Everything You Must Know About Nintendo's Marketing Strategyby@priya11

Everything You Must Know About Nintendo's Marketing Strategy

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According to companiesmarketcap.com, as of November 2022, Nintendo is the world's 312th most valued company and amongst prodigious gaming companies with a current market cap of over $48.87 B and a total revenue of $14.06 B.

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How Nintendo Expanded Its Market Capitalization & Customer Base with Creative Positioning


Introduction

Nintendo has been an innovator in the video game industry for a really long period now, and its marketing strategy is no exception. For decades, the Nintendo marketing strategy has leveraged creative positioning to expand its market capitalization and customer base.


In this blog post, we'll take a closer look at the Nintendo marketing strategy from prototyping to production staging and how it has evolved over time, helping the company architect a grand success story. Nintendo's marketing strategy is unique, from the way it approaches product segmentation to the innovative tactics it uses to engage its customers to its creative positioning ways in the highly competitive video gaming space.


Evolution of Nintendo

Evolution of Nintendo


The Nintendo marketing strategy focuses on targeting new markets and leveraging new technology to expand its fan base. Consequently, Nintendo has grown prolifically, and all this while consistently being nothing less than bliss to video gamers over the years.


Nintendo's market share has been growing primarily because of its consistent brand voice and the amazing experience that this valuable company provides. The branding and advertising strategies of the company are incredibly clear and focused on framing a customer intimacy model.


The company has been ruling the video gaming world and, with time, has evolved and ascended to new horizons. Its consoles have always been characterized by new technology for enhancing both causal and serious gaming experiences across an array of devices by leveraging mobile gaming as well as desktop and P.C. gaming.


An important part of the Nintendo marketing strategy is winning brand loyalists in the form of older audiences as well as GenZ.


Nintendo: Brief History


Nintendo is a Japanese multinational consumer electronics and video game company founded in 1889 by Fusajiro Yamauchi.


Nintendo’s original headquarters in Kyoto: Source: Wikimedia Commons

Nintendo’s original headquarters in Kyoto: Source: Wikimedia Commons


It originally produced handmade playing cards before branching out into other types of entertainment, such as toys, video games, and health & fitness products.


Nintendo’s Old Headquarter Nameplate: Image Credit : Eckhard Pecher | Edited by Smuckola | CC BY 2.5, Link | Wikimedia Commons |

Nintendo’s Old Headquarter Nameplate: Image Credit : Eckhard Pecher | Edited by Smuckola | CC BY 2.5, Link | Wikimedia Commons |


In the 1980s also, video games were very popular. Atari was dominant in this market. Games designers around the world were scrambling to develop games for Atari V.C.S. systems. Similarly, arcade games flourished in Japan and the U.S., which encouraged Nintendo to start playing arcade games. Donkey Kong was such a success that it prompted Nintendo to escape financial difficulties and helped to expand its distribution network across North America.


In 1982 Nintendo was selling 60,000 Donkey Kong consoles sales to consumers worldwide. It was as focused on dominating the video game market with creative positioning as it is now.

Today, the Nintendo entertainment system is much more widespread than just playing cards, and the brand dominates the video game industry. It is one of the world's most recognizable brands globally and has become synonymous with gaming culture.


In the early 1980s, Nintendo released its first home video game console, the Famicom, in Japan and later introduced it to North America as the N.E.S. (Nintendo Entertainment System).

This system popularized gaming with titles such as Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, and Tetris. In 1989, Nintendo also released the Game Boy, which was the first hand-held video game console.


The massive success of the N.E.S. and Game Boy led Nintendo to create other successful gaming hardware such as the SNES (Super Nintendo Entertainment System), N64 (Nintendo 64), GameCube, Wii, and Wii U.


In addition to its own hardware, Nintendo has also developed highly acclaimed games for both mobile devices and home consoles. Some of their most iconic titles include Donkey Kong, Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, and Pokémon. Many people have enjoyed playing Mario from a very early age and continue doing so even now.


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According to companiesmarketcap.com, as of November 2022, Nintendo is the world's 312th most valued company and amongst prodigious gaming companies with a current market cap of over $48.87 B and a total revenue of $14.06 B.


It continues to be an innovator in the industry, creating memorable experiences for gamers of all ages. Nintendo is also well known for its commitment to quality and customer service, which have seen it become one of the most successful video game companies in history. However, the massive success story of Nintendo is not without some misses.

For example, the Wii was Nintendo's best-selling home console of all time, so of course, its successor launched with impossibly high expectations. And yes, the Wii U was an abject failure, despite having a number of excellent first-party Nintendo games.


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Today, Nintendo continues to produce some of the world’s most popular games and consoles, as well as developing new technologies to create even more engaging gaming experiences.

With its large library of iconic games, strong reputation for quality and customer service, and ever-evolving technology, Nintendo has established itself as an industry leader and a pillar of the gaming world.


Let’s explore more on how Nintendo's marketing strategy is way ahead of its competition; read on.


Nintendo’s Global Footprint


Nintendo sells its products worldwide as a major influencer amongst the major players in the game market. The European head office is headquartered in Frankfurt, Germany. The U.S. head office is in Washington and is headquartered in Melbourne, with operations throughout Oceania, New Zealand, etc. Nintendo's product is widely distributed in all major areas of the world and can be purchased across the market.


Emphasizing the importance of being a global brand, the late Satoru Iwata, former C.E.O. and President of Nintendo, had said, "We are trying to capture the widest possible audience, all around the world."


Their distribution network is powerful in that the products are available in gaming shops and hypermarkets.


Nintendo: Vision, Mission & Values


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Nintendo, the Japanese multinational consumer electronics and video game company since its inception in 1889, has grown to become one of the most successful and influential companies in the world. Let's see how the vision, mission, and values of the company deliver remarkable customer value and have done wonders over the years:


1. Nintendo’s vision is to Innovate and Engage People


Nintendo's unique consoles, and products, blended with the latest technology, are hyper-focused on innovation to engage people by creating unique entertainment experiences that inspire and entertain the world and deliver phenomenal customer experiences.


2. Nintendo’s Customer-First Culture


Nintendo’s mission statement, “we believe it is essential not only to provide products of the highest quality but to treat every customer with attention, consideration, and respect,” describes its commitment to providing innovative products, services, and experiences for its customers.


3. Nintendo’s Values Focused on Mutual Reverence, Integrity, Quality & Safety


Nintendo's values include quality, innovation, respect for others, integrity, and safety. These values are applied to all aspects of the company, from product design to customer support. They help guide the direction of the company and help ensure that the company remains focused on its goals.


Nintendo’s commitment to quality is seen in its dedication to creating products that are safe, secure, and of high quality. This commitment to safety extends to all aspects of the company’s operations, including product design, manufacturing processes, customer service, and marketing practices.


The company also has a strong commitment to innovation, with an emphasis on creating new experiences for customers. Nintendo strives to continuously improve its products and services while respecting the rights and opinions of others.


The company's commitment to integrity is reflected in its corporate culture and how it conducts business. Nintendo has established a set of ethical standards that are embedded in its D.N.A., which helps the company ensure that it always acts with honesty and fairness.


4. Building Intimate & Deep Sentimental Bonds with Customers


Nintendo has been successful in creating a unique brand experience that is both entertaining and inspiring.


Through its vision, mission, and values, it has been able to connect with people on a deeper level and build relationships beyond the transactional one.


Nintendo has created an emotional connection with its customers that extends beyond just providing products and services.


This strong connection allows them to stand out in the market by leveraging the customer intimacy model that transcends far beyond transactional value while also creating loyal and engaged fans who continue to support the company.


How Nintendo's Brand Positioning Strategy Fetched Winning Edge


Nintendo inspected American consumer markets for a while and found nobody wanted the latest video game electronics. Why are games so good that they're pathetic? In Japan, Famicom from the Nintendo Entertainment System was already well-positioned to replicate that success. However, to compete with an increasingly difficult global electronic market, Nintendo took a step backward. The Nintendo Entertainment System was projected as a toy, not as an electronic device; this was indeed a wise move.


This instance is an overview of Nintendo's most significant positioning decisions for the 1985 release of the Nintendo N.E.S. The N.E.S. wasn't just an electronic thing, but merely toys. The first N.E.S. console had a robot called R.O.B. that would "help" players play a game. Nintendo hasn't looked back ever since.


Nintendo's brand positioning strategy has been a key factor in its gaining an edge over its competitors. Here's how.


1. Branding & Advertising Campaigns to Create Strong Customer Relationships


Their approach to marketing focuses on creating strong relationships with their customers rather than just selling products. This is done through various methods, such as creating unique campaigns that are tailored to their target audience and engaging with the gaming community through events and promotional activities.


2. Using Iconic Characters as Brand Evangelists


Nintendo has also made use of its iconic characters, such as Mario and Link, to promote the brand and make it more recognizable. By creating a distinct visual identity that is easily associated with Nintendo, they have strengthened their position in the market.


Nintendo has a unique marketing strategy that sets them apart from its competitors by leveraging iconic brand mascots and symbol advertising. Nintendo's success is driven by its recognizable characters and games, which act as ambassadors for the brand. For example, when promoting their latest product – the Nintendo Switch/Switch Lite – Nintendo's campaign used these mascots to create a strong emotional connection with consumers. Introduction of the Nintendo Switch Online (N.S.O.) subscription model allows users to play games online, voice chat & save on the cloud.


Products like Nintendo Ds and Switch have focused on demographic segmentation. People ranging from the age 15-35 who are gamers. Using behavioral segmentation, it targets people who casually like to play games and are not hardcore gamers.


The promotion of the Nintendo Switch focused on user interaction, showing everyday scenarios in which the product could be used to create an emotional resonance with viewers.


Additionally, Nintendo's ads included sound effects that served as a consistent symbol of the product's features, further connecting with users on an emotional level. As a result of this creative and effective marketing strategy, Nintendo was able to achieve 55 million unit sales since its 2017 release and accounted for 60% of global unit sales in 2020 across current-generation video games.


The iconic brand mascots and clever use of sound signals create an emotional bond between the product, the users, and, ultimately, Nintendo as a brand.


3. A New-Technology-First Brand


Nintendo was one of the first companies to leverage new technologies, such as motion-sensing game controllers and virtual reality, to further differentiate itself from its competitors.


4. Blue Ocean Strategy


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Nintendo has also employed a "blue ocean strategy," which involves creating new markets rather than competing in existing ones. This enabled them to capture new customers that were not interested in the products offered by other companies, thus giving them an edge over their competitors.

5. Investing in Research & Development


Nintendo has also invested heavily in research and development to ensure that its products remain ahead of the competition. This has allowed them to create innovative and unique products that have kept customers coming back for more.


All of these efforts have combined to make Nintendo one of the most recognizable brands in gaming today, and its brand positioning strategy is a key factor in this success.


By creating strong relationships with their customers and investing heavily in research, they have forged an unbeatable edge over their competitors.


Nintendo's brand positioning strategy has been integral to its success in the gaming industry, which leads to its unique popularity in the mobile gaming and hand-held devices gaming space as well. It has allowed them to capture new markets, differentiate themselves from other companies, and create products that remain ahead of the competition.


Nintendo's U.S.P. is Its State-of-the-Art Products Designed for Phenomenal Digital Gaming Experiences


Nintendo Providing Immersive Digital Experiences (Image Source: www.businesswire.com)

Nintendo Providing Immersive Digital Experiences (Image Source: www.businesswire.com)


Nintendo has been the leader in the video gaming industry since it first released its iconic console, the Nintendo Entertainment System (N.E.S.), back in 1983. By creatively positioning itself as a family-friendly brand and creating innovative products such as the Wii U and Nintendo Switch, Nintendo has successfully outlasted other competitors like Sega, Atari, Microsoft Xbox, and Sony PlayStation.


Nintendo's success has been due in large part to its marketing strategy, which is both creative and innovative.


Their strategies are centered around the idea of “uniting generations,” aiming to bring families together by providing games that can be enjoyed by all ages.


Nintendo always focuses on creating holistic, integral, and shareable, digital-first online gaming experiences by employing the below strategies:


1. Market Segmentation to Include Both Older and Younger Generations


Nintendo was one of the first companies to recognize the importance of targeting both children and adults in its marketing campaigns.

2. Reward Programs to Promote Brand Loyalty


They also developed strategies to increase their brand loyalty, such as allowing customers to upgrade older consoles when new ones came out or creating a rewards program for loyal players. This approach has enabled Nintendo to keep its dedicated fanbase and entice new customers.


3. Innovating Groundbreaking Products Focused on Ease of Use


In terms of product innovation, Nintendo has consistently released groundbreaking products such as the Wii U, Nintendo Switch, and Nintendo D.S. systems. These have been designed with a focus on comfort and ease of use, allowing for hours of entertainment without tiring out users' hands or eyes.


4. A Wide Variety of Games for Capturing Audiences with Diverse Interests


Nintendo also ensures that its systems offer a variety of games, ranging from educational titles to sports and RPGs.


The above strategies are the keystone to Nintendo's creative positioning in the video gaming market. Its innovative approach to marketing, product innovation, and loyalty programs have helped Nintendo stand apart from its competitors while still providing an enjoyable experience for players of all ages. Mobile games are especially popular among people of all ages, and with Nintendo, they can lay their hands on a wide array of genres.


The company has continuously provided gamers with products such as Nintendo Switch and Nintendo D.S. that offer exciting experiences while still focusing on comfort and ease of use. They have also developed strategies to stay ahead of their competitors, such as providing options for customers to upgrade consoles when new systems come out. Nintendo's creative positioning and unique approach have enabled them to remain the leader in video gaming for decades and will undoubtedly continue to shape the industry for years to come.


Nintendo Direct – An online show Hosted by Nintendo to Keep Audience Informed About Their DLC Content or Upcoming Games (Image Source - https://www.nintendo.com/nintendo-direct/09-13-2022/)

Nintendo Direct – An online show Hosted by Nintendo to Keep Audience Informed About Their DLC Content or Upcoming Games (Image Source - https://www.nintendo.com/nintendo-direct/09-13-2022/)


As the gaming industry continues to expand, it will be interesting to see how Nintendo's marketing tactics will evolve further in the future.

Nintendo’s Roadmap for 2023: Delight Customers with Some Highly Anticipated Switch Games


In 2023, Nintendo is expected to make a splash in the gaming industry with some of its most famous upcoming games and titles. The company has already announced several forthcoming releases for the Nintendo Switch that year, which should delight customers.


Persona 3: Portable, Fire Emblem Engage, Atelier Ryza 3: Alchemist of the End & The Secret Key, and Kirby's are just some of the anticipated titles to be launched in 2023.


More excitingly, Nintendo might also be planning a new generation of hardware — the Switch Pro — which is rumored to have higher specs and improved visuals compared to its predecessor.

The Switch Pro could potentially give gamers an even better gaming experience than what they’re used to while playing the current version of the gaming console.


In addition, Nintendo could be preparing a new set of accessories such as controllers and Joy-Cons that will be compatible with the Switch Pro. This would give gamers additional features and options for their gaming experience, allowing them to customize their experience even further.

The company has also been rumored to be developing an augmented reality headset, which could make for some exciting new gaming possibilities.


Nintendo might also introduce cloud gaming to the Nintendo Switch in 2023. This would allow gamers to stream games from a central server, giving them access to more titles and better graphics than the current gaming console can deliver.


Overall, it looks like Nintendo's plans for 2023 will be sure to thrill fans.


This valuable company is planning a wide range of titles, hardware, accessories, and services that could potentially revolutionize the gaming industry. With so much on offer, Nintendo Switch owners can expect plenty of thrills when Nintendo's plans for 2023 unravel.


Conclusion


Nintendo's marketing strategy is rooted in its focus on providing quality games and protecting its intellectual property. While transcending beyond mobile gaming, it may be appealing to enter the cloud gaming markets, and the company also seems to be experimenting with the idea; this could come at the cost of brand dilution.


As such, Nintendo has to carefully consider the risks versus rewards of competing with incumbents in those spaces like Google Stadia, Microsoft xCloud, Facebook, and Nvidia GeForce NOW.

Ultimately, Nintendo will need to decide if it is ready to enter the ring and face off with the industry's giants. Only time will tell how this decision will turn out for the company.


However, regardless of the outcome, Nintendo has established a strong track record in gaming and has become an iconic brand that will continue to be successful.  ​









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