I’m willing to wager that I am not the only American resident who had never heard of UK-based credit agency Barclaycard before they released Waterslide Extreme for the iPhone. The app, which allows players to ride massive waterslides through urban environments, as in this TV commercial, functions as both an amusing game and an interactive ad for Barclaycard, which isn’t even based stateside. Yet, US iPhone users account for nearly half of the free app’s downloads, which today total over 10 million.
Reaching an obscenely high number of downloads for a free app isn’t terribly surprising — but, being ad-based, those numbers translate to some serious brand engagement. According to a press release from developer FISHLABS, “Measured by the total of 10 million downloads with an average playing time of 2.5 minutes and four sessions per player this corresponds to an average brand engagement of 100 million minutes. Thanks to the interactivity of ad games like Waterslide Extreme, the brand awareness factor is exceptionally high.”
Suddenly, I’m never going to look at waterslides the same way again.