As designers and installers of home automation and networking products, a lot of our dealers work with Home Theater systems — in addition to distributed video, whole home audio and networking. These are almost standard services.
A new feature you should add to your list of services is gaming. Yes, video games. For those of you who are rolling your eyes in disgust (or just rolling on the floor laughing), keep reading. Video games are not just child’s play any more.
Once stereotyped as a small social subset, who is the current audience for video games?
- In 2004 game sale shook the traditional entertainment world by surpassing movie ticket sales.
- Games again snapped at the heels of prized movie studio releases in August 2007 when the first day of Microsoft’s Halo 3 sales was predicted to reach $155 million, while blockbuster Spider-man opening weekend box office grosses tallied $151 million. (Graser 2007)
- In its first week, Guitar Hero: Aerosmith sold more than 3 times the copies that Aerosmith’s last studio album did. (CES 2009)
- A lot more women are becoming involved with gaming, mainly thanks to the Nintendo Wii, which sports a 60% share of women players. More than 50% of all new Guitar Hero players are female. Overall though, the amount of women and men playing games has almost reached a 50/50% balance point. (New York Game Conference 2008, CES 2009)
- Gaming in general has become even more a part of America’s daily lifestyle with 59% of the U.S. population playing games. (New York Game Conference 2008 )
- Back in 1999, the industry said fewer than 10% of America’s video-game players were older than 50. But since then, the percentage has more than doubled. Today more than one in four players are that age. (ABC News)
- The average age of game players is 29 and the average age of buyers is 36. (USA Today)
- 52% of people who have increased their game-play time have done so at the expense of watching TV, while 47% go to the movies less in favor of playing games. (Entertainment Software Association)
So how does this relate to a marketing campaign? How can you tap into this market? You already are, in a way. Distributed Audio, Networking, Home Theaters, Video — all these are part of the video game experience.
Start selling it now. Video games can either be a simple one-line bullet point on your marketing literature, or gaming can be an entire page on your web site. Above all: have fun with it!
(Some information from Theatre Design & Technology magazine.)