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“Only the dead have seen the end of war,” said Plato 2,400 years ago. It means man will always fight in wars.
Enter World of Tanks (WoT), one of the most popular video games ever created with 110 million players. WoT become NeoReach’s client in 2016 seeking greater visibility and engagement with young American audiences.
Our team devised a strategy that leveraged YouTube influencers who appeal to the firearms, military and outdoors crowd. The campaign received 37+ million video impressions at 40% less cost in customer acquisition.
Here’s how we did it.
Campaign: World of Tanks
World of Tanks (WoT) is a massive multiplayer online game where users command mid-20th-century combat vehicles. Players buy and select from 500+ tanks and duel in a realistic urban or rural battlefield. The game launched in 2010 and has achieved wide success globally.
The client tasked NeoReach to increase brand awareness and to acquire new players at a lower cost. Our firm’s YouTube campaign outperformed WoT’s television ad shown during Super Bowl LI between the New England Patriots and Atlanta Falcons.
- Target 17-25-year-old unmarried males in the U.S.
- Hit target acquisition cost metrics
The client’s goals led to two approaches.
First, our team partnered with content creators who appealed to the young male demographic, and that meant choosing popular warfare– and adventure-themed YouTube channels.
Secondly, we commissioned sponsored content that could drive viral impressions.
General George S. Patton, the World War II general, said: “Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.” WoT is about attacking other tanks and outsmarting opponents. To be victorious, you have to gain tactical advantages by leveraging the terrain, hiding behind barriers, and using hand-eye coordination to shoot a vulnerable enemy before he (or she) knows what’s going on.
This game dynamic helped us to formulate content that would resonate with audiences: Have a real-life tank fire at a truck and run over it.
“Our YouTube integration outperformed WoT’s Super Bowl ad five times (5x) over, and for one-fiftieth (1/50th) of the cost,” says Brian Sorel, chief operating officer of NeoReach. “The best video racked up 14 million views within a couple of weeks and it still continues to get views today.”
Sorel refers to the video by Matt Carriker who operates the DemolitionRanch YouTube channel, the most popular firearms-themed channel on YouTube with 7.2 million subscribers. The Dec. 2016 video “I Shot My Truck with a Tank” offered an invite code to play WoT in premium, 250 gold (the game’s native currency) and free Churchill III tank.
In the video (which now has 16.6 million views), Carriker shoots a live round from a World War II-era tank at his 1999 Chevy Silverado. The tank demolishes his own truck. The vid generated more than 28,000 comments, and it showed that our team made the right decisions in the content creation process to promote the client.
Aside from DemolitionRanch, NeoReach worked with other YouTube influencers:
- NightHawkInLight (1.5+ million subscribers)
- Lindybeige: a channel that focuses on ancient and medieval warfare technology
- FullMag: an outdoor adventures channel
From our experience, fun and authentic content produce great results.
The WoT campaign had a 40% reduction in customer acquisition costs. Here are the key measures:
- 100,000+ new app installs
- 69% non-married audience
- 37+ million video views
- 75% of viewers are 17-25 years old
“We chose the influencers that we did because their audience fit the target demographic and they were willing to go above and beyond with their content,” says Sorel. “One influencer (Matt Carriker) integrated the video game into his video. The influencers creatively integrated the video game into their content.”