PR Campaign of the Year 2008 by gabyion


									PR Campaign of the Year 2008
March 06, 2008

                                 GolinHarris and Nintendo of America: Wii Launch: How Wii Helped
                                 Nintendo Get Its Game Back

                                 The decision by GolinHarris and Nintendo of America to create a new
                                 psychographic for its gaming system - a game for non-gamers - coupled with
                                 the multitude of mediums pursued to reach critical mass, makes this a
                                 textbook case for any launch campaign. That the PR element was integral to
                                 massive sales and the sowing of a new audience for Nintendo makes this an
                                 obvious selection for PRWeek's Campaign of the Year.

                                 By 2006, Nintendo had dropped to third in the video-game industry behind
                                 Sony and Microsoft after dominating the landscape about 20 years earlier. To
                                 get back on top, its new offering, the Wii, would have to compete with the
                                 high-end graphics and the other tech advances its rivals were offering in their
                                 gaming consoles. The Wii was also set to launch just two days prior to the
                                 Sony Playstation 3.

Golin, Nintendo's agency partner, decided to make the Wii motion-sensitive controller a differentiator. The
controller makes it possible for anyone to play, so the Wii could target the core gaming audience, as well as
"dabblers," "lapsed gamers," and "non-gamers." The team also decided to make a push to get girls, women, and
seniors to buy the Wii, which would help it surpass the competition.

The marketing team convinced reporters and the public that this was a video game for people who didn't
normally play video games - creating a market that didn't previously exist.

Pre-launch, Nintendo executives spoke with industry analysts at the Game Developers Conference, telling them
that the industry needed new players to grow.

Consumers were targeted on MySpace, where the "How Wii Play" profile made more than 60,000 friends, and
through an ambassador program that got the system into the hands of gamers, moms, and large inter-
generational families, who spread information about the system through blogs and word of mouth. On the day
of the launch, midnight events in New York and LA were held. Thousands of consumers showed up and media
coverage was provided by the AP, MTV, Good Morning America, and others.

In the end, the Wii met or exceeded sales goals despite early surveys that showed only 11% of consumers
intended to purchase it. Stores had difficulty keeping enough in stock, with the console outselling the Xbox 360
two to one and the Playstation 3 by three to one. The Wii earned 10 billion audience impressions over three
months, including 14 Today appearances and a stint on South Park

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