This past week I attended the Pocket Gamer Connects tradeshow here in Toronto, Canada and it was my first time at the show. I decided it would be a good opportunity to sit in on some panels and check out the “big indie zone” which unfortunately wasn’t so big. But needless to say I really enjoyed the show and I picked up some valuable information along the way. My main interest in attending the show was to learn more about the mobile gaming market in general and gain some insight on how to successfully market and promote a mobile game.
I arrived at the show around 9:30am (check-in began at 8:30am) and i quickly attended the intro session hosted by Chris James who is the CEO of Steel Media – the parent company that hosted the event. During the intro session Chris handed the mic over to Jayson Hilchie who provided the audience an insight on how the mobile gaming market and overall gaming market in general is performing and growing year over year. He also talked about some of the hurdles and/or obstacles that the gaming industry is facing as a whole such as the controversy around loot boxes and in-app purchases. But he ended his talk in a positive manner noting the gaming industry is vibrant and is continuing to grow year over year…yay!
Some of the panels i sat in on were hosted by industry professionals such as the lovely Stephanie Greenall of Tilt Five and Matt Sharpe of Zynga. Some of the topics that were discussed were social media marketing with micro influencers, the value of reward ads and community participation. Other panels i sat in on talked about data analytics which i was very interested in – considering i’m getting roughly 100 downloads per week on my mobile game with a high uninstall rate is something I need to address. Not sure if players are just hating my game, finding it too difficult/easy or just not really interested is something I definitely need to get more data on. Leonard Tatum of Tatum Games hosted a panel on MIKROS which is a free data analytics tool and is compatible with Unity – so this is something that I may look at integrating into my data collection process over the next few weeks.
Clash of Clans increased there weekly downloads from 20k to 50k by simply adding drool to their storefront thumbnail…mind blown!
The big indie zone was a bit underwhelming as there was only a dozen or so vendors showcasing their indie games and most of the games I tried out just weren’t really all that exciting to me. There was also a meeting zone where publishers and indie devs had the opportunity to meet face to face to discuss potential marketing partnerships. I had a few meetings scheduled for the day but i ended up cancelling my meetings because I was more interested in sitting in on the panels. If you ever plan on attending the show I would recommend looking over the itinerary to determine which panels you are most interested in attending and squeezing in some 1-on-1 meetings in between panels.
Overall I was pretty impressed with the show this year and I think I will definitely attend it again next year.
If you want to learn more about Pocket Gamer Connects hit up the official website.