Meet the Sims … and Shoot Them: The Rise of Militainment

I ran across an interview with the author of this fascinating article during this mornings NPR’s “Morning Edition”. He offers a mind-expanding view of how gaming is changing not just marketing but the way the Army recruits and trains soldiers and even how wars will now be fought.

“America’s Army” is a video game…a tactical, multiplayer, first-person shooter” in game lingo…originally intended as a recruitment promotional vehicle for the U.S. Army. What it’s turned out to be is one of the most downloaded and popular internet games of all time, the most successful single marketing activity the Army has ever undertaken for recruitment purposes, a fascinating case study of new marketing techniques in action and a peek at how battles of the future will be waged…in real life theaters and marketing ones.

I’d say most marketers have yet to wake up to the power that gaming could play in the marketing mix. But, there are some really strange and wonderful examples of how it works. Having lunch with two clients in the oil field services business last week, they raved about a very successful game they had created to demo one of their drilling products.

If big brands are having trouble determining a line item for social media or mobile (and they are), they’ll have fits about a game line item. It just doesn’t fit into one of their standard, predetermined media categories. But, if gaming could do this for the army, imagine what it could do for a Gillette or Axe.

What examples do you have regarding how gaming is changing marketing?

By P.W. Singer | Foreign Policy.

via Meet the Sims … and Shoot Them: The Rise of Militainment – By P.W. Singer | Foreign Policy.


About Scott Cone
A husband to a loving, lovely wife. Father to six great kids and two grand kids. I'm a marketing, advertising and promotion professional with a keen interest in big ideas, all things digital and especially how mobile is changing all aspects of communication and marketing. I play guitar and sing, write music, write screenplays, act, scuba dive, weight lift, ski and enjoy Christian apologetics, logic, evolution versus intelligent design and the basis for morals, values and ethics.

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