Entrepreneurs and companies worldwide know the value of social media as a marketing tool. Several different companies, both big and little, old and new, can be seen selling their goods online. So why should video game developers not leverage social media’s influence to advertise their games?
According to a report by GrandViewResearch, The global video game market was worth USD 195.65 billion in 2021 and is predicted to increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.9% between 2022 and 2030 https://www.grandviewresearch.com/industry-analysis/video-game-market. With a forecasted growth rate of 9.64% between 2021 and 2026, it is abundantly evident that the gaming business is here to stay.
Large development studios and independent developers are fighting to attract the target audience, making the industry more competitive than ever. With the evolution of the internet as a mass communication tool, the gaming industry has been revolutionized through various innovations. However, it has also raised a significant issue: how can you leverage social media to promote your game?
In this regard, GIA investigated how one video game developer, Sunday Akor, used and continues using the popular social media network TikTok to promote his games, Virago Herstory, Virago Run, and Virago Naked Reality, developed by Honest Chronicle. Current figures indicate that Virago Herstory has over 100,000 downloads on the Google Play Store and over 200,000 on the Apple Store, amassing over 20k downloads in a single day. At its peak, Virago naked reality reached the top 15 on the App Store
Virago is a 2D adventure survival game set in an interconnected world with black and white graphics. It tells the story of a girl, Willow, who, after escaping her abusive stalker, begins to suffer from hallucinations. The game features bizarre creatures animated by hand in a traditional 2D style, and various versions of the game can be played on Steam, GooglePlay or App Store.
What is Social Media Marketing?
In today’s business world, having an online presence is essential for any organization. Each social media account represents your company, game, or overall brand as its official voice. The goal is to engage your audience in conversation and build a brand community. Social media network sites make it simple to share essential information and important updates with your community through fan pages and official announcements. Additionally, social media keeps reminding consumers of your product/service and organically integrates it into their life
Why should you define your audience?
Organizations must have a distinct understanding of their target audience before they can begin marketing on social media. Defining your target demographic is the first step to a successful social media marketing campaign. Numerous other variables, including tone of voice, target audience demographic information, and behavioral data, can guide the best targeting procedure and help you precisely specify how you present your brand on various social networking sites.
Virago’s Social Strategy on Instagram
GIA had already highlighted how Virago used Instagram as its first social networking site to create a buzz about the game. At the time, lead developer and owner Sunday felt that TikTok hadn’t caught up. His strategy consisted of sharing his input on various games on their gaming pages while directing people to view his game @ virago_game .
This strategy gradually gained him a following on the platform, with current numbers showing a follower count of over 4,600. Virago_game released and continues to produce quality material semi-regularly by concentrating on visual media such as infographics and short videos. The main bonus is not just to advertise. Instagram users can be inclined to learn more about your new release by promoting it through interactive content.
Virago Social Strategy on TikTok
Gamers globally visit TikTok to create and enjoy gaming content. More than half of TikTok users watch gaming-related short video content daily. Short videos in the immersive, full-screen, sound-on format are ideal for sharing gameplay snippets, walkthroughs and tutorials, cosplay, and other manifestations of video game fandom. Gamers enthusiastically interact and constantly search for new games to play, share, and discuss on the platform.
The best way for game publishers to win over TikTok users is to think like a creator, participate in the fun, and appear as a community member, which the creator of the game, Sunday, did.
He engaged with fans by creating short videos on the game’s relatable content. He also responded to suggestions by integrating fan feedback into the game, all while showcasing the outcome of those ideas and suggestions. During this process, he would amass a community on Discord and ask fans to share their email addresses voluntarily to get game updates. With a community on the back burner, he encouraged people to like and engage with the game’s content for better viewership on the platform, which rewards engagement through prominent viewership per TikTok’s algorithm.
Gamers are a unique and passionate audience who love to engage with content they relate to and are fans of. By building and engaging with your community on the social network sites discussed while having a presence on other sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Youtube, and Twitter, your game is bound to create a buzz around it, driving sales and downloads. Additionally, through influencer marketing, video game studios can work with video game streamers, personalities, and influencers to build social proof, introduce the game to new audiences, and help put a face to the marketing efforts.
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