For Gen Z and Gen Alpha, gaming is a lot more than just playing games. Over 80% of kids and teens play video games, and even more consume gaming content, follow gaming influencers, and socialize with friends through gaming. Gaming’s importance in reaching youth audiences can’t be ignored.

The best way for brands to make lasting connections with the next generation is by plugging into the gaming ecosystem. While building a custom, branded game is a highly effective approach, it’s also the most expensive and time-consuming option. There are several other strategies to reach kids and teens that work for a wide range of budgets and goals. You don’t have to build a fully custom gaming activation to be successful—you just need a strong brand and the right partner.

Here are four approaches for safely reaching youth in and around the gaming ecosystem (without building a game from scratch):

Strategy 1: Game Integrations

What It Is: Incorporate your brand into existing, turnkey gaming experiences.

Where It Runs: Top gaming destinations like Roblox and Fortnite.

Why It Works: Builds brand affinity, leveraging existing, engaged audiences and game developers that know what works.

Cost: $$$

Time to Market: 2-3 Months

Example: SuperAwesome partnered with an apparel brand to create branded in-game items to reward players in a popular Roblox game, distributing 718k+ tote bags and over 1M clothing pieces that helped build brand awareness even after the integrations were over.

Strategy 2: Creator Amplification

What It Is: Partner with gaming influencers to create and amplify content.

Where It Runs: Social platforms like TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, or Twitch.

Why It Works: Leverages the popularity, authenticity, and communities of top creators that fit your brand ethos. Speaks directly to youth gaming audiences.

Cost: $$+

Time to Market: 1 Month+

Example: One retailer worked with SuperAwesome on a creator campaign to reintroduce their heritage footwear brand, delivering 4.3M+ views across TikTok and YouTube, 3.6M+ YouTube impressions, and a 50% average view-through rate on YouTube TrueView.

Strategy 3: Cross-Platform Amplification

What It Is: Amplify campaigns across digital destinations that gamers love.

Where It Runs: The entire youth digital marketplace across mobile app, web, OTT, social, and YouTube.

Why It Works: Achieves massive scale by capturing youth gamers’ attention across the digital landscape.

Cost: $$+

Time to Market:  1 Month+

Example: SuperAwesome helped a leading toy brand drive traffic and create buzz by running media across popular safe apps, sites, and OTT channels, resulting in 12.3M+ YouTube views and 18.3M+ completed views in more than 13 markets.

Strategy 4: In-Game Ads

What It Is: Utilize dynamic, in-game billboard ads for natural reach that fits seamlessly into game play.

Where It Runs: Top gaming destinations, including nearly 100 Roblox games and over 300 app and console games.

Why It Works: Builds positive brand sentiment in digital environments that Gen Alpha and Gen Z love.

Cost: $+

Time to Market: 1 Month

Example: SuperAwesome helped drive 156.3M in-game billboard impressions for a major retail brand.

Gaming is the most immersive, effective way for brands to safely reach influential youth audiences, and there are multiple ways to find success. The most strategic, cohesive approach combines innovative campaigns with authentic experiences, and always carries clear disclosures.

SuperAwesome has the tools and expertise to bring your brand into the gaming ecosystem. Contact our team to learn more about SuperAwesome’s innovative solutions.