Jun 29, 2023 - Technology

Trucking company tries to recruit drivers through a trucking video game

Video game screenshot of a billboard in truck

American Truck Simulator. Screenshot: SCS Software

A major trucking company is advertising for long-haulers in a video game, with the theory that the game, American Truck Simulator, might breed good drivers.

Driving the news: Schneider National began running in-game ads across six in-game billboards in American Truck Simulator this spring.

  • The game, released in 2016 by SCS Software and regularly updated since then, allows players to drive authentic big rigs across the U.S.

What they’re saying: “We think that people who like the game, might like the real thing and want to drive with us,” said Kara Leiterman, a media relations manager for Schneider.

  • The company got the idea to advertise after discovering that some of the drivers in their training program who received a commercial drivers license “showed skills above their experience level,” Leiterman said.
  • “They credited their learning to the video game American Truck Simulator.”

Between the lines: Leiterman says it is too early to say if the ads are working but that the company is “optimistic.”

The big picture: The most popular form of advertising in video games involve interstitial ads that run between mobile games.

  • But companies do dabble with in-game billboards. In 2008, for example, the Obama presidential campaign took out billboards in the Electronic Arts racing game Burnout Paradise.

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