You’re ready to rock and roll with your new game. So how do you tell people about it? One of the best marketing strategies, particularly if you want people to write about your game, is email outreach. For this, you simply cannot live without a press kit.
Compiling all essential data in one place makes things easier to find for editors and bloggers. Not only that, but having the * perfect press kit * puts you at an advantage by communicating all the necessary insights about your game, media files, quotes and contacts at one place, making their job that much easier. And we all know, they like people to make their jobs easier.
So let’s get started. Here are three questions to consider when structuring the Perfect Press Kit for your indie game.
What’s So Great About Your Game?
Before you do anything else, ask yourself this question and write down all the great and never seen before things about your game. The art style, graphics, sound effects, story... it can be one thing, or a mix of things that make your baby stand out from the rest of the games.
If you can’t find at least one unique selling point for your game, no influencer or journalist is going to find it, or write about it, either.
The answer to the 'Why?' is going to be the foundation of your press kit. So you must identify it and articulate it in the most exciting way possible, and add it to the introduction of your game in all your outreach campaigns.
Can You Impress the Media?
To convince the media that your unique selling point is real, you must show them well-crafted graphics and videos to back your claim.
The first audience of your marketing content is the media and key influencers. Don’t forget that they are passionate gamers, as well. If you can impress the media, they ‘ll help you impress the thousands of players who follow them, either by writing or making video content about your game.
The graphics element of your press kit will depend on the status of your development. Include high-resolution key artwork or concept art if your game is in the early stage. If your title is ready for launch, include an actual screenshot or enhanced visuals that provide a clear conception of what your game is all about. Make sure the images are high resolution. Don’t make the media chase after to you to ask for better pictures. They won’t.
Video content, like gameplay videos or trailers, must be well edited and showcase key visuals of your gameplay or story. An ideal timeline for most games is 10 to 60 seconds for trailer/teaser videos and 2 to 4 minutes of gameplay videos. You can play with the length, but don’t let it t get boring or irrelevant… not even for a second.
You can also include funny or entertaining GIFs in your press kit, so that influencers can add them in their social posts and articles. Make it fun and entertaining for them, and they’ll make it worthwhile for you.
Give Them Facts
What makes a press kit “picture perfect”? A fact sheet with updated information about the game plus, studio and contact details of the key personnel involved in the project.
The fact sheet must relate the following data:
- key features of the game,
- platforms the game will release on and the price on those platforms,
- release dates,
- a company bio,
- contact information like name, emails, social media handles, website and any other important links.
If your game is already featured on any leading news portal, or if there are any interviews published about the game, include them just below the fact sheet. Quotes and links add credibility to your press kit and increase the likelihood that your game news/trailers will be published in more outlets.
Another important piece of information you should include are links to the beta or finished version of your game. Be sure to explain how they can download a review or test copy. Make it as easy as possible for them to request a copy of your game, and don’t forget to track downloads so you know who’s showing interest in your game.
Package the Press Kit Nice and Pretty
Now that you’ve perfected your press kit by putting all the important information and graphics in one place, let's talk about packaging it for the media.
Ideally, your press kit should be hosted on a link, possibly the press / media page on your website. Here are two great examples of press kits for the popular indie titles Shovel Knight and Tiny & Big. Use them for inspiration.
Another great way to host your press kit is with presskit() by Rami Ismail. It's a simple, 'free' script that allows you to edit text, images and videos, all in less than 30 minutes. Take a look at the press kit samples for Ridiculous Fishing and So many me .
If this is all too much for you, create a simple press kit in Word. Then zip the file with your images and upload the zipped file to Dropbox or Google Drive. This method is acceptable, if not impressive, as long as things are easy to access.
But I strongly suggest you create a dedicated web presence for your game and press kit. Remember, the name of game is improving visibility to journalists, and what better way to do this than by directly visiting your website?
Now you know how to draft a ‘Perfect Press Kit’ for your indie game. Put some effort into it, as it is the most important tool you have to amplify the effect of your media outreach campaign.
Did you try something different with your Press Kit or Email Pitch? How’d it work out for you? Feel free to share with fellow indie developers in the comments section below.