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Marketing – Look It Up.

August 20, 2008

I’ll get back to the Gen Con wrap-ups soon, but there’s something that came up in a panel I sat in on at Gen Con being run by Daniel Perez of Highmoon Media Productions about the impact of podcasting on the gaming community. It really rang true with me, and I wanted to extoll on this a little bit. For those of you who regular the Accidental Survivors section of the ForgedRPG message boards, this may look familiar to you.

Something that Mike Stackpole mentioned in one of the panels we attended was that publishers just don’t seem to understand the power of marketing, and the power of podcasts. For the cost of one book, they can get their product name beamed directly into the brains of – in our case – somewhere around 500-600 gamers. Maybe more. They are not simply handing a book to some random fan of the system, they are handing it to somebody who is going to give an unbiased review of the product and, via a trusted medium, tell hundreds and hundreds of people about it.

Yes, I said trusted medium. We are wired to implicitly trust broadcast mediums like radio and television. Podcasts fall into that category as well, and as much as we may debase ourselves (mostly for fun), podcasters are trusted and – for some bizarre reason – taken as experts on the subject.

The sooner publishers get their heads wrapped around that, the better it will be for them. They will find that podcasters are passionate and more than willing to bend over backwards (or, frontwards in Fraser’s case) for a game publisher, and they are willing to do it for absolutely nothing (or, for a cheeseburger in Fraser’s case).

For that matter, I want to tip my hat to the folks at Green Ronin and Fantasy Flight Games for understanding this and offering review copies of their products. That was pretty f**kin’ chang.

  1. My job here is done, then. 🙂

  2. David permalink

    There is an important discussion among chattering classes about whether the denziens of the blogosphere are “real” journalists. Certainly, the impact of a blogpost going viral can have measurable political or market repurcussions. But what is it about professional journalists that they are regarded as credible and authoritative? Diligence in research and independence of opinion. In reviewing stuff, bloggers need to exercise a level of honesty and independence in order to retain credibility, because being raised in the age of radio and tv also leads to an ability to identify fakery in that media. I know that, given the chance, you would do a great job at reviewing pre-market material from gaming companies in an unbiased, objective way (cheeseburgers notwithstanding).

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