Nickelodeon is one of the most popular children’s entertainment brands in the country and worldwide. With so many popular cartoon characters and series, Nickelodeon is always on the lookout for reaching out to their fans through every possible medium. Their nickindia.com portal hosts a wide array of browser based online games. The brand wanted to innovate in the gaming space and give a first of its kind gaming experience to children.
Children are amongst the most prolific users of voice. When it comes to exploring new things with voice, they are far ahead of the curve compared to their parents. They already play games on smartphones and connect very easily with branded content that they can recognize and relate to. At the same time, if the brand is one that is trusted by their parents, with the right content and medium, you can have a winning combination at your hands.
Google had released their Interactive Canvas API on the Google Assistant specifically for games, so that players can have a full screen multimodal experience with voice on their Android phones and smart displays.
Boltd’s genesis is from years spent developing online games across various platforms. When Nickelodeon came to us to see if we can do with something with games and voice, we felt it was the perfect opportunity to innovate in this space and create something truly special for their audience – a voice-based ludo game branded with their characters.
We worked in close conjunction with the Nick and the Google team to come up with Nickelodeon Ludo Action on Google. We shed the classic look-n-feel of the Ludo game and gave it a very fresh and contemporary look, keeping the younger audience in mind. We ditched the classical 4-pegs per house combination and went with just 2 pegs to make the game faster. Nickelodeon recorded voice
overs of their characters who would be featured in the game, to add depth to the voice interactivity and branding. We worked with Google engineers to ensure the game was responsive and without any lag.
With so much gone into the making, careful planning went into making sure that the target audience was made aware of the Nickelodeon Ludo Action on Google.
- The Nickelodeon team put dedicated resources behind marking the AoG. From showing TVCs during prime time to running campaigns on YouTube and social media, they put their weight into making sure that Nickelodeon Ludo becomes the go to voice gaming destination for children.
- We integrated the actions.intent.PLAY_GAME built-in intent in our AoG and registered for it at the time of submission for making Nickelodeon Ludo eligible for implicit invocation. We also registered for the “Actions for Families” program to take advantage of Google Assistant’s conversational discovery opportunities.
- Being branded quality content for children, and ticking all the right boxes, Google promoted the AoG across various channels and we found users who have thus far become loyal to our Action on Google game.
- App fatigue is huge in the smartphone world. To be able to play one of the most popular games with your favourite cartoon characters, just by saying, “Ok, Google, talk to Nickelodeon Ludo”, is huge. At the same time, instead of just superficial skinning, doing a deep dive in the branding experience leaves a lasting impression and creates a better emotional connect with the customers.
- Voice platforms are still in their nascency and to do things that are taken for granted on other platforms, one has to have an open mind and a lot of patience. Did we say creativity is important? No? Creativity is the most important ingredient when it comes to voice.