Paul Evans on launching Xbox's Kinect Star Wars game

Promoting the launch of Microsoft's multi-market videogame Kinect Star Wars earlier this year relied on a marketing strategy focused on creating buzz around social media, supported by media agency UM, says Paul Evans.

Talking to Marketing at IAB Engage 2012, Evans, head of media, EMEA at Xbox, explained the six month marketing strategy behind the launch. Admitting the activity required 16-18 hour days for six months, six days a week, Evans said two strong areas of focus were mobile and social.

Designed to sell games through word of mouth, the award-winning campaign is reported to have generated four times ROI, and to have successfully cut through the technology side to promote a great user experience.

Kinect Star Wars promised to bring the movie franchise to gamers like never before, by harnessing the controller-free power of Kinect for Xbox 360. Players are able to physically hone their Jedi skills, wield the power of the Force in their hands, pilot iconic ships and vehicles, rampage as a vicious Rancor monster or even dance with iconic Star Wars characters.

One of Evans' key learnings since launching the activity is that when it comes to harnessing social media and mobile, it is difficult to beat the power of video.

"Video is incredible," he said. "Video works so, so hard. Video drives a lot of impressions, separate to the app experience, the video worked in its own rights."

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