Tasked with promoting Xbox Game Pass across Europe and US during an extremely competitive holiday period, an important time for sales for the video game industry, the Assembly team rose to the challenge, smashing the initial KPIs set by the client.

Objectives:

  • Raise broader awareness of Xbox Game Pass and value for gamers (measured via social media sentiment monitoring tools)
  • Promote and raise awareness of new Xbox Game Pass titles among European and US gamers in key markets (measured via social metrics)
  • Engage with key European and US content creators to check-in with them during a critical sales period for Xbox Games Pass (measured via number of creators taking part)

 

STRATEGY & EXECUTION

The idea itself was simple and effective. The team created a 100-piece jigsaw puzzle highlighting some of the newest titles added to the Xbox Game Pass service, but crucially also containing a series of Xbox Game Pass codes only revealed once the puzzles were completed.

In total, 175 jigsaw puzzles were sent out across nine markets covering a broad range of EMEA-based video game and general interest content creators with varying size audiences and public/industry profiles. The creators were chosen to ensure we hit a diverse range of ‘gamers’ across EMEA and also to mitigate some anticipated push-back for paid budget, which was not available.

The Xbox Game Pass codes were unique to each of the 175 puzzles, making each puzzle also unique. This, coupled with the code reveal on completion, caught the imagination of the creators, many of whom chose to complete their puzzle live on stream and their social channels as a competition for their own audiences. This added real value to the creators – who need to keep their audiences engaged, entertained and loyal – and secured large audiences and engagement across key social channels and delivered fantastic awareness for the Xbox Games Pass services at a cost that was easily comparable to x10 paid media spend.

A personalised greeting card also helped to encourage creators to put their puzzle together for a special surprise and share their experience in creative ways to share the holiday spirit with their viewers and community.

BUSINESS OUTCOME

While we expected a warm reception from the creators, the end result surpassed all our expectations. Most impressively, using Microsoft’s own internal marketing value tracking tool, which is used across major global campaigns, events, owned content and earned activations, the project is estimated to have delivered a stunning return on investment.

Looking at output and outcomes, from the 175 jigsaws that were sent out, the results include:

  • 208 social media posts
  • 20.4m social media followers reached across creator’s channels
  • 4.1 million impressions
  • 144K engagements with content
  • In addition to the general puzzles created, the UK Xbox social team also created a separate 1,000-piece version of the same puzzle that they completed on a special 2 hour holiday livestream, revealing the codes to their audience. This livestream was hosted on the Xbox UK Twitter and Facebook channels, reaching an audience of 295K. The stream had 800 concurrent viewers and received 20.6K engagements.