Getting projects in front of people can be pretty difficult, especially for quiet lurkers with visually simple/boring projects – like me! And while I’m the opposite of great at marketing and spreading the word, I still want to share some personal experiences I made on different platforms.
Updates will be made after trying new things 🙂
So far, one of the most fun platforms for me. Tweets are easy to write and can contain pretty much anything, the people in the indiedev sphere are an amazingly friendly crowd, and with a bit of experimentation/preparation, you can get eyes on your stuff pretty fast, even without a huge following.
- easy to use on all devices
- lets you post pretty much whatever (links, videos, images, …)
- very friendly indiedev community
- hard to stand out
- bad for generating a real interest
- not great for building communities
- can be a bit of a circlejerk
Keep an eye out for thread/hashtags relevant to your projects – e.g. #screenshotsaturday, #pitchyourgame, etc. Whether or not they really help people disagree about, but the threads usually get seen by a bigger crowd.
If you have a project that is visually interesting, Instagram might be worth trying. Posts usually consist of an image with the possibility to add a description nobody cares about.
- nice to look at
- great for eye-catching content
- friendly interface for the viewer
- integrates well with facebook
- only allows one link in the user profile
- tries very hard to force you to post from mobile devices
- posting UI can be a complete nightmare
- Facebook account required, and very much not wanted ;/
Personally, I am convinced I just don’t “get” Instagram and my simple, uninteresting-looking games aren’t a great fit for it. The limits in creating posts – no links, posting videos and stories only from phone, video length and format limitations, not even being able to select/copy texts from descriptions after posting – drove me completely insane. I hate having to work from my mobile phone when writing/editing content.
My opinion may change if I ever try my hand at a more artsy looking project, but so far, deleting the app was the most fun I had with it.
If you have the time and energy to invest in building up an account and find the relevant communities that let you create posts without immediately auto-deleting them, Reddit is a cool platform! As a chronic lurker without a huge posting/commenting history, I tend to stay away though. Be prepared to post, re-post, cross-post, get downvoted or deleted… it’s part of the process! And make a list of some nicer communities that may accept some self-promotion or are relevant to your project.
Probably the best community-building platform for gaming! Join a few fun, relevant servers and you can make great friends. Even though I haven’t really tried actively marketing projects on it, I love the community aspects and just hanging out with people. You can even write your own bots and be pretty creative with your own server 🙂
Depending on the topic, looking for relevant forums might be worth a try, for example:
- TIGsource for game development
- itch.io for community posts and maybe game jams
- Toucharcade for mobile games
The bigger those communities are, the more people may stumble upon new posts.
If you like recording devlogs or have regular video content you can share, Youtube is pretty fun! I enjoyed experimenting with it quite a bit, but found it to be far too time consuming to edit videos to a level I was happy with. The platform is also very crowded, so getting videos seen is a task in itself.
Similar to Youtube, if you have the time to invest in setting up a (semi-regular) stream, it’s quite possible to create a small community with streaming game development. Streaming can be a ton of fun, but also costs some time for planning and setting up. And don’t expect to be doing your most brilliant work on stream – talking and working at the same time is difficult 😉