An Idea for Blizzard (Starcraft 2)

8 Jul

Hey all!  As promised, I will be focusing more on extraordinary marketing ideas for the next little while and we’ll see how that works out.  If people continue to enjoy it (traffic the last couple days of days has blown me away) then I’ll keep the idea mill churning away.  Make sure to take a second and leave a comment if this is the kind of thing you want to see more of.

Today’s marketing idea is simple.  It’s a nice change from the more complicated Molson campaign I recommended the other day.  The reason why it’s so simple is because it uses digital tools to reach a large audience.  Technology continues to connect people in new and surprising ways.

It’s also personally relevant.  I’ve enjoyed the games Blizzard produces and their uncompromising attention to detail for many years.  Real Time Strategy has such  elaborate, intricate gameplay and I feel that it often gets overlooked in this age of First Person Shooters and twitch gaming.  Starcraft 2 has the potential to reverse this trend.

If I were in the shoes of a top dog at Activision Blizzard…with an awesome product about to be released, legions of loyal fans who also happen to be extremely tech savvy and a blockbuster franchise…well, I would be looking into purchasing one of Twitter’s new Promoted Trends for the launch of Starcraft 2 (set for July 27).

I’ve blogged previously concerning the incredible opportunity Promoted Trends provide for marketers and advertisers.  The value of this new medium is twofold:

1.  It encourages users to chime in and join the conversation.  Anyone who’s been to an awkward dinner party can relate, sometimes just getting a conversation started is a chore.  Once started, however, conversation tends to be self-fueling.  Promoted Trends on Twitter incorporate a promoted tweet that starts the party.  Like the first brave soul on the dance floor, they set the tone.  Next comes a waterfall of thoughts, opinions and shared experiences where everybody gets a turn in the spotlight.

2.  Promoted Trends encourage authentic communication.  When somebody tweets their undying love for Starcraft 2, you know that there is actually a person out there who loves Starcraft 2 and wanted to share that with the world.  This sounds obvious but it isn’t always true.  So it stands out amongst the advertising hubris.  For example, television commercials are notorious for rousing suspicion with too-good-to-be-true claims.  Corporate websites that highlight customer feedback face a similar problem – what’s to stop them from picking only the best comments?  Worse still, they could edit the results to make themselves look better or falsify the information entirely.  Twitter, on the other hand, shows everything.  Good or bad, it all gets lumped into the same conversation.  This way you know that guy who loves Starcraft 2 is genuine.

Hopefully we see Starcraft 2 promoted as a trend on release day if not shortly after.  It would be an extraordinary way to spread word to the masses.  Sure, it might trend either way but Blizzard would be better off being proactive as trending topics can be wildly unpredictable.

You have a passionate fanbase Blizzard; give them a forum in which they can share their passion and they will gladly go to work for you.  Others will see these actions and will want to be part of it as well.

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