News Article

Nintendo UK Looking To Raise Awareness Of Wii U With Tesco Campaign

Posted by Damien McFerran

"There are many people out there that don’t know what this is"

Nintendo UK has admitted that many consumers don't realise the Wii U is a new console, and that it intends to bolster awareness by embarking on an ambitious in-store campaign with leading UK supermarket chain Tesco.

Nintendo is making sure that its new system has a considerable presence in Tesco stores, and is sending out promotional leaflets to 300,000 Tesco customers who purchased Wii consoles in the past but have yet to upgrade to a new games system. Money-off vouchers will also be offered.

Tesco is the biggest supermarket chain in the UK and is the second-largest retailer in the world measured by profits — after US firm Wal-Mart.

Nintendo has revealed that its combined marketing budget for 3DS and Wii U is significantly higher than it was last year, and that in addition to working with Tesco the company intends to air a series of television adverts in the run up to the all-important Christmas shopping season. This will be augmented by online promotions, print adverts and an "out of home" tour which aims to reach 115,500 shoppers up and down the UK.

Speaking to MCV, UK marketing director Shelly Pearce explained that the company is well aware of the problems its new console is facing:

We haven’t had the sales we wanted on Wii U hardware. We haven’t had the software for most of this year. But we have some quite ambitious numbers, particularly with some of our biggest franchises coming.

Our monthly tracking shows that Wii remains the No.1 console for brand awareness. This offers us a massive opportunity to convert Wii owners to Wii U.

Interest is starting to grow but we know we have a lot of work to do. There was a big misconception at launch about what Wii U is. And one of the big messages is that this is a new console and a new controller. There are many people out there that don’t know what this is.

With rival stores like Asda scaling back its support for Wii U, it will be a much-needed shot in the arm for the system to get exposure in a chain as large as Tesco.

What are your thoughts on the campaign? Post a comment to tell us.


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User Comments (51)



Bilko said:

More awareness has to be a good thing. Hope it's not too late, but if this has an effect this Christmas it could help a lot.



deusy said:

They can never do too many campaigns like this — the Wii U needs everything Nintendo give it.



Ricube said:

I live in Italy and i'we never seen any kind of commercial here... In stores I alwaye see wiiU games in the most hidden corner in the wii shelf...



fredcaster said:

Hang on a minute. Nintendo are telling me that if something is advertised it's more likely to sell?? Woah I'm going to have to go and lie down for a while.



cornishlee said:

One year after launch. I know they had few first-party games last year, but still, what were they thinking last year?



MadAdam81 said:

If Nintendo does this in its biggest 10 markets, then that would be a good start.



Senario said:

@cornishlee No use wasting money on advertising without a wide variety of games available from platformers like rayman and NSMBU, to action games like MH3U and W101, and adventure games like WWHD. They needed awareness but I am not so sure more advertising would help too much without the games. Now that they have them, advertising is all good. Although the same cannot be said for Nintendo of America. People are too caught up in FPS or Third person shooters even though there are fans of nintendo.



Freakazoid said:

it has began
Hopecully they do more than this
@Ricube i live in germany and we lately got quite a lot tv spots. Ok most are of course on childrens tv. Also didnt u get the Nintendo Figurines at Mc Donalds?
Some special advertisment was about when u test the wii u you can win one. Also i dont remember too well but i just wanted to point out that the advetisment is getting more at least in germany.



cornishlee said:

Obviously most of the games available at launch were third party, which I think is the point you were trying to make and the one which I alluded to in my first post. My point is though that it was an almighty mess-up that's lost them a lot of goodwill from publishers and consumers alike. The soft launch hasn't done them any favours.



VeeFlamesNL said:

Well, I just want to see U sales rise to levels of the 3DS. I'm very sure WWHD will raise sales. If it does, ANY other 1st party will do it NO MATTER WHAT. But anyway, advertise the console!



SigourneyBeaver said:

They should start getting the Wii U into Tesco stores because the ones I've been in don't have it. They only sell gamepad rubber skins.



Senario said:

@cornishlee I wouldn't solely blame nintendo as the main reason they had less first party was because of work on the 3DS and putting trust in third party devs who said they would publish on Nintendo's platform if they had the chance to do so without being overshadowed by Nintendo games. Sadly, a ton of them did not go through with it and got cold feet. Even Ubisoft who semi-supports nintendo got cold feet and delayed rayman legends for inferior ports to other systems.

As usual, third parties do not have good will to nintendo(some of them seem snobbish) but I do not think the majority of consumers have lost good will towards them. To me it feels like the "me too!" Mentality where say a sony fan says something and people hop on the hate bandwagon as bad news is all that is ever reported on bit sites. Nevermind that these people probably would never buy the system in the first place and are not the majority as much as they want to believe.



Ricube said:

@Freakazoid Ich bin zur haelfte auch deutsch. I've got 3 figurines from mcDonalds and even here Nintendo characters are beloved as anywhere. The thing is people just doesn't know about the WiiU. Anyway Nintendo sure has a stronger presence in Germany than in Italy. Until the Gamecube game's wheren't even localised in italian language.



cornishlee said:

Yes, I understand that Nintendo wanted to give third parties room to sell software and, despite lacking exclusives, the line-up was pretty good. I've played Darksiders 2 and NG3:RE several times. What Nintendo could, and should, have done, however, is back up the launch with marketing. That was where they failed to deliver and left those publishers which supported them at release floundering. If I was one of those third-parties I'd have scaled back my support too.



bagszi said:

Sad thing it won't come to every tesco. I'm pretty sure I won't see WiiU in the Hungarian tesco's. They aren't even selling nintendo games here right now... :S



MrGawain said:

It makes sense to push it in Tesco, you need to sell it to Mums and Dads with their kids instead of the 16-25 year old age bracket that spend their time in GAME (note I didn't say spend their money, I said spend their time!)



ThumperUK said:

At last, Nintendo UK are doing something about its pitiful awareness of the WiiU. This is nothing to do with the name being confusing (shoppers are NOT stupid on the whole!) but a complete lack of advertising for the console, aside from a small campaign last November. That had to be withdrawn but even before then, the spend on TV space was far less than for something like the CoD annual update and was far too small for a console launch.

Advertising is necessary for sales and brand awareness, is Nintendo finally getting this? It needs to sack its Ad Agencies both here and the US, they are simply not producing results.



Peach64 said:

This is really strange, and for the last couple of weeks most Tesco stores have been drastically reducing their Nintendo displays, until they're left with just a top 5 selling Nintendo games section.





withoutdk said:


it is the same in Denmark... most of the stores here dont even have a single game to show the customers in store.... it is either out back or they dont have it at all.

but i see a lot of ps xbox games... it is a shame really... it is almost like they are getting money for not showing the nintendo stuff... people cant even see the wii u or try it... and if they have games for the wii... they are probably 10£ more expensive.



readyletsgo said:

@Peach64 you should see the WiiU section in the Tescos in Dublin, does not exist. Never saw a WiiU game in the shops, just Wii and 3DS and since the start of September my local super Tesco has removed all video game games, people just don't buy games in supermarkets in Ireland I guess but the fact that WiiU was never in Tesco here says it all.

Edit- also since we only have Gamestop here now the WiiU section is a joke, the games are hidden out the back and the actual WiiU sample console is upstairs in the DVD section where no one goes anymore. It's like all companies are out to fail Nintendo or something but PS4 and XBone is everywhere with displays on the ground floor. Just annoying and a bit sad



Emblem said:

Awareness is good but Super markets don't move that many units of anything electrical in the UK so i hope Nintendo don't waste too much money on this campaign. Store fronts like Argos,PC World, Game etc however sell significantly more so i hope a equal effort is being spent there.



Platypus101 said:

@Emblem I believe it's their attempt to draw in (or shall I say "re-hook") the casuals that made up the success base of the Wii... With price cuts and some interesting bundles on the horizon, this might just help.



rjejr said:

"sending out promotional leaflets to 300,000 Tesco customers who purchased Wii consoles in the past but have yet to upgrade to a new games system."

How do they know that? Or are they just assuming nobody has upgraded to Wii U yet? (I don't know UK Wii U sales figures, or Wii sales figures for that matter.)

So are there really a bunch of Nintendo execs thinking "outside the box" that advertising helps sell new items? Good job boys, you get a cookie. (Don Rickles voice)

All of early 2013 (before I drank the Kool-Aid and bought a Wii U) the lack of shelf space has been one of my greatest concerns. Everybody kept saying "someday the good games will come" and "someday the Wii U will get a price drop". But there is such a thing as too late. Something about horses and barns burning. Once retailers devote shelf space to X1 and PS4 and Disney Infinity and Skylanders Swapforce and 2DS how much room do you think they are all of a sudden going to make for Wii U games and consoles? And Amazon not carrying the system in the US I still think is a concern for all the Prime members, especially w/ all the Xbox and PS ads always appearing at the top of the page.

So yes, advertising is good, but only time will time if it's a matter of "too little, too late".



unrandomsam said:

Tesco is just the same as Asda and Sainsbury's.

Always sell of most of the excess games stuff during the Summer and restock for Christmas.

Asda sold off all that Wii U stuff.
Tesco Sold off quite a bit of Wii U stuff / Mario Tennis Open (£10) / Dream Drop Distance (£5) / Epic Mickey 3DS (£10)
Sainbury's Sold off Dream Team Bros (£15) / Some Wii U stuff.

Thing is in most cases unless you get their immediately then it will be bought by people who just relist it on ebay.



MAB said:

Actually it was a good strategy for Nintendo not to waste a tonne of cash on advertising for the past year. Imagine a normal person seeing a WiiU ad on TV then jumping online to check-out info on websites only to be bombarded with whiners caught within a massive wall of internet traffic click hate articles and complete nonsense... Like the following comments ↓



Legromancer said:

yes, it's was really great from Nintendo to make no effort trying to sell Wii Us...gave us pretty great 3rd Party support.



Sqirm64 said:

"There are many people out there that don't know what this is"
No duh sherlock!



ikki5 said:

is this really going to do anything? In my mind, UK doesn't care about Nintendo, it is not just about the Wii U here. They have limited stock for Nintendo, NOT the Wii U. SO that means, Wii, Wii U, DS and 3DS....and look at how the 3DS is doing. People go on about how Nintnedo doesn't care about UK but it is stuff like this that tells me why they don't seem to care as much because they just reduce Nintendo entirely and shove them off the shelves even though the 3DS right now is selling incredibly well (like look at that shelf, 5 Nintendo games.....). If they reduced just Wii U, then it'd make more sense to me but where they reduce it all, I almost see it as a lost cause. The way I see it, it isn't really Nintendo's fault for the UK, it's the UKs fault for shoving Nintendo out entirely so if they want to complain about Nintendo not doing anything, then they need to show that they are interested in Nintendo so Nintendo might even bother trying. Then if they are just going to shove the stock away then, Nintendo should just write it off as a lost cause, save their money and go to people who actually want it. Think it is harsh? then maybe people in UK should actually act like they want Nintendo.



unrandomsam said:

@ikki5 Amazon is great for Nintendo the eshop tells you what exists all you need is the hardware and they do as well as anybody in terms of actually keeping physical stuff in stock - Supermarkets are as good as any if they sell them as a loss leader. (Game UK are terrible to Nintendo but yet they gave them the online code monopoly. e.g the main town centre store of theirs doesn't even stock most official accessories and the demo WIi U is connected to a 4:3 CRT (The PS3 and 360 are on a 1080p LCD)).



unrandomsam said:

@MadAussieBloke They were also selling them at a loss. (The PS3/360 sold loads at a loss and haven't even made that money back). Slightly different in that it is profitable after one first party game but I am not sure how that applies if the game is super discounted.



Caryslan said:

@unrandomsam The Xbox 360 made its losses back years ago. In fact, it also managed to make back all the losses from the first Xbox as well. Microsoft has made nothing but pure profit off the Xbox 360 since about 2009.

As for the PS3, I think I read that the system started to become profitable once the Slim models hit the market, and Sony has largely made back most if not all their losses from the PS3.



Peach64 said:

@ikki5 What a load of rubbish. Mario Kart Wii is the best selling console game of all time in the UK. Good games sell, the 3DS has had several titles do well, but even as a Nintendo fan I've not been impressed with the Wii U games. You can't blame people for not buying. There's no Nintendo bias. It's no coincidence that when a game reviews well it sells well.



ikki5 said:


Interesting, you call my statement rubbish but take a look at your store shelves, FIVE games on 3 different systems, a game may have sold great but now, look at how pathetic it is. Three 3DS games, one Wii game and one Wii U game. I don't blame Nintendo for not caring about you because this shows that you don't care about them. Stores simply reduce stock because people don't buy it. I could possibly see it as the Wii U if people don't know about the Wii U but where they reduce the Wii to one game and the 3DS to three games.... yeah, that is a kick to the face of Nintendo, even more so when you blame them for a reduction to stock to systems that are even well known and even sold very well. You want Nintendo to care about you more, then how about you support them more proving to retailers that stocking their stuff really matters. There is plenty of good games out for the Wii U that got a great review, why not try playing some of them.



dizzy_boy said:

Is this the same initiative that Nintendo had with Game to promote the WiiU? Because we all know how well that one worked.



DarkKirby said:

I still think Nintendo has the wrong idea trying to convince people who don't know what the Wii U is to buy a Wii U. They should be targeting people who already know what the Wii U is, which is pretty much every gamer.

I really don't think people not buying the Wii U is an awareness problem.



FineLerv said:

I'm still not sure why it's suddenly become an issue whether a console is popular or not. I didn't buy my PS thinking "Boy, I sure hope this console sells well"; I bought it because there were games I wanted to play. Same with the Wii U.

If there's games you want to play then buy the console and let Nintendo worry about marketting and sales figures. If there's not, go on a Nintendo Enthusiast site and complain in the comments. Or grow up. Whichever works for you.



FineLerv said:

Either way, the uniformed audience (dads who buy consoles for their kids) that I know don't know what a Wii U is ("it's a portable?" "It's a controller for the Wii?") but these guys are just people who crack their consoles anyway and just pirate games for their children. The uninformed audience is irrelevant. Consoles need the 12 year olds to thrive - and 12 year olds want Halo nowadays.



hcfwesker said:

I'm sorry, but wiiU will NEVER captivate casuals like the Wii did. Wii sports is what hooked most casuals in. They bought the system, played the heck out of Wii sports and Nintendo only games, but soon realized all the AAA 3rd party games that were the talk of the town were only being released on competitive consoles ... which is the SAME EXACT thing going on this generation. So all those millions of Wiis just got pushed aside once the Wii Sports fad wore off, and the casuals that "did" become gamers went on to PS3 and 360 to play the games everyone was raving about which you couldn't get for the Wii. And these people know that. The younger audience you want to target ... most kids go with what their friends like, and right now "it's cool" to play CoD on xbox live. That's what kids want to do, they get picked on if they talk about or own a Nintendo console lol. Forget about targeting past Wii owners. Get the games and 3rd party support back. Relaize Nintendo your gamers from the past are grown up and we want grown up games. Yes, I love games like Zelda, Metroid, DK, and Mario, but I also want the AAA 3rd party games others have on competing consoles. Thats what your success is riding on this generation.



Pj1 said:

I'll be so p****d off if Tesco do a big Wii-U price drop round Christmas, the Zelda bundle that is due out soon (4 October) is £250:00 and last year I got mine for £300:00, I'm not happy. 3D Mario and Zelda will help them sell systems and games this year.



unrandomsam said:

@Caryslan As far as I have read (With numbers not speculation) as far back as 2012 360 was down 3 million PS3 was down 5 million.

Microsoft is not expecting the whole thing to pay off until 2020 (That I have read them say).

There is no official statements from either which is not something companies do. (Investors would want to know etc).

That is why they are changing to the old NIntendo tactic of selling the consoles at a profit and using less cutting edge technology.



Gunnerholic said:

Probably because in my large Tesco Extra supermarket there is only one game on the shelves and no sign of any consoles or peripherals...



LztheQuack said:

I read "complete lack of advertising" and I've seen online ads in Britain and America...ok?



JustinH said:

I've told a few of you Europe guys how Nintendo was going to market themselves once they rolled out their push, and sure enough, this is it: get people on the streets, put games in the public's hands and ease off on TV ads and other traditional marketing ploys.

That's how they've done it in North America for a few years now, and with Europe so much more population-dense, it could work even better over there.



Kit said:

Probably to do with the stoopid name of the Wii U... if they called it the Wii 2 then people would've been in no doubt.



Araknie said:

Like people don't know what PS4 or an Xbox One is, gamers know, non gamers don't.

I don't consider gamers the one that buy a console for CoD ignoring the exclusive, just to clarify what meant "gamers".

It's often a misleading word.

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