Tips for Cultivating a Thriving gaming community

Games are more than just a way to pass the time — they are reshaping the way many people interact with friends, consume media, and even view the world. Gaming has been one of the most popular outlets for keeping people sane during this time of self-isolation due to COVID-19. Verizon reported that since the coronavirus outbreak gaming usage has gone up by 75%. 

Here’s why these loyal players and communities are so important and what you can do to build engagement in your gaming communities and channel that engagement into new revenue.

Why Loyal Gamers and Communities Matter

What makes the gaming industry so successful? It’s not only new gaming technology and a widening customer base — it’s the existing players and the affinity they have for the games they love.

Leveraging those connections by fostering a community makes it easier for video game publishers to keep consumers happy, save on marketing and advertising, and see exactly where the future of gaming is going to stay ahead of their peers.

Happy Players Spread Customer Satisfaction

Sometimes, things go wrong. Your server crashes, an update doesn’t go as planned, or a new feature takes longer than predicted to roll out. While having an active community of customers means facing complaints when you drop the ball, it also allows you to remedy the situation.

When these challenges arise, a community gives you a direct channel to keep your customers updated on progress. Perhaps even more importantly, it also gives your most engaged players an outlet where they can discuss what’s going right and answer questions on your behalf to defuse any tension over the situation.

Engagement Shrinks Marketing Costs

By now, most businesses know acquiring a new customer usually costs more than retaining an existing one. It’s also important to note that selling a new product or game to an existing customer has a 60 to 70% success rate. But selling to a new customer might only pan out 5 to 20% of the time.

So after spending all that marketing money and effort to win a player over, it makes little sense to let that customer lose interest. Build a community to engage players and cut your marketing costs drastically.

How to Grow a Gaming Community

Source: Hubspot
An Active Gaming Community Can Keep You Ahead of the Curve

A strong community helps you understand how players engage in your games and what’s happening in the industry, today and in the future. For example, many modern gamers yearn for the freedom to start a game while riding an Uber home, switch to playing it on their Apple TV at home, and then finish a session on their tablet while lying in bed.

Developers and marketers who stayed engaged with their loyal community of players were better able to respond to this demand for omni-channel play.

Communities Boost Affordable Word-of-Mouth Advertising

There is a reason that so many brands invest in influencer marketing — word-of-mouth advertising is one of the most effective and affordable ways to reach an audience.

How to Grow a Gaming Community

A strong community does word-of-mouth advertising for you. When players exchange information on their favorite levels, engage in a friendly competition over who has the best skin (the appearance of the player’s avatar), or talk about their experience with your newest release, it keeps your game and new offerings top of mind without any ad spend at all.

You can also see the importance of the player community through the great success of Play Together in 2021

Here’s How to Effectively Build an Engaged Gaming Community

The following strategies help ensure you’re in the right place, with the right content, and bring the right value to the table to build and foster a passionate community around your game.

Make Sure You Are on The Right Platforms

Where should your community be built? It depends on where your audience hangs out. 

You may spend hours of precious time trying to grow a community on Instagram, and then later realize that the gamers you want to target hang out more on Facebook and YouTube. Do your research before you progress any further.

Social media sites like Facebook and Youtube are the most obvious place to start in Vietnam.

  • Facebook wants you to pay for ads and will artificially reduce your organic growth over time. However, that’s where everyone is.
  • Youtube requires you to put out content frequently if you want to benefit from the search engine and referrals as much as possible. The time investment to get started is enormous. If you only post your trailers, you’ll get some views, but nothing extraordinary.
Promote Community-Created Content

Along with sharing share your own content, always remember to allow users to create their content. 

Show your community you appreciate them and their dedication by promoting the content they create, such as videos, drawings, and other fan art. 

Always Offer Value, Not Just Pitches

Don’t treat your community of players as a means to an end — they are so much more. When you offer value, you show your loyal gamers that you respect them as people and don’t just see them as dollar signs.

Ways to add value include running fun contests, sharing sneak peeks and other exclusive content, and hosting giveaways that encourage your audience to engage with your brand, all while showing that you value their thoughts and participation.

Don’t Forget the Real World

Communities exist outside of your bubble, too. Wherever possible, attend relevant conferences, expos, meetups, and local gaming nights.

Engaging face-to-face (or, screen-to-screen in the case of virtual events) outside your online bubble can give you truly unbiased feedback, and hopefully win you some new fans.

When presenting at a booth at a game show, for example, make the presentation of your game engaging and fun. To boost engagement, try hosting a high-score competition or giveaway. The more exciting your booth or table looks, the easier it will be to get people to spend time at it.

Reaching out to influencers to join your game’s community allows you to leverage other communities to grow your own.

For a sense of achievement, agree on certain goals to hit on their stream for their audience to reap the rewards. For example, if they level up twice in an hour, you’ll give them five early access Steam keys to distribute to their fans.

Start Today with Gamota 

If you’re looking to grow your gaming community in Vietnam, you’ll need a solid strategy that incorporates engaging content, community-building activities, and effective outreach. But with so many moving parts, it can be challenging to know where to start.

Whether you’re a seasoned gaming company or a new community looking to make a splash, Gamota can help you reach your goals and build a loyal fanbase in Vietnam’s thriving gaming scene. So why wait? Sign up for Gamota today and start growing your gaming community like a pro.