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QuizUp opens up new branded content opportunities with gaming, social

Mobile application QuizUp has already struck a few deals with brands including HBO and Coca-Cola that want to tap into sponsored content, but some experts believe there is a bigger opportunity around leveraging location and the app?s social graph.

QuizUp is a free iPhone and Android app that lets players answer trivia questions in real-time. With more brand advertisers looking to target consumers in niche apps versus larger advertising networks, the idea behind QuizUp?s marketing opportunities is that brands are directly integrated into the game itself so that the content does not feel like advertising.

?QuizUp has done work with several brands already, but there are opportunities to take that to another level recognizing smartphone capabilities,? said Bryon Morrison, president of mobile marketing at The Marketing Arm, Dallas, TX.

?Relevancy of the brands based on time and location are obvious opportunities,? he said. ?Tapping into social graph data and driving relevancy that way would also increase effectiveness of the advertising.?

Mobile trivia
Each round of QuizUp play includes seven questions, and players have 10 seconds to answer each question. 

The company claims that the app differentiates itself from other games in terms of advertising because of its focus on content.

The app boasts more than 400 topics that players can choose from, many of which are spun towards branding and advertising categories.

For example, one topic asks players to recognize brand logos and another set of questions poses users to guess the names of pop stars in real-time.

Other examples of topics that consumers can answer questions on include sets of questions relating to a specific movie or television show.

The app is set up to recommend games and content that a player may like based on their previous play, which could be useful in helping brands reach a wider group on the app.

?It's more about the approach and execution,? said Viggo Jonsson, vice president of business development at Plain Vanilla Games, Reykjavik, Iceland. QuizUp is developed by Plain Vanilla Games.

?Similar to sponsored or branded content on the Web, we believe that there's an even bigger opportunity for that on mobile, especially with gaming,? he said.

Coca-Cola is currently running a campaign within the app to promote its sponsorship of the upcoming FIFA World Cup.

Players see the soda giant?s content under the ?topics? tab within the menu of the app. 

Thirteen branded Coca-Cola trivia games have been set up that correlates to individual countries participating in the event as well as facts about the World Cup.

One game titled ?Off the Pitch? asks, ?Soccer anthem ?Three Lions? was a hit for who in 1996?? Another game about Italy poses questions about who the country won its biggest game in 1984.

In addition to the QuizUp campaign, Coca-Cola is using new mobile apps and social content to support its involvement in the soccer games (see story). 

Content partnerships
QuizUp is also in the process of striking up partnerships with media brands that integrate content into the app.

For example, the app has licensed the content from HBO?s Game of Thrones so that trivia questions relating to the game appear next to images from the show. 

A similar partnership pulls in visuals from Google Maps into the games.

?All in all, we want to preserve the experience of playing QuizUp, so anything that we explore will revolve around that,? Mr. Jonsson said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Marketer, New York