Fortnite has been a big name in the entertainment industry since early 2019, and the in-game Marshmello concert changed the relationship between music and video games forever. The Battle Royale title is now a stop worth considering for any artist planning their next global tour, as people continue to see their real-world lives migrate into the metaverse, free from barriers and borders.
But if Marshmello was revolutionary and Travis Scott was evolutionary, EPIC’s most recent showing with Ariana Grande has been viewed by some as a little lacking. Of course, die-hard Ari fans must have loved seeing their favourite star doing her thing in all her digitised glory, but for the regular Fortnite players, it felt like more of the same.
The audience numbers for the Mello and Travis Scott events were widely publicised in the days after, and yet an official consensus on Ari’s viewership seems hard to come by. Did Ariana not perform as well?
Having pioneered one of the significant entertainment activations in recent memory, is it time for EPIC and Fortnite to find their mark 2?
Here, five ways that evolution could happen and how brands could be part of the story:
- Make bigger better – By creating a living festival within Fortnite’s Party Royale mode with multiple artists across multiple stages for fans to enjoy from their own homes. If you miss it, you miss out! Additionally, fashion brands could be the official “merch” partner, providing ‘festival looks’ that can be purchased through online web stores as in-game skins and in the real world.
- Create a unique moment – By negotiating that one of the headline artists’ tracks is performed live for the first time in-game or a one-off collaboration between headliners, which generates buzz and an, ‘I was there moment. The moment could be brought to players by a brand, and they could licence the artist’s track beyond the Fortnite platform, including digital content and TVCs.
- Engagement and Access – By offering exclusive content to players for completing challenges within the game. Successful players are invited to a Party Royale island to see additional performances or Q&As with their favourite artists. An artist’s existing partners can expand their relationship into Fortnite, taking ownership of these challenges and giving back to the community.
- Resurrect – By bringing to life deceased or retired artists, showcasing their music to new and (predominantly) younger audiences and ensuring it lives on within the metaverse.
- Expand eCommerce – By using the in-game concert as an announcement for the artist’s real-world tour, with tickets able to be purchased exclusively in Fortnite 24 hours before it goes on general sale. Additionally, every purchaser is gifted a limited-edition virtual tour t-shirt only able to be worn in Fortnite, allowing in-game bragging rights for years to come with players wearing rare ‘vintage’ tour memorabilia.
However, these partnerships materialise, broadening live events would increase brand interest in Fortnite’s music offering as a viable sponsorship opportunity should EPIC decide to take that route. Either to reach gamers through their love of music or to take existing festival strategies into the digital world.
To find out more about how gaming and entertainment could be part of your brand’s story, get in touch at [email protected] or drop us a link on LinkedIn, @Fuse.