Obama taps into in-game advertising

LONDON - Democratic candidate Barack Obama is looking to harness in-game advertising as he campaigns to become the next President of the USA.

Obama has booked ads inside the Xbox 360 racing game Burnout Paradise in an attempt to reach the young gaming community.

The campaign, which features billboards with Obama's image, includes a message that players should register their vote, and to vote early, in conjunction with game publisher Electronic Arts.

Justin Townsend, chief executive of IGA Worldwide, described the billboards as "an extremely savvy move on the party of the Obama campaign".

Townsend said the in-game ads were an innovative and effective way to engage the 18 to 34 demographic, adding: "This is a prime example of a visionary advertiser wanting to impact and influence a highly engaged audience."

The campaign inside the popular game on the Xbox 360 Live network has created a buzz in gaming circles and the blogosphere, and continues the wide use of digital and social media that the Obama team has used, including blogging, Facebook, YouTube and MySpace.

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