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Advergaming is a marketing strategy that combines advertising and gaming. It involves the integration of branded content into video games or the creation of entire games centered around a specific brand or product. This approach leverages the interactive and engaging nature of games to promote products, services, or brand awareness. For example, M&M's created their own game with their branded content, as can be seen in the image below.

M&M's: The Lost Formulas

Here are some key aspects to consider when defining advergaming:

  1. Types of Advergaming:
    • In-game advertising: This involves incorporating branded content into existing games. It could be in the form of billboards, product placements, or branded items within the game environment. For example, seeing real-world brands on billboards in a racing game.
    • Branded games: These are games developed specifically to promote a particular brand or product. The game itself may center around a brand's theme, storyline, or characters, making it an immersive brand experience.
    • Ad-supported games: These are games where advertisements are presented to players during gameplay, often as short videos or banners. The ads might not be directly tied to the game’s theme, but they serve to support its monetization.
  2. Purpose:
    • The primary goal of advergaming is to increase brand awareness, build brand loyalty, and engage with consumers in a unique way. By placing ads in games or creating branded games, companies can reach audiences that are highly engaged and spend a significant amount of time playing games.
    • Another objective can be to create a positive brand association through enjoyable gameplay experiences. If a player enjoys a branded game, they may develop a favorable opinion of the associated brand.
  3. Benefits:
    • Engagement: Games are inherently interactive, providing a unique opportunity to engage consumers in a way that traditional advertising methods often can't match.
    • Targeted Marketing: Advergaming allows for precise targeting based on the type of game and the demographics of its player base. This can help brands reach specific audience segments more effectively.
    • Brand Integration: With branded games, companies have the freedom to integrate their brand's message and products into the gameplay itself, creating a more immersive experience for players.
    • Memorable Experiences: Well-designed advergaming campaigns can create lasting memories and associations with the brand, leading to increased brand recall and customer loyalty.
  4. Challenges:
    • Relevance: The integration of branded content must feel natural and relevant to the game's context; otherwise, it can be perceived as intrusive or annoying.
    • Player Reception: If players feel that a game is overly commercialized or exists solely to promote a brand, they might reject it or leave negative reviews.
    • Development Costs: Creating branded games from scratch can be expensive, and the return on investment might be uncertain.

Overall, advergaming represents a creative way for brands to connect with consumers in a highly interactive setting. However, it requires careful planning and execution to ensure that the gaming experience is enjoyable and that the advertising elements are seamlessly integrated.


Neuromarketing is the application of neuroscience and psychological principles to marketing to understand consumer behavior, decision-making, and emotional responses. Advergaming, as a form of advertising within games, plays a significant role in neuromarketing because it provides a rich environment for studying and influencing consumer behavior. Here are the functions of advergaming in the context of neuromarketing:

  1. Engagement and Immersion:
    • Advergaming offers a high level of engagement due to its interactive nature. This allows marketers to capture users' attention for extended periods, providing a deeper and more immersive brand experience. Neuroscientific tools can measure physiological responses (like brain activity, eye-tracking, or heart rate) to assess how engaged players are with the game and its branded content.
  2. Emotional Connection:
    • Games often evoke strong emotions, whether it's excitement, challenge, or satisfaction. Neuromarketing explores how these emotions influence brand perception and purchasing behavior. Advergaming can create positive emotional associations with a brand, which can lead to greater brand loyalty and advocacy. Neuroimaging tools, like fMRI or EEG, can help understand which game elements elicit the strongest emotional responses.
  3. Memory and Recall:
    • Neuromarketing seeks to understand how consumers retain information. Advergaming can create memorable experiences that reinforce brand recall. By tracking brain activity or using implicit memory tests, marketers can determine which aspects of a game or advergaming campaign are most memorable and what elements drive the strongest recall.
  4. Behavioral Influence:
    • Neuromarketing looks at how certain stimuli trigger specific behaviors. Advergaming can subtly guide player choices or behaviors by incorporating branded content into the game narrative. This might include encouraging players to choose specific in-game items or participate in branded events, which can translate to real-world consumer behavior.
  5. Decision-Making:
    • Games often involve decision-making processes, and advergaming can influence these decisions through product placement, narrative cues, or rewards. Neuromarketing studies can help determine how these in-game choices relate to consumer decisions outside the game. Techniques like eye-tracking and response time analysis are used to understand where players focus and what drives their in-game choices.
  6. Implicit Brand Associations:
    • Advergaming can foster implicit associations between brands and positive experiences. Neuromarketing can explore how these subconscious associations form and how they influence consumer attitudes and purchasing decisions. Implicit association tests (IATs) or similar techniques can reveal underlying biases or preferences created by advergaming.
  7. Consumer Feedback and Refinement:
    • Neuromarketing provides insights into how consumers react to advergaming campaigns, allowing marketers to refine and improve their strategies. By measuring physiological and neurological responses, marketers can fine-tune game elements, pacing, and advertising integration to create a more effective and enjoyable experience.

Overall, advergaming in neuromarketing helps bridge the gap between interactive entertainment and consumer behavior analysis. By exploring how gamers engage with branded content, marketers can create more targeted, impactful, and effective advertising campaigns.


Let's say a marketing agency is working with a beverage company to promote a new energy drink targeted at gamers. To leverage advergaming in their campaign, they developed a mobile game where players navigate through a virtual obstacle course, collecting power-ups and overcoming challenges to reach the finish line.

In this game:

  • Branded Integration: Throughout the game, players encounter obstacles that can only be overcome by collecting cans of the energy drink, prominently displaying the brand logo. Additionally, the power-ups players collect could be themed around the drink's ingredients, reinforcing its energy-boosting properties.
  • Engagement and Immersion: The gameplay is designed to be addictive and challenging, keeping players engaged for extended periods. By immersing players in a fun and exciting experience, the game maximizes exposure to the brand.
  • Emotional Connection: The game's fast-paced action and competitive elements evoke feelings of excitement and accomplishment in players. These positive emotions become associated with the brand, fostering a deeper emotional connection.
  • Memory and Recall: After playing the game, players are more likely to remember the brand due to the strong association between the gameplay experience and the energy drink. This increases the likelihood of them choosing the brand when making purchasing decisions.
  • Behavioral Influence: Throughout the game, subtle cues encourage players to collect more energy drink cans or share their progress on social media to unlock rewards, influencing their in-game behavior and potentially translating into real-world actions, such as purchasing the product.
  • Consumer Feedback and Refinement: Using neuromarketing techniques such as eye-tracking and EEG, the marketing agency gathers data on player engagement, emotional responses, and brand recall. This feedback helps them refine the game's mechanics and advertising integration for maximum effectiveness.

In this example, advergaming serves as a powerful tool within the broader framework of neuromarketing, allowing the beverage company to connect with its target audience in a meaningful and impactful way while also gathering valuable insights into consumer behavior and preferences.

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