Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki is gearing up to be our biggest event in the city yet, and we couldn’t be more excited to share with you all that we have in store! It’s going to be a magnificent two day event packed with endless opportunities to learn, scale and most importantly, connect.
If you haven’t heard, we’re bringing back Europe’s favourite games industry conference to the spiritual home of mobile gaming for the first time in two years. On September 27th to 28th, over 1,200 games industry professionals from around the globe will descend upon Helsinki for two days full of networking, matchmaking opportunities and hours of wisdom from over 200 thought leaders from all over the world.
We’re continuing our series spotlighting just some of the amazing speakers that will be gracing the stage at our Helsinki show this September. They have been generous enough to share a few of their insights and expertise with us ahead of time, and you won’t want to miss them!
Today, we’re shining the spotlight on Interact’s VP of Partnerships, Peter Griffin. Peter Griffin is the VP of Partnerships at Playstack, a London-based company that is reinventing relationships between developers, brands, and publishers. Playstack was founded with the belief that even the greatest developers need support to be at their best. Playstack’s innovative AdTech, Interact, pushes the boundaries of impactful advertising in games; integrating non-disruptive interactive ads that enrich the player’s experience.
Peter joined Playstack in 2020, to run the brand partnerships team for Interact. He had forged an impressive career in the toy and games industry, as Development Director EMEA at Winning Moves where he led relationships with international partners to launch new Monopoly editions across the world in cities like Dubai, Cape Town and Lagos. Prior to that he managed advertising partnerships at Google, as lead presenter of the Google AdWords University, completed an MBA at Imperial Business School and an Anthropology degree at the University of Cambridge.
Find a way to engage and listen to brands who want to be part of your play.Peter Griffin
Driven by a lifelong passion for games, and a deep understanding of brand requirements from publisher platforms, he is a leading pioneer in the new in-game advertising industry. Motivated by his empathetic nature, Peter has spearheaded Playstack’s mission to acknowledge the humanity behind each screen and to publish enriching games, with integrated brand experiences, that players will genuinely enjoy.
Don’t miss Peter Griffin at Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki, where he will be participating in a panel discussing inclusive ads and how ads can be an exciting and integrated part of the play.
PocketGamer.biz: If you could give other mobile games companies one piece of advice, what would it be?
Peter Griffin: Find a way to engage and listen to brands who want to be part of your play.
We hear from brands and agencies all the time who want to find the right, respectful way to get into gaming - and who are willing to pay for it. We are now at the stage where brands and agencies understand that gaming is the most popular form of entertainment on the planet and they want a piece of it - but the challenge for them so often is not knowing whom to talk to and how to get started.
We, as the games industry, need to offer brands the right tools and channels to talk to us; together we’ll be able to develop meaningful, enjoyable, game-enhancing branded experiences that players and brands will value.
Outside development and publishing, where are the next big opportunities in the mobile games market?
It’s clear that there are huge opportunities within in-game advertising. And the potential, we believe, is in improving how these ads are integrated within play; enhancing play experience, and making better, more fun and ultimately more profitable games.
If we can, as a mobile games industry, show brands the power of play and what that can mean for consumer awareness, engagement and activity then we could change the fundamental feel of the games all of us make.Peter Griffin
As most in-game advertising, especially in the mobile space, still uses interstitial, interruptive and disruptive ads, we think that there’s still a long way to go. There has been a new wave of ad companies providing simple ways for brands to be integrated into games and these ‘in-play display’ ads have offered something new, for sure.
However we think the games industry can offer much more than these display boards to players and brands. Player first, truly engaging branded experiences within games; built by games developers rather than ad tech companies.
What is your biggest aspiration/goal in mobile gaming?
However much we talk about ‘value exchange’ and the fact that players are content with seeing adverts if it means free games or content, we believe that the best ‘play’ experience doesn’t involve interruptive advertising.
Players don’t want to be interrupted when they are engaged and brands don’t want players to have a negative experience.
Our biggest aspiration… We want developers to have viable monetization options that a) don’t frustrate their players, b) are truly valuable to brands, and (to be really ambitious)… c) that players not only tolerate but love.
If we can, as a mobile games industry, show brands the power of play and what that can mean for consumer awareness, engagement and activity then we could change the fundamental feel of the games all of us make.
What was the fundamental appeal of the mobile games industry that brought you to it?
I have so many happy childhood memories playing games with family and friends: with school mates crammed round a small monitor playing Goldeneye, smashing buttons on Track & Field, passing round a Nokia phone on the bus to challenge each other’s scores at Snake. I want my two children to get a similar sense of joy from gaming as they grow up, and the chance to be part of the industry that can deliver that still thrills me everyday.
You can’t innovate if you isolate. Be open, share, collaborate and disruptive ideas will follow.Peter Griffin
Can people get in touch with you at the event? What sort of people would you like to connect with?
We want to speak to people who understand that there’s an opportunity and a challenge around advertising in games; and who want to work with us on what a solution could look like. If you are a developer who wants to find a better way to monetise your game, talk to us. If you’re a brand that wants to get into games but doesn’t like the options available, talk to us. If you are an AdTech platform that agrees that there are better ways of doing this, talk to us. We can solve this together.
What is the best way to disrupt a market?
You can’t innovate if you isolate. Be open, share, collaborate and disruptive ideas will follow.
In this context; the solution of in-game advertising isn’t going to come from an advertising company, or from a gaming company - it’s going to come from when gaming companies engage with brands and agencies, try to understand advertising and brand requirements and together create solutions that genuinely add value for all involved - the brand, the game and the players.
Connect with our stellar speakers
Expand your network with the likes of Peter Griffin and many, many more brilliant minds at this year’s Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki conference. There is no better place to connect with the biggest and most inspiring industry players and take your business to the next level.