You have a game, and you want to tell people about it. It’s a good game – and you know games. You play a LOT of games. Games are easy to understand.
Marketing, though. That may seem like a ‘big bad end guy’. You know it’s coming, but you’re not sure what to expect. It can be kinda scary.
If that’s you, thinking about your marketing as an adventuring party may help.
The Fighter (Your Game)
He’s out in front. Because of that, he’s what people usually see first. He’s often the one everyone remembers. They talk about his strengths and his weaknesses. They often attribute the success of the whole party to this burly example of adventurehood.
Your game is the same thing. Believe it or not, your game – the product you’re trying to sell (or give away) – is part of your marketing. In fact, it’s the primary piece of marketing. A good product can smash through obstacles others will find difficult. A good product will stand up to a great deal of abuse when and if competitors attack. A good product will help you get noticed when it ‘walks in the room’ ahead of the rest of your efforts.
The Mage (Your Website)
He’s got smarts, he does. When people want in-depth knowledge about obscure topics, they often turn to the mage. He’s not out in front, like the fighter, but he doesn’t have to be. He can sit in the back, aware of everything around him, and make his presence known by working wonders in the right circumstances. And he’s got other tricks that can impress the ‘common folk’, raising the profile of the entire party.
Your website is your mage. This is where customers will go to dive deep into your game. They might be drawn in by your game, but your website is where they turn to really get to know you. Your website is also where you can put some really neat content – art galleries, videos, behind-the-scenes blog posts. These are the glamours you cast on visitors to help them believe that your game is worth playing.
The Cleric (Your Events)
The cleric represents her god to the masses; she’s the living embodiment of everything her god stands for. It’s to the cleric that people turn when they want to worship. She can heal your wounds, but she’s also good in a fight, helping the party through rough patches.
Your event appearances are your clerics. This is where the gaming public can meet your team and get to know you – not the you that’s on the internet, hidden behind walls of text and sales lingo. They get a glimpse inside your soul. If your team really believes in what they’re doing, people will notice and you’ll make disciples that can then go out and spread your gospel to the far reaches of the world.
The Rogue (Your Advertising)
While the mage has smarts, the rogue has skills. He’s where the party turns to open doors the rest can’t manage, or bypass traps that can slow them down. He’s also the guy that mingles with the crowd, casually mentioning positive information about the party, while the fighters up front grabbing their attention. He’s often in the shadows, and some people distrust him, but the rogue is no less important than the mage or the cleric. When you have a skilled rogue, your party can do things other parties find difficult. Without him, the party lacks an important ingredient needed for success.
Advertising is an important part of marketing, just like the rogue is an important part of any adventuring party. Advertising allows you to reach out to people that don’t know about your game, that have never been to your website, and have never run into you at conventions. When done well, advertising allows you to tell more people about your game, more quickly. Without advertising, you can succeed, but you may not be as successful as if you’d taken the time to invest in a well-rounded marketing effort.
Art provided by Fractal Entertainment. Check out SideQuest, their Unity-based, free-to-play browser-based RPG.