About Robin Aström
In 2016, Robin Aström was one of three founders of Wehype, a gaming influencer agency and platform. Robin founded Wehype with his sibling and childhood friend, translating their passion for gaming into a technology-driven platform that helps brands and gaming influencers connect.
Wehype’s results-driven technology and expertise have helped brands like Ubisoft, Sega, and EA connect with gamers worldwide via influencer marketing.
We asked Robin about how gamers can monetize their content, earn consistently online, and the changing nature of the influencer marketing world.
Helping Gamers Monetize Their Content
Robin shares that there are tens of millions of gaming channels online, particularly on YouTube and Twitch. Both platforms offer monetization opportunities, such as the YouTube Partner Program, through integrated ads or subscription revenues.
However, many influencers today depend on brand sponsorship revenue to supplement their income. For gaming influencers, brand sponsorships often look like being paid to play a new game and test it out on live stream or including a paid ad segment promoting a product.
Robin explains, “Ever since we started the company, we’ve seen quite a steady increase [in brands advertising on gaming platforms], and I think that a lot of brands have started to recognize the value and the massive scale of the gaming audience. There are more than one billion people watching gaming content on YouTube, Twitch, and similar platforms.”
As a result of the huge number of people watching gaming content, brands are taking note and looking for new ways to advertise their products or services to these audiences.
A Male-Dominated Industry
Gaming remains a male-dominated industry. However, Robin shares that new developments with female gamers are on the rise.
“It’s something that I think we’re seeing – a greater development with more female gamers coming in both on the creator side and on the gamer side. There’s still much more to be doing in that area. If you look historically, it’s a more male-dominated industry, but I think that there are positive forces striving, and we’re seeing a great development.”
The Biggest Misconceptions in the Gaming Influencer Marketing Space
For brands looking to get into gaming influencer marketing, Robin shares that one of the biggest misconceptions is that brands need a unique strategy to speak to gamers.
“A lot of people playing games are ordinary people that also go buy food. They go to the gym. They have regular habits, and so on. So, you don’t need to treat them so differently. You shouldn’t come in and try to overdo it as well. I think that a natural approach where you speak naturally and you do it on the gamers’ terms is the best way.”
He adds that the Wehype team has seen some unsuccessful attempts and activations at gaming influencer marketing, primarily when companies jump on trends unsuccessfully or use awkward ‘gaming language,’ which doesn’t translate well to the audience.
How Wehype Works with Gaming Influencers and Brands
Wehype takes a data-driven approach to help brands and gaming influencers connect. Their platform categorizes creators based on their typical content and how well it engages with their audiences.
“We’re combining that more data-driven approach with a human approach of a creator, who are really living and sleeping [in the industry] and always aware of the latest trends. So combining that artificial with that human intelligence is the way that we help our clients find the best fit for their activations and campaigns.”
A recent success story is a campaign with Polish gaming company Techland for their newest game Dying Light.
“It really showed proof of how you can work with creators from the early stages of a game launch, from when you have your first trailer showing the game. They did different watch parties, where they had creators watching the trailer with their communities and interacting and leading up to testing out the game in the beta phase.”
Creators involved in this campaign had early access to the game, allowing them to stream gameplay. Some YouTube videos even featured creators dressed as characters from the game. Techland also hosted a real-life event for creators to attend.
Changes in the Gaming Industry
Games are becoming more diverse and accessible for many people, a trend Robin wants to see continue in the industry.
“More and more games are coming to mobile phones. Mobile phones are becoming better, so you can play more on your phone, and the Internet connection is getting better across the world, so more people can enjoy it. We really like to see gaming as entertainment, but not only passive but active entertainment, where you actually are using your brain and collaborating.”
This trend bodes well for Wehype, as their mission is to continue driving the future of how games reach gamers. Robin would especially like to continue developing innovative ways to reach people who haven’t played many or any games.
“There are games for everyone to enjoy, so it’s just a matter of how we can find creative ways of reaching out to these people so that they become aware of different games.”
Another change in the gaming industry that Robin sees happening is the current intersection of the gaming and entertainment industry. He believes that gaming will also continue to become more social, and creators will continue to become the future of media.
“We think that phenomena and cultural aspects will only grow, and we see a vision in which we help two parties connect seamlessly, so it should be as easy as possible for a game developer to find the right creators and to exchange value.”
Exciting Happenings at Wehype
Wehype is continuing to work with many new games and grow its team, especially in the international space. Robin shares that Wehype just opened its third office in Stockholm.
In addition, Wehype is building a sustainable infrastructure for the gaming industry. This infrastructure would allow companies to increase their spending on influencer marketing by decreasing the manual work required to find the right gaming influencers and monitor the campaign.