Go Farther: DLC and Synergy

Bonnie and I have talked alot about Downloadable Content (DLC) and its impact on video games and to a lesser extent entertainment.  I know we cover all kinds of geekery, but if you think we'll get tired of discussing DLC . . . we're probably not going to for awhile.  DLC is big.

And that leads me to another Go Farther, an idea I'd like to see people try more – and that you may get a few ideas from.

Namely, DLC, be it X-box, Wii/Ds, or what have you gives you awesome chances for synergy.

At its core DLC is really about making downloads normal for electronic entertainment (when previously it was a PC domain).  It's about everything from games to extra content to new costumes being available in an organized manner, such as in-game or in an online store.

It's almost too easy to miss that DLC is a change not just in technology (or more how it's used), but in mindset.  People are now not only able to download things easier, they're getting used to it.

This means incredible chances for game, product, and marketing synergy – letting you get software and goodies into people's hands faster than ever.  The simple download codes and unlockables we see today are the tip of the iceberg of a chance to do some very cool stuff.

Ask yourself for a moment what could be done with DLC for various marketing tie-ins:

  • Books could have download codes to let you get special wallpapers or graphics related to content.
  • Fighting games could be extensible, so new characters – perhaps even from other games – could be downloaded as a cross-promotional.
  • Simple downloadable games (perhaps with online counterparts) could be used as promotionals.  Imagine how, say, a paranormal romance might get some promotion with a datesim download.
  • TV-show or movie themed games could take DLC as part of sequels.

DLC Synergy has, simply, awesome potential to build loyalty, get customers, promote neat things, and in general make cool stuff.

If your career is remotely related to media, you'll want to be aware of DLC.  Who knows what you could try in the near future to make a simple download a way to promote work and build loyalty . . .

– Steven Savage