HBO and Riot Games are teaming up to promote Game of Thrones Season 4 and League of Legends. One fruit of these labors will be a cross-over trailer featuring the show and game.
"HBO is doing a three-week activation in advance of their series premiere on April 6th," Riot vice president of eSports and merchandising Dustin Beck told AListDaily. "They’re going to be getting some marketing assets, whether that’s logo bugs or Website takeovers. But we’re also working with their team to produce a mash-up trailer. They’re giving us some exclusive sneak peaks into footage that hasn’t been seen before."
Riot is known for making great trailers, recent examples being the "Twist of Fate" cinematic and the Jinx music video. I'm psyched to see what they can do on a joint Thrones/League trailer. The big challenge is just going to be making sure the show and game footage fit together. I'm just hoping it's not like those shitty NBA Playoffs/movie commercials that intersperse footage from, like, Iron Man with footage of Kobe Bryant making a tomahawk dunk:
Beck said that the deal started with a cold call from HBO. The television network felt that there would be a lot of overlap between the player base of LoL and the viewership of Game of Thrones. Riot's research suggested the same thing.
"We’ve done a lot of player surveys to see what our fans like and dislike and I think a lot of the discussion and strategies going forward that we have are going to cater to our fan base. We want to make sure that any activations that we do are super authentic to our fans and that we’re not working with brands that aren’t going to have any value to our players."
The show and game do seem like they fit together. They're both medieval fantasy products with young fan bases. There's a good chance that a LoL fan would be interested in Thrones and vice versa.
The popularity of GoT and LoL make them attractive marketing partners as well. The third season of Thrones attracted about five million viewers per episode. League has about 7.5 million concurrent players at peak hours during the day.
The premiere episode for Thrones Season 4 will air at 9pm on the 6th. League of Legends' fourth season of eSports play has been underway since January.