In today’s marketing world, SEO is a large part of getting and keeping your customer base interested in your products. Social media should be an instrumental part of any marketing campaign, especially for video games whose customers are often very tech-savvy and engaged online.
Blogging is a great way to brand your video game. This means not only using it as a platform to release news and updates about your game, but to see it as a base for your potential customers to engage with you, the developers — not only will it make the fans feel personally involved in the development of the game, but these kind of strategies can create great hype for your game.
Why a Blog?
Using popular social media sites are a great way to get news of your game out there, so why should you invest in a blog for your game?
While social media updates can reach millions of people, they are often limited in how much you can promote a particular product.
A blog allows you to have a hub where you can put all your social media content in one place, and in much greater detail than on any other site. For example, a short, pithy Tweet can include a link to a longer article that also happens to contain exclusive information concerning your game, which then brings people in direct contact with information about your game.
Have Great Content
To have a successful blog, you need great content. When you’re marketing a video game, content shouldn’t be hard to come by — news, announcements, and reviews should be aplenty, but by including a wider range of content, you can attract and keep a large following.
Allocate a budget for creative social media marketing to make sure your content is top-quality. Trailers are great, but it’s the “bonus feature” materials that fans really love. It doesn’t have to be a huge budget; a little can go a long way. Funny featurettes, webisodes, or even developer stories about the day at the office, or amusing glitches that occurred during game development.
Know your demographic, what they like and will respond to. Marketing not only the game, but branding the company behind the game, is a great way to turn customers into long-term fans.
Whatever you do, don’t bore your audience. Don’t post a Facebook link to the same article or trailer ten times a day. That sends up red flags that lead them straight to the dreaded “unlike” button.
Insider & Exclusive Information
One of the best types of content you can provide is “exclusives” or “insider information” about your game. You can begin to excite fans of the game long before the game itself is released. Teasing exclusive clips or gameplay sequences is a great way to get conversation started. You can advertise these teasers on social media sites, but have the actual content available “exclusively” on your blog.
By asking for a certain amount of “likes” or “retweets” before you release the content, you can start a campaign driven by the fans themselves.
When They Talk, Talk Back!
You can’t flood the web with information without getting some form of feedback — and it’s critical to take advantage of that. Respond to the comments in your blog, or at least address any major themes or concerns you see popping up in threads. (Picking a few comments/questions to respond to in detail would make for another great type of blog post).
Be sure to reward the fans that take the time to comment and engage with your game. You can run contests or giveaways that will keep people coming back to your blog, and your game, over and over.
The important thing to remember here is to be open-minded. Internet anonymity is a great and terrible thing, so you have to be the adult in the room and keep an even head. Receive positive feedback enthusiastically but gracefully, and acknowledge the negative reactions while promising to take them into consideration.