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22 Jul 2013

A couple generations ago, when games were exclusively physical products, you could have local scarcity within which you could relatively easily stand out. Now the market is the entire global Internet, and we’re all operating within an abundance economy whether we like it or not (but mostly we like it). Your game will be competing against every other indie game and every other commercial game out there: competing for marketing attention, for sales, for play time.

You can’t stand out in that kind of market by trying to out-shout your competition. It’s like E3: every booth is trying to be louder and flashier than its neighbors in an attempt to get you to pay attention to them and not the competition. How do you get your message across in that environment, especially if you don’t have the resources to shout louder?

The thing about E3 is those booths aren’t talking to anybody, they’re just blasting their message out omni-directionally and hoping enough people will notice. So you stand out by instead walking up to someone and saying, “Hi, I made this game and I think you might be interested in it. Want to chat?”

You don’t stand out by shouting louder: you stand out by speaking quietly, directly to your audience, and giving them the opportunity to talk back. They can’t ask questions of a loudspeaker or a TV monitor, but they can ask questions of you, and you can have a dialogue.

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business freelancing video-games