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Buttonia ... How can we improve it/sales?

01-06-2011, 05:33 PM
#1
Joined: Mar 2010
Location: Malta
Posts: 37
Buttonia ... How can we improve it/sales?

We have developed a puzzle game called Buttonia. The goal is to turn on all buttons. It's quite a brain teaser.
You can download the lite version to try it out.


The sales are mediocre, around 2/day. Our big mistake was the marketing was non-existing on launch.

I would like to ask if we could do something more to improve the sales. I've tried contacting some PR companies but they suggested to save the money on the release of our next game.

What do you think about the game? My hunch is that it's too much of a brain teaser so it might not be for everyone.

Any comments and criticism are more than welcome

Last edited by xenonii; 01-06-2011 at 06:17 PM. Reason: to add image
01-06-2011, 05:38 PM
#2
Joined: Nov 2010
Location: alea iacta est
Posts: 1,368
Quote:
Originally Posted by xenonii View Post
We have developed a puzzle game called Buttonia. The goal is to turn on all buttons. It's quite a brain teaser.
You can download the lite version to try it out.

The sales are mediocre, around 2/day. Our big mistake was the marketing was non-existing on launch.

I would like to ask if we could do something more to improve the sales. I've tried contacting some PR companies but they suggested to save the money on the release of our next game.

What do you think about the game? My hunch is that it's too much of a brain teaser so it might not be for everyone.

Any comments and criticism are more than welcome
Its very hard to market a game after launch. Or, you just get much less exposure and sales for the money.

01-07-2011, 02:36 AM
#3
Joined: Sep 2010
Location: Tokyo, Japan
Posts: 27
Hmm, you even have a lite version and that is not helping too much, huh?

If I may, one thing I suggest is to rethink your color palette. I am no expert in color theory but I don't find the colors to be very "inviting." In general, when colors are picked by an experienced graphic designer they are picked very deliberately to serve a purpose. I see no harmony in the palette here. The colors aren't horrible or anything but at the same time they don't scream "Play me!" It's very subtle, but maybe you could look into it.

I will have to download it before I can comment on gameplay but if you feel like it might be too difficult for the average person, perhaps you could make different difficulty settings?
01-07-2011, 04:21 PM
#4
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 248
Quote:
Originally Posted by xenonii View Post
The sales are mediocre, around 2/day. Our big mistake was the marketing was non-existing on launch.

I would like to ask if we could do something more to improve the sales.
Promote, promote, promote!

If people don't know about your game they aren't going to buy it. PR companies are mostly about building hype by getting blogs to write about your game. If it's not a new game blogs don't have too much of a reason to write about.

Basically you need to give blogs a reason (news) to write about you. For example making a contest where you give away a free iPad for the best YouTube video created about the game. I have seen it done before with several apps.

If you do a big update with extra features that is also a reason for blogs to write about it. But you will never get the same push as a brand new game.

One thing for sure is you need to advertise your game so people will know about it. Imagine if every person turned on their iPhone and saw an ad for your game with a buy now link. Your sales will sky rocket, even if you have a crappy game. Once people hear enough about it they start to believe the hype.

I bought Angry Birds when it came out and just didn't think it was very good. I gave up after the first few levels. But after months and months of hearing how awesome it is both from friends on Facebook and seeing articles about it EVERYWHERE I decided to give it another shot. It took me a while to love it but I kept playing in order to see what all the hype was about. Finally I ended up buying Angry Birds Seasons as well.

I recommend spending a bit of money on ads to see what works for your game. Then once you figure out what works you can starting spending a lot of money in order to earn money. You can also do what AssyriaGameStudios said and try a free a day site like FAAD or the one he mentioned. IF you do that make sure you have some In-App or ads to monetize it.

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01-07-2011, 11:46 PM
#5
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Hollywood, CA
Posts: 1,869
of course I'll agree with what others have said here. Marketing is the most important thing you can do with ANY product nowadays, be it a good app or a crappy one. There is so much overwhelming competition on the app store now that there is no hope your app will "slip through the cracks" to get noticed anymore, unless of course it has some amazing edge going for it (revolutionary tech, standout graphical polish, big-name connection, etc)

You really need to put marketing 1st and everything else second, if downloads is your goal. More and more this means spending money and becoming very social. It's very easy to waste money on the wrong things to, so do your homework and find what makes the most sense in your case (depending on your budget, your game type, and your plans down the road). Keep in mind that these days, it is very hard to expect reasonable downloads even from a game that is FREE.

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01-08-2011, 03:22 AM
#6
This game like Bejeweled game. How to play like that
01-08-2011, 05:08 AM
#7
Joined: Mar 2010
Location: Malta
Posts: 37
How much to spend?

Thanks for the excellent feedback. I will have a think about pulling it off and rebranding it.

I'm trying to learn as much as I can from this launch failure so the next game that I'm doing will launched properly.

When you say budgets, what amounts do you have in mind? What is a typical budget? I contacted some PR company and for 6 weeks of marketing before launch they are asking for around 5000$. This includes previews, contacting review sites, and preparing press releases, etc. All stuff I really don't enjoy doing

Nev
____________________________
site: SoftwareProdigy
game: Flip Them All
01-08-2011, 05:32 AM
#8
Joined: Mar 2010
Location: Malta
Posts: 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by atnguyen001 View Post
This game like Bejeweled game. How to play like that
It's not like Bejeweled actually. You don't have to match-3. But you have to tap on the buttons and each button effects it's neighbouring buttons. So you have to choose which buttons to tap.

Nev
____________________________
site: SoftwareProdigy
game: Flip Them All
01-08-2011, 06:45 AM
#9
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by xenonii View Post
Thanks for the excellent feedback. I will have a think about pulling it off and rebranding it.

I'm trying to learn as much as I can from this launch failure so the next game that I'm doing will launched properly.

When you say budgets, what amounts do you have in mind? What is a typical budget? I contacted some PR company and for 6 weeks of marketing before launch they are asking for around 5000$. This includes previews, contacting review sites, and preparing press releases, etc. All stuff I really don't enjoy doing
$5,000 sounds like a lot to me . We did a press page ourselves (http://www.6zer0.com/pr/), modelled on what review sites seem to want, then sent it out to a bunch of review sites, with some success. But unless someone significant picks your app up and does a significant review, it's not going to do a lot. So my advice would definitely NOT be to spend the $5,000, however much you don't like PR work. Since yours is a puzzle game, perhaps you could offer some prize for the first person to complete it or the first person to achieve a certain score, to make the PR story a little sexier. You'll see we're doing that with 6zer0 with a % of app sales. The last bit of advice, such as this is would be to lower expectations! The App Store is the quintessential buyer's market. All sellers save maybe Rolio need to protect themselves from the danger of high hopes!

6zer0: it's about time
01-08-2011, 07:31 AM
#10
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 659
looks like match 3 game. There are probably thousands of games like this on the app store. You need to go really heavy on the marketing..