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Subject: Best Marketing Techniques You've Come Across? rss

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Thomas Rushing
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Looking to learn a bit about marketing my game. Want to find out if anyone has some good marketing techniques that they have used and had success with, preferably the kind that require little to no money.

Kickstarter seems like it's a really good one.
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It doesn't sound like you would be successful at kickstarter at this point. Take your game to game meetups in your city or other nearby cities and get more feedback. See if they would be interested in you bringing it back to the next meetup. Ads on here seem to do fairly well at getting the word out. One thing Bubble Talk did was to send their game free of charge, to boardgame meetups they found, in multiple cities and ask to a survey to be filled out and returned. My group played it and sent the survey back. That game is now in Target stores. Contact other game makers and ask how they marketed their game to the public.
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Thomas Rushing
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toober wrote:
It doesn't sound like you would be successful at kickstarter at this point. Take your game to game meetups in your city or other nearby cities and get more feedback. See if they would be interested in you bringing it back to the next meetup. Ads on here seem to do fairly well at getting the word out. One thing Bubble Talk did was to send their game free of charge, to boardgame meetups they found, in multiple cities and ask to a survey to be filled out and returned. My group played it and sent the survey back. That game is now in Target stores. Contact other game makers and ask how they marketed their game to the public.


I like the idea that Bubble Talk did, that's a great idea!

Why do you think Kickstarter wouldn't be a viable option. I think it's a bit presumptuous for anyone to assume that a Kickstarter campaign wouldn't be successful. Kickstarter is a VERY powerful tool that can be utilized at many different points in a games life cycle, not just in the pre-development stages.
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ARCTheGame wrote:
toober wrote:
It doesn't sound like you would be successful at kickstarter at this point. Take your game to game meetups in your city or other nearby cities and get more feedback. See if they would be interested in you bringing it back to the next meetup. Ads on here seem to do fairly well at getting the word out. One thing Bubble Talk did was to send their game free of charge, to boardgame meetups they found, in multiple cities and ask to a survey to be filled out and returned. My group played it and sent the survey back. That game is now in Target stores. Contact other game makers and ask how they marketed their game to the public.


I like the idea that Bubble Talk did, that's a great idea!

Why do you think Kickstarter wouldn't be a viable option. I think it's a bit presumptuous for anyone to assume that a Kickstarter campaign wouldn't be successful. Kickstarter is a VERY powerful tool that can be utilized at many different points in a games life cycle, not just in the pre-development stages.


Here's a place to start learning about KS:

http://twomonkeystudios.com/?p=147

There is a lot of power in KS but you have to understand how to get that power to work for you. There are no shortcuts. You have to do your homework in advance. KS is not a magic bullet:

http://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/160421/controversial-or-fr...

and best of luck in your venture
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Nate K
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Wasn't... wasn't ARC Kickstarted? Or are you designing a new game?
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Thomas Rushing
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kurthl33t wrote:
Wasn't... wasn't ARC Kickstarted? Or are you designing a new game?


It was. We are looking to do a second set, with rules updates, new "Cube" concepts added to the game as an alternate way to play, and a few other things.
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Thomas Rushing
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pnpfanatic wrote:
ARCTheGame wrote:
toober wrote:
It doesn't sound like you would be successful at kickstarter at this point. Take your game to game meetups in your city or other nearby cities and get more feedback. See if they would be interested in you bringing it back to the next meetup. Ads on here seem to do fairly well at getting the word out. One thing Bubble Talk did was to send their game free of charge, to boardgame meetups they found, in multiple cities and ask to a survey to be filled out and returned. My group played it and sent the survey back. That game is now in Target stores. Contact other game makers and ask how they marketed their game to the public.


I like the idea that Bubble Talk did, that's a great idea!

Why do you think Kickstarter wouldn't be a viable option. I think it's a bit presumptuous for anyone to assume that a Kickstarter campaign wouldn't be successful. Kickstarter is a VERY powerful tool that can be utilized at many different points in a games life cycle, not just in the pre-development stages.


Here's a place to start learning about KS:

http://twomonkeystudios.com/?p=147

There is a lot of power in KS but you have to understand how to get that power to work for you. There are no shortcuts. You have to do your homework in advance. KS is not a magic bullet:

http://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/160421/controversial-or-fr...

and best of luck in your venture


Thanks! I have actually ran a successful Kickstarter. I am wondering more along the lines of OTHER marketing strategies. Not Indiegogo... lol
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John "Omega" Williams
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Kickstarter isnt a marketing strategy, it is a sales outlet.

Marketing a game would be getting it recognition, getting word out it even exists. If no one knows your game is about to go to KS or even on KS then it essentially does not exist untill chance encounters.

Things to do.
Hit up local cons. See if friends are hitting cons you cant get to and have them showcase the game there, demo, playtest, etc. This can help alot. Print off flyers or have congoing friends afield print off some and leave them at convention flyer tables, etc to drum up interest.

Have a simple or medium level PNP demo ready to hand out for people to look at. Depending on components or rules this can help garner interest.

An example of poor marketing strategy is Hasbro/WOTC and its Battleship Galaxies game. Zero marketing hardly. The game did not do as well as it could have and it never saw the expansions it was supposed to have.
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Brook Gentlestream
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ARCTheGame wrote:
Looking to learn a bit about marketing my game. Want to find out if anyone has some good marketing techniques that they have used and had success with, preferably the kind that require little to no money.

Kickstarter seems like it's a really good one.



Nature of the Beast offers a free PDF print-and-play demo to play out the first three or four turns in a tutorial.

BattleCON: War of the Indines offers 4 free characters to play the game with in their free print-and-play demo, allowing you to play full games using 4 out of their total 16+ characters to give you a feel for the game.
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Thomas Rushing
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Omega2064 wrote:
Kickstarter isnt a marketing strategy, it is a sales outlet.

Marketing a game would be getting it recognition, getting word out it even exists. If no one knows your game is about to go to KS or even on KS then it essentially doesnt exist untill chance encounters.

Things to do.
Hit up local cons. See is friends are hitting cons you cant get to and have them showcase the game there, demo, playtest, etc. This can help alot. Print off flyers or have congoing friends afield print off some and leave them at convention flyer tables, etc to drum up interest.

Have a simple or medium level PNP demo ready to hand out for people to look at. Depending on components or rules this can help garner interest.

An example of poor marketing strategy is Hasbro/WOTC and its Battleship Galaxies game. Zero marketing hardly. The game didnt do as well as it could have and it never saw the expansions it was supposed to have.


I beg to differ Omega.

For example, we lost a lot of the marketing that was generated from other bloggers, podcasters, and youtubers, discussing our game while it was on Kickstarter because of the fact that it was on Kickstarter. We lost the marketing because we had to do a name change at the end of our campaign.

Kickstarter is an amazing tool and can be used for more than just what the website deems it to be used for, the ability to use tools differently than they were intended for is one of the biggest reasons some entrepreneurs are so successful. To further support this claim I challenge you to email Kickstarter and ask them if you can put an existing product out there or run a second campaign for a successful product; they will tell you to be creative in your campaign, I know, I have asked.

Kickstarter is a marketing tool just as much as it is a sales tool. Anything that gets you the attention of someone's eyeballs can be considered a marketing tool, just ask Miley Cyrus and her twerk skills...

Thanks for the additional marketing suggestions =).
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John "Omega" Williams
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Another thing to consider.

Sending out samples of the game to reviewers. Check who is open at the moment and send them a copy if possible. Not allways an option. But it can help garner recognition and awareness.
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Thomas Rushing
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lordrahvin wrote:
ARCTheGame wrote:
Looking to learn a bit about marketing my game. Want to find out if anyone has some good marketing techniques that they have used and had success with, preferably the kind that require little to no money.

Kickstarter seems like it's a really good one.



Nature of the Beast offers a free PDF print-and-play demo to play out the first three or four turns in a tutorial.

BattleCON: War of the Indines offers 4 free characters to play the game with in their free print-and-play demo, allowing you to play full games using 4 out of their total 16+ characters to give you a feel for the game.


Now that's an idea! Free print and play demo of a few of our decks!
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Jozsh J.
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This isn't free (unless you do it yourself), but I feel that one of the best ways to market a project/game, is to have a website. I've seen it on here, and on other places, they say the same thing, "Have a website for the game". Which is something every project and idea should have, and a lot of them do get a website, but the problem with that is, is that it's just a website.
I have not marketed, or even published, my game yet that I've been working on, so I can't speak from experience on that behalf or in terms of success, but, I am a web designer (and user of the interwebs ), and I can tell you that: if you can build a solid and awesome website to properly represent your project, a lot of the marketing will be done by people sharing your website.


Your game is your product, but your website is your store that they look at, walk in to and around in, learn about your product, and walk out with it in their hand.


So about it being "just" a website.
This is my personal opinion, but I feel the website shouldn't be just a website with information and pictures, or even look like the today's modern/standard looking website. I feel it needs to be an extension of the game; adding that tone and creative flare. I feel it needs to match the theme and feel of your game. If this can be the case, a lot of gamers could get excited by the set tone, as it will paint an image of what to expect.


I know that a website isn't easy to have created, especially if you go to a web designer and he says, "for a ba-jillion bucks, I'll make your website!" BUT, the benefit can be HUGE if you can invest and get the site done in such a manner.

A website to me is: a business card, an image, a theme, an idea, and everything else regarding you and your project -- it all sets the tone. If you have a game company, and want to have the company site appear and look professional, that's fine, but for you game, have a sub-domain or separate website that gives players, and potential players, the look and feel of the game.

As a gamer in general, I like being immersed to such a degree...quick, quick example: If the game is set to a future-like sci-fi theme, I think it would be cool to create a website looking like a futuristic interface...clicking icons, seeing things change and move around, all while displaying info about the game...I think you get the idea...and I think that would be awesome...


A sharply dressed person will stand out in a crowd of casually dressed people. But in addition to that, I feel that if your website is that sharply dressed individual, it shouldn't be dressed in such a manner that it improperly misrepresents your project and theme set by you.
My point is, do get a website, BUT don't make the website look just like another website. Set the tone. Make the game/project website look like an extension of the game to the point that: if players looked at the board game/card game, and then went to the website, it would all seem like a reflection of each other in tone. I feel it will get the gamers excited, and ultimately want spread the word.


A website is a powerful tool for marketing, especially if it's built well and looks nice. It's the hub of information for the your project, and is supposed to represent that set image, to that certain audience/demographic for your product.



my...two...cents...


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Thomas Rushing
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Jozsh wrote:
This isn't free (unless you do it yourself), but I feel that one of the best ways to market a project/game, is to have a website. I've seen it on here, and on other places, they say the same thing, "Have a website for the game". Which is something every project and idea should have, and a lot of them do get a website, but the problem with that is, is that it's just a website.
I have not marketed, or even published, my game yet that I've been working on, so I can't speak from experience on that behalf or in terms of success, but, I am a web designer (and user of the interwebs ), and I can tell you that: if you can build a solid and awesome website to properly represent your project, a lot of the marketing will be done by people sharing your website.


Your game is your product, but your website is your store that they look at, walk in to and around in, learn about your product, and walk out with it in their hand.


So about it being "just" a website.
This is my personal opinion, but I feel the website shouldn't be just a website with information and pictures, or even look like the today's modern/standard looking website. I feel it needs to be an extension of the game; adding that tone and creative flare. I feel it needs to match the theme and feel of your game. If this can be the case, a lot of gamers could get excited by the set tone, as it will paint an image of what to expect.


I know that a website isn't easy to have created, especially if you go to a web designer and he says, "for a ba-jillion bucks, I'll make your website!" BUT, the benefit can be HUGE if you can invest and get the site done in such a manner.

A website to me is: a business card, an image, a theme, an idea, and everything else regarding you and your project -- it all sets the tone. If you have a game company, and want to have the company site appear and look professional, that's fine, but for you game, have a sub-domain or separate website that gives players, and potential players, the look and feel of the game.

As a gamer in general, I like being immersed to such a degree...quick, quick example: If the game is set to a future-like sci-fi theme, I think it would be cool to create a website looking like a futuristic interface...clicking icons, seeing things change and move around, all while displaying info about the game...I think you get the idea...and I think that would be awesome...


A sharply dressed person will stand out in a crowd of casually dressed people. But in addition to that, I feel that if your website is that sharply dressed individual, it shouldn't be dressed in such a manner that it improperly misrepresents your project and theme set by you.
My point is, do get a website, BUT don't make the website look just like another website. Set the tone. Make the game/project website look like an extension of the game to the point that: if players looked at the board game/card game, and then went to the website, it would all seem like a reflection of each other in tone. I feel it will get the gamers excited, and ultimately want spread the word.


A website is a powerful tool for marketing, especially if it's built well and looks nice. It's the hub of information for the your project, and is suppose to represent that set image, to that certain audience/demographic for your product.



my...two...cents...




Jozsh, Awesome points and feedback! Thank you so much for taking the time to write all that out! I think you're right. We actually have a meeting with a web developer to start redesigning our site, making it more user friendly and releasing a non-beta version of the site. As a web designer do you offer your services and/or have a portfolio we can take a look at?
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Marketing or Advertising?

Most customers/backers are only going to be familiar with the advertising side of a project.

You may want to talk to some of the project creators to see what they did on the marketing side as far as research and planning.

On the advertising side I think Brotherwise Games did an excellent job with their campaign
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/brotherwise/boss-monster...

They had their website, facebook page and twitter account and they used youtube and reddit.

More importantly though their backers really went above and beyond promoting the campaign. If you did a search for Boss Monster during their campaign, you probably would have seen a mention of it on just about every social platform and a number of blogs. Promotions took on a life of their own.

I forget which campaign it was, but one creator did a live launch party at a convention and had a Q&A session about the campaign. That was kind of different

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I am sending you a PM Thomas!






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80sgamer wrote:
Marketing or Advertising?

On the advertising side I think Brotherwise Games did an excellent job with their campaign
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/brotherwise/boss-monster...

They had their website, facebook page and twitter account and they used youtube and reddit.

More importantly though their backers really went above and beyond promoting the campaign. If you did a search for Boss Monster during their campaign, you probably would have seen a mention of it on just about every social platform and a number of blogs. Promotions took on a life of their own.

I forget which campaign it was, but one creator did a live launch party at a convention and had a Q&A session about the campaign. That was kind of different




I heard of the game for sure, and I think -- for them and anyone else who is an independent designer/publisher/whatever -- some key things to definitely do would be: is provide content, set image/tone, and be consistent.

They defined their image and set the tone with their content, and were consistent in pushing it and maintaining it.

There are obviously many ways to do those things, but I would think: show the product to the people, and give them a visual of what's going to come, and then constantly talk about it and share it.

That is the gist of it all for anyone with their idea or product, eventually those interested will tell others who might be interested.

BUT THEY HAD A WEBSITE! see...heh..

Here's the thing about their website too, its a very simplistic/minimalistic, BUT, it gets straight to the point and sets the theme with the color scheme, etc... and that's good enough. They used kickstarter like a website; filling it with videos and images, and information, and I think that's definitely good, but I still believe a website is a must with what I said before.

Also, when you do get a website, at least for a crowd-funding project and don't want to go all out with pages and everything else, or a full blown website is not something that could happen at the moment, you can use a website like an AD in the paper.

On a single web page, you can note the highlights of the game, note the basic, basic mechanics/gameplay, and throw up some graphics and some content...all while of course setting that theme/tone.

This can be enough. If you take that approach, its really just a matter of showing and telling gamers what to expect, what it is, how it'll work, and how they can get themselves a copy...sounds like an AD to me...and ads work.





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I run the Today in Board Games newsletter and one of my goals in doing so is to help publishers and designers get the word out about their games. Some of the things we do on a regular basis to help folks market their games are:
* Press Releases - Send these out to all the board game related sites. Some will run them on their website.
* Giveaways - this is a great way to get people involved as contestants can earn extra entries by liking your facebook page, visiting your Kickstarter, joining your e-mail list, etc. Giveaways also tend to have a high participation rate - so if you can get them in front of a large audience you will get a good response.
* Join the Back it for a Buck Challenge - this is obviously for Kickstarter projects only but you can have your project featured for free.
* Interviews - I do a lot of interviews with game designers and publishers, and a lot of other sites / podcasts do as well. Interviews are free and a great way to spread the word.
* Reviews - this was mentioned above but take a look at James Mathe's list of reviewers (needs an update but still fairly accurate) to find people who will review your game.
* Banner Advertising - BGG ads are a good pick but will cost you a minimum of $500. However a lot of other sites out there will run ads as well for much smaller buy-ins ($10-50).
* Feature spots - News and community related sites typically can feature your game in some capacity. BGG News will occasionally do this. GameBugle, BoardGaming.com, and PurplePawn are other options. My newsletter features a game in each issue. Costs can vary on this - check around.

If you want help doing any of the above let me know.
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Thomas Rushing
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BobTHJ wrote:
I run the Today in Board Games newsletter and one of my goals in doing so is to help publishers and designers get the word out about their games. Some of the things we do on a regular basis to help folks market their games are:
* Press Releases - Send these out to all the board game related sites. Some will run them on their website.
* Giveaways - this is a great way to get people involved as contestants can earn extra entries by liking your facebook page, visiting your Kickstarter, joining your e-mail list, etc. Giveaways also tend to have a high participation rate - so if you can get them in front of a large audience you will get a good response.
* Join the Back it for a Buck Challenge - this is obviously for Kickstarter projects only but you can have your project featured for free.
* Interviews - I do a lot of interviews with game designers and publishers, and a lot of other sites / podcasts do as well. Interviews are free and a great way to spread the word.
* Reviews - this was mentioned above but take a look at James Mathe's list of reviewers (needs an update but still fairly accurate) to find people who will review your game.
* Banner Advertising - BGG ads are a good pick but will cost you a minimum of $500. However a lot of other sites out there will run ads as well for much smaller buy-ins ($10-50).
* Feature spots - News and community related sites typically can feature your game in some capacity. BGG News will occasionally do this. GameBugle, BoardGaming.com, and PurplePawn are other options. My newsletter features a game in each issue. Costs can vary on this - check around.

If you want help doing any of the above let me know.


Thank you for all the feedback! I would love some help on a few of these ideas when the time comes. What are some of the websites that only charge 10-15?
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ARCTheGame wrote:
Thank you for all the feedback! I would love some help on a few of these ideas when the time comes. What are some of the websites that only charge 10-15?


Our minimum buy-in at TodayInBoardGames.com is $10 for a share of the monthly banner impressions (minimum 10k). I know tabletopgamingnews.com uses a similar system. Not sure on exact amounts for others but some other places you may want to check are gamebugle.com, boardgaming.com, polyhedroncollider.com, islaythedragon.com, etc. I'm sure there are many more. Most regular board game bloggers are probably willing to sell some ad space on the cheap.

I'm actually working on a Gamer ad network that will allow sites to pool together to share ad impressions. This will allow you to sign up and pay for ads once and have them distributed across all participating sites.
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I was going to inquire this place about it, I maybe not this week, but for sure next week. If no one checks then, I'll post here what they tell me:

http://pojo.com/Advertising.html



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Thomas Rushing
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Hello All!

We made some changes to our website, would love to get your feedback. Here's the link to the thread about it on BGG.com

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1054817/looking-for-feedback...
 
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ARCTheGame wrote:
Hello All!

We made some changes to our website, would love to get your feedback. Here's the link to the thread about it on BGG.com

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1054817/looking-for-feedback...


Error: That thread does not exist.
 
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toober wrote:
ARCTheGame wrote:
Hello All!

We made some changes to our website, would love to get your feedback. Here's the link to the thread about it on BGG.com

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1054817/looking-for-feedback...


Error: That thread does not exist.


Indie Game Developer Here - What would you pay for our game?
 
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