Garena Free Fire Marketing Strategy: How Free Fire became the Most Popular Battle Royale Game in India

Harshit Verma Harshit Verma
Nov 27, 2021 9 min read
Garena Free Fire Marketing Strategy: How Free Fire became the Most Popular Battle Royale Game in India

Let me ask you a question, what do you do when you are free ? Keeping the pandemic in mind, Chances are most young folks would say that they play games, multiplayer games with their friends. Even though I assume that we have a variety of audience on our blog, who like reading, being curious etcetera but gaming has always been most people's favorite.

If I had asked this question a couple of decades from now, the answer would vary hugely. With technology disrupting every field, gaming has become the one stop destination for quite any of the age groups. It is an escape from our rather boring world. This world doesn't allow us much freedom but the gaming world is always ready to fulfil our human need to be limitless. Moreover as computers are getting smaller and smaller, almost to the size of our palms. We can see a surge in mobile gamers.

Around the last couple years, the most played and talked game was PUBG or the Player's Unknown Battlegrounds. The concept was simple and cooperative. Hundred random real people are parachuted into the same terrain, they fight till the end. The Last one standing wins the game.

The game was so popular with Indians that there were reports of extreme addictions among children and teens. The issue got so big that even our prime minister Shri Narendra Modi commented on it in one of his speeches. The game was hated by parents and absolutely loved by their kids. As the game had multiplayer, It allowed them to connect with friends during the pandemic. But with rising tensions among India and China, PUBG was banned due to its roots in China.

This doesn't stop here, there were alternatives for these types of games. The most famous one β€œFree fire” came into the limelight. It had excellent marketing that made it surge the charts of downloads and installs. This article dissects the marketing of the game Free Fire and how games like these are changing the face of the Indian mobile gaming industry. Read on to discover unnoticed facts and figures.

The Surging Gaming Fad
What is Free-Fire?
Free Fire Marketing Strategy
FAQ

The Surging Gaming Fad

India with its huge population is the second most populous country in the world. Moreover, the average age in India is approximately 29 years. Which means that we are an immense young nation.

Youngsters are known to break stereotypes and create their own path to success. This country is increasingly moving towards dominating the gaming sector. Till now, it was not seen as a viable career option but now the tide around this topic is changing.

Especially after a pandemic hit the whole world. It confined us to our homes and led us to change our ways of living. Most of the sectors are now working on a remote model. Thus gaming got its much needed boost. With streaming partners like YouTube, it has become extremely easy to showcase your gaming skills online and build a community.

One of the most famous formats of games in India and world wide is the online multiplayer genre. The genre that is followed by Free fire, the recent hit android game. Read to know about how this world operates in Free Fire.

What is Free-Fire?

Garena Free Fire
Garena Free Fire 

Free Fire or Garena Free Fire is an android game. In 2017, it was released as Garena Free Fire, which has over 80 million daily active users globally as of May 2020. It is headquartered in Singapore and is traded with the name of Forrest Li. The company which holds all the rights to this game is Sea Limited, with Terry Zhao as its president.

At the heart of it, the game is a survival shooter game. Each game, which is about 10 minute places the player on a map with 49 other people. Every player is allowed to build up a team of four and play as a team also. Players can land on any point on the map by gliding through a parachute. They can fight, hide, take vehicles and travel the map. The ultimate standing wins the match.

Other than the basic running-frame, the game also offers different modes and methods to play. Game modes like the 10 minute battleground, 4 people squad game, or 4 versus 4 modes are amongst the most played. The game manages to provide great graphics with all its functions as an online multiplayer. However the quality of gameplay may differ according to device specs.


Growth Of Indian Gaming Industry During Pandemic
The Indian Online Gaming Industry is growing exponentially fast and is expected to be worth $1.1 billion by 2021, this is because of the Covid 19 pandemic.

Free Fire Marketing Strategy

Free Fire is not just a regular game that hopes to increase its downloads with word of mouth, but it prepares for its marketing in India. It manages to hook more and more players with its marketing campaigns. This section of the articles lists some noticeable brand campaigns that the company runs.

Roping in Celebrities

It seems like the golden rule of advertisement is to make a celeb say good things about your product. Free Fire does not lag in that domain too. It roped in the all time pro footballer, Cristiano Ronaldo as the game’s brand ambassador. This is not a regular sight when you see the OG footballer promoting a game. The football player said on its association with the game a great feeling,

It’s a great feeling having not only a character in Free Fire modeled after me, but also having the whole universe within the game-changing along with it. The Garena team has worked into the game tons of new features and elements for Operation Chrono. I hope Free Fire players all over the world are just as excited as I am!” said Cristiano Ronaldo.

Ronaldo Character in Free Fire
Ronaldo Character in Free Fire

This collaboration with Cristiano Ronaldo went really well. The company reported more installs after this collaboration than recent times. This is a promotional video that the company uploaded on its YouTube channel.

β€Œβ€ŒSpeaking of celebrities, India is a special place. If Free Fire wants to hold their leg in here they need something personalised with Indian audiences. They did what was probably needed. They made a song, roping in Sachin Jigar as singers. The song starred YouTube celeb Bhuvan Bam and actress Shraddha Kapoor. The song, not to mention really hit the chord with fans of these stars and the singer duo.

Championships: the battle of bests

The best part of a sport is not the winning or the losing, but the sport itself. The sportsman spirit and the sweat of hardwork is the best part about the game. Free Fire knows this very well and that is why it hosts championships of the best players and anyone can be the next player for that matter. Making an indoor game as exciting as an outdoor sport takes time but Free Fire is hacking the process on how to make a nerve racking thumbs game.

The company has managed to make a space in the hearts of budding gamers. If you are someone who wants to be a gamer, then tournaments are what you look forward to. These tournaments provide a stage to show what you got, to show your skills and be liked by the gamer folks. This is one of the best marketing strategies that the company follows. Despite being marketing, it is first the gamer’s win.

Free Fire Tournament in India
Free Fire Tournament in India

India is a land of diversity and we have a lot of people of different ethnicities. The company thoughtfully made this a task. What they did was they made the championships for people of almost all Indian languages. Yes, the championships happen in different slots, keeping in mind one region at a time. That is the reason we can see their YouTube channel filled with championships in languages like Hindi, English, Tamil, Bengali and much more.

Onboarding Streamers

When you are in a business of games, online streamers have to be your friends. They promote games without naming it as an advertisement or marketing tag. So Free Fire onboards streamers who create content around the gameplays.

Streamers make the game a little more spicy with their own way of commenting. This makes up the basis of their tribe or channel. It also helps the game get more liking among the age group. It's a win-win situation for both the gamers and game makers.

Take for example, β€œTwo side brothers”, two brothers who stream Free Fire and give their viewers a glimpse of their life. They also go and compete in tournaments, domestically and international tours, hosted by Free Fire.

More than just reviews, Free Fire makes them more inclusive to their fans. In this video streamers went that extra mile and met their most loyal subscribers. This is all done to promote the sportsmen spirit that the game provides. It is to celebrate the collaboration of gamers and game makers to make everyday life a little more fun.

Quick Updates for better performance

Free Fire Update
Free Fire Update

If you look at the last update of this game on Google play store, it will show November 1. Not to mention, the company focuses on the user satisfaction in a very steep manner. If we notice the games of these types, we will find that these are quite heavy games and take good time to get better. They are heavy games because of the data that they are packaged with.

Moreover they are multiplayer, which increases the probability of glitches every now and then. This makes the updating process expensive and time taxing, but Free Fire doesn't stop, it manages to release updates on time. The recent updates included,

  1. Clash Squad Season 9 - Begins 09/29 17:00 GMT+8.
  2. Airdrop Vending Machine now available in Battle Royale.
  3. New Weapon - Treatment Sniper now available in Battle Royale.
  4. Weapon Stats adjustments.
  5. Character Balancing adjustments.
  6. Replay system available for Battle Royale and Clash Squad.
  7. Players can now customize the amount of items to drop from the bag.

The key differentiator between PUBG and Free Fire, as seen by experts, is the fact that the latter has more flexibility with earning game characters and rewards. Keeping the skill sets almost the same on both levels.


How did PUBG mobile India got Approved to Relaunch?
The popular battle royale game PUBG has teased that it will be relaunching in India soon, but how did it got approved? Let’s find out

Conclusion

Mobile apps are considered to be a difficult market to win in. The mobile gaming market is even harder to tap into. Even in these windy markets, Free fire is mostly able to stand. As of May 2020, Free Fire has set a record with over 80 million daily active users globally. As of November 2019, Free Fire has grossed over $1 billion worldwide. These are massive numbers to the benchmarks in the mobile gaming industry.

Free Fire was also one of the first battle royale games to hit the market in 2017. It soon became the most downloaded mobile game globally in the year 2019. The game also received an award for the "Best Popular Vote Game" by Google Play Store in 2019.

The company behind Free Fire seems like it is pushing the throttle to make India its prime playing country. The game has more than 1,000,000,000 downloads as of now. however these are global numbers, the larger chunk of these numbers are expected to be in India.

One visit to their YouTube channel will make you aware of the efforts that the company is putting in to elevate the game. Nonetheless these efforts can be proved with the hype that the game has garnered.

FAQ

Is Garena Free Fire a free game?

Yes, Garena Free Fire is a free to play game.

Who is the present CEO of Free Fire?

Forest Li is the founder and the current CEO of Garena Free Fire.

Which country has most downloads of Free Fire?

India ranked top in the most number of Free Fire downloads and was followed by the USA at number 2 and Brazil at number 3.

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