The trend of the Spring Festival in the Year of the Ox can be summarized as: head game + marketing diversification + socialization
“The wind and waves are calm on the stage, and the undercurrent is raging under the stage.”
Regarding the Chinese New Year game for the Year of the Ox, DataEye CEO Wang Xiangbin concluded. Expansively speaking, the term “calm” means that there are few new faces on the free lists and best-selling lists during the Spring Festival; the “turbulent dark tide” includes investment, mergers, and marketing.
Looking at the two lists during the Spring Festival period (2.11-2.17), the trend shows a tendency toward head and oligopoly. The best-selling list, the Tengwang war is still the same, and Ali continues the Year of the Rat with a high-strike strategy and ranks among the best-selling TOP5. The free list, developed by Kunpo, and the super-casual “Jade Master” distributed by Ohayoo, has always maintained the first place in the iOS free list.
Tengwang Ali, coupled with byte, took turns on stage to provoke the Spring Festival of the Ox. Compared with the Year of the Rat, the protagonist on the stage has hardly changed.
The river is rippling with blue waves, seemingly harmonious. But these four old faces can’t say that they didn’t work hard to become the leading role. Marketing is the core of these four rivals. In view of this, Jinghe summarized the Spring Festival files for the Year of the Ox as: head game + marketing diversification + socialization.
What are the “undercurrents” in the Spring Festival file for the Year of the Ox? In addition to Tengwang Ali, and byte, what other manufacturers’ products are worth paying attention to? Which game market trends should we pay attention to in 2021?
Pure flow play is outdated
In the Spring Festival file of the Year of the Ox, the biggest change is byte.
In the free list, BYTE leads with “Master of Emerald”. The scenery seems to be the same, but the stars are dim. Compared with the Year of the Rat, the number of products ranked among the top 5 free lists has dropped significantly.
In comparison, the performance of the 37 free list is relatively bright. During the Spring Festival of the Year of the Ox game, “Peerless Immortal King” released by Sanqi was ranked second, fourth, and fifth on the free list for three consecutive days.
The ranking of this work is slightly different from that of “Master of Emerald”. However, the biggest difference between the two is that “Peerless Immortal King” puts far more picture materials than the jade master.
Wang Xiangbin said that different game categories will have different game purchase strategies. The biggest difference is the creative production cost and exquisiteness, and the material consumption cycle.
The cost of CG animations produced by head manufacturers can reach tens of thousands, or even more than 100,000, for a single film, and a single material can continue to run for a month.
For stand-alone games, the production cost and degree of exquisiteness lag far behind that of online games, and the continuous release time is basically only one or two days, at most a few days.
The difference between online games and stand-alone games is still very large.
“The term buying volume was frequently mentioned in 2015. At that time, it was still a period of traffic dividends.” Wang Xiangbin told Jinghe, “After five years of doubling development, 2020 will reach the peak of the buying volume market.”
In this period, the most representative is still the top manufacturer. But another thing worth mentioning is the Guangzhou gaming circle. They have done their best in traffic management, both in the refinement of traffic and the use of traffic.
Previously, the buying volume market had always been dominated by Legend, Xianxia, and Three Kingdoms products. It wasn’t until 18 years that the pattern of the buying volume market changed.
Wang Xiangbin’s live broadcast mentioned that “as long as there are depressions with traffic, there will be a large influx of games, so the categories are gradually diversified.”
When talking about product buying trends? Wang Xiangbin believes that buying volume is no longer the key to game products, which is why this year’s Spring Festival stalls are different from usual.
He said that DataEye also conducted related research in 2020, and found that many content publishers have understood the drawbacks of simple purchases, and began to focus on how to create diversified marketing methods. This is why more and more manufacturers have re-matched their investment ratios.
This shift in focus has almost become the consensus of domestic manufacturers and a brand new marketing logic.
In fact, the effect of marketing diversification far surpasses simple purchases, and the difficulty is naturally extraordinary. Manufacturers need to be very familiar with every marketing method, and whether the content planning ability is outstanding will also greatly affect the release effect.
Wang Xiangbin told Jinghe that from his personal opinion, the marketing strategy of pure information flow has become a thing of the past, and more and more manufacturers will overcome difficulties, enrich marketing methods, and achieve marketing diversification.
In terms of product numbers, the byte is a bit less popular, but from the perspective of the purchase platform, the byte system is still strong.
“When it comes to Byte and Kuaishou, they are basically two manufacturers that account for a large proportion of game purchases.” Wang Xiangbin said, “Byte has maintained a high growth rate throughout the past few years of commercialization of game advertising. , And Kuaishou developed earlier.”
He said that some leading manufacturers have invested heavily in Kuaishou. If we talk about commercialization alone, Bytedance is still at the forefront.
ByteDance has relatively complete supporting facilities, and its application level is much higher than other platforms. It also has huge traffic and sufficient advertising inventory, which can give full play to each advertising space.
Heading and oligopoly of top-selling products
Compared to the cool performance of the free list, the best-selling list is not lively. However, it also presents a different kind of scenery, namely heading and oligopoly.
At present, the head pattern of the game industry can be said to be quite stable. The two giants of Tengwang basically occupy the Top 5, and it is rare to see new games that can break the siege.
Wang Xiangbin believes that the reason for the lack of new products in the 2020 market is that the industry generally does not pay enough attention to the long-term research and development of products, and the second is that the version number does put a lot of pressure on the product supply side.
There is a cause and an effect. Due to the above two reasons, only the “top list” of the giants is left during the Spring Festival period. Where is the starting point of heading? In 2020, DataEye did some basic market research and found that in the five years from 2015 to 2020, the threshold for research and development has increased year by year, resulting in higher and higher basic costs for a product to succeed. This is also the basic logic of heading: Only big factories have the resources and ability to make successful products.
“For example, for a product in 2015, it may be 1 million to 3 million for CPs, but by 2020, a mid-waist manufacturer with a team of 100-200 people may cost more than 30 million R&D. .” Wang Xiangbin told Jinghe.
In this way, the cost estimates of the leading manufacturers are directly rushing to the 100 million yuan mark. This kind of threshold is often difficult to reach for some small teams, and the heading is gradually deepening.
The most typical case is “Glory of the King”. In the Year of the Ox, the king broke out again as scheduled. What’s strange is that there are few discussions on the stalls of King’s Spring Festival in the market.
You know, the 30th year of the King’s New Year has always been the focus of media and brokerage. 1.3 billion and 2 billion, these two staggering numbers are the special marks of the Year of the Pig and the Year of the Ox.
Of course, the Year of the Ox cannot be compared with the Year of the Rat. The latter is a product of a special moment and almost all offline activities are cut off. In contrast to the Spring Festival stalls in the Year of the Ox, the most obvious change is the popularity of offline entertainment.
In this case, online traffic is bound to be diverted. As a national product, the king is undoubtedly the target of diversion.
In view of this, Wang Xiangbin estimates that the king’s turnover in the Year of the Ox is between 1.3 billion and 2 billion.
In view of the staggered online and offline entertainment scenes, the king is not idle. During the Spring Festival of the Year of the Ox, the evening party “King’s Glory to Worship the Years” created by the King Linkage Station B rushed to the hot searches on Weibo, and programs such as “The King’s Hero Celebrates the New Year” and “A Hundred Dances” and other programs earned enough attention.
The author believes that from an industry perspective, this marks the impact of Chinese mobile games on platform apps. The concept of the game is gradually blurred, and the new “king” identity urgently needs to be established.
King is no longer just a game, but a social platform for players.
“The King’s cooperation is more like cultural output, focusing on brand influence,” Wang Xiangbin said. “This is significantly different from other game product marketing.”
It is worth mentioning that during the Spring Festival of the Year of the Ox, King also organized multiple live events in conjunction with Kuaishou. As the WeChat video account enters the game, the author believes that short video and live broadcast will become more important in the game announcement chain.
The King of the Spring Festival of the Year of the Ox is only a preview. In the future, more and more manufacturers will use video accounts to improve the efficiency of publicity.
Wang Xiangbin believes that from the perspective of game marketing, the entry of video numbers is a positive signal, and it is still very promising internally. After all, creators are currently facing two major problems on the Shake Kuai platform: difficult to obtain traffic; difficult to make money.
He further explained that there is still a gap between the commercial ecology of the Douyin platform and the commercial ecology of WeChat. In addition, considering the time when the video number enters the game, there will be a wave of traffic dividends as a latecomer.
Combining the above two advantages, the future video account platform will attract more and more game manufacturers.
Into the first year of diversified marketing
As for the marketing side, game marketing in the Year of the Ox has clearly passed the era of pure purchases. The launch of New Year’s Greetings by Wangzhe Linkage Station B is a typical case.
Similar diversified marketing cases include “Tang Detective Three” linkage “The Strongest Snail” and Onmyoji IP masterpiece “Samurai Order”. Of course, don’t forget the “WeChat red envelope cover” that was popular some time ago.
Why do they keep innovating on the marketing side? What is the motivation behind it?
Regarding this, Wang Xiangbin said that long ago marketing relied on advertising to open up the situation. But if it still relies solely on launching, it will inevitably be somewhat unsustainable.
“Diversified marketing” came into being. “The buying volume is bidding, and the cost has been rising.” Wang Xiangbin said, “How to make the marketing effect longer and how to reduce the front-end cost is a question that many manufacturers are discussing.”
In his answer, he said that many large companies rarely say the word “buy volume” internally, and more talk about “user growth” or “digital marketing”. Essentially, they use purchase as a supplementary means, not the main force, otherwise the cost will not stop the car.
Therefore, in today’s “post-purchase era”, the marketing side can only balance the cost of buying volume through diversified means.
It is worth mentioning that this is not a simple matter. “This kind of marketing is very risky and difficult.” Wang Xiangbin said, “Some manufacturers have more than enough energy and are not able to manipulate such a complicated marketing model, so it is often the top manufacturers who do it.”
The ultimate goal of marketing is to occupy players’ minds. Only in this way can we get a steady stream of renewable traffic and the most precious “tap water”, which can’t be bought with any advertising fees.
So how expensive is the purchase?
“For the subject matter, the cost gap is still very large.” Wang Xiangbin said in the live broadcast, “Some casual themes may be less than 5 yuan or 10 yuan per user, while the fiercely competitive subjects like the Three Kingdoms cost four to five hundred. People are also very common.”
He also said that although there is no “turning point” in the purchase cost, which has resulted in a sharp decline, from DataEye’s research and internal research, the game advertising market of traffic platforms is already at a high point. Greater breakthroughs are not realistic.
Looking forward to 2021, Wang Xiangbin predicts that three-dimensional marketing will continue throughout the year. At the same time, he also expects that in 2021, the domestic game market will have a model that is different from traditional purchases, and more good products will appear.
Once the industry overcomes the three major difficulties of low version numbers, high purchase costs, and high R&D thresholds, the Chinese game market may enter the next fast lane.