Nintendo and Consumers Have Struck Gold
When the deluxe edition Wii U was announced prior to its release in November 2012, it was noted that every purchaser would also be enrolled in an incentives program called the Digital Deluxe Promotion. This program is very similar to Club Nintendo in the sense that the user receives rewards for their patronage – in this case being eShop money for digital purchases. Every digital purchase adds a 10th of what it’s worth in the form of points to your overall score, accessible here. When you reach a certain amount of points, Nintendo gives you $5.00 in Nintendo eShop credit! Much wow, right? This is real money going into your eShop wallet (that your 3DS also shares).
Because Nintendo’s been thinking of solutions to bringing an account system to their consoles at a snail’s pace, it’s looking to happen next generation, I’ve been slightly reluctant to the idea of buying retail games electronically. I’ve dipped in a toe or two with small purchases like indie titles and virtual console releases, I’ve gained a few $5 codes over large spans of time, but the real bread and butter comes from points received from games between $30-$60 dollars.
Early Mario Kart 8 buyers have the option to download another free retail game before July 31st – a reminder if you haven’t claimed your game yet. At this time, and in conjunction with Club Nintendo, I’ve realized just how damn awesome the Digital Deluxe Promotion truly is. After registering my products through Club Nintendo and the DDP after Mario Kart, my free game, and some other small titles I needed to register, I earned $10-$15 in eShop credit and enough Club Nintendo coins to level up to platinum. I was feeling pretty balling…like a boss of the highest caliber. It made me remember that this promotion will exist for just a short time longer (until late 2014 – early 2015).
Nintendo, does it have to go away so soon….or ever even?
It’s honestly one of the most genius ways to not only get consumers to become more comfortable with digital purchases, but it gives the buyers a true sense of gratification. I love “free” money for games I was going to buy anyway. Let’s keep this going. The DDP gives people that little nudge to buy games from the eShop and reaffirms fandom for many people. “Nintendo gives us free sh*t. They truly care about us!” Thus, a stellar technique to build brand loyalty and coerce new buyers.
Nintendo knows that there would be a lot of people like me, skeptical, and not wanting to do a rain dance or sing psalms to get their purchases back if their console is destroyed. The only thing Nintendo needs to do now is extend this offer to 3DS purchases and integrate this idea into Club Nintendo as an option for eShop games instead of classic titles and collectibles nobody wants. Sorry guys, those physical rewards are terrible.
Whenever we get accounts – real accounts – in the 9th generation, the DDP will reach its full potential. It can only get better from here. Nintendo gets a lot of flak for things they do badly, but the things they do right are super right.