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11 Mar 2015

How To Market Your Indie Studio: Enticing Customers To Review

While it isn’t fair to say that marketing your indie studio becomes easier over time, in a way it does. Every indie game you release is going to have its own set of challenges regarding marketing; but having a library of good, highly rated games will make all of the difference in getting the press to review your indie game and ultimately, helping  you to gain new customers.

Today, we are going to focus on creating a foundation for the rest of your studio’s indie games by enticing your current customers to review your first game. These tips will also work for every indie game you release going forward as well. Let’s get started!

For mobile games, ask for reviews

We’ve all seen apps that ask us to write a review. It’s one of the best ways to remind your customers to review your indie game, and is also a proven way to ensure that your indie game gets a wealth of reviews right from the start. Simply design a window to pop up, asking players to rate your indie game on their respective mobile store; just be sure you ask them at the right time.

When asking for reviews, timing is certainly everything. You don’t want to ask players to review the game right when they start the game, nor do you want to ask them whenever they die and get a game over (both instances could lead to poor app reviews). Instead, ask them to review the game between gameplay. For example, you could ask players to review your indie game when a level is loading or whenever they beat a level. You may even want to consider asking them whenever they complete a challenge since they are most likely going to be ecstatic.

The trick is to catch players in the moment where their opinion of your indie game would typically be at its highest. People love reviewing apps if they are especially good, so if you can leech off of that positive energy, you will raise the chances of having an influx of positive reviews.

Ask in your call to actions

Whenever you update your indie game, you should be mentioning the changes made in your notes on the game’s store page. To get an idea as to how you should format this, check out the top apps on your respective mobile store to get a good idea how to do this. No matter where you are selling your indie game, be sure to include a call to action near the bottom of every update asking players to rate your indie game!

Be sure to also do this on any videos you upload to YouTube. Simply include a call to action at the bottom of the video’s description asking players to rate your indie game. Include these types of call to actions every chance you get (especially on social media), and remind players that if they love your game, they need to review it!

But never ask for a 5-star rating

Never tell players how to vote. Not only will many of them ignore your request for a review, but many of them may even rate your indie game poorly out of spite. It’s as simple as that.

Make a great game

At the end of the day, getting your players to rate your indie game is as simple as making an awesome game. There are a few reasons people rate games: most commonly if the game is awful or is a success. Players love voicing their opinion regarding things they are passionate about, and if people are loving your game, chances are more people than normally will review it positively. Use the tips above and keep this in mind, and everything will fall into place.

Join us next time when we discuss getting the press to cover your indie game. Until then, if you have any questions, let us know in the comments below!


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