The frequency with which Nintendo release their Nintendo Direct presentations has increased of late, and for good reason. Nintendo president, Satoru Iwata, shared with investors that as many as 600,000 to 1 million people watch the Nintendo Direct videos in a week.
The Nintendo Direct presentations involve Iwata himself speaking to viewers about the latest first-party and third-party software in the works for Nintendo devices, along with trailers for the aforementioned, as well as information on upcoming services, firmware updates for Nintendo devices, and more.
“Each time we do a Nintendo Direct broadcast, more people visit the Nintendo eShop to download game demos and 3D videos, and it has become clear that it also leads to a higher use rate of the hardware, and even higher hardware sales,” Iwata said to investors at a Q&A. “This convinces us that it is worthwhile to do regular broadcasts.”
Iwata shared another interesting fact—a recent Nintendo Direct presentation for Animal Crossing: New Leaf that was streamed in Japan has accumulated over 1.1 million views since it was shown. Iwata points out that this was a full 47-minute presentation, and that 65% of views were from smartphone devices. The video even made it into the YouTube charts, indicating that, if the circumstances are right, Nintendo Direct videos can go beyond the audience of dedicated gamers.
However, Iwata feels, Nintendo will have to continue to innovate with Nintendo Direct presentations themselves as well, if they want to keep people’s interest in the long term.
“Just as some marketing methods lose their appeal over time, people will become bored if we simply continue to do the same thing, as is the case throughout the entertainment industry,” Iwata cautioned. “In a sense, I feel that Nintendo Direct has an entertainment aspect too, so I think the challenge is whether we can continue to innovate successfully.”