This blogging thing is a neat game. But what does social media have to do with game design? When creating a computer game you must “Learn and Respect Marketing” and start talking about your game! BTW: The book “Inbound Marketing” has been critical in my learning the marketing of a blog.
Obviously I recommend Google for your blogging infrastructure. Turn everything on, and hook everything together. A gmail account is easy to obtain. With that same login you get a blogger account. Create a webpage to support the blog at sites.google.com. If you get stuck hooking them together you can turn to youtube for a tutorial (also a google site, btw!). Turn on Analytics and Adwords. The Adwords account has a keyword tool which is fun to play with even if you don’t intend to spend any money. At least play with the Keyword tool in the “Reporting and Tools” section. It will help you pick keywords for your posts.
You may get lucky and receive a coupon for $100 in Google Adwords. I tossed in an extra $10, and that has been the entire ad budget for this blog. It also netted me an entire series of posts called The Adwords Experiment. I turned those blog posts into a free step by step document called “The Cheap Fast Guide to Google Adwords“. It’s a great place to start for a newbie to marketing looking for some help.
Google Adsense provides the loot. Sort of. The higher your numbers, the more readers and viewers and clickers you have the more actual money that you make. This reward makes you pay attention to your Google analytics information. It makes you want to drive your numbers higher. But you will quickly find out that they really don’t pay you very much. Check out thetrafficblogers forum board for tips and ways to make money online.
The Google Analytics numbers are fun to make go higher without the reward of money. Seeing the %Change column with a green up arrow makes you happy. Much like an up arrow on a ticker symbol on the stock market. Seeing a red down arrow makes you sad. They provide emotional feedback to the user which inspires better behavior.
Literally a Game:
By the time this blog gets posted I will have been on Empire Avenue for a couple months (I have a large backlog of scheduled blogs). EA is a wonderful intersection between social media, finance, and games. It runs like a stock market, based on your social media activity, with achievements, leader boards and other game mechanics. EA really peaked my interest lately.
Reddit makes a good source for traffic for your site, your game, or your blog. As ‘the front page of the internet’ it can be a powerful tool for finding folks who are interested in your game idea. Redditors are very vocal and can be great for feedback, QA, suggestions, tips, etc. You can even find CC artwork, coders, and others who are interested in working on your project. We’re going to discuss Reddit a bit more over the next couple weeks. Check out my next post about driving Traffic with Reddit.