開發者分享如何與媒介合作進行恰當的產品營銷

本文原作者:Antonio Santo 譯者:ciel chen

儘管我們覺得遊戲發行報道不應該成爲向媒體推廣遊戲的唯一路徑,然而它始終是一個非常重要的推廣工具。我曾經被非常非常多次地請教過要如何寫一份遊戲發行報道。這裏是需要一些與之相關的本能和天賦的:記者和市場專家大多(至少說應該)具備良好的文字功底——我們發現這對於其他人來說確實非常難做到的。“寫好來”並不是一個確切有用的建議,首先因爲這是廢話,其次因爲這話說起來容易做起來難。不過這裏有些要點技巧是隻要你懂,就可以很好地實施操作,我把它們歸結爲了幾個撰寫一篇有影響力的遊戲發行報道所需的小技巧。要是這裏有一名搜索引擎優化專家他會說這樣描述我的文章:“7個小技巧助你出品一份有影響力的獨立遊戲發行報道”。

gamer(from freegameupdate)

gamer(from freegameupdate)

一,選擇你的戰場。你要花點時間研究研究手頭上這些東西是不是你想要作爲發行報道的內容。一方面,記住你是爲了吸引媒體爲你寫一篇單獨報道或文章才發送的報道,所以你的報道要有報道價值。如果你稿子裏都是些零頭瑣碎的內容,人們會覺得你是個喊“狼來了”的孩子——等你真的有重要的信息要傳達的時候都沒人想聽了。另一方面,投送遊戲發行報道也比你想象的複雜,你之後就知道了。所以你要省省力氣,爲真正的戰鬥蓄力。不過我不是說你想讓自己的聲音被聽到而作出的努力是白費的,而是說有別的辦法:開發日記、寫在你自己的博客上或者當個友情作者寫篇文章、社交媒體、項目總結等等……你有很多工具:要懂得利用!

二,在你的遊戲發行報道上多用點心。不要隨便胡亂瞎謅幾行話就發出去了。這不僅是因爲這篇報道涵蓋的信息很重要,而且因爲這關乎接收者對你和你的遊戲品牌的印象。如果你不擅長寫作,那至少別出現語法錯誤——就像我,明顯我不是一個英語母語者,所以我會很認真地校對我的文本。可以加上一些圖片和截圖,不過不要太多,這會佔用人家收件箱空間。

三,信息構架。就像你會知道你最想讓你遊戲的哪些東西成爲新聞內容的一部分,就試着按照這個走向構架就好了。在報道的第一段放上最重要的信息——這篇報道的主要內容概要。比方說:你要在2月28日發行你的遊戲擴展內容。用報道的第二段和第三段來提供一些有關內容:你的遊戲於1月10日發行在PC上,售價x歐元,這款遊戲是有關什麼什麼內容的。然後你可以引用一些對你工作室或者任意有關的不錯評論。當然了,在這裏你不是記者:你不需要嚴格地遵從“5W規則”或者倒金字塔結構,你的目標是讓你的產品最好地呈現出來,不過如果你能掌握記者的思考方式和信息構架將會非常有幫助。

四,讓記者少費點勁。一名記者每天都要收到幾十封甚至上百封的電子郵件。所以想讓自己的郵件被注意到真的很困難,所以你好歹讓他們艱難的生活儘可能地簡單點——如果你要他們通過Google才能搜到你的更多信息,那他們大多不會去搜的。所以附上你的所有遊戲相關數據(發行數據、平臺、售價等等)以及一個有可視內容的新聞資料包鏈接,有關你工作室的更多細節內容……Vlambeer的新聞資料包就是很好的模板(不過如果你能用上你自己個人定製的材料效果會更好)。

五,選擇點擊“發送”的合適時間。不要選擇在星期一或者星期五發表遊戲發行報道。星期一大多是最重要新聞和那些週末發生事件的報道時間。而星期五,全世界的每個作者都在盯着他們的表等着下班,如果不是什麼GRA VI的發表之類的重要內容,他們是不會鳥你的。除了之前說的,你還要看看那些3-A級同行的重要發行、預告片公佈和網上見面會等……也許你不是個可以預見未來的算命先生,但是如果下個禮拜二有個3A級大型遊戲要發行,那之後的一天裏沒人會理會別的東西了。除非你真的別無選擇,不然就等這個巨頭遊戲的風頭過去了再說。

六,跟進你最看重的目標。在你發出遊戲發行報道之後,就到了跟進的時候了——也就是直接發郵件確認他們是否看過你的發行報道了,可以的話你可以禮貌地問問他們可不可以給你寫點什麼評價。儘管沒有規定跟進的過程中你要等多久,不過根據我的經驗來說一般要等兩三天。請允許我在這裏多此一舉地再說一遍:那些報道了人們感興趣內容的文章才更有吸引力。跟進成百上千的媒體聯繫人是不合適的,不過如你事先知道最可能讀你文章的最重要人羣是哪些的話,你就可以把注意力集中在他們身上。可以對相關的媒介和記者做一些調查:可以是那些專注你所選平臺的網站,也可以是那些喜歡某類遊戲的作者……把直接個性化的定製跟進電子郵件發給他們。你還可以提到一些過去的故事或者他們的相關評述,這些評述讓你覺得他們會對你的遊戲有所興趣。這可比你發羣發郵件給上百個COO強多了。

七,如果他們沒回你郵件別放在心上。在強調一次:記者每天要受到幾十封的電子郵件。他們真的沒法一一回復每個人,甚至對個人的跟進郵件也回覆不過來。有一些雜誌的記者是從來不會回覆郵件的,這可能是提高效率的內部規則。所以這並沒有針對,你不要覺得沮喪或者因此怨恨他們:要知道,除了你以外還有千千萬萬的遊戲等着發表發行報道呢。僅作爲參考性標誌——Mailchimp中游戲行業平均郵件點擊率是12.52%(提醒一下:我們遊戲郵件的平均點擊率比這高出很多,如果你想有更多瞭解,可以給我們發郵件)。一名PR需要沒日沒夜地努力耐心工作來讓你的品牌和產品得到關注——這是需要天賦、勤奮以及一些運氣的——不過運氣來的前提是你得剛好在呀。

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Even though we think that press releases shouldn’t be your one and only way to approach the media and to spread the word about your game, it is indeed a very important tool. I’ve been asked many, many times how to write a press release. There’s a bit of instinct and talent about it: journalists and marketing experts tend to be, or at least should be, good with words; we find very easy some things that other people struggle with. “Write well” is not exactly a useful piece of advice, first because it’s obvious, second because that’s easier said than done. But there are other things which can be easily implemented once you know them, so let’s see, in a nutshell, some tips for writing a good press release. Or, as an SEO expert would say, 7 Tips On Using Press Releases About Your Indie Game (why the hell they capitalize every single word, I wonder).

1. Pick your battles. is this really press release material? Take your time to decide if you have to send this as a press release or not. On the one hand, since its goal is to get the press write a piece of news or an article about you, a press release should be about something newsworthy. If you keep sending releases about trivial things, people will see you as the boy who cried wolf too many times, and when you send important info it could pass unnoticed. On the other hand, sending a press release is much more work than you realize, as you will see very soon. Save your strength for the real fights. That’s not to say you shouldn’t try to get your voice heard about minor topics, but there are other ways: development diaries, writing on your blog or as a guest writer, social media, post-mortems… You have many tools: use them!

2. Give your press release the time it deserves. Don’t scribble a few lines and hit send. It’s not only important because of the info it contains, but because of what it says about you and your brand. If you are not a great writer, at least try to avoid grammar mistakes – I mean, it’s obvious that I’m not a native English speaker, but I proofread very carefully my texts. Use images and screenshots in a good resolution, but not so heavy that they obliterate anyone’s inbox.

3. Structure the information. Remember that you are most likely sending what you want to become a piece of news, so try to structure just like that. Put the most important info, what the press release is about, in the first paragraph. For instance: you will release an expansion for your game on February 28th. Use the second or third paragraph to offer some context: your game was released on January 10th for PC, it costs €X, it is about this and that. Then you can quote some good reviews or talk about your studio or whatever. Of course, you are not a journalist here: you don’t have to follow strictly the 5W rules or the inverted pyramid, and your goal is to put your product under the best light, but it’s very useful to have in mind how journalists think and structure info. Read more about the inverted pyramid here.

4. Make journalists’ life easier. A journalist receives easily dozens of emails on a daily basis – or even more than a hundred. It is difficult enough to get noticed with so much noise, so at the very least you should make their life as easy as possible. If they have to Google you to find more info, chances are that they just won’t. Include all relevant data about your game (release dates, platforms, prices, etc.) and a link to a press kit with visual assets, more details about your studio… Presskit() by Vlambeer is a good template to follow (although it always looks better if you use your own personal, customized material).

5. Pick up the right time to hit the Send button. Never send a press release on Monday mornings or Fridays. Mondays are for the most important news and those pile of stuff that happened during the weekend. On Fridays, every single writer in the world is looking intently at their watches. They are wrapping up the week, waiting for the bell to ring to go home; if they even notice a press release coming in half an hour before the weekend, they will just ignore it unless it’s GTA VI being announced. Having said that, you should also check the triple-A industry for important releases, announced trailers or online meetings… You may not be a fortune teller capable of guessing the future, but if next Tuesday there will be a huge AAA release, it’s very likely that during the next days no one will talk about anything else. Unless you really don’t have an option, just wait until all the fuss is over.

6. Follow up with your most important targets. After you send a press release, it’s time to follow-up – that is, to send direct emails in order to check if they saw your press release, and maybe to ask politely if they plan to write something about it. Even though there is no rule about how much time you should wait for following up, as a rule of thumb I would wait two or three days. Allow me to dress Captain Obvious’ cape for a moment: press releases will be more efficient with people interested in what they say. Following up with hundreds or thousands of press contacts is just not feasible, but if you know beforehand the most important people you would like to read your stuff, you can focus on them. Research a little bit for relevant media and journalists: websites specialized in your platform of choice, writers who like a particular genre… and send them direct, personal, customized follow-up emails, maybe mentioning a past story or review they wrote that is relevant and that made you thought that they will love your game. That is always more effective than sending a generic email to a hundred people in COO.

7. Don’t take it personally if they don’t answer or publish anything. Again: journalists receive dozens or emails per day. They just can’t cover or answer to everything, even to personal follow-ups. There are magazines whose journalists never answer back, probably as an internal rule to improve efficiency. It’s not personal and you shouldn’t get depressed or grudge them for that: there are thousands and thousands of games out there. Just as a mark of reference, games industry average open rate in Mailchimp is as low as 12.52 % (our average open rate is much, much, much higher than that, mind you – if you want more details, send us an email!). A PR needs to be tireless, working painstakingly and patiently to get your brand and products noticed. It takes talent, hard work and a bit of luck – but you have to be there when the luck comes!(source:gamasutra.com