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April 2015 Retro Gaming Article

April 13, 2015 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Is Mariah Carey forging a better way to promote new video games & gaming press releases?

I can't say I'm a fan of Mariah Carey's music, although I think I own one of her Christmas albums. When I saw #RevealMariah trending on Twitter, I admit to being curious. Was it Mariah Carey? If so... what's she revealing? It turns out she's revealing her latest album cover.

Mariah Carey's album cover reveal at 25% Mariah Carey's album cover reveal at 50% Mariah Carey's album cover reveal at 75% That awkward point where we wonder if anyone cares anymore: 90% Via social media sharing, her album cover was revealed in an interesting way. If you went to Mariah Carey's website, you'd see a black and white photo of her along with a progress bar vertically traversing the image. As her website is shared on Facebook and Twitter, more of the cover is revealed based on the number of shares.

I like the strategy being used here to tease the new album cover in unison with the amount of social media sharing. Share more - see more! I see a lot of appeal to this. So, often news is "leaked" or info is strewn across many outlets - some reliable and others not as much. This strategy kind of focuses the attention on the one site doing the reveal.

Couldn't this technique be used in the video game industry? Sure there are plenty of news outlets and info sources, but this approach (if done correctly) would focus gamers and fans on a central site - presumably the developer's website. This seems preferable to the numerous rumor sites and those rehashing and regurgitating the same info.
Gaming has plenty of viral assets for a reveal campaign

There was an awkward spell with Mariah's album reveal when it reached 90% and seemed to hang there for a while since the website's incentive was effectively complete. Obviously this technique relies on a visual with mass appeal that people will want to see and be excited enough to share it on social media.

Shantae This tact may not have worked on traditional box art from the 80's, but gaming these days has no shortage of sexually charged imagery. Tekken 7's Lucky Chloe would have fit the bill - even though there was a lot of chatter about her being too plain for the franchise. And how about a character's updated look, as with Shantae few years ago. These are just a few potential candidates for a reveal campaign.

Video gaming is probably at the same pace as the music industry in terms of pushing the "sex sells" mantra. So finding viral content to "reveal" via a social sharing campaign should be easy. What I liked most about Mariah's campaign is the single point of focus and the idea that YOU matter and are a part of an outcome - almost like a Groupon. The sharing is good for the brand and it brings people together in a unique manner.

The gaming industry needs to get away from midnight launches & staged leaks - and begin promoting content in new creative ways. There's no reason gaming shouldn't be on the forefront of advertising technology and pioneer new forms of engagement. They have plenty of exciting content that should reach gamers through innovative strategic campaigns, not the same paragraph copied onto every pseudo news outlet the internet can serve up.

Game companies: Please be bold. Delve into new territory. Use new technology to embrace gamers. Engage us with great games that exude your creativity. We're tired of going to GameStop at midnight for glitch-ridden games.

Mariah Carey's Reveal Campaign

Mariah Carey's album cover Mariah Carey's album cover started at 0% revealed.
Mariah Carey's album cover Mariah Carey's album cover finished at 100% revealed.

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