Digital Touchscreen Games Heat Up As Temperatures Fall

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Gamers hit the bars, bringing new opportunities for marketers reaching out to the "unreachable"

With unique and engaging content, our entertainment media is actively sought out by an attentive audience -- and that offers brands an excellent opportunity for interaction.

The days are getting shorter, but winter's long nights are raising the mercury on touchscreen video game play, according to new numbers from emerging ad platform AMI Meganet, a joint venture of Merit Entertainment and AMI Entertainment.

Though the rest of the world may be hibernating, cool, young 20 and 30-somethings are chasing away winter blues by heading out to their favorite bars and taverns for warm elixirs, cold beers, good times, and yes, casual digital entertainment.

New figures released today by AMI Meganet show a significant spike in touchscreen video game popularity, with plays per month soaring 21 percent between November 2007 and March 2008.

"While our games are a blast for our players, it's really music to the ears of vending operators and advertisers who are placing creative and colorful ads in our games," said Mike Nickerson, vice president of advertising for AMI Meganet. "Rather than sitting in front of the TV on a cold winter's night, that influential, hard-to-reach audience is out and about with friends, enjoying the comfort of their favorite bars and nighttime spots and interacting with the top brands while playing fun group games on the Megatouch or their favorite tunes on the AMI digital jukebox."

Though the winter's chill correlates to an increase in games played per month, touchscreen video game usage maintained steady growth during the warmer months as well. Between March 2008 and September 2008, games played per months slipped just 17 percent.

"Clearly our short, casual games and fully loaded jukeboxes are catching the attention of that on-the go consumer," said Nickerson. "With unique and engaging content, our entertainment media is actively sought out by an attentive audience -- and that offers brands an excellent opportunity for interaction."

With more than 15,000 broadband-connected touchscreen games and jukeboxes, AMI Meganet gives brands access to the largest network of its kind in the country. A leader in digital out-of-home advertising, AMI Meganet connects national brands with hard-to-reach young adults through fun, interactive digital entertainment found in bars, taverns and other social places.

Each year, the company generates more than 1.14 billion gross impressions through more than 150 card, trivia and strategy touchscreen games, digital jukeboxes filled with more than 10,000 genre-crossing songs, and networked big-screen plasma TVs, playing hours of no-repeat music, news and sports videos.

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Emily Umbright
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