Zynga is experimenting with a new type of cross-promotion that uses in-game mailbox messages to redirect users to other Zynga games where they have pending notifications or requests.
As seen in CastleVille, the new feature generates inbox messages for other game requests under a heading called Zynga Game Requests. The inbox message clearly indicates that it’s for a game other than the one the user is currently playing through a logo and the name of the game in bold text. Additionally, the button that allows users to interact with the message reads, “Go Accept,” indicating to the user that they will leave the game they are currently viewing to go into another game.
Note that the inbox automatically appears in most games right as the user enters the game. It can also be accessed from a menu bar somewhere on the canvas page.
It’ll be interesting to see how users react to the cross-promotion as many probably click buttons on inbox notifications and requests without reading the text. In games where an inbox item is cleared from the list as soon as the user interacts with it — like in CastleVille — users are probably even less likely to understand that they’re being taken out of the game they came to play and led to a different game.