Congrats on creating an amazing video game! There’s only one final achievement to unlock — a successful marketing campaign.
It doesn’t hurt to go the traditional route; sending your game out for reviews in major publications, taking out ads in popular forums, and so on. Whatever you do, you can’t go wrong with using social media for marketing.
Actually, let’s walk that back real quick. There IS a wrong way, and saying the wrong thing on social media can actually turn gamers against you.
Do it right, though, and you’ll score big. For example, Assassin’s Creed: Revelations won an award for their campaign that got fans to create over 175,000 videos and share them with 450,000 of their friends.
Want that to be your game’s name in the number one spot? Follow this walkthrough to take your video game’s social media campaign to the next level!
Decide on Your Goal
If you want to learn how to create a social media campaign that rocks, you need to start at the foundation. Figure out what you want to get out of your campaign and build on that.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Raise awareness for your new game
- Promote new downloadable content
- Tell fans that your game is available on a new platform (from PC to app, for example)
What’s most important is that you state your goal. You can’t advance to the next level if you don’t know your objective.
Do Your Homework
Now that you’ve got your goal, you need a strategy. You’re trying to get your potential customer to do a specific action, but who is your customer?
Gamers, sure — but do they like retro side-scrollers? Are they into survival horror?
There are a few techniques to help you gain inside info on who you’re selling to: social listening and opposition research.
For social listening, stalk your customers. Hang out on social media sites or forums that they are in and see what they’re talking about.
For opposition research, pick a successful game similar to yours. See what worked for them and what didn’t then lift what you like.
Figure Out Your Approach
A big mistake with social media campaign planning is using the “spray and pray” method. We’ll let you in on an important secret: not every social media channel is going to work for you.
Decide if Instagram is best or Twitter is where you need to be. If your potential customers are on Snapchat, spend some time there.
There are two exceptions to this rule: Facebook and YouTube. Facebook pulls in nearly 80% of all ad revenue and YouTube is crawling with people watching gaming videos.
After all, PewDiePie is the most popular YouTuber, beating out popular heavyweights like Justin Beiber and Eminem.
Cover Your Assets
Here’s something not everyone considers during a media campaign: do you have access to your assets?
Does someone already have the name you want to use for a sassy character account on Twitter? Is someone squatting on the name you picked for your official Facebook page?
When this happens, you have to think outside of the box. Being creative can help you mitigate these issues.
Already got all the accounts you want? Do a thorough audit and make sure that they’re up to date and have the correct info.
Create Killer Content
It used to be that you could put up any old content and get away with it. These days, you need to be clever and deliver quality goods to stand out from the rest.
Learn how to craft high-quality images. Create an extensive guide that’s relevant to your game (more here for examples).
A good gaming social media campaign can even occur in the real world. BioShock 2 had people talking on social media by having wine bottles with promotional posters wash ashore on beaches.
All your previous skills — customer targeting, deciding which sites to be on, research on successful campaigns — come into play here. If you did your homework, you’ll be solid.
Review and Respond
You can’t launch your campaign into the void and wish it the best of luck. You need to tend it like a garden that protects you from a rampaging zombie horde.
See which posts are doing well and build your content around them. A post that does well organically makes for a great ad; boost it and put some cash behind it.
See what your customers and fans are saying in the comment section. Interact with them and answer any questions that come up.
A word of warning: always be professional when chatting with customers, even if you’re speaking in a character voice. Don’t punch down, don’t get emotional, and don’t forget that what’s online lives forever (sort of like a zombie).
Monitor and Plan Your Next Attack
Your content is creating buzz, your follower count is growing, and your customers are following you down the funnel. That’s great, but that’s only phase one.
Remember what we said about social listening and doing research? Now you need to turn your attention to your own assets to grow your success.
After your campaign has run for a bit, it’s time to see what works and what doesn’t. You can narrow your targets even further or identify new targets to go after.
Some things to keep an eye on include what’s the best time to post, what kind of content gets shares, and which social media platform drives traffic to your page.
Making a Successful Social Media Campaign
There’s no reason to approach a social media campaign like it’s the last boss level and you’re out of extra lives. Our guide will help your campaign level up and meets your goals.
There’s no special code to bypass the challenges you’re going to face. Put in the work and always focus on your goal to achieve the best results.
It’s dangerous to go alone. Join us on our social media tips and tricks blog so that you’ve got the tools to power up your online marketing game!