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5 Surprising Trends in Mobile Gaming and Why Brands Should Care

For years,  Gaming has been Entertainment's best kept secret. Video games are now the #1 revenue generator in the industry.  But are brands keeping up?

Here are the stats:

#5 Revenue Growth


                                                                                                     NewZoo / Statista

Over 10 years ago, gaming hit one of Mario's Golden Stars ⭐ and has been on an unstoppable record breaking streak ever since. 

As an entire generation has turned to video games as a new source of entertainment, media moguls like Reed Hastings over at Netflix are beginning  to worry.  In a shareholder report, Netflix stated that "Fortnite was more of a threat to its business than Time Warner's HBO".  

Grand Theft Auto V recently became the highest grossing entertainment product of all time, blowing past every book, album and movie ever made.


#4 Mobile Dominance 

Revenue Per Segment New Zoo


Mobile Gaming has been gaining market share since 2015.  Meanwhile, PC and Console gaming's share of the market has been shrinking. 

Much of the transition to mobile has been driven by women.  Women are 24% more likely to play games on their phones then on computers and they're over 3x more likely to play on mobile than consoles.

Also helping to propel mobile gaming forward has been the overall increase in smartphone usage. In 2018, the amount of daily time that mobile phone users spent on their devices was 215 minutes.  By late 2021 that number is expected to reach 234 minutes 


#3 Audience

typical-gamers                                                                            Statista

The proliferation of mobile phones has changed the demographic makeup of mobile gamers.  In 2014, the average mobile gamer was 27.7 .  Today that number is up to 36.3 years old.

Over half of mobile gamers are women.  Today Almost 60% of gamers earn an income over $50K per year and 25% make over $100K anually.

The misconception that gamers are zit covered teenage boys playing alone in their parent's basement is more outdated than my POG collection.  


#2 Brand Spending 

Custom_Animated_BarGraph_Dollar_Stack                                                                                                AdAge


The market has moved, but brands haven't.  As we've seen, there has been a tectonic shift in consumer behavior.  When they're bored, instead of reaching for the remote control, people are now reaching for their phones.

More time is spent gaming than in any other segment of the entertainment industry.  However, gaming is receiving just a fraction of the total marketing dollars coming from brands. The good news is that there is a lot of opportunity for marketers who are spotting the trends.

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#1 Why We Play


Why do People Play Forbes                                                                         Forbes


As mobile gaming has matured, so too have the reasons for why people play.  When Gamers were asked by the Forbes M+A Group why they game, the top reasons they gave were brain stimulation, relaxation and to connect with others

For brands, the opportunity in mobile games is that they can connect with consumers while they're in an agreeable state of mind.  While they're engaged and while they're happy.

Brands are still spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on things like billboards.  Would you rather be in front of a potential customer while they're battling rush hour traffic on their way to work, or when they've just won 1st place on the race they've been trying to beat for the last 10 minutes?


Billboard Gif