Mobile Games Monetizing – Trends and Strategies You Must Know

Wonder what has made this game app so huge? Well, the statistics clearly depict the inclination of more than millions of people towards mobile gaming. And, if you already have a mobile game app or want to launch one soon, it will definitely give you good returns. But, there is a rule book for everything and so, for creating profitable mobile gaming apps.

Know your target – There are millions of game apps available that can be downloaded for free. If you have the plan to launch your game, then the first step to develop a game is to know your audience. Study and understand their needs and interest. A good mobile app development company, does a detailed research, before starting with the development process.

Online Community – Get social, because the audiences are social. They want to exchange their experiences, scores with friends and also with other users across the world. Thus, offer your users a multichannel gaming experience to spike their engagement levels.

In-app purchases – Anything for free attract customers always. People are not willing to spend money to download games when, there are so many free games available. As a solution to this, you can include In-app purchase offer. Once, the user is engaged with the game, he wouldn’t mind to make a purchase while playing. Also, you may offer the users with incentives that will support in persuading them to make a purchase. This, is a good medium to earn revenue, which can be more than the revenue through downloads.

Mobile Ads – If you know how to rightly pitch your user, mobile ads form a potential medium to earn profits. Native ads are the way to go, avoid banner ads that are non- appealing. Be sure that the ad format is synchronized with the mobile app design.

User behavior and technology varies with every mobile operating system. Create your monetizing strategy, after studying the behavior patterns and only after learning the technique of the operating system. The smartphone market is a complex one, and along with it, is a tough competition in the market that overwhelms the developers to follow the right monetizing strategy. The big companies are indulging in mobility solutions and if an effective strategy is followed, a lot of revenue can be generated through this medium.

Also, Mobile game analytics are significant to understand how the users are approaching the game and to calculate the changes that are needed to make, to achieve mass downloads by providing an exciting gaming experience.

Free Mobile Games – A Fun Way to Spend Leisure Time

Mobile phone games are amongst the most popular forms of gaming and free mobile phone games are doing their bit to increase the popularity. The purpose of cell phones is no longer just making calls. It is quite a common sight to see someone glued to his cell phone, oblivious of all that’s going around. More often than not, chances are that the person is playing a mobile phone game.

Gaming is a massive industry that is growing at a rapid pace. Some years ago, experts had predicted that people would pay large sums of money to play games on their cell phones. They have been proved right. Such games are addictive and often a person hooked to mobile games just can’t get enough of them. Such persons are always on the lookout for free mobile phone games. Mobile games quickly become out-dated because new and better games are released ever so often. Some of the games that have become outdated are Poker, Solitaire, Juiced etc.

The fierce competition between the various cell phone companies and service providers is one factor that has increased the popularity of free mobile phone games. They offer mobile games free of cost as an incentive. These games are either freely downloadable from the Internet or get activated on simulation. Often they are an intrinsic part of the handset.

Free Online Games

There are numerous free mobile phone games online. Some of the well-known ones include:

o FIFA 2005 Mobile Edition: This football game has been designed in a very realistic manner. One of its highlights is the ability to replay shots.
o Colin McRae Rally 2005: The three dimensional graphics of this game tempt one to keep racing against time.
o Karate Master: The objective of this game is to enable Chen to get a black belt with the blessing of the Master. He also has to win all the fights and be declared “The Best Under the Sun”.
o Conflict Global Storm: In this game, one has to fight against global terrorism. The modus operandi includes obtaining data from the terrorists, capturing them, rescuing one’s partners and foiling the plans of the terrorists.
o Jackpot: This is a conventional casino game. One would get 100 dollars to play the game. The aim of the game is to maximize one’s earnings. One loses the game when he loses the money. The quantum of money is stored in the memory and can be verified from the menu.
o 3D Pool: This three-dimensional pool game tests your ability to strategize and play pool.

Free mobile phone games are in great demand amongst people who love gaming. They are an inexpensive and entertaining way to spend one’s leisure time.

Digital Marketing and Its Impact on Small Time Game and Mobile Application Developers

Stephen DiMarco has hit a very valid point in his post about how online marketing needs to start to assess some of the more qualitative side of marketing in terms of a brand rather than just Google Analytics or PPC, etc. In a world that’s primarily driven by unique page views, PPC campaign numbers, CTR rates, and other hard facts, it’s an interesting thought. As a gaming company, we offer post-marketing services which includes this marketing and it’s driven by numbers. We’ve yet to see how this affects us a brand, and Stephen’s got us thinking.

There are a whole slew of developers that are online at the App Store, but there’s an inherent problem with trusting a single developer. Many developers have delivered a product that’s a stand-alone app that is basically a flash-in-the-pan while others have consistently turned out mediocre but reliable apps. Who do you trust; the company that turns out one stellar app after a long hiatus or a developer that just needs some new direction or energy in their creative processes? There’s no real concept of a brand, there’s no Unilever or P&G for the App Store and therein lies the problem for marketers for iPhone development.

Although many people would argue that apps are products that have a repeat purchase cycle, etc, there’s yet to be a single developer that’s built a very successful brand using just their apps. People view apps like a utility and look to promote them as such. Very rarely does anyone ever hear about the developer but rather the app itself. This is a problem in an industry where the first firm to truly brand itself will gain a massive first-mover advantage. Indeed it will be difficult, but if a firm is able to do so, they’d easily take over the App Store.

The problem, to a certain extent, lies in the tools that are geared towards quantitative metrics rather than qualitative metrics. For example, Twitter following dictates whether you are a thought leader or follower, a PPC campaign shows how well SEO or ad placement is working. Yes, they do provide numbers which can help translate into potential leads, but there’s no concept of a brand.

Resultantly, firms are looking to use their marketing dollars to build a brand. For us, as game developers, there’s an added challenge. Although it may be easy to build one stellar app and continue to tweak it over time, such an effort doesn’t build a brand in the long run. At this point, firms need to realize how their marketing channels are being used besides the metrics they provide. Do you use your Twitter account to talk with customers? What type of a Twitter following do you have? Does your website show how committed you are to your vision? These questions begin to emphasize how qualitative metrics become important. It’s great having numbers, but as companies grow there’s a need to build a relationship with customers outside of the traditional client-vendor concept.

For example, in the case of gaming studios, a loyal group of customers translates into many benefits. Beta testers are easily found from your Twitter following or customers that have written great reviews for your titles. Ultimately these are the people that will promote you for free. They don’t show up in the metrics, you find them by talking to them. This is a brand building activity that many firms ignore. Again, for small startups it’s difficult to find the right people, but most of the time they’re hiding right under your radar. Yet many firms ignore the potential of these testers and continue to push out apps without sufficient testing. There’s no reason when there’s a small group of dedicated followers that you need to deliver a game without proper testing. These people will be the life line for your game as you need the critical honest feedback about gameplay, controls, graphics, user interfaces, etc. Without these people, you’d never get the proper feedback which helps develop a truly outstanding title.

Nonetheless, many firms do use these techniques but need to realize that there’s a brand to be built using these types of activities. Reward your beta-testers with promo codes for free games so that they spread the word about you, their recommendation to other gamers will go a long way in making your company stand out amongst the army of developers on the App Store. As mentioned by Stephen, there’s a need to change from the quantitative towards the qualitative side of marketing to build brands similar to IBM, Apple, or Microsoft for app development companies. Firms need to get away from the purely numerical side of marketing and start to see where they want to be in 10 years time.