game are to bring the best entertainment experience to them. There’s more coming from us in the core gaming category, and you can expect those properties to be equally compelling with world-class IP, immersive experiences and engaging gameplay.


PAX Prime 2015: Twitch Takes Center Stage

PAX Prime has become one of the hottest tickets for gamers, with the show typically selling out every year in very short order. The convention facilities are packed with all kinds of game companies from tabletop favorites to console, PC and mobile game publishers, all looking to get the incredibly dedicated fans attending PAX Prime to get excited about the latest games. Now you don’t have to be one of the lucky attendees to experience what’s going on at PAX Prime, because Twitch will bring it right to you wherever you are in the world.

The show is jammed with news releases from many game companies large and small, showing off new hardware (like Valve demoing Vive VR, and Razer showing its new Wildcat Tournament Grade Controller for Xbox One) and new games (like 3D Realms showing its new title Bombshell, and Warner Bros. Interactive demoing Mad Max) to news about existing games (like ArenaNet’s announcing the release date for its Guild Wars 2 expansion, Heart of Thorns October 23rd). Twitch has a stage on the show floor and a steady lineup of guests to bring you the best of PAX Prime on a convenient stream.

Twitch’s director of PR, Chase, spoke with [a]listdaily about the PAX Prime show and Twitch’s extensive coverage of it.

How much work goes into to creating the Twitch presence at PAX Prime How many months in advance do you start planning?

We begin our most aggressive work on PAX about four-six months in advance, although there are smaller pieces of the puzzle that start much sooner than that. There is a lot that goes into every show where we have a booth presence, such as coordinating the stage content, creating exclusive swag for our awesome community, vetting sponsors and ensuring the booth itself is optimized on the technical and branding front.

What size audience did you attract last year watching your streams from PAX Prime, and do you expect to beat those numbers this year?

Since every event we do has exceeded its predecessor in large increments, we expect this PAX to surpass last year’s viewership. It helps that as the exclusive broadcasting partner of PAX, we have content you can’t see anywhere else. It’s also worth noting that because the show sells out in what seems like minutes, we are able to provide a window to the event to all of the people who couldn’t purchase a ticket or make it from across the globe to be here. We love being able to offer that to our community since they are the reason we exist.

What are the most popular things that appear at your booth?

There is an audience for everything we do at PAX. We have blocks of time for our popular broadcasters to do meet-and-greets with their fans and that always draws huge lines, our Twitch Town Hall panel fills to capacity, and our stage show attracts a lot of viewers since it has all of the biggest brands doing segments, so there is not one element that rises above the rest. In terms of our broadcast, it’s hard to narrow down which event will draw the most viewers, but to simplify what to see, whether it is panels from several of the theaters, our stage show or our partners who are doing their own broadcasts from PAX, we’ve created a one-stop shop portal at

Obviously you’ve got a great deal of your streaming planned out in advance of the show, but how much at PAX Prime is likely to be spontaneous, a last-minute surprise, or something even you didn’t expect?

While we schedule all of our stage guests in advance and know what games they are going to showcase, we never know what direction the interviews are going to take, so that’s where surprises can occur. We also have occasional content that is unannounced, so that is a surprise more for our community than ourselves.

There’s certainly going to be plenty to see for game fans, but is there a time that you really suggest they make plans to tune in for?

Our Twitch Town Hall panel is always worth watching because we devote a big chunk of time to letting our community provide feedback about our platform. It’s from listening to our community that we’ve been able to continue to grow and connect with them. Another fan favorite is our PJSaltan of Stream II. This was such a big hit the first time, we’re bringing it back. It’s where 16 popular Twitch personalities go head to head for the title of King or Queen of Salt while playing new games with insane rules. For context, getting Salty on Twitch is when someone gets mad, so the madness on our stage during this event will be at a comical level. Come watch live at the booth or online Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from 1-3 p.m. PDT.

‘Borderlands’ Headed To Movie Screens

The movie business has been getting pretty serious lately about making films based on games we already have Warcraft and Assassin’s Creed movies on the way, and even Nintendo is thinking seriously about movies based on its games. Now they will be joined by Borderlands, being created by a partnership between game developer Gearbox Software and Lionsgate Films.

“We believe that we’ve brought together the right partners, the ideal creative team and the perfect property to launch a new motion picture tentpole for a global audience,” Lionsgate Motion Picture Group co-chairs Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger told The Hollywood Reporter in a statement. The deal was negotiated by Lionsgate’s Peter Levin and Patricia Laucella, along with Summit Entertainment’s Geoff Shaevitz.

The Borderlands franchise has sold over 26 million copies since launching in 2009, and those numbers sound pretty attractive to filmmakers. The adaptation will be spearheaded by veteran Avi Arad and his son Ari Arad, whose credits include Iron Man, Spider-Man, X-Men and more. “Borderlands has a unique story-driven narrative energy and rich multi-dimensional characters that position it to become a singular motion picture event,” the Arads said in a statement.

Will we be seeing more movies made from successful video games That seems like a pretty solid bet, though of course we’ll have to see how the latest crop of movies turns out audiences. If they movies can attract any reasonable percentage of the gameplaying fan base, though, success seems well within reach.

DeNA’s Mirrativ App Livestreams Any Content

The mobile livestreaming space has been heating up this year, with Perisocpe and Meerkat getting traction while other apps like Mobcrush and Kamcord focus on gaming. Now Japan’s mobile game giant DeNA is entering the mobile livestreaming business with Mirrativ, its Android app that streams any game or app on your device.

The great benefit of Mirrativ is that it does away with cables or attachments to PCs in order to stream just three clicks and you’re sending whatever’s on your Anrdoid device screen to the world. Broadcasters can also add their face or voice to the stream with use of the front-facing camera. Unlike some other streaming apps, Mirrativ isn’t limited to pre-selected apps it just takes whatever’s on the screen and broadcasts it.

DeNA told TechCrunch that an iOS version is coming soon, but that will be limited to watch streams and not broadcasting them. TechCrunch opines that DeNA may have run into problems trying to livestream on iOS, though the introduction of iOS 9 with its ReplayKit API may well make that possible for developers to implement.

Mirrativ is available now in a limited beta before the full launch next month. With its ease of setup (it takes just seconds to get a broadcast going once you are set up, according to VentureBeat‘s hands-on experience), Mirrativ could give Periscope and Meerkat some interesting competition, especially by being able to put your own face and voice on top of what you are streaming. One lack right now, though, is there’s no easy way to capture what you’re streaming hopefully that capability will be added in the future, which would make this extremely useful indeed to all sorts of users.

Mirrativ and other livestreaming apps on mobile will no doubt drive video on mobile even further into becoming a common part of the mobile experience.

Mobile Grabs More Attention, But Games Lag

The mobile revolution continues to transform the media industry, and analytics firm Flurry (now a Yahoo subsidiary has some hard numbers from American mobile device users to show the details. In the second quarter of 2015, “American consumers spent, on average, 3 hrs and 40 minutes per day on their mobile devices. That is a 35 percent increase in time spent from one year ago and a 24 percent increase from Q4 2014. In just six short months, the average time American consumers spend on their phones each day increased by 43 minutes,” said SVP publishing Simon Khalaf in a blog post.


There are 175 million Americans with at least one mobile device now, and since November of 2014 that aggregate is spending an extra 125 million hours per day on their devices. That’s an impressive growth after seven years of growth, and it’s made mobile the top media channel for Americans — at least by time spent per day.

How that time is spent is also important. Only 10 percent of it is spent in a mobile browser, so apps are obviously king. Social, Messaging, and Entertainment are more than 50 percent of mobile time, growing an amazing 240 percent year over year. Part of that growth came at the expense of gaming, with its share declining from 32 percent of mobile time to 15 percent (dropping from 52 minutes per day to 33 minutes per day).

Khalaf believes that drop in gaming is due to three factors: lack of new hits, millennials shifting to watching games instead of playing, and gamers spending more time on fewer games by buying their way to the top.



It is somewhat daunting when you realize, as VentureBeat pointed out, that the top-grossing games of 2015 are mostly the same as the top-grossing games of a few years ago. The top tiers of mobile gaming seem to be very hard to break into, and if people are spending less time playing mobile games, where’s your opportunity to make money Any problem usually also represents an opportunity, and in this case it’s breaking through the clutter and the boredom with more innovative and engaging mobile games. Where these games will come from and what they will look like is unknown, but the opportunity is there — and there’s certainly no lack of companies trying to take advantage of that opportunity.