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Discussion in 'Indie Basics' started by 2dnoob, Feb 23, 2007.
And what are you going to do in marketing in that half a year noob? Write a press release?
In all honesty I don't, at least not 6 months worth. Though I really should, which is why I've hired someone part time to handle it for me. Though this guy is only doing like 30 hours per month simply because I'm not sure there is really enough marketing to be done that would fill more than that amount of time. At least not for the kind of games I currently sell.
If you're doing a shooter there aren't all that many places to advertise with any serious level of effect. However if you're doing an RPG or Adventure it seems you have many more options available.
With a Match-3 or some other super casual game any cheap guerilla marketing is most likely pointless since again there aren't enough effective options, other than just sticking it on as many portals as possible. Infact on a super casual game I'd say any level of guerilla marketing totally pointless and a waste of time that could be spent making your next game.
P.S Andy cracks me up
Neil, next time you talk this all for me. Why should I spend my time after all. And whistle me when you need any help with such stuff.
Are we all already so annoying to know all the same and repeat ourselves again and again?
Hey!!! I know something new!!! Nope... Just kidding...
This Russian speaks nothing but the truth!
Here's an article you might want to read.
It explains the differences between the "waterfall", "agile", and "stage gate" approaches to software development, and how some could reduce the risk of a game being a failure in the market.
I fear that's what alot of coders on this forum who complain about sales do. Making money in the game biz, especially for "true indies" has alot to do with marketing as well. I have read about awesome games not making any money because no one knows about them, and then there's the sub par game which makes money because of superior marketing.
But I've done more research and it does seem to make more sense to write the best game you can, and then market the hell out of it. And if marketing to alot of you is just getting portal sales, then you have alot to learn about "indie marketing".
Guys, is that noob is trying to offend me or this is just my bad English again?
Please note guys that this was him who asked the question not me.
And now watch this! I'm silence...
He was agreeing with you.
Your english seems fine to me. I was offended by you thinking all I plan to do is write a press release, which may or not be the norm. lol...
You will say me by five years later after you will publish first your 12 games if you were able to figure out something else.
So far you are in ignore together with that Daniel. Go read some more articles and say us how great you know this business after that.
Sorry guys i've spent my time on you.
Think this is so funny noob? Not at all? You probably can invide these forums but this is far away from the whole game development world.
uh..ok..on 2nd thought maybe your english isn't that good afterall.
...Yeah, correct. Doesn't let me to read that articles...
I'm now convinced that Andy is in fact a babelfish translator bot that became self-aware early in the new millenium. Either that or I'm trapped in that twilight zone episode where the guy wakes up to find the english language has changed completely and he can't understand anyone.
Now my english isn't so good. Are you saying that after all your years in business that a press release is the only option you've discovered for marketing?
What I gather is that you (Andy) and 2Dnoob might be saying the same thing, that there's more than just press releases to marketing but that you have a problem with him making that claim without any experience to back it up?
1. The guy stated that he is going to spend half a year on marketing of the game.
2. So my question was what else he is going to do in that half a year except of writing the press release. Because basically I believe that the best marketing for indies is development and publishing of new games.
3. He started to attack me (me!) that he knows something more than just bringing the game to portals. The trouble is that we got no any single game on any portal ( except of this one - http://www.shockwave.com/gamelanding/blocky.jsp but it was developed in a week of spare time just for our own fun). So I'd appreciate if he'd check at first what he is talking about.
4. So yes, my reaction was obvious - I recommended him to survive in this business five years before teaching me to something. Reaction was obvious... but wording was incorrect as I assume now.
Anyway I totally disagree with one's position when he comes, ask a question and later starts to teach the responders what should be the correct answer. OKi?
Pardon guys! I was trying to do my best with your language.
It's the new davinci code I think Andy is great, he's the only person you can't really tell if he's angry or not. Much respect, and you're english isn't that bad, albeit it does look babelized sometimes.
Agreed... Agreed... OKi? Are you happy now? Bleaaaah...
I think this is great advice. When I released my first game I had all these cool ideas of how to market the game, and thought they would easily get me a ton of sales. I thought I would post on forums, send press release, buy banner advertising, try some viral thing where I tell my MSN contacts about the game and get them to tell their contacts blah blah blah.
Basically most of these things are highly unlikely to be worth the amount of time spent on doing them, unless you're REALLY good at it and your game is really unique/special.
Things like SEO and link exchanges on the other hand do help and in my opinion are worth your time. On top of this emailing/phoning reviewers and making exposure deals with other sites can help. But it's certainly not enough to spend 6 months full time on.
I don't know...
I think some of you are forgetting that you can also continue to update your game as well. If you make the right changes, you'll steadily see your conversion rate creep up with each update. My game, BlockHeads Clash, had sluggish sales initially but I tweaked my nag screens, improved my Mac installer, and made some small gameplay tweaks, and my sales increased substantially when I released an update back in January. Also, if you have a significant update you can send a PR (not a mass mailing) to targeted editors who have written about your game before.
Granted, I'm not marketing full-time on BlockHeads. I right now I'm devoting a few days a month to updates, but if I was marketing full-time on this particular game I'd do this:
Get player feedback --> Fix a couple of bugs/usability issues --> Add a small new feature or improvement --> Submit to (Mac) download sites --> Monitor conversion rate --> Once conversion rate is high enough, experiment with an advertisement somewhere --> Contact a site/blog for a review --> Repeat Cycle
What I mentioned certainly could keep you busy for 6 months and if you do it full-time you'll probably get faster results. Granted, sometimes a dud is a dud. But if your game shows potential, it's worth giving it some solid marketing efforts and updates for several months. If your sales start going up after 2-3 updates, you may have a diamond in the rough. The great thing too is that once your sales go up they generally stay up with minimal work.
The problem with starting another game immediately after the first one is that you may not have learned all the lessons yet and just keep making the same mistakes. You could spend 6 months developing another game and still end up with usability issues, a lousy nag screen, unintuitive buy process on your website, and limited media contacts. These things usually are worked on/sorted out post-launch. If you cut short your post-launch period to work on another game these things will remain unresolved and it will likely bite you again on the next release.
If you see my earlier post I also think it has a lot to do with the kind of game. Block Heads is pretty unique and stands out very well from the crowd, and as such is likely to receive much better coverage from a press release about an update or something. Are editors really going to devote the same attention to an update of a match-3?
I'm not going to argue that updating and marketing won't increase your sales, it almost certainly will. But the question you have to ask is, would releasing another game make even more? Also don't forget that a new game is marketing for your site and brand. A press release for a new game will surely get more attention than one for an update.
I'm definitely not saying you shouldn't market and do updates, but if it's taking a seriously long time (more and a month or two full time) perhaps you should re-evalute if it's really worth it.
Bare in mind I actually plan to do the exact opposite for my next full release, and spend some serious time marketing it. Though this game is pretty original so probably deserves the extra effort.
Yeah that should be emphasized. If you're doing a match-3 or some other generic casual game, you probably won't get much love from the gaming press. Additionally, advertising costs will be through the roof because you're competing with BigFish, Real, Pogo, ArcadeTown, MSN, and others for search keywords and other ad spaces. So yes, in this scenario you'd definitely struggle marketing and you might be better off churning out another puzzle game.