Tech companies must make use of an ever-expanding arsenal of different tools to maintain competitive advantage. Peer-to-peer community support now plays an integral role in customer relationship management. To put it bluntly, they’re becoming inseparable. That’s why you need a community platform that can be integrated with your other platforms - i.e. CRM and contact software, allowing you to make better use of data to drive business results while providing a smoother experience for your staff and customers.
For many gamers, the mere announcement of a title coming to early access is enough to dent their enthusiasm. After all, for every successful title that makes it to full release, there are several more perpetually locked in endless development. There are even games that developers abandon entirely, leading them to be pulled from Steam or whichever platform they launched on. Regrettably, early access has proven to be a quagmire of abandoned projects, low-quality cash-grabs and incomplete games being forced into full release.
That being said, things are changing. Despite inherent drawbacks of the early access model, there’s great potential to be realized, both from the perspective of developers and from that of the players. Done right, early access presents a win-win situation for both parties. Done wrong, and it’s a surefire way to tarnish your reputation as a developer or publisher for good.
B2B customers are driven to succeed, and that makes them adept at setting goals and celebrating great performance. They also tend to be busy people trying to meet tight deadlines and keep their hectic schedules organized. When they need help using your product or service, chances are they’ll make a beeline for your community forums and knowledge base in search of quick answers to their questions. After all, time is money, and they probably don’t have the time to call customer support or wait for a reply to an email.
Crowdfunding is no longer a trendy buzzword. Today, fundraising campaigns on Kickstarter and Indiegogo, among others, are behind some of the most successful indie video games in the world.
Isometric RPG Pillars of Eternity, for example, raised just under $4 million, which was almost four times more than its initial funding goal. Such was its success that developers Obsidian Entertainment announced a sequel in 2017 that topped out at $4.4 million. Other successful campaigns include Star Citizen at $2.2 million against a goal of $500,000, Divinity: Original Sin at $944,000 surpassing a goal of $400,000 and The Banner Saga, which raised $724,000 against a goal of $100,000. Many more who have surpassed their original goals.
Online communities have profoundly changed the way businesses build relationships with their customers. That said, many B2B executives have shunned them for years, dismissing them as something for the spotlight-grabbing B2C world. After all, B2C communities tend to be places of entertainment, characterized by talk about shared interests, unlike the ho-hum of business-focused communities.