EA Sports has finally solved the dilemma of how to appeal to the female market.
That was according to label boss Peter Moore this morning, speaking to delegates at the Edinburgh Interactive Festival.
Discussing the reinvention of EA Sports since his arrival in 2007, Moore said that the firm had “no idea” how to approach the “scary” female gaming sector in its marketing.
He told the audience: “It was a challenge. How do we go after this audience? How do we talk to women? We had no idea. The only time our testosterone-fuelled business talked to women was about games for their boyfriends, sons or fathers. It was scary. We felt we had nothing that would appeal to a female gamer. But now some figures say up to 40 per cent of all gamers are female, so we had to address it using our game engines, the great EA Sports brand – and by re-thinking the way we want to market.”
After quitting its model of porting PS2 sports games to Wii and building title from the ground up on the platform, Moore said the firm began to appeal to family gamers. But it wasn’t until the launch of EA Sports Active that it specifically won over a predominantly female audience.
He said: “When I was at Reebok years ago, we took some plastic and made it into a step. We bundled it with a great video and told people it would enhance their workout at home, which it did. We had a $150 million business within a year.
“We had to go after a similar niche with EA Sports Active, appealing to women – who probably spent their days at home looking after the kids, and who didn’t have the time or money for the gym. We spotted this rise in health, wellness and fitness gaming early. We reached 1.8 million sales in its first month – and we’re changing people’s lives as well.
He added: “We’re finally talking to girls. We finally have women as part of the EA Sports community. It’s not a franchise, but a full platform for us going forward. It complements the Wii Balance Board.
“As Americans would say, it kicks your ass. You know about it after spending 25 minutes on this.”