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5 steps to build a successful games marketing strategy

So, you have finished developing your game and are now ready to launch it – congratulations! But, just as with any other product, your games marketing strategy needs to be sharp and on-point, so that you can successfully connect with your target audience and convince them to get your game.

A good games marketing strategy should be based firmly on market research and player research, rather than assumptions. The purpose of this research is to discover the behaviours, interests, preferences and motivations of your target players, as well as the landscape of the market you are trying to succeed in.

This will help you to tailor your marketing efforts to the specific needs of your target audience, allowing you to create a games marketing strategy that successfully appeals to your target customers and gets them excited to play your game.

In this blog post, I will look at five key steps you should follow if you want to build a successful games marketing strategy.

If you want a more in-depth look at digital marketing best practices for gaming companies, I have written a full-length guide on this topic, which you can read by clicking the banner below! Without further ado, let’s get started.

1. Do social listening

Social listening helps you to understand the opinions of your target audience. Every second, opinions are expressed online and large volumes of unstructured data are produced by online conversations. Social listening tools allow you to “listen” in to these conversations and find and analyse online comments about your game or your competitors, giving you both qualitative and quantitative insights.

Social listening is rapidly becoming a crucial technique for gathering customer data, as it allows you to monitor pertinent discussions on social media platforms with the intention of understanding underlying mood and sentiment. By having your finger on the pulse of these online conversations and sentiments, this can help you to shape your games marketing strategy, for example by emphasising aspects of the game that you have seen particular buzz about online.

2. Define your goal in a SMART way

Defining your marketing goals is a key step in creating an effective games marketing campaign. A marketing goal is a specific goal that you want to achieve through your marketing efforts. These goals should be SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound).

  • Specific: Goals should be clear and specific. You should be able to define what you want to achieve and what the result should look like.
  • Measurable: You should be able to quantify the success of your marketing goals using specific metrics. For example, success can be measured by the number of downloads, the number of social media followers, or the amount of revenue generated.
  • Achievable: Marketing goals should be challenging yet achievable. Given your available resources and market conditions, you need to be realistic.
  • Relevant: Your marketing goals should be related to your overall business goals. For example, if your overall business goal is to increase revenues, your marketing goal should focus on increasing sales.
  • Time-bound: Marketing goals should have a concrete timeline for achieving them. This will ensure you progress and stay on track.

Your specific goals will depend on your company, your budget, your game, your target market, your company mission and many other factors. Whatever your goals are, just make sure they are SMART.

3. Study your competitors

Any sound marketing strategy must include a competitor analysis. This involves keeping an eye on your competitors and what they are up to. Positioning yourself and your game in your target market is made easier by being aware of what your rivals are doing.

The main benefit of competitor analysis is that it allows you to identify the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors, i.e. what they are doing well and what they are doing badly, which can inform your own marketing efforts.

If you see that they are doing something brilliantly, this could inspire you to adopt similar tactics. Alternatively, if you see they are doing something poorly, this could identify an opportunity for you to outshine your competitor by doing it better.

4. Conduct a SWOT analysis

Once you have finished studying your competitors, you should group all the collected data into a SWOT analysis. By doing this, you will be able to assess your strengths and weaknesses compared to your competitors, and identify threats and opportunities.

5. Create your buyer personas

It is important to conduct persona research to create what are known as your buyer personas. A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer. It is based on real-world data and insights, including target user demographics, behaviours, motivations and pain points. Creating buyer personas can help you better understand your audience and influence your marketing strategies, messages and tactics.

It is recommended that you create more than one persona, because marketing to your entire target audience as a single unit is unlikely to provide the best results. There are likely to be different types of players who are interested in your game: super-competitive players; players who are more casual and see it as a way to relax; players who are super-keen on completing quests; and players who enjoy simply exploring the world of your game. Because of this, it is a good idea to segment your audience accordingly, so that you can create marketing materials and strategies that are tailored to the specific needs of each persona.

Having a deep understanding of your target audience is a key component of a successful games marketing campaign. It is about identifying the people most likely to play your game, understanding their interests and preferences, and tailoring your marketing efforts to resonate with them.

Want to learn more?

I hope this blog post has been a useful introduction to games marketing. For more in-depth information and advice, read my full-length guide here! From reading this guide, you will learn:

  • An overview of the gaming industry
  • How to build a successful games marketing strategy
  • How to promote your game and manage your community
  • Examples of fantastic games marketing campaigns
  • How to succeed at games marketing internationally
  • The latest trends shaping the gaming industry
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Giuseppe Pezzullo

Global Business Manager at Webcertain
Giuseppe joined the Webcertain family at the beginning of 2022 and since then has been helping clients to prosper, endeavouring to get them excellent results across all digital marketing channels. He is an innovative communication strategist who loves using his digital marketing expertise to transform brand communications to drive bottom-line results. He holds an MA in Marketing and Data Analysis from the Birkbeck University in London. Originally from Italy, Giuseppe lived for many years in the UK, and is now based in Spain. He speaks English, Italian and Spanish.

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