This year's London Games Conference on November 19th will have a number of high profile speakers from around the games industry sharing their knowledge.
Ahead of the event, Curse's vice president of global sales Nathan Lindberg tells MCV about what we can expect from his speech at the event and the issue of authenticity in games marketing.
For the unaware, who are you and what do you do?
First and foremost, I'm the guy whom everyone was shouting his name at the MCV Awards back in April (#NathanLindberg). Other than that, I'm the vice president of global sales for Curse, one of the largest games media companies here in the UK. My responsibility is to effectively and efficiently connect brands to an audience of people most receptive to their marketing message. I work with brands not just in the UK, but all over the globe in our regional sales offices in the US, Germany, and Australia.
Tell us a bit about your talk at LGC. Don't just tell us the title – what is it really about?
It's about making the UK special (and it is). So much is said these days about going global, yet so much is lost in translation from market to market. There are key differences between UK consumers and US, EU and APAC consumers that really need to be focused on and harnessed to maximize success in a slumping UK marketplace. My talk focuses on what UK marketers need to know to differentiate their efforts from their global counterparts for the betterment of their own marketing efforts.
Can you give us an example of a successful product / launch you have worked on, and any specific learnings?
The launch of [communication service]Curse Voicehas been a monumental effort, but something we felt the community just had to have. Voice is an underrated value in gaming (especially on the PC platform) and we wanted to create something that not only provided best in class voice service, but also connected into the specific game a user was playing and provide additional benefits.
The launch was the easy part, and we learned a lot about supporting game publishers (currently supporting Riot Games, Blizzard, Hi-Rez Studios, S2 Games, Carbine Studios & 2k Games) and what markets value voice (Brazil is the #2 market for CV behind the US). We just completed a major exclusive partnership with Evolve for its Big Alpha weekend program where all codes were given out via Curse Voice.
What are the biggest challenges currently affecting the way games are marketed?
Authenticity is still a struggle I believe, partly because of the demands brands have, partly because of the mass skepticism of the audience. But influencer marketing programs, when done correctly can be massively effective. We've seen that with our own video hosts as well as tapping into our over 3,000 influencers in our Union for Gamers YouTube MCN.
What single area of games marketing should we pay attention to in 2015 – and why?
Influencers and custom content. I did a panel about a month back at AdWeek on the power of MCN's and it is astounding how powerful these content creators can be for a brand. Over the next 12 months, I fully expect to see great programs, poor programs and a lot in-between as the industry grapples with how to successfully utilise influencers to market their products. The key as we see it, is to trust an intermediary (like Curse) and be flexible in what can be delivered. No one ever won a sprint in shackles.