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1038321 Posts in 41959 Topics- by 33585 Members - Latest Member: ASavary

September 02, 2014, 01:24:05 PM
TIGSource ForumsDeveloperBusinessFollowers, subscribers, where and how?
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Author Topic: Followers, subscribers, where and how?  (Read 1268 times)
PDS271
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« Reply #15 on: November 27, 2012, 07:44:07 PM »

Blogs are important because it is an archive of original content. Content is the #1 most important thing to market yourself online today. The other reason it is important to blog is because you can integrate it with your website and when people search for keywords the search engines will show your site if you create a lot of good, original content.

There are a lot of articles on how to be effective on blogging. One of the more recent overviews is here:

http://www.lifehack.org/articles/technology/101-steps-to-becoming-a-better-blogger.html

I also just posted a new article on an overview of social media for game developers:

http://pds271.wordpress.com/2012/11/27/facebook-twitter-game-dev-win/
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Archibald
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« Reply #16 on: November 28, 2012, 01:52:26 AM »

I also just posted a new article on an overview of social media for game developers:

http://pds271.wordpress.com/2012/11/27/facebook-twitter-game-dev-win/
"you should average 1 tweet an hour" that's where I always stop reading. No matter how effective marketing tool this is I simply can not tweet/blog/facebook at anything even similar to that pace if I want to have any game finished. My energy has to go to making the game, not writing about it... I could imagine tweeting like once per 2 weeks, or once per week if the release is near and there is a lot to be announced, but on a normal day, unplug the internet and go make the actual game without any distractions. I can't imagine finishing it other way in any reasonable amount of time.

Spending effort on marketing is one thing, but making marketing your primary task is another and can't work for a lone indie.



BTW, what do you think about IndieDB? I mean it looks nice for a developer at a first glance (you out downloads, screens, can get feedback from people...) Isn't that one better, than a blog? Anyone uses it? What you think?
« Last Edit: November 28, 2012, 02:07:43 AM by Archibald » Logged

Europe1300 - Realistic Historical Medieval Sim
PDS271
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« Reply #17 on: November 30, 2012, 08:17:24 AM »

I can understand where not having enough time is an issue, though being active in the online community you are hoping will buy your game is essential. By tweeting once an hour I mean total tweets for the day. There many programs which allow you to schedule posts throughout the day at certain time intervals - one of them is Hoot Suite: http://hootsuite.com/.

You can schedule the most important posts of the day, like a great article you've read, or an original post on your blog. The remaining tweets can be follows ups to people talking to you or retweets of posts you find interesting.

Speaking of blogs, I checked out indieDB and while I think it is good that they offer a spot for members to blog, the downside is that you have no brand presence on their site. Setting up a personal blog through Wordpress is quick and easy, has built in Search Engine Optimization - so potential customers can find your content easily, and has tons of free themes to customize the look of the site to match your brand.

I can tell how passionate you are about completing your games, but my advice would be to cut out a small block each day where you can focus on your audience - even if it's just an hour. That is a good start and you'd be surprised at how much you can accomplish on the marketing side of things in just that hour.
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Archibald
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« Reply #18 on: December 03, 2012, 05:21:16 AM »

So, IndieDB is good only to be listed on but you should not use their blog feature?

About blogs. Thins kinds of puzzles me. Aren't you blogging dev related stuff that is interesting to other devs only? If it's not interesting to players how it can help you make more people avare of your game? Or maybe other indie devs buy your games?

my advice would be to cut out a small block each day where you can focus on your audience - even if it's just an hour.
Just "an hour"?! Smiley Whoa, how long you work each day? I work 4-6 hours a day, so a whole hour is around 25% of my time budget. But maybe it's that I'm too lazy and should work more... Smiley
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Europe1300 - Realistic Historical Medieval Sim
PDS271
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« Reply #19 on: December 03, 2012, 06:02:06 AM »

Hey Archibald,

Your orignal question about not having enough time inspired me to write a short piece on some tools that can help you manage your marketing time. As far as how much I work - probably too much  Tired

So, IndieDB is good only to be listed on but you should not use their blog feature?

About blogs. Thins kinds of puzzles me. Aren't you blogging dev related stuff that is interesting to other devs only? If it's not interesting to players how it can help you make more people avare of your game? Or maybe other indie devs buy your games?

IndieDB is definitely good to be on. The more links to your site or blog out there the more people will be able to find it.

The content that you create on your blog should be focused on your audience - That is probably the hardest part of marketing any product; knowing who your target audience is. As an example, if your game is for toddlers to teach them basic shapes, letters and numbers then you might want to create content that parents will find interesting since the toddler won't be the one purchasing the game. This may be short reviews of other children's apps, or lists of money budgeting apps, or advice on how to introduce gaming and technology to children (if you have experience in that area), just to name a few ideas. All the while you could also post periodic updates of info on your upcoming game. What this does is build trust with the exact audience who will be making the decision to purchase your game. It will also begin to set you apart as an expert in your particular niche.

I know it sounds like a lot of work, but if you are determined to make your game successful and get it in front of the people who will want it then it will pay off  Smiley
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TobiasW
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« Reply #20 on: December 03, 2012, 06:09:57 AM »

@Paul Eres:
How did you get that many subscribers? And do you know how many sales you got thanks to your newsletter?
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Archibald
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« Reply #21 on: December 03, 2012, 06:24:14 AM »

Your orignal question about not having enough time inspired me to write a short piece on some tools that can help you manage your marketing time.
Grin

Quote
As far as how much I work - probably too much  Tired
Maybe I will write one how to work less, I'm kind of good at being not overworked  Grin

The content that you create on your blog should be focused on your audience
Which bring me back to the purpose of a blog. We write about "sales of our games", "how to get more traffic", "if it's worth releasing on mac/linux" and things like that. It's interesting ONLY to other game devs. So, I wrote an excellent blog like that, I get 100,000 followers (all of them other indie game devs). Does it bring me even one additional sale? I try to find the financial logic (writing blogs because it's fun is completely another story, I don't deny this) for an indie to have a blog.

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Europe1300 - Realistic Historical Medieval Sim
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« Reply #22 on: December 03, 2012, 06:30:22 AM »

If you want to attract potential customers, write about your game, not all the meta-business of being an indie dev. Use your blog like people are using the DevLogs here.
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Laserbrain Studios
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« Reply #23 on: December 03, 2012, 06:37:18 AM »

If you want to attract potential customers, write about your game, not all the meta-business of being an indie dev. Use your blog like people are using the DevLogs here.
Well, that makes much more sense. Your blog indeed looks appealing to a gamer.
So you are using it to post updates to the people who already are interested in your game? Like a focusing point, not a way to get new players/traffic?

Right now I'm using various gaming forums for this. Any comment on this? Should I switch to a blog and just drop a link to my blog on the dedicated gaming forums?

Also, haven't you thought of using your own forum for this instead of a blog?
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Europe1300 - Realistic Historical Medieval Sim
Christian Knudsen
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« Reply #24 on: December 03, 2012, 10:48:14 AM »

So you are using it to post updates to the people who already are interested in your game? Like a focusing point, not a way to get new players/traffic?

Both, I guess. It definitely serves as updates to the people already interested in the game, but it also brings in new people now and then. I haven't really done any marketing as the game is still a couple of years from being finished, but the updates (and videos in particular -- I'm sure RPS wouldn't have written about it if there wasn't a video) have generated some attention. I think just the fact that potential customers can see that it's a game that's been in development for a while and that I'm always working on it means that they're more likely to get invested. And when they're invested, they're more likely to talk about it elsewhere and bring in other people.

Right now I'm using various gaming forums for this. Any comment on this? Should I switch to a blog and just drop a link to my blog on the dedicated gaming forums?

Just dropping a link to your blog can be perceived as spamming. I have a DevLog here and a thread on the Ubuntu forums where I copy-paste some blog posts. I don't post all updates on those forums, though, just the biggest updates (new gameplay mechanics or releases, for example).

Also, haven't you thought of using your own forum for this instead of a blog?

A forum requires a bit more involvement from people, and forum posts with updates aren't as immediately apparent as they are on a blog. I follow the Wolfire blog and the development of Overgrowth, for example, but I'm not a member of their forum and have never really read it.

What I have done, however, is connect my blog with my forum, so that the blog post automatically gets posted on the forum, and instead of separate blog comments, the blog post links to the thread comments. I did that to avoid having two parallel 'communities' -- one in the blog comments and one on the forums. The downside might be that casual visitors are less likely to post comments when they're made on the forum (even though I allow guest posts on the forum, so they don't have to register).
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Laserbrain Studios
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« Reply #25 on: December 03, 2012, 10:50:21 AM »

@Paul Eres:
How did you get that many subscribers? And do you know how many sales you got thanks to your newsletter?

mainly because i've been making/releasing games for 15 years. i've made about 16 games, going back to the late 90s. even if you only get a few hundred subscribers a year that adds up over such a long time. however considering that time span, i don't think the number i have is particularly high. i know many indies with newsletters in the tens or hundreds of thousands (e.g. i think cliffski and hanako and jeff vogel are in that range)

oh, another thing i do is i offer a package of all of my old games in one big zip file to newsletter subscribers. it's a good idea to offer rewards to people who subscribe to your newsletter. of course people can just sign up and then unsubscribe to get the zip if they want (and that's fine), but having an incentive is good
« Last Edit: December 03, 2012, 10:57:08 AM by Paul Eres » Logged

Archibald
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« Reply #26 on: December 23, 2012, 06:34:06 AM »

I have been thinking and reading and run a small (unrepresentative) pool among players and so far I came to these conclusions:

- facebook & twitter are of very low use. Maybe to have these and post big announcements like when the game is finished, but posting all the time and being active there seems a waste of time. I could not find even one success story related to these.
- YouTube is of extremely high importance, not as having a whole channel with various videos, but just one video with gameplay of your game (x10 important if the gameplay involves bocks/vexels/construction in any form :D)
- official website (and/or blog since this is very similar) is the most efficient tool that is under your control. Players mostly bookmark the official website.
- RSS and newsletter could be of use (and definitely rank far higher than twitter and facebook)
- RPS (Rock, Paper, Shotgun) is very important
- Indie/ModDB is of unknown to no use, especially the forums there, could not find even one game entry that had any reasonable traffic on such forums

Please, please, please, contest these thoughts if you find them incorrect. I'm here to learn, not to preach, and I could be completely wrong on these. In such case please tell me...
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Europe1300 - Realistic Historical Medieval Sim
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