FunCom has announced today that they have partnered with Massive Inc. to add in-game billboard ads for their free-trial players. The full release is below:
|Durham, USA - February 24, 2004 - Funcom, developer and publisher of top video game titles like Anarchy Online and The Longest Journey, has signed an exclusive agreement with Massive Incorporated, creator of the world’s first video game advertising network. In a revolutionary deal all free players of Anarchy Online will see dynamic in-game advertising billboards in central areas of the game. Paying subscribers will not see the advertisements. |
Mitch Davis, CEO of Massive Incorporated said “We’re thrilled to add Funcom’s leading titles into our advertising network and broaden our reach with their hundreds of thousands of gamers. We’re excited about changing the game development business model to provide a new source of significant revenues beyond box sales and subscriptions and delivering a powerful new medium to global advertisers.”
Last year, TV rating company Nielsen Media reported a fall in the amount of prime-time TV viewing among 18 – 34 year old men. In a report from Ziff Davis Digital Gaming they reckoned that a quarter of gamers had swapped TV watching time for playing time. Seeing that in 2003 US advertisers spent $ 12 billion on TV spots targeting young men while the equivalent figure for in-game ads was just $ 10 million, the US advertising landscape is poised to undergo changes in the years to come. As millions of young men and women change their lifestyle and entertainment habits, advertisers now finds an additional venue to reach the coveted 18 – 34 demographic through the medium of games…..and Funcom takes the first step in March 2005.
Trond Aas, CEO of Funcom stated “As opposed to a medium like TV you know that the gamers eyes are always watching the screen while playing games. With official ad measurement methods from Nielsen we are sure advertisers will cherish this revolutionary new opportunity to reach the extremely valuable 18 – 34 demographic. Through our own research we know that most gamers want in-game advertisement to heighten the sense of realism. Seeing that the live billboards in Anarchy Online do not interfere with gameplay I am confident our free players will welcome the permanent continuation of our complimentary subscription in the ultimate sci-fi MMORPG.”