playstation marketing

This article is part of the Visual Revolution Summit interview series. Learn more about the Summit here.

If anyone understands the importance of community, it’s PlayStation’s VP of Marketing John Koller. With the launch of the PS4, “the most socially connected gaming platform ever launched,” PlayStation is making sharing integral to the gaming platform. We recently had the opportunity to interview John on how this shift is effecting PlayStation’s marketing and product. Check out his responses below!

Q: What does the Visual Revolution mean to you, your team, or marketing as a whole?
A: PlayStation is a content and narrative based company that relies on and markets the rich high-definition graphical fidelity of our games. As we built the PS4, we started with our gamers’ expectations in mind – which was to create the best place to play and with graphics that are comparable to the very best theatrical experiences. When we market the PS4, we use this messaging as a foundation and find partners that help promote these features, while also allowing our gamers to participate and celebritize their experiences with our platform. Twitch is a great example of a partner that allows gamers to live stream their PS4 gaming experiences and celebrate with their social community.

Q: One of the big announcements for the PS4 was the inclusion of share functionality – what was the motivation to include this and how have Playstation fans responded to it?
A: Sharing is a gamer behavior that has been in the industry for years, but we strongly believed that building this experience in at a platform level would facilitate our broader goal of creating the most socially connected gaming platform ever launched. And I think this inclusion has paid strong dividends for gamers and the business alike. With a strategic goal of celebritizing the gamer and their incredible achievements, we really tapped into the mindset of how gamers play. They want to feel epic, they want to play with their friends, and they want to celebrate their gaming wins.

Q: From Youtube to Twitch, there is a big audience for gaming. Has this affected the content the marketing team at PlayStation creates?
A: Most definitely. Because the audience for gaming content has exploded, our focus is more on tonality – and it’s our firm belief that authenticity in marketing communications is the most important consideration. We must be credible and speak to gamers in their voice. Where we speak to them is important, but how we speak is most critical. That shift has changed the content we create and has provided the opportunity for PlayStation creative such as Bid for Greatness (ability to bid for PlayStation gaming items), Conversations with Creators (insights from game developers), and First to Greatness (celebration of first touchdown, first goal, first head shot in games played).

Q: What other social platforms does the PlayStation team use to engage the gaming community? 
A: We strongly believe that building the most authentic and socially connected gaming community on our platforms is the way to drive growth – meaning that those who begin to play on the PS4 quickly see that playing with their friends makes the experience that much more fun and engaging. The tip of that spear is our membership service PlayStation Plus, which provides the best opportunity to experience more together. We engage our existing community here, and advocacy of this special membership and connection to PlayStation grows this social platform substantially.

Want to learn more about PlayStation’s community marketing? John will be presenting during the Video Vidi Vici section at VRS. Request your invite today!

About The Author

Monica is a book hoarder and gets overexcited about community-driven marketing. She lives in New York City and dreams of a day when a landlord will let her have a cat.

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