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How to sell social networking to your boss and publisher

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How to sell social networking to your boss and publisher

  1. 1. Sell Social Networking to your Boss and your Publisher <ul><li>Adam Martin </li></ul><ul><li>GDC 2009 </li></ul>
  2. 2. I’m losing my voice
  3. 3. I speak less
  4. 4. words say more
  5. 5. why am I doing this?
  6. 6. two little stories
  7. 7. “the pitch”
  8. 8. you: developer
  9. 9. convinced by Social Gaming
  10. 10. go to publisher / boss
  11. 11. pitch
  12. 12. great game
  13. 13. social networking
  14. 14. huge success
  15. 15. rejection
  16. 16. :(
  17. 17. “the project”
  18. 18. game
  19. 19. great ideas
  20. 20. doesn’t work
  21. 21. cancelled
  22. 22. :(
  23. 23. ...
  24. 24. what went wrong?
  25. 25. how can you fix it?
  26. 26. the pitch ...
  27. 27. ...what happened?
  28. 28. expectations vs. reality reality reality
  29. 29. what the publisher expected
  30. 30. PROFIT
  31. 31. what the publisher heard
  32. 32. COSTS
  33. 33. DISRUPTION
  34. 34. you didn’t notice
  35. 35. what the developer heard
  36. 36. INNOVATION
  37. 37. POPULARITY
  38. 38. FREE MARKETING
  39. 39. what the publisher expected
  40. 40. PROFIT
  41. 41. you already know that one
  42. 42. (we’ll come back to this)
  43. 43. DISRUPTION
  44. 44. (important)
  45. 45. what is disruption?
  46. 47. (curiously apposite)
  47. 48. also
  48. 50. “disruptive innovation”
  49. 51. “ disruptive innovation” != “revolutionary”
  50. 52. revolution:
  51. 53. guns, explosions, etc
  52. 54. change
  53. 55. stays the same
  54. 56. disruption:
  55. 57. silence
  56. 58. change
  57. 59. wiped out
  58. 60. silence
  59. 61. “social networking”
  60. 62. “so what?”
  61. 63. problem 2:
  62. 64. change
  63. 65. change => loss
  64. 66. &quot;Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering&quot;
  65. 67. &quot;Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering&quot;
  66. 68. change => loss; loss => anger/fear; anger/fear => rejection rejection rejection
  67. 69. your game
  68. 70. (w/social networking)
  69. 71. invalidate
  70. 72. years of experience
  71. 73. change => loss; loss => anger/fear; anger/fear => rejection rejection rejection
  72. 74. (and the Dark Side)
  73. 75. a.k.a. “ Disruptive Change”
  74. 76. </disruption>
  75. 77. <profit />
  76. 78. net result:
  77. 79. pitch
  78. 80. a reasonable theory:
  79. 81. “better games are more likely to be funded”
  80. 82. reality:
  81. 83. didn’t understand
  82. 84. (OR:)
  83. 85. got scared
  84. 86. one thing they know:
  85. 87. Show me the money.
  86. 88. (how much more will it cost?)
  87. 89. (how much revenue will it bring?)
  88. 90. You already told them
  89. 91. did you tell them..?
  90. 92. e.g. “Why...
  91. 93. ...better graphics? <ul><li>Screenshots make press-websites and magazines look better </li></ul><ul><li>“Ooh, shiny!” </li></ul><ul><li>Graphics sell video cards; video cards sell games </li></ul>
  92. 94. ...more levels? <ul><li>Keep the consumer busy long enough for them to tell their friends “it’s good, buy it” </li></ul><ul><li>“Scatter / shotgun!” - let a thousand flowers bloom </li></ul><ul><li>Levels are cheap, but look expensive </li></ul>
  93. 95. ...multiplayer? <ul><li>Hides bad game-design </li></ul><ul><li>Hides weak AI </li></ul><ul><li>People who play online, talk online = free marketing </li></ul>
  94. 96. ...Social Games? <ul><li>Um, err, well, um... </li></ul>
  95. 97. what went wrong?
  96. 98. how can you fix it?
  97. 99. 1: “Don’t say this”
  98. 100. there are twenty times as many people using each social network as are using each online game
  99. 101. publisher thinks:
  100. 102. (SN users dont spend money)
  101. 103. (too expensive to run the ops for that many people)
  102. 104. (very low quality, low production value, our brand is much more high quality than that)
  103. 105. the future of “the internet”
  104. 106. publisher thinks:
  105. 107. (fad)
  106. 108. (landgrab that we won’t win)
  107. 109. viral marketing
  108. 110. (VM doesn’t work)
  109. 111. (you’re just gambling)
  110. 112. 2. Do say these:
  111. 113. here’s a prototype
  112. 114. (usually...)
  113. 115. (...never tried)
  114. 116. Guns don’t kill people <ul><li>Bad content doesn’t cancel subscriptions </li></ul><ul><li>“No friends” does </li></ul>
  115. 117. Sales Teams <ul><li>ZT Online: $200m annual revenue; 3,000 full-time salespeople; coincidence? </li></ul><ul><li>Your Game’s Social Network: 5m part-time salespeople </li></ul>
  116. 118. Virtual Communities, Virtual Goods <ul><li>Why are you only selling ONE thing to this captive audience who already likes you? </li></ul>
  117. 119. If you don’t build it... <ul><li>...the users will do it anyway. </li></ul><ul><li>Welcome to IM, eBay, Forums, Guild sites, Wikia, GoogleMaps mashups, etc </li></ul>
  118. 120. you lose:
  119. 121. brand-control,
  120. 122. game-control,
  121. 123. cross-sell opportunities,
  122. 124. and transaction commisions
  123. 125. we’ll learn as we go
  124. 126. ...and that’s OK
  125. 127. (and cheap)
  126. 128. tell them what they want to hear:
  127. 129. reduce cost:
  128. 130. e.g. “Don’t worry, be crappy”
  129. 131. e.g. free market research
  130. 132. e.g. lowered consumer expectations
  131. 133. reduced risk:
  132. 134. e.g. “soft launch”
  133. 135. e.g. ops costs only if we succeed
  134. 136. increased revenue
  135. 137. e.g. up-sell and cross-sell
  136. 138. increased customer loyalty
  137. 139. e.g. stick with your friends
  138. 140. Questions?

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