We all know social media has become an integral part of people’s lives. Most of us have Facebook or Google+ accounts, and communicate to people through instant messenger or some other form of online community. However, social media also refers to social gaming, in which people play games online or through their mobile devices with a network of tens of millions. Games like Cityville, Words with Friends and Angry Birds are some of the best-known examples of these popular social gaming communities and they’re becoming more wide spread every single day. While these games are often considered distractions or time-wasters from people’s day-to-day lives, it’s clear that this form of social media is one that is here to stay. What’s wrong with putting a little play back into people’s lives anyway?
Social Gaming Evolves
With such a broad fan base and wide following, the medium of social gaming is obviously evolving. By understanding where social gaming is going next, it may be possible to predict the trends and get ahead of the curve when creating the next huge social game, like Bingo Friendzy or Bubble Safari. Avid gamers will also learn which traits of these simple video games to focus on when they’re developing new concepts. For those not familiar with the brand, Jackpotjoy is currently the UK’s leading online instant win and bingo site with over 4 million players and paying out in excess of GBP 90 million every month. Michael Saunders, managing director, plans to expand the brand, which is owned by Gamesys Group, and reach a wider audience while ensuring that all players are over 18 years of age and that other criteria is met. The newly released “Bingo and Slots Friendzy” is Jackpotjoy’s first Facebook app which offers real cash jackpots to users.
Gamer Demographics in the U.S.: Not What You Might Have Expected
To do this effectively, you should first understand who social gamers are. Some of the statistics may surprise you. Fifty-eight percent of social gamers in the U.S. are over 40-years-old and twenty-nine percent are married with children. Seventy-nine percent have a college degree or better and forty-four percent make over $50,000 per year. Most shockingly however, is that only eight percent of all the people who play social games actually access them from their mobile phones—meaning the vast majority are playing these games on their personal or work computers. There are a number of other important stats to note, like fifty-four percent of social gamers are female and about sixty-three percent of these social gamers are between the ages of 30 and 59, as opposed to teenagers, which you might expect. With this in mind, social gaming companies know where to market most of their games and what markets they need to pitch their message to.
Just Like In the Real Casinos
Some of the first and still the most popular social games are those in which players can gamble against each other in some way. The top Facebook game in July 2012, Texas Holdem Poker, has been around since 2007. It now has 7 million daily users and 33 million monthly active users. Online gambling poker rooms have been around for well over a decade now and are similar to actual poker rooms in casinos. These social games are not much different and haven’t really strayed too far from the most popular games of the past. Even as social gaming evolves, it will always tap into the traits of successful games from the past, namely those with large amounts of risk, chance, luck and drama.
Social Gaming Meets Fashion
However, a new wave of social games unlike any games we’ve ever seen or played before are also being developed. Fashion and social games are about to collide, even though that may seem like a pretty bizarre mix. However, anything that generates millions upon millions of “likes” is something the fashion industry will ultimately want a piece of. At Fashion Week this year, DKNY and Fashion Week Live partnered to form a Facebook game. In this game, players can “launch their very own fashion career by racking up points to win digital DKNY clothes, virtual apartment upgrades and respect points from other players,” according to a report by The Huffington Post.
With all types of people taking interest in the latest social games, and multiple industries investing, it seems like social gaming is quickly becoming a part of every aspect of our lives.