This is the fifth and final pat of a five part series. Click here to read part 4
Nintendo of Europe announced some great deals during Gamescom this week. Project Zero (Fatal Frame in the US) will be released in an exclusive Limited Edition, so will Xenoblade Chronicles X. And to celebrate Xenoblade, the Wii game was made available for download on the Wii. So I only have one question: Why are those things special in the first place?
Mind you I am not talking about the Limited Editions here. I am talking about the fact that it is a special occasion for Nintendo to actually do some marketing. When Mario Kart 8 launched, they considered it a special occasion to actually market the game. Same with Splatoon. And that is just plain silly.
Marketing is as intregal to selling stuff as actually selling stuff. How do you expect people to learn about your product without marketing? Word of mouth? That worked twenty years ago but nowadays, thanks to social media, word of mouth is worth very little. Sure, people still talk and sometimes even tweet about stuff they are fans of, but those tweets drown in a flood of paid tweets about other products and real, big time marketing.
Last time I said that Zelda should launch in the spring or summer of 2016 because waiting for the fall period would be a bad idea due to the overabundance of other titles coming out. And not only do I stand by that idea, I’d like to elaborate on it a bit more. Zelda is a system seller. We know that much already, no need to discuss that. Wind Waker HD sold systems. Ocarina of Time 3D sold systems. If Zelda Wii U releases in the spring or fall season it will sell systems, probably even more than in the fall where people have other options available for their limited resources. But nothing releases in the spring/summer season. If Nintendo is smart, they release the game when nothing else is around and push it with a massive marketing strategy. I am talking billboards, TV ads, maybe even movie theater ads, huge website marketing and stuff.
If they can capitalize on the fact that spring/summer 2016 faces a software drought (as every spring/summer season does) and push it with extensive marketing, they could easily push ahead regular Zelda sales. And if they keep that marketing alive for the rest of the year, they can still sell a lot of games in the fall because people buy presents either way. Which brings me to my next point.
Nintendo (any company, really) should market their older games better. Run campaigns that show the people what great games are already available on the system. Run a TV ad showing Mario 3D World, Wonderful 101, and other Family friendly titles that are already out. Create a second ad for the evening program showing Bayonetta, ZombiU and other titles for teens and adults. Capitalize on the fact that the system has some incredibly great games. Advertise the Virtual Console titles, indie titles and give new and old customers a reason to check out the games they might have missed.
Of course marketing is expensive but if Splatoon is any indicator it works. So why not keep the momentum up with some great ad campaigns? Why not create an ad for the upcoming Mario and Sonic olympic game that ALSO features Mario 3D World and Sonic Lost World at the end for good measure? Maybe release that three game combo in a bundle and advertise the hell out of it? Create a Bundle with Wonderful 101 and Pikmin 3 and advertise it all while you release Pikmin 1 and Pikmin 2 for Virtual Console. Run TV ads during Sleepy Hollow or Once upon a Time for Fatal Frame 5 and tell people that Bayonetta 1 and 2 are also available for the system. Close it with the Tagline “Enough Excuses” and tell them to get one now!
Everything I have said over the last few weeks with my articles will have greater results if marketed correctly. Word of mouth is an outdated marketing practice. Times have changed and so have tastes but if you spend some money for advertisement, you can capture an audience with the quality of your product. This is something Nintendo needs to get A.S.A.P. otherwise they will stagnate and not go anywhere. Splatoon did it well. Follow that pattern and pump it up a notch^^
This concludes my 5 part series. If you think I missed something, tell me in the comments 🙂 Thanks for reading^^