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Nintendo spent an estimated $4.5m on TV ads in August - Report

According to iSpot.tv Nintendo outspent other video game brands during the month to promote the new-look 2DS XL

TV advertising may not work for all companies in this era of online marketing and social media, but there are definitely brands that can benefit from the traditional TV ad spend. Nintendo, with its family-friendly image, may be one of those top brands and the house of Mario is certainly outspending competing video game companies for TV time. According to the latest from iSpot.tv (as outlined on VentureBeat), Nintendo spent an estimated $4.5 million in August for television ads, more than competitors like PlayStation, Xbox, King or others.

Nintendo's $4.5 million may not seem like much when compared to non-gaming brands like Geico, who can easily spend over $21.5 million in one week, but that figure puts Nintendo ahead of PlayStation (an estimated $2.5m in ad spending), InnoGames (estimated $1.5m), and King and Xbox who each spent an estimated $1.3m. All told, TV ad spending for gaming brands was up to an estimated $17.1m from July's $12.2 million. Game companies representing 29 brands ran 81 spots nearly 9,000 times and generated over 1.1 billion TV ad impressions.

Nintendo aired 14 commercials over 1,600 times, generating around 230m impressions, driven largely by the nearly $1m spend for the company's "New, Sleek Look" spot to spread awareness for its new 2DS XL. As you might expect, Nintendo targeted younger audiences by placing the ad on networks like Adult Swim, Cartoon Network, and Nick. TV shows that got more attention included SpongeBob SquarePants, Teen Titans Go!, and American Dad.

Aside from Nintendo, given that August is always Madden season for EA Sports, Xbox decided to piggyback on the Madden brand. Microsoft started running TV spots for Madden on Xbox starting on August 14. The "Madden NFL 18: This Is the Year" spot aired 356 times and gained 46.3 million impressions, while targeting football and sports enthusiasts on networks like ESPN and NFL Network, especially leveraging programming like NFL preseason football, SportsCenter, and NFL Live.

With the holiday shopping season fast approaching and Nintendo gearing up for Super Mario Odyssey on Switch, we wouldn't be surprised to see Nintendo spending heavily again. And of course, Xbox One X will undoubtedly see a big push from Microsoft as well.

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Latest comments (2)

Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.29 days ago
Unless Nintendo and their supply chain are truly prepared for November, a big spending push will only worsen the supply/demand dynamic they already face during the slow months.

I'm actually surprised by some of these numbers. I see so many online and channel specific Sony ads the past few months that I am surprised they only paid, as iSpot.tv notes, $2.5 million for it. Maybe it's the online ad spending difference that I'm noticing....which is not covered by iSpot.tv's report.
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Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 29 days ago
Turn on champions league football and you are guaranteed to see Sony PS4Pro and Xperia XZ ads on the sidelines. Alleged cost for Sony are $50 million per season paid to UEFA. TV and cinema spots not included. At least in Europe you have to look beyond TV ads to get an idea of how much Sony spends. I do not know whether U.S. sports are affected in the same way, or whether sideline ads are an European or global strategy for Sony.

No shortage of Nintendo Switch in Germany. You want one, you can have one. Worst case, overnight mail order. Supply good, popularity high.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Klaus Preisinger on 19th September 2017 2:13pm

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