Post details: WHY

05/16/10

Permalink 07:57:11 am, Categories: Promotion, marketing : strategic, 746 words   English (US)

WHY

Cross posted at story games

Seeing this great video from video from TED (and you should go check it to understand the rest of the post), I bought the book Start with Why from the speaker and read it last week. A very moving and inspiring book I strongly recommend. And this reading will have a direct impact on my project.

A little history
I've been working on my project for eight years now, always having a gut feeling toward the reason it was designed that way. And then, by about four years in process I discovered the Forge and various communities of indie publishers. When presenting my product, people asked me "what I am supposed to do with this?", to which I answered "I don't know". Most of the participants told me I could not answer that way. So, I worked on a better answer, exchange with people who really helped me. I now know how to describe, in great lengths, the main difference between what I'm doing and what's common on the market. I can explain those differences, the main advantages, the type of players of might be more inclined to buy it.

This is very rational, and don't get me wrong, very useful. It took me a long time to know this and a lot of help. And that's the kind of things one needs to have in a business plan, so the process needs to be there. But, that's kind of odd : it has only been one year that I really know WHAT I am doing. I have putted so much efforts in finding it out, I thought I would really use it.

Promotion
I intend to release a first pdf version of Avalanche this summer. We're currently working on the promotion/marketing plan. We have a good idea of the part of the market we want to target. We also know, how to describe the differences between our products and our competition. This is a little bit lengthy, but it is quite understandable. Armed with those tools, we are ready to launch a product with a strong promotion strategy.

Sell WHY, not WHAT
Simon Sinek explains that people don't buy WHAT you're selling but WHY you are selling it. It is the key for innovators to build a strong fan base. He explains it in long length in his book. WHY is based on gut feeling, WHAT is rational.
We went into a lot efforts to describe our WHAT, and we were going to use it as much as we could. I mean, there are strong rational reasons to buy Avalanche instead of the typical modules. But, this doesn't really matter I think. And, to explain it takes time.
But, promoting Avalanche through the WHY "prism" makes so much sense. And it is so much easier. And, I always knew WHY I was doing this. So, we're going to change completely our promotion strategy.
I still need to think a little bit about it, especially about how to formulate it, but our WHY would look like :
"This is not a book where you are the hero, but a book where you are the author." "We need you to finish the book." "We value more the creative process than the final product."
This is our vision and this is what we should put in the back of the product; the first thing a customer should come across. They may like it or not, it doesn't matter. It is very simple and easy to get : it isn't rational.
And one of the most beautiful thing I find about this is that it all gets easier suddenly. If you come across a product stating "we need you to finish the book", it seems clear to me that I can't tell you what you'll do with it; otherwise, I would have finished the book.
For sure, someone who agrees with this vision, will come across, in the book, on our lengthy explanation on HOW we do the stuff we're doing. But this part should only reinforces our WHY. Using this filter, the WHY filter, our main differences is much more easier to "get".

Questions
Do you find Simon as aspiring as I do ? I do have the sense that the indie community did go in length explaining, with a lot of theory, the differences between story games and the others, but what about the WHY ? Finally, may I challenge you to tell me your WHY ?

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