Monday, April 15, 2013

Board games actually fulfill a human need!?

I sit in front of a laptop pretty much all day at work.

Sound familiar?

That is another motivation for me to get out of the office 4-5 times a week and hit the gym!

And there's the fact that my books are replaced by my Kindle, my CDs are gone, and the list goes on. You can all relate to this in one way or another.

A recent post from Fast Company, Forget Your Email: We All Crave The Physical, based on a new trend report that found that we still cherish those physical artifacts. In fact, there may be some kind of innate need to touch things and experience things in "real-life", instead of only digitally.

Interestingly, this is exactly the type of thing that board games address. In spades.

My son, after a memorable win at Colosseum.
So, we like to play physical games. We need to touch things. It probably even meets some innate need we have... so what?

From a marketing point of view, understanding this type of thing not only allows us to understand our customers better, but it also helps us tap into new markets, develop messaging, products, and all kinds of things.

Here's but two examples:

1. Messaging:

Developing messaging and positioning is a whole thing all by itself. But one of the keys is to understand what makes the market tick.

Why do the customers care? Why should the market care?

Thanks to this Fast Company post (and the trend report), we now know that gaming is probably helping to satisfy a need we have for physical experiences.

Yeah, this just got real.

2. Product planning:

Knowing the needs we are satisfying helps us focus our product planning and development.

What is the real value we are providing with this product? How can we differentiate?

Think about ways to enhance the physical experience. How can you package and/or develop products in ways to achieve those experiences we crave?

Is there something you can do that is unique or especially memorable?

Hopefully this has triggered all kinds of creative thinking. And there will be future posts that will explore this topic further.

Now, go have fun and embrace the physical!

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