Spending on in-game advertising will reach $1 billion by 2014, says media analysis group Screen Digest in a new report.
This means in-game ads will represent one and a half percent of total global annual spending on digital ads by then, says the group's latest report.
"While acknowledging short-term softness in ad spending in 2009, particularly on emerging formats, Screen Digest retains faith in the prospects for dynamic in-game advertising in the longer term," says the group.
In-game ads are poised for resilience because of a combination of key traits advertisers prize, says Screen Digest, including high levels of audience engagement, positive associations with beloved game properties, and the ability to reach demographics that are hard to contact in other media.
The relationship between online games and an increasingly-popular ad-funded, free-to-play business model will also help drive the growth of in-game ads, says futures director Adam Smith.
"There are many ways in which advertising can help evolve business models for video games and we have only just begun to explore that potential," Smith says. "Given gaming is now a mainstream leisure interest, in-game deserves the same consideration as mobile and social media."