Are you developing a mobile app? Get anything from icons and buttons to your entire mobile app designed at 99designs! You can start your next graphic design project for as low as $199. Visit 99designs.com/Chat and get a $99 Power Pack of services for free.
PreApps provides an outlet for developers to harness early exposure, access beta testers, generate critical user feedback, and most importantly rapid downloads upon release. Get 10% off on ALL PreApps marketing services by using promo code AppMasters!
Subscribe to the Show
About the Episode
In this episode, you’ll hear the launch strategy of a small indie game studio and how they approach social media, PR and getting featured by Apple. Also, listen to the part of the show where they talk about idea generation and knowing when to actually pursue an idea.
Of Launch Strategies, Getting Featured in Apple and the Best Media Approach
A small indie game studio does not have a big publisher behind it and cannot really launch a big strategy so the advice is to go for the cheap but very effective way to launch – do it on Facebook and Twitter. Organize a group of friends to start the ball rolling, chat about the app and most importantly, introduce the game with particularly attractive and eye catching artwork. The developer must have the confidence to believe that the game is good because if it is, it will just develop a fan base. Also, get the fans involved — communicate with them. With Touchdown Hero, for example, the developers asked the fans’ opinion about the uniforms they want and the teams they favor in the real life. It can be a huge success because it is a game that actually makes sense, it is rooted in reality. Thus,the strategy is to make sure the developers are visible and accessible to the fans and constant communication between them is maintained.
In getting featured in Apple, Martin and Michael looked for possible contacts in Linkedin. People in the business such as Microsoft or Sony may know other people who can help and one never knows where the connection will lead. They eventually found the correct people to approach in Apple and their approach was to send a video teaser, one that was catchy and interesting enough to make sure interest is generated. The two important things to remember are: 1) make a high quality game and 2) make it an enjoyable game – enjoyable in the sense that the game is easy to understand and use but not too easy to master. If the game has these two important qualities and an Indie developer ever gets the chance to present this game to Apple, he has a very good chance of being featured.
There are two ways of approaching social media and PR people: 1) Do it yourself way – emailing to all the big names in the business, asking for help to get featured. This worked out very well for CherryPick Games Studio; and 2) Get a PR agency – choose one that is neither too small nor too big and is just right for an Indie.
Generating Ideas and Knowing When to Pursue Them
Generally, most developers will say they generate and choose an idea through gut feel. Developers do not come with a DNA-coded instinct for the successful game, but it is something they gain through experience. Ideas are generated through constantly exposing themselves to all sorts of games, not just the ones they like but everything new. They are people who actually love games and like to play them most of the time, thus, they have preferences that make sense to all gamers. So gut feel must answer the all important question of, “Is it a game that I, the developer, want to play?” Developers collate all these information of features in the games that they like to play, discuss them and usually come up with a similar game that would contain variations of these features. So they know they can pursue the idea when they have actually tried the game and enjoy playing it. In a sense, all developers look at games as gamers.
What advice would you give to anyone looking to build a mobile app?
Get ready to work hard and work harder. Even in success stories, people work hard.
– Mike’s Fav App: Zombie Catchers: (iTunes)
– Martin’s Fav App: Farenheit: (iTunes)