Here at the Loughlin/Michaels Group, we love working with interesting and innovative companies. For the past month and a half, we’ve had a great time running a special campaign for Latin America’s largest social gaming publisher, Mentez. Mentez is a household name in Latin America, but was virtually unknown here in the U.S. We helped change that.
Our story starts in mid-July, when we got a call from Insight Venture Partners, a Manhattan-based VC firm that had heard about our team through one of its other investment companies. Insight called us up and asked, “What do you think about online games in Brazil?” We were intrigued.
The team jumped into research mode, using Google Translate to read through Mentez’s Portuguese-language website, its Portuguese-language social media, and Portuguese-language news coverage. We were able to get a pretty good handle on the Mentez business model: The company takes successful online games from the U.S. and China, and makes them succeed in Latin America and Brazil, through translation, localization, project management, alternative payments, branding and cross-platform promotion. We quickly developed a game plan, and successfully presented our ideas to the executive team.
Once they were on board, we had a busy month ahead of us. We ironed out our strategy, media targets and campaign objectives. We wrote an interactive press release (and had it translated into traditional and simplified Chinese), rewrote much of Mentez’s English-language website copy, coordinated a customized media training session with the company’s top three executives and an executive from Playdom, and secured an exclusive interview with Dean Takahashi from VentureBeat.
On launch day, the office was a flurry of activity. Donna came in over the weekend and decorated the office like it was Carnaval — with gold, purple and green streamers and beads on every desk. Takahashi’s article published on schedule, and we immediately sent out customized pitches to the editors on our short list, telling them that Mentez’s executives were available for interviews. Just in case you’re interested, click here to read the press release we sent out.
The launch went according to plan, exceeding our predetermined metrics for success. We secured 15 original articles, notably in VentureBeat, Inside Social Games (twice), Inside Facebook, The Social Times, Gamasutra, Red Herring and Dow Jones VentureWire. Oh, and more than 200 mentions on Twitter.
They wanted to make a splash, and they did a cannonball. Mentez reports that early responses from the campaign have been positive, with queries from curious game developers in the U.S. and China interested in partnering with the company. You’ll be hearing a lot more about Mentez, Brazil and social gaming in emerging Internet markets this year. We’re happy to be part of that push.