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EA: In-game ads not so hot, real money is in microtransactions


Speaking to Edge, EA's general manager of free-to-play operations, Ben Cousins, revealed that in-game ad sales aren't bringing in substantial earnings for the company. Cousins stated that EA isn't "getting much from ad revenue at all," adding that in-game ad business "hasn't grown as fast as people expected it to." Microsotransactions, on the other hand, have grown leaps and bounds, said Cousins, pointing to the king of microtransaction operations, Zynga.

EA has seen this firsthand, as Cousins noted that its free-to-play Battlefield Heroes has seen substantially more revenue generated by microtransactions than by advertisements. Cousins still believes that advertising can work, but said is should be "more about specific deals where you can tie the content in." Cousins pointed to the recent deal EA made with Dr. Pepper, in which players could redeem codes on soda bottles for in-game content. Still, while specific campaigns like this can work, Cousins said, generic in-game ads may soon become a thing of the past.

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