In this episode, we explore how Gamesight is changing the game when it comes to video game marketing.
We talk to industry expert Christian Thomas, Gamesight's support and solutions lead, about how Gamesight's proprietary data is bringing a whole new level of KPI tracking to PC, console, and web3 video games. With Gamesight's advanced analytics, marketers can now track key metrics like engagement, retention, and conversion rates, allowing them to optimize their campaigns and drive more revenue.
We dive deep into the technology behind Gamesight's platform and discuss new data trends in the gaming industry. Whether you're a marketer looking to get ahead in the gaming world or simply interested in the latest trends in video game marketing, this episode is a must-listen.
Yane: Anyway, so, okay. Might as well start. So Welcome to this episode of the Gamesight podcast.
So we have on here with us. the wonderful, the amazing Christian Thomas. So what Christian does here is he's the, he's the genius who understands the brain side and the sales side. So he has this unique intersection where he comes into our sales calls and he talks about the product and explains the numbers. Did I miss anything Christian?
Christian: Well officially, officially the lead solution engineer and I lead the solution engineering and support team here. So that's new. and yeah, that, I think that's a pretty good explanation. We talk to customers about our product and that takes a little bit of technical knowledge, takes a little bit of sales knowledge, and being able to blend that together is a unique skill set that you need for [00:01:00] this role.
So yeah, super excited to do that for Gamesight.
Yane: Yeah, I totally forgot. You just got promoted, right? Whoa,
Christian: exciting times,
Yane: Exciting times.
Marker - What is Gamesight
Yane: I guess we can go into like a, how it's made for the Gamesight product, right? I'm
sure you've been doing these sales calls all day, but, here's another one.
Yane: if you wanna go into it. Mm-hmm.
Christian: Yeah, it's what I do. So, Gamesight, the attribution product, it's built for marketing teams, specifically for PC and console games. So for a long time, marketing teams have been in this kind of weird position where they've got a budget and they're tasked with making the most out of that budget.
And what they're supposed to be doing is spending money to drive people into the game, right? So they're putting ads in all these places like Facebook, Google, Twitter, TikTok, they might even have some other stuff that they're doing that's not specifically ads, but you know, companies are really big on their own social accounts [00:02:00] now.
Even gaming companies to push updates and stuff and notify people of new content that's coming out. So they're doing all of this. Not really sure if it's working or not. Because what happens is somebody clicks on the ad and they end up going to, you know, the website of the game, or maybe they go straight to Steam or Xbox and they make a purchase.
Christian: people have no idea if that worked or not, right? Marketing, the marketing team has no idea, if that worked. They're really relying on things like, how many people clicked on my ads, how many people saw my ads? Maybe if I drove 'em to the website, how many people ended up clicking the buy on Steam button?
They don't actually know that they bought it, they just know that they clicked it. so Gamesight solves that problem, for marketing teams, helps them understand what's actually working and what's not, so that they can look really good at the end of the year and say, hey, we reduced all these like, metrics that are really important for marketing teams.
They'll say things like, cost per acquisition, return on ad spend, all these, industry terms that are really important for them that say [00:03:00] we're making good decisions with the money that you've given us for marketing. So that's what we do. We help them do good at the end of the year. We help 'em look good, help 'em make sure that they're hitting those goals that they have.
Yane: Amazing. Really good overview of our product in case anyone doesn't already know. Imagine not already knowing what Gamesight does.
Christian: We get such good word of mouth. That's crazy. Like we have a lot of people come to us today and they're like. Yeah. I have a friend that works at such and such company and they're using Gamesight and they're like, you guys have to get on Gamesight like you don't know about this. So we get a lot of word of mouth stuff.
We're big in the industry.
Yane: Oh my God, I feel kind of popular. Gamesight's kind of popular.
Yeah, it it is something that like companies have been needing, right?
Like it came out of like a need.
Christian: Well, yeah, to, to that end, like there's been similar things for the mobile world for a long time. That's, that's the crazy thing, is that mobile. Games figured this out a long time ago, [00:04:00] but just the ecosystem for PC and console is just different, and no one had figured it out yet. So we're kind of in this interesting time right now where it's all very new.
Like we're educating a lot of marketing teams on this ourselves, helping them understand what's possible just because the, the, the tech is so new for them. So, yeah, and we're, we're the only ones really doing it right now, so it's, it's a really exciting time to be here.
Yane: So we are pretty new in this space, what do you think sets us apart from, I guess, like other companies that also do like data attribution?
Christian: Well, just the fact that we can do it for PC and console, so we do run into people from time to time that provide other attribution solutions for other industries and those attribution solutions were great for those other industries. So, like an example that I use all the time is if you have your t-shirt store,
you're selling t-shirts outta your garage and you've got a [00:05:00] website and you've got a little bit of ad spend that you're throwing out there every month for Facebook ads. you can use a Facebook pixel on your website or Google Analytics pixel on your website to help you understand if those ads are performing right. So help you understand if someone clicked on that ad. Did they actually end up making a purchase decision?
see all the things that Gamesight shows you for PC and console games, right? You can see, which campaigns are working best, which ad types are working best, is there a certain messaging or certain type of creative that works really good? And you can double down on that stuff. So sometimes we talk to customers that have tried to apply this type of technology for PC and console gains, and it just doesn't work.
Like the ecosystem is different. and these tools only help really up to the point of the website and they kind of fall off after that, which is really the critical thing, right? Like all the good stuff is happening downstream of the website. All the good stuff is happening on the Xbox storefront or Steam storefront where they're making a purchase, once they're actually in game, making a purchase decision once they're in game.
So [00:06:00] that's where all the important stuff is happening. And so when we run into competitors, what we usually find is they're not even really competing on the same thing.
We can help them measure all that stuff on the website, but they're really missing what's important for marketers, which is all happening in the game and on those storefronts where those tools can't really help.
Yane: That's crazy how that works, actually. So we work in the game to track things like Conversions.
Christian: Right, right. It might be a minor distinction for some people, but I, I think it's pretty important to say that we're not actually in the game, in the game. We're on like the server side, so we only get like a small subset of telemetry. So it's only stuff that's happening that's important for marketing teams.
So we don't see everything, of course, we
Christian: Somebody started a game, somebody made a purchase decision. We're seeing those types of things.
Yane: Right. Like whatever the developer themselves set up as well.
Christian: Yeah, exactly. Yeah. So there's, [00:07:00] yeah, nothing, nothing in the game. In the game.
Marker - Industry trends
Yane: I really wanna go into like industry trends and like unique things that you've been seeing.
Anything that comes to mind.
Christian: On industry trends. So I think, I think something that we're gonna start seeing more and more of, and it's one of those things that I think gets, gets pushed a lot before it's actually really happening, but, we are starting to hear a little bit about it from customers, which for me starts to make it feel a little bit more real.
and that's in game advertising. I have mixed feelings on this. I mean, there, there's a lot of ways that it could be done poorly and a few ways that I think it could be done well. I think the problem is like it's low hanging fruit, right? Like the gaming industry is 100, 200 billion industry every year. And it's always growing and big brands are eventually going to want a piece of that. Like they're going to be more aggressive about trying to find opportunities to reach that audience, non endemic. So people like, you know, Coke car brands, cereal brands, trying [00:08:00] to get their IP in front of gamers.
It's a super valuable audience. It's a young audience. And so I think we've seen a little bit of this, in things like, Fortnite where you maybe get branded worlds. I think there are places where it could fit naturally in, you know, areas like, you're playing like a Grand Theft Auto type game, which has like realistic satirical billboards that are obviously making fun of brands that actually exist and maybe fitting in some stuff there that could actually work.
Some ways that it could be done a little bit better, but obviously tons of ways that it could be disruptive. Tons
Christian: ways that can catch a lot of backlash from gamers. So I don't know. I think we're going to see a little bit more of that start to come become real over the next few years. I just think the industry is too big for brands to ignore for too much longer.
Yane: Dang in game advertising. Do you feel like it's inevitable?[00:09:00]
Christian: Again, like mixed feelings on this, like, I, it is not that like I want it to happen necessarily. Like I like my, you know, space that's just, I can go and play my game and not think about anything else. But I think for some types of games, some brands that maybe fit a little bit better with that ip. Some studios that are maybe looking for additional monetization.
There's a lot of incentive there. so like, think about any mobile game that you've played, like ever. There's interstitial ads, like between loading screens, like when you fire up the game, like you have to close them out. It's super disruptive and people just kind of like accept it now, like it's just a thing that happens.
I hope that it doesn't get that disruptive for games, and I don't think it'll happen for all games, but I think for maybe certain genres, maybe certain companies where it could be a better fit, I think we'll eventually start to see it. Yeah,
Yane: Dang. I mean, I'm just thinking about, I don't know if you've played [00:10:00] Roblox recently.
Christian: They do the same thing, right? They have some of those branded worlds and, and that type of, those type of events.
I just hope it's in a way that's not intrusive and not disruptive for gamers.
Yane: You don't like,Walmart Land in Roblox?
Christian: Yeah, I don't see myself, I'm, I'm not a big Roblox player, but I think if I did play Roblox, I probably wouldn't be spending too much time in Walmart then. But I don't know. See at, at the same time, like, you know, I don't know how you feel about Metaverse discourse, but I mean, again, all of these things have a place where there is an angle where it could fit for a certain type of player.
Like, I don't know, could you imagine going into like Walmart World and if you spent 30 minutes in there, I don't know, you get like a gift card or something. I don't know.
Christian: Throwing ideas at the wall, but like that's like the difference between actually putting thought into these kind of things and trying to do it in a way that works for your [00:11:00] players instead of just like being super intrusive
And just doing something as a cash grab.
Christian: You know what I mean?
Yane: True. Nowadays it's sort of like, what can the advertiser do for the player? Right? It's not just like, it's not just like a TV commercial ad anymore.
Christian: Yeah. Advertisers. I mean, advertisers are getting smarter. They're, They're trying
Christian: more about their audiences. They're trying to be a better fit. They know that. You know, targeting Gen Z is different from, trying to gain, new millennial customers or more Gen X customers.
They know that part of that is like, how do I fit with my audience
As 'moomers' we can't relate, unfortunately.
Yane: Yeah 'moomers'! We avoid detection by all advertisers.
Christian: Under the radar.
Yane: We move in stealth. Yeah.
Well in the advertising space, I mean I think that people's embracing of influencers. I like that. I think that's very cool. I mean, I have been watching Twitch for a really long [00:12:00] time. I'm not like loyal to any particular streamers, but
I bounce around a lot and it's really cool to see how that community has grown from, you know, being something that you might be afraid to tell, like your parents or something like, oh yeah, I'm a streamer to like people legitimately getting large brand deals from gaming companies and non-gaming companies, because people take them seriously, because people understand that the audience that they've cultivated is valuable and they have something to offer.
Their name means something and when they talk about something on a stream, like it's going to mean something to the people, that watch that stream. Obviously that cuts both ways. Like that could be good and bad, but to see the, the trend of like seeing the gaming community maturing in that way to where, there are those opportunities for big personalities, for people that are great at games, people that are fun to watch.
Like, I like that trend. I, I hope we keep moving in that.
Yane: Yeah. I love the idea of like indie creators being [00:13:00] able to create their own platform and even becoming legitimized, like you said. Of course, yeah. There's a lot of, ups and downs, a lot of fires on the internet every day. But for the most part, like you said, it, it is like a cool thing, right? I think I read somewhere that like one outta six kids wants to be like an influencer when they grow up.
Christian: This is us consuming that, like scare tactics like media, where it's like, do you know what kids are doing these days?
Yane: Are you tracking their screen time?
Like Yeah. But like, yeah. I mean it's a legitimate thing. People, like young people, they idolize, you know, streamers because they're relatable, right?
Christian: I mean, they are normal people, right? They're not like movie stars, they're not sports athletes. These things that seem un unattainable. They're a person that has a webcam and a mic, and they play a game and they've cultivated this community of other people that are like them. And, you know, once you get to a certain audience size, that, that becomes super valuable.
I have friends that have like kids or like they have [00:14:00] young cousins and stuff, and they just like, they're always on the iPad and they're watching streamers play games. And I'm like, that's crazy. Like, I do that too.
Yane: That's so cute.
Christian: Everyone, yeah,
it's like everyone does it.
But like I started doing that when I was like 13 or 14. They're doing it at like very, very young ages. And then there are older people here that can like cite streamers by name and I'm like, oh my gosh. It's a huge audience and, I'm, I'm happy to see it continue to mature and grow in that way.
Yane: Yay. I think the hope is just on that path to growth, may it be as not cringe as possible. Hmm. That's my hope.
Christian: You know, just part of the growing pains, right? Like we're talking about, you know, young to like young adult people, these are people without media training. These are people like getting this platform for the first time. They're gonna make mistakes.
And, I, I think it just, it comes with the territory. You know, people will learn from other people's mistakes and you hope that will continue to happen as the, the community matures. but yeah, you're, you're definitely right.[00:15:00]
Yane: Yeah. I think for me it hit when, I went to a friend's house and on their smart tv. The main program they had open was Twitch. Like they wouldn't go to like, you know, Netflix or Hulu or whatever. Like the streaming site they used was Twitch. And then I noticed like a couple of my friends had their houses set up like that.
And I was like, yo, gamers kind of made it, I don't know.
Christian: I know.
People legitimately like search for information on TikTok now. Like that's a thing that people do. Like you want to like, Find something out. You're like, okay, who's talking about these topics? I guess I'm old because I, you know, I don't do that.
But , you know, I, I will go YouTube things and like, that's different from how my parents Yeah, Search for information. So things are, things are different. Things are changing.
Yane: If, if nobody got my back, What is it like the random math YouTuber? Who's teaching me like advanced calculus, like he got my back.
Christian: Oh yeah. Everybody has those people [00:16:00] like the one person that helped you get through a class like he has like a hundred subscribers on YouTube, but they're like the best, like Calc 2 creator on YouTube.
Yane: Can we sponsor those guys? Yeah. Yeah.
Christian: Yeah, we need to find them. Do an influencer activation for one of those guys.
Christian: The data trends that tend to be pretty cool, I guess we were talking about TikTok a little bit before, but it's grown a lot in the gaming industry just in the past year. I mean, we've seen the growth. For how much people were using it just like a year ago to now, it's exploded.
So gaming companies are taking it seriously as a place to serve ads. That audience is super valuable. We've been talking about how much like younger audiences are on TikTok. and, and those, those brands are super valuable, to, to gaming companies because they want you. They want these loyal audiences for their games.
They want to go where the most [00:17:00] people are. And right now that's, that's TikTok. so that's, that's been a huge change, that, that I've seen. Just on the data side, the amount of people that are like now asking us, like before we were getting, maybe a year ago, we were getting people saying like, should we be advertising on TikTok. Like, is that a smart thing? Like, is that, are we gonna, is that gonna be worthwhile for us to spend our money there? And now they're like, you guys support TikTok, right? We're like, yeah.
Yane: Like "we need TikTok!" Yeah. Nice. I mean, first of all, do you think it'll get banned? They've been talking about banning it. There's like another push in congress, but I know they've been talking about banning it since it, it's, it's been out, so I don't really
Christian: Dude, I don't know. My radar is so broken on these kind of things. Like I, I think ultimately what we see, I, I find it very hard to believe that we get like a full, a full ban. You know, just like across the board, [00:18:00] even, even like countrywide. I think what we might actually see as maybe. they start age gating some things,
they start maybe banning it on like specific devices, like I think some government employees maybe are not allowed to have it on
their government phones.
I think we maybe see some stuff like that, some small like targeted, restrictions. But, I think, I think it's too popular. I think there's too much. Investment into the platform from, I mean, we've been talking about these brands sp pumping a lot of ad dollars and, and revenue. Lots of influencers that are like specifically TikTok influencers.
So there's like a lot of, I think there's a lot of attention on it right now.
Yane: People would riot, all the children would take to the streets.
Christian: All the Zoomers like that, you'd have to actually, you'd have to actually play out that scenario of like, would you rather fight like a hundred ducks or like 100 10 year olds or anything?
Yane: Oh my God, that's so funny. They'd be like, yo, no cap. That was not bussing.[00:19:00]
Christian: Yes, slang terms at me that I, I don't understand. That would ruin me. Like, that's it. I would just like, they, I would know that they were making fun of me and like I, I would just give up. I'd be like, okay, I'm sorry. You win. You win
Yane: For TikTok, we've done a couple of campaigns and we actually looked at the aggregate data in our 2022 AD Network report. Right. And I think the finding was actually that like, while TikTok has like really high exposure, people don't really tend to like click through the ad.
They just like see it and then they, you know, swipe past.
Christian: It's very high speed, right? Like that, that's part of the, the platform is, it's geared towards short term content and, and you know, getting through things like quickly to find the stuff that you like. so yeah, there are some limitations on tracking that for ad performance if there's no click. but there might be some changes on that soon on the TikTok side, to help advertisers,
so we'll see on that.
Marker - Future predictions
Yane: What about like, future predictions? Is there anything fun or interesting? Any insights you have into what the future might look like for the gaming industry.
Christian: Ooh, I wish, like, I wish I just had a crystal ball or I could just see what was coming. I, I, I don't have anything like, probably super enlightening. I think anything that I would say would, people would just be like, oh, duh. But I. I'm not a VR guy, like I had never owned a VR headset, but I, I like the potential of vr.
I like the idea of it. I think it's still probably a little expensive for a lot of people and I think a lot of the experiences are, maybe things that people can experience better on PlayStation or, or Xbox, or like Steam. but I think that's changing. I, I've seen some unique stuff in the past couple of years that really make the most out of vr, so I'm kind of excited to see that technology mature a little bit, come to a price point where more people can buy it and in more [00:21:00] studios are excited about developing unique games for those platforms.
I feel like, I feel like vr, it feels like it's been around for a while. , but it's still, it's still pretty young, relevant to, you know, traditional gaming technologies. so there's still little ways to go and there's still not too many studios developing for it yet, but every year, you know, we get a little bit closer to it becoming more mainstream, so,
Yane: True. I mean, Among Us VR popped off for sure. Like revived the game actually.
Christian: Yeah, the Half Life, the Half Life VR game looked great like that. That almost got me, like I, if I would've had the money to spend at the time, I probably would've bought a headset just to play that game, because that's like, sometimes that's the kind of thing that happens, right? Like there's a tipping point where.
the price range gets to, gets to just the right spot. There's a big enough or exciting enough game or IP that releases on that platform and then all of a sudden, like it hits that tipping point, it becomes mainstream. so I don't think we're there yet. [00:22:00] I think we'll get there. I think there's still some like kinks to work out with the technology and, and the price point needs to come on down a little bit, but, it's coming.
It's coming. I don't know when, but I, I can see.
Yane: Heck yeah. definitely think there's, I think there's a lot of ups and downs with like the metaverse and VR and stuff like that, but it's definitely it. It's here to stay, I think. And there's like a lot of exciting things people are doing, so yeah.
Christian: Everything has its place, right? Like, it, it's, it's one of those things that we were talking about before there, for all of these different technologies, you know, VR or just maybe the metaverse or, or in-game advertising, like all of this stuff, it won't work for everyone. It won't work for every game. It won't work for every player, every game, studio, every genre.
Each one of those things has its place. So like is Metaverse going to be the like, you know, utopian dream that like maybe people like evangelize it to be, or like, you know, people that are probably [00:23:00] incentivized to evangelize the belief? I don't think so, but I think. , all of those things have a place for a certain function and a certain group of people and, and certain type of, you know, either player, if it's a game that we're talking about or company, if it's someone adopting some metaverse technologies to make remote work easier or something like that.
Yane: Hmm. Yeah. So it's, I feel like, in the age of like social media and the internet, people like hype things up a lot. They like overvalue things. Overinflate like the true functionality of like this kind of tech, and
Christian: What? Internet hypes things? No, no, never
Yane: Yeah. No, no way. Yeah. Yeah. So I think a lot of that, I think especially in like the last year or so, you know, like crypto crash, like metaverse, like Facebook, or excuse me, like meta Facebook, me also known as meta, sort of like exploded, right?
And like, I think a lot of, these inflated ideas have sort of readjusted, but I, I almost think that like, it, it's sort of a good thing for the [00:24:00] industry, right? Because now the real players. they don't need to worry about like the stigma. They can just focus on creating a good product. Yes.
Christian: And there there's a thing about technology, right? Like I guess maybe this is cliche now. I thought it was enlightening when I first heard it, but like they say that history doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme. Technology has a similar type of pattern that it follows a lot of times, so. Something, some new emerging technology will come out.
It'll make a big splash. People will get super excited, hype will be crazy. And then people realize like, okay, this thing is like 10 years too early. It's way too expensive. or it's just not, . It's not practical, it's not useful. The audience isn't there yet. This you can look at basically anything that we use today and find this pattern.
Smartphones did it. I have an Apple watch on right now that was the same thing, like this technology was conceptualized and prototyped like in the eighties and didn't actually become mainstream until like five or 10 [00:25:00] years ago.
Christian: So this type of thing happens with everything. I think the same thing will happen with Web 3 technologies.
Gaming seems like it's a good fit, but there's a lot of bad ways to do it. There's a few good
Yane: Crypto Zoo. Yeah.
Christian: Stuff like that. yeah, so, so there, there's bad ways and there's good fits for these technologies for certain things. Like, we've seen this with CS go. For a while. Like there's a whole marketplace for just owning actual in-game items but there's like a whole off game economy where you can do this type of exchange. It's been proven out that there are people that are willing to accept this kind of thing. It's just, first of all, there has to be a fun game. People have to be able to interact with the technology.
Like Web 3 is still kind of hard for most people to conceptualize. So it's not main streamable yet. so it's got a ways to go. So like we're kind of like at that hype cycle, if you look at it at a curve, there's the big tall hype cycle at the beginning, and then it hits this trough of despair and, and shame.
And then [00:26:00] eventually it comes out into like this mature technology that people can actually use and enjoy and interact with.
Yane: Mm-hmm. . Yeah. Thank you
Christian: The trough of despair. You like that? You like the despair,
Yane: Sometimes, sometimes you're in the trough of despair, but it means that you're climbing out of it, you know?
Christian: Always looking forward and upwards. Yes. We're
Yane: Yes. Life lessons with Christian
Marker - Talking about the department
Christian: I guess we're still a pretty small department, right? we're, because we're still a small company, but we're growing really fast and I just think it's super exciting to be a part of a company that's growing and gives people the opportunity to take ownership of things and lead.
and you know, we do have a great team on the solution engineering and support side. So, you know, small team, but full of rock stars I think.
Yane: I love that. Rock stars.
We got data, rock stars.
Christian: Yeah, it's me and Mark today. We'll continue to grow that as the company grows, but yeah, starting small.
Marker - Mark
Yane: I feel like I, I [00:27:00] interact with Mark the least on the entire , the entire team
Christian: Yeah, so Mark is, he's super instrumental. He's kind of like our first, he's like our line of defense, right? So whenever a lot of people find game site the first time through our website, right? So like a lot of our marketing materials that you work on ends up driving people to our website and when they, you know, make a support ticket there, mark is actually the one that receives that.
Yane: Cool. .So if you go to our website and there's like that little chat box at the bottom that's like, you can talk to Mark there.
Christian: That's Mark. Yeah. So if anybody's listening and wants to talk to Mark no, please don't do that. Please, please don't, please don't use it just to talk to Mark.
Yane: Please don't.
Christian: but theoretically you could talk to him now, Yeah, so, so that's the, yeah, that's the solutions engineering and, and, support team today. But yeah, we'll, we'll continue to grow that as the company.
Yane: Any last things you wanted to share before we, wrap up this episode?
Christian: Happy. [00:28:00] Happy to be a guest. This is my first podcast experience. I'm kind of starstruck.
This is awesome. Just being on the Game site pod. I think it's a big thing. love that we're getting our name out there like that. And yeah, if you're interested about Gamesight, I'm not telling you to go to the website in poke Mark and talk to him and say, what's up?
Yane: All right. Yeah. Check us out at, Gamesight.io and thank you again Christian.
That's a wrap.