Thursday, April 18, 2013

Advertise your game without actually advertising your game!

Or, public relations (PR) and one way it works.

I found a couple of good articles recently about board games and family time.

Board games can offer many benefits for families and Tabletop games allow face-to-face activity.

Both tell a similar story - that playing board games is a great way to bring families together. Each article features quotes from industry influencers and others.

You may also notice that each article makes some game recommendations, and even references some local game shops, where interested readers can learn more about the hobby, and maybe even stop in and buy a game or two while they're there.

One side benefit to this digital information age we are living in is that there are thousands of media outlets, in all shapes and sizes, that are literally screaming for interesting content for their audiences to consume.

That's good for folks with an interesting story to tell.

But that's the trick.

These articles are examples of "human interest stories", which we see constantly in the media and all over the Internet. The basic difference with this type of PR activity is that the focus is not on the product(s) or companies. The focus is on a broader interest/need that will attract eyeballs. It is need/benefit focused.

You'll notice that they aren't describing a game. Games are mentioned but the designer or publisher isn't rattling off all the mechanics or telling you how it's played.

Human interest story = focus on audience needs and benefits

Your company, product, or brand is in there as an "oh, by the way..."

And when your messaging appears in this type of story, it needs to fit with the story and can't be a hard sell. It must fit with the need/benefit message you've told in the rest of the story, otherwise it'll get sniffed out as another advertisment.

There are many strategies and tactics for a well-rounded PR program, and of course they are dependent upon what you are trying to achieve. Each strategy is going to be tailored to accomplish different things. I'll delve into others in future posts.

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