Marketing firm appssavvy has released the results of a study investigating the effectiveness of branded virtual goods in building purchase intent and brand awareness. The study was conducted in Booyah's MyTown social game on iPhone, tracking user reactions to a branded virtual goods campaign promoting Powermat brand wireless charging accessories. Appssavvy compared the results to standard consumer reaction to mobile advertising.
The study found that branded virtual goods in the Powermat campaign boosted aided awareness of the brand by 45%, ad awareness by 60%, and user purchase intent by 32%. Mobile norms in these categories are 8%, 22%, and 11% (respectively). This means that branded goods in the Powermat campaign performed anywhere from 3 to 5 times better than traditional mobile advertising. Appssavvy was aided in the study by InsightExpress, which surveyed 2,894 MyTown players.
MyTown's Powermat campaign gave players free branded virtual goods whenever they checked in at real-world Powermat retailers including Best Buy and Target. The promotion also had a sweepstakes component that let users enter a prize drawing by interacting with Powermat products at retailers. The promotion began on June 2, 2010 and ran through June 13, 2010. At the time of the launch, MyTown had recently passed the 2 million user milestone.
"There is a tremendous amount of buzz in the advertising community around virtual goods. Today's research should significantly raise that as the results of delivering branded items proved to drive metrics through the roof," said Chris Cunningham, co-founder and CEO of appssavvy, in a press statement. "The key to virtual goods marketing is, first and foremost, understanding the social activity taking place and then adding value to that experience, which the Powermat campaign did to perfection."
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