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2018/19 trends in indie game marketing & PR

In many ways, 2018 has been a phenomenal year for indie games – with the likes of Return of the Obra Dinn, Guacamelee 2 and today’s GRIS rightly enthralling players. But it’s also been a very challenging year for a large number of indie developers, who have increasingly found it difficult to stand out from the crowd.

Over the year we’ve worked with around 20 different indie studios on more than 50 individual PR and marketing campaigns, and we’ve spotted some trends we think you should be aware of as we wrap up 2018 and head into the New Year. read more

How to get influencers to play your indie game

As we’ve discussed in previous posts, influencer marketing is becoming a powerful force in the games industry and more and more developers are considering the way their audience consumes content. Indie game sensations have been created overnight with the power big-name influencers can bring to a project, but we’re not going to be discussing those fascinatingly rare instances here. Although it’s inspiring to read about how a combination of miraculous luck and fortunate timing has made games blow up on YouTube it’s probably not going to help you market your indie game. read more

Developing your PR standing as a game developer

A common source of disappointment we see among indie developers is the erroneous assumption that a PR campaign will instantly convert into top-tier coverage. The reality, however, is that being namechecked by the biggest outlet involves a complex and multi-staged process that takes time, energy, and an element of trial and error.

When an editor, journalist or influencer is deciding what to cover on a given day, there are two prerequisites that need to be hit. Number one: they need to know that product or company exists. Number two: they need to be confident that it will be of interest to their audience. read more

Indie Game Marketing: Creating the best trailer for your indie game

One of the most important things you can do in your indie game marketing efforts to promote your game is a make or commission a professional quality trailer. Often referred to in indie game PR as one of the most important marketing tools, an amazing trailer can give your game the edge it needs to stand out amongst the crowd.

Gone are the days where customers could look at the back of the box to get a visual sense of a game – the rise in digital storefronts means trailers are often people’s first exposure to your game and first impressions count. You’ll want to capture the imagination of your audience, retain their attention and sell them on the appeal of your game all in a matter of seconds. That’s no easy task in today’s fast-moving world of digital content, but we’ve compiled a few key pointers to set you on the right track to create a trailer that will captivate your audience and give your game every chance of success. read more

Indie Game Marketing: Staying on target with your audience

Most industry professionals will tell you the first thing you need to establish when starting out with a new game, or even just an idea for a new game, is who your target audience are and how you’ll reach them. Now, indie game marketing differs from conventional marketing somewhat in this endeavour. Whilst triple-A has the luxury of their audience often seeking them out you can’t expect that level of attention as an indie. You will have to go out and find your target audience if you want to expose them to your game. Only once you have an idea of who your target audience is and where they are can you start to implement any kind of effective marketing plan.   read more

Indie game marketing: the most common mistakes, and how to avoid them

Last year, I wrote about the most common indie game PR mistakes, and how to avoid falling into those traps. More than ever, those tips remain true: it’s vital to have a clear proposition, allow enough time to prove your value to the media, and ensure everything you present is on-message and slickly produced. But good indie game marketing covers more than just PR, and we often see studios follow the rules when it comes to their public relations, yet fail to capitalise on this success due to having a less-than-robust overall marketing strategy. read more

When not to release your indie game

You might think that the right time to release a game is when it’s finished, but things aren’t quite that straight forward, especially when it comes to indie games. Launching a game in an unsuitable release window can ruin any chances it has of success resulting in disappointing sales and the inevitable fade into obscurity. The bigger picture can be hard to see if you’re not familiar with marketing, but understanding the industries regular release rhythm can be invaluable. It could just give a game the edge it needs to gain exposure and interest on launch. Let’s take a look at the most important things to remember when releasing an indie game. read more

How indie game marketing can benefit from open production

Recently, many games studios have thrown out old ways of making and marketing their games, and have embraced a bold, disruptive new approach: open production. But what is it? And is it right for you?

What is open production?

Traditionally, video games are made behind closed doors. Teams of designers and developers work away in secret, with information drip-fed to the public by PR and marketing teams, often building up to big reveals and impactful campaigns as the game heads towards launch. read more

Thinking outside the box: Guerilla marketing & indie games

There’s a good chance you’ve heard the term guerrilla marketing before – as it’s often thrown around when discussing particularly unusual PR campaigns that use unique or novel techniques. In truth, guerilla marketing takes on many forms, but generally, the term is used to describe the unconventional use of marketing techniques to advertise a product with little to no budget.

It’s a very imaginative process with practitioners utilising high energy, impactful methods to grab the audience’s attention and leave a lasting impression on their prospective customers. The potential this has for indie game marketing as an untapped and cost-effective strategy is unparalleled. The advantage this offers could make the difference between a game standing out in a crowded market or disappearing among the flood of unrelenting releases. Guerilla marketing is about as indie as it gets – small, bespoke and uniquely designed. It’s a match made in heaven. read more

How indie games can get the best marketing exposure at expos

Gamescom’s just wrapped up in Cologne, PAX heads to Seattle this weekend, and EGX and the Paris Games Week hit Birmingham and, uh, Paris respectively next month.

It’s that time of year where thousands of indie developers around the world head to expos to showcase their latest creation. But with booths at many such events costing thousands, if not tens of thousands, how can indies get the best bang for their buck?

Here are our five top tips – for getting the most out of your marketing, and more besides. read more