Game Marketing Tips, Analysis, and News

Monday, July 12, 2010

Google Games?

Here's an interesting bit of news: According to TechCrunch, Google has invested $100 million into Zynga, with the intent of making it the cornerstone of their upcoming Google Games. Zynga has been racing along, with a rumored $350 million in revenue last year, half of which was operating profit (!). Now, you might ask why Google is getting into games? A number of reasons spring to mind. Social games, for one thing, are an amazingly fast-growing market segment with intense profitability. So are mobile games. And what company would Google be trying to outmaneuver in the social networking space? Facebook, of course, and they and Zynga aren't getting along all that well right now.

Add in the upcoming Google TV revolution that could steal serious market share from console games, and you can see the outlines of a strategy here. (Plus it helps block Apple's march to world domination along the same path.) Talk about your battle of the titans... this is going to be an interesting scrum, as heavyweights like EA join the fun with Facebook, Apple, and Google.

One winner I can predict for sure: Consumers are going to have more gaming choices, and probably at lower prices, than ever before. I think gaming is going to be an ever larger share of overall leisure time, taking a bite out of TV watching for one thing. We'll have to see how this strategy unfolds, and particularly how the various players intend to make money. Will social gaming continue to have legs? Sure looks like it at this point...

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