WildTangent: 86 percent of gamers prefer free games with ads over paid games without

Photo via Flickr / Cristiano Betta
Photo via Flickr / Cristiano Betta

Cross-platform games network WildTangent and IHS Technology have revealed the results of a recent study, which found mobile gamers to be incredibly receptive to value exchange-style advertising, or ads that reward gamers for viewing them, often with in-game content (free currency, exclusive items, energy boosts, etc.).

According to the report, 79 percent of gamers said they liked receiving these free virtual goods from clicking on ads, while 86 percent said they prefer to play free games with ads over paid games without advertising.

The study found 89 percent of gamers are likely to recall the value exchange advertisements they view in games, and marketers have seen two times more post-ad actions driven by in-game ads than by live TV. What’s more, the report showed a 120 percent increase in the number of times mobile gamers visited the “cash store” areas of a game after seeing these value exchange advertisements.

“The research shows that gamers embrace value exchange ads, which demonstrates the progress the industry has made with advertising in and around video games,” said Christine Arrington, senior games analyst at IHS Technology. “As gamers become more accustomed to in-game advertising, it becomes essential for brand marketers to find creative ways to use value exchange advertising while developers must ensure gamers have easy access to these offers.”

In addition to higher engagement with branded advertisements, app developers also see improvements in revenue with these kinds of ads. According to this research, after implementing rewarding ads, gamers remained engaged with apps longer and spent more money, more often.

The pair’s full report is available on WildTangent’s website.