Everything You Need to Know About a Video Game Go-to-Market Strategy
by Game Marketing Genie, on 29-Dec-2020 09:00:00
If you've got a new game or are launching to a new market, then you need a go-to-market (GTM) strategy. Competition in the gaming industry is very fierce, and with limited resources to market your game, you need a proper plan to ensure you're on the right path.
Without a solid strategy, it'll be difficult to know if you're chasing the right clientele or how to differentiate your game in a crowded market. A GTM strategy solves these problems, guiding you on reaching your target users and achieving a competitive advantage.
This post will teach you how to create a successful go-to-market strategy you can use when launching a new game.
What is a go-to-market strategy?
A go-to-market (GTM) strategy is a business action plan that outlines the steps a company needs to take to succeed in a new market. You can apply it to various business endeavors such as launching a new game, moving an existing game into a new market, or even re-launching one.
A study by SmallBizTrends found that only 56 percent of new businesses made it to the 5th year. Another report by Yahoo says that 90 percent of startups eventually fail. While the reasons for failure are varied, many could have been prevented with an actionable go-to-market plan.
A GTM strategy serves several purposes. First, it clarifies why a gaming studio is launching a game, who it's for, and how to get users to buy and engage with it.
Second, it forces studios to think through the issues the users will face when interacting with their game. This helps you give consumers the best possible experience and earn their trust.
A comprehensive GTM strategy also gives you a framework for measuring your progress along the way and to detect and diagnose issues that could hamper their success before they manage to run the venture to the ground.
How to build a go-to-market strategy
Now that you know what is a go-to-market strategy let's look at what you need to do to create a solid plan that will help you penetrate niche gaming markets.
Know your players and buyer personas
No video game is appropriate for every player. Clarifying your target players is an essential element in formulating your GTM strategy. Use factors such as age, occupation, interests, and geography to identify the people who resonate with your game.
Create buyer personas that map out the exact features of different consumer groups you're targeting. This process will help you understand the best ways to reach these clients with your game. You will also use this information to achieve your long-term video game marketing goals.
Break down your buyer personas into actionable items
The main aim of this step is to develop customer intelligence. Use web surveys, focus groups, and in-depth interviews to generate actionable customer insights that will help you figure out the best ways to connect with your users.
Here are the questions that will help you define your target customer:
- Who is your game for? That is, who will be the most profitable customers for it?
- What needs do your target users have that you're trying to satisfy?
- What experience do you want to offer your customers?
- What emotions do you want players to experience after interacting with your game?
The answers to these questions will help you understand how your target customers behave, bettering your chances of creating an effective GTM plan.
Understand your brand's style and positioning
Who are you as a company? What promises do you make to your users? What language do you use to describe yourself in your marketing materials? If you have a strong brand, is your new game consistent with it?
Your brand's style is very important when developing a GTM strategy. It influences your brand's position in the customers' eyes and the likelihood that they will choose you over the competition.
Define your unique selling proposition or value proposition
The next step is to define your game's unique selling proposition. This is what makes your game unique from other titles out there. Gamers have many options for titles they can play, and you need to offer something special for them to choose your game over what's already available.
You need a clear understanding of your game's key features and benefits to define your value proposition. Try to see how your game connects with your target audience and the problems it solves for the gamer. You should also assess how different your game is from other titles in your niche and use this information to convince players to try your game.
Choose your outreach channels
You should also come up with a distribution model that defines the channels that will take your game to the players. You can use your website as the primary distribution channel to reach the end consumer.
Alternatively, you can use game portals and content delivery systems to distribute your game. When choosing the distribution channels, think of your target users and select the channels that appeal to them.
Our blog, How to Make a Game Marketing Plan Work, highlights the best distribution platforms available to game developers.
Understand your pricing and budget
Once you have identified the best channels, you can start preparing a budget. Here you'll set a price for your game and the costs associated with pushing your GTM strategy. When developing the pricing strategy, consider whether you should have introductory discounts to encourage players to try your game.
Your game's price should be based on your business model, but also consider the message your pricing sends to players about the value your game provides. The price you set will also impact other aspects of your GTM strategy, such as the sales process, so it's vital to select the best pricing model. Engage an online marketing agency to develop a pricing strategy for your game.
Know your marketing mix
With everything set, it's now time to develop a marketing strategy to raise your game's awareness within the target market. You'll have to identify the best methods to connect with your target audience across various marketing platforms.
The nature of your target audience will determine your marketing mix. You need to find the marketing methods that appeal to your audience to get them excited to try your game. Be sure to track and measure your efforts so you can make the necessary adjustments.
We have highlighted the best strategies you can use to promote your game in our blog, 11 Video Game Marketing Strategies You Can Use Right Now.
Why is one necessary?
Here are the reasons why you need a go-to-market strategy for your video game.
To outline your plan
A GTM strategy outlines how you will reach your target customers with your game and attain a competitive advantage. It provides a blueprint for delivering your game to the masses, factoring in key issues such as product pricing and distribution channels. It reduces the time to market for your game since it establishes a timeline for defined milestones and creates an attainable path to success.
To keep you on track
You need a go-to-market strategy to stay on track to achieving your marketing goals. The GTM strategy defines your ideal players and the best methods to connect with them. It highlights the right approach for finding customers and how your sales team will engage and sell to them.
To stick to your budget
Marketing a new game to players for the first time is very expensive since you have many things to do to get noticed. A GTM strategy defines the budget you will use for this exercise, thus ensuring your marketing funds are used correctly.
To target the right people
Most gaming studios fail because they don't target the right people when marketing their games. The foundation of a GTM strategy is a clearly defined target audience to ensure you reach the right people with your messaging.
To have a foundation for your marketing methods
A GTM strategy also sets the foundation for your marketing methods. It will help you understand your customers and the best way to connect with them. It also highlights your unique value proposition, and you'll use this information to attract players to your game.
Want to learn more about digital marketing?
Digital marketing is a vast industry, and you need a strong understanding to master it. That's why we've compiled all of our best resources to create the ultimate guide to digital marketing. Check it out here: Everything You Need to Know About Video Game Digital Marketing.
We have explained what a go-to-market strategy is and hope you understand how important it is when launching a new game. A GTM strategy will help you figure out who your game is for and create a plan to convince them to download and play it.
A go-to-market strategy may seem easy, but it can be quite challenging as there are lots of aspects to consider. The team at Game Marketing Genie can help create the best plan for delivering your game to the target users.
Are you struggling to convince gamers to play your game? Use these tips to create a winning marketing strategy.