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Madness #1 Your Game Can't Market Itself

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RPGJohnny

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The Indie Game Developer Is Disillusioned!



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Can it really be true? Can indies be living in a dream world designed on fantasy rather than reality? The answer is YES, and I will go on to define why! Indies believe that their games can market themselves or that small non targeted budgets can bring in the fame needed to make sales. I will debunk the myth and tell you WHY this doesn't work and will never work. For the upcoming article I will debunk "word of mouth", "advertising scales", geographical targeting", "public relations", "marketing research", and more!

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[font=comic sans ms,cursive]How much does a indie know about big company marketing? Can we at least we can all agree that big publishers bring in the views needed to make sales. They do this with PAX, GDC, and other gaming / anime gatherings. Any type of blog or media will POST about their game and generate the article hype for them. These games pushed through big publisher ultimately fail, but as to why we must understand. The games that go through the publishers DON'T always keep it gamer focused. Most, if not all, the products come out buggy, mutilated, and often no where near where the hype level was at.[/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]Big publishers spend lots of money hyping the people up, but to make sales that is what they need to do. Indies think that just because they make a cheaper product, that people will simply just dive in and buy the product if they like it. How will they ever know about the product and like it or not IF THEY CAN'T SEE IT, or HEAR ABOUT IT? The sad part is, most even go as far as to say "Well we got a review by this one website ..." NO! Simply put 80% of your potential buyers don't or won't go on those websites! You think major droves of people will go on to IGN just to find your product? Most, if not all, go on IGN to find out the latest news about games they already heard about. Less than 5% will take interest in your game if accidentally searched. So what does a indie need to do?[/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]Easy, you need to go and advertise or campaign where the people spend their time. Facebook used to be a good place to advertise on for games and movies. Now, it is mostly about social networking and hardly anyone has their wallet associated with the image of Facebook. That being said it still doesn't hurt to advertise a product through Facebook, just don't expect you to get your money back! Now where would there be another place to advertise? Google search? That may be good for SEO Link juice needed to get your game around, but it nearly isn't as fast enough as you need it to be. So where then? YOUTUBE!!![/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]YouTube is #2 most used search engine in the world! Google being #1! Talk about a monopoly!! Now let's get down to WHY YouTube is good for marketing and advertising on for indies. The lowest front page videos on YouTube get 30,000-50,000 views per day, with top being 300,000 - 500,000 views per day! Very few videos without a huge subscriber base behind them can rank on YouTube without highly targeted traffic and advertising. So, where do the indies come in? It is up to you to create hype videos and advertise through YouTube. You can't afford people to overlook your game. Each person who buys your game is nearly worth $4.00 per month on the iPhone and roughly $30 per month on the PC. [/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]So now that you know the value, do you really want to make your game popular? The answer should be yes, and I will go over now Word Of Mouth. So many indies get confused when hearing the words. The answer really is, Word Of Mouth = hype by a publisher or a company in secret passing out positive hype to social bookmarking and social media websites in order to spread the product more effectively! So in total, you use someone who knows how to catch people's eyes in order to spread your product around for more sales. In return, most people think W.O.M. (Word Of Mouth) is spread by the consumers. That is entirely false as TRULY Successful W.O.M. campaigns come from viral marketing agencies. The moral of the story is "gold driven mouths bring in the gold".[/font]




[font=comic sans ms,cursive]So why do indies believe only customers can use W.O.M.? Simple, because they are fooled into this misconception about only customers can spread good reviews. If you look at some of the big publisher game releases a lot of the W.O.M. is coming from advertising and marketing agencies on the side. This being the case, you will clearly see how they CONTROL what people think about their product until launch. Is it worth being able to fully understand that you can't just release and hope for the best?[/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]What do you need to do to bring in the sales? You need a game trailer that you can buy advertising for on YouTube and Google. This trailer needs to be DRAMATIC, hold its mood the entire view session, needs to focus on one aspect of your video game that excites the user, and finally it needs a STRONG CALL TO ACTION at the ending of the trailer. It should be so cleverly crafted that the normal person doesn't think twice about using their wallets and buying the product. Expect to pay on YouTube $0.58 per VIEW for the FPS, First Person Shooter keywords. On Google it'll be around $1.29 a click, with most clicks going in for around $3.00 per click on the high scale end of things.[/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]So how does one go VIRAL on YouTube without much cash? There are 2 ways. The first and cheapest but time consuming is hitting up 250 of the major popular sites on the internet. 100 deal with videos and 150 deal with games. You really want to target all 250, which includes YouTube being #1 on the list. If you can get into the top 10 on each site then you can draw in the sales figures. It might actually cost a lot of cash doing it this way as you have little to no control about when people will watch your video, if at all! So the next part is actually buying advertising and marketing services that increase your chance for viral videos![/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]When you purchase viral marketing or advertising it is going to be expensive. If you simply don't have the budget, don't bother to make a game. Viral videos not only set when and where people watch the video, they can also create a NEED for the product you are offering people. look at Kony 2012 and say I am wrong. nearly 100M views and $30M made in donations. The company is being investigated by several videos on the internet of key position people admitting very few dollars actually go into Uganda. Did that stop donations? NO, in fact more people gave for round 2! the point is, the video was very dramatic, easy to create emotional attachments to the viewers, and finally it called for your money at the end. It really did become successful even if they company is rotten to the core![/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]Imagine if you genuinely created a NEED for your product? How much money are you willing to spend to be successful? Marketing and Advertising are 90% of the sales game. the product doesn't even matter anymore as long as you can sell the hype and generate sales! So if you don't think much of advertising or marketing your game then don't bother counting sales. Not even ducks want your game if they can't see it on YouTube! So in theory for me a PC gamer is worth $100 each and a iPhone Gamer is worth $15 each. That is way higher than what the average is for each, but I do know the power of a happy gamer![/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]So how do I do viral videos? In the next installment of my MADNESS I will reveal how I create viral videos and how they hit YouTube top page.[/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]Questions? Post Em Here![/font]


[font=comic sans ms,cursive]Comments? Post Em Here![/font]


[font=comic sans ms,cursive]Concerns? Post Em Here![/font]


[font=comic sans ms,cursive]Inquiries? PM Me! Or visit my Twitter![/font]


[font=comic sans ms,cursive]Job Opportunities? PM Me! Or visit my Twitter![/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]A little about me:[/font]



[font=comic sans ms,cursive]I do viral marketing and advertising of video games. I design and create video games. I like to play video games. I don't like video game hobbyists trying to ruin the market with low quality games. I support video game hobbyists willing to create a better game for a better market! I created several companies,and several gamer groups premiering on YouTube late 2012. The RPG tag comes from Role Playing Games as I love Warhammer and Dungeons and Dragons! I am 5 years younger than 30 years old![/font]

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Did you mean "delusional" rather than "disillusioned"? I'd also suggest a different (perhaps more standard) font for the body of your post, as the current one is a little harder to read than necessary.

Looking forward to your follow-up -- this post is all very exciting and has got me (more) interested in the idea of YouTube marketing, but it's pretty much devoid of actual implementable suggestions, which will hopefully come with the next instalment! :-)

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I think that you're right with most of what you say, but on the other hand, is viral marketing by your definition still viral marketing when you invest lot of money to keep it alive ? Or is it just an other marketing approach of the big players utilizing new media (newpaper->television->youtube).

In my definition viral marketing is more of what happens with minecraft or donny darko.

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[url="http://www.gamedev.net/blog/1462/entry-2254602-madness-3-how-to-create-controlled-hype/"]http://www.gamedev.net/blog/1462/entry-2254602-madness-3-how-to-create-controlled-hype/[/url] This reveals to you how I market my videos. It also explains the Minecraft and Donny Darko effect which is still buying people's time in exchange for their videos and hype about the game. The early Minecrafters made videos in hopes to get paid from YouTube. This effect led more people to do it. Now with Notch allowing any type of video to be made from Minecraft leads people to make more videos to make money off Minecraft. In return Notch gets more people to buy his game. Also with big publishers newspaper and TV are obsolete. The media is now Online an social. You go to YouTube now and find 11B views per day. that is very big and more gamers now go on YouTube than newspapers and TV to find a game they want or like. blogs work wonders to, but imagine if your viral video got featured on a blog because it was a cool video. that draws eyes to. In essence it is better to create the hype and manage it than let people create the hype for you without management. if you pay someone $200 and they were able to get 600,000 people to watch and share your video that is faster and more effective since information is TIME BASED and SPEED DEPENDANT (more efficient) than letting your 10 friends spread to a total of 200 people and then it dies.

Your investments of a lot of money will in return allow you to control your audience to a certain extent. Even if they just watch your video game trailers and let's plays of people who bought the game, by the time you release another game they might be convinced to buy your new game and old. That happened to me when I watched the Deadspace 2 trailers and walkthroughs. I went out and bought Deadspace 1. It is all about how people think in order to get the sales. In my Madness #3 I explain a lot about this, also in Madness #2.

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