Check A Look: 3 Juicy Marketing Tips Any Business Can Take From Devolver Digital
Everyone’s favorite parts of a press conference: the sneak peeks at new products and the surreal excitement of gory special effects. At least, that is what the attendees of Devolver Digital’s brilliant press conferences will tell you.
Devolver Digital is known as the small video game publisher with a big impact on the industry. They help indie developers create worldwide sensations, and all with a lean, yet dedicated, team.
The Future of Marketing? Or The Future’s Future?
While typical corporate press conferences and new product announcements are more focused on appearing professional and controlling their message, Devolver’s approach includes more than a little gore and lots of actors who aren’t afraid to work with pyrotechnics. Here are our favorite takeaways from Devolver Digital’s wildly successful riff on experiential marketing.
Don’t Be Afraid to Go Meta
Your audience knows you are marketing to them because everyone is marketing to them—it’s no secret anymore. Devolver Digital takes this to the extreme, even performing skits about new ways they can make it easier to take their customers’ cash. They confront criticisms of their industry with sometimes startling honesty, building an alliance with their customers who see this transparency as respecting their intelligence—and their money. It is always Devolver and their customers against everyone else.
Of course what works for Devolver’s target market won’t necessarily work for yours, but it is an enlightening message about what can happen when you throw away the pretense. Don’t be afraid to take down the fourth wall and address the reality when it can help you tell a story that will resonate with your audience.
Really Really Understand Your Users
We predict that diving headfirst into user insights to engage what your customer base wants on a deeper level will be key this year. A well developed inside joke or story can turn a potential user into a superfan, but many companies have crashed and burned trying to force that kind of relationship. What Devolver Digital shows us is that churning out a few surveys for your audience’s interests doesn’t have to be where it stops; dig into your brand’s user culture, figure out what makes your audience want your product in the first place, what helps them connect to each other, and then kick it up several notches. Be thoughtful, confident, and excited—they can smell a poser a mile away.
Know When To Button Up
The bottom line is that Devolver Digital’s antics only work because they regularly put out high quality video games. They work with some of the biggest gaming companies in the world, partnering to create the next generation of digital entertainment—and you can bet they don’t go into meetings with PlayStation flaunting the same irreverent attitude as their press conferences. If you are going to be drawing the spotlight, make sure you can deliver the quality that goes along with it.
The success of Devolver Digital’s wacky and outrageous brand experiences is pretty straightforward: they’re designed to be fun—certainly not just for anyone, but for their target audience. Overall, their strategy to stand out through sometimes shocking but always entertaining over-the-top experiences has made the video game marketing landscape a lot more interesting, and that is something we can all appreciate.