After the success of our ten app store optimization experts piece, we’ve decided to come back round with another round of recommendations for influential figures in another aspect of the app economy: game monetization. Because, let’s be honest, monetization is an incredibly hot topic at the moment. With the rise of the free to play model in particular, a winner takes all gaming economy and the successes of Supercell and King, it is clear that those capable of understanding the field can gain themselves an invaluable foot hold in a lucrative but ever changing industry.
But who should you be listening to? And which voices mean the most in the wider industry? Praising a range of figures from theorists, monetization practitioners and experts from related fields, we’re running down some essential industry voices that you should be keeping your ears out for on social media and beyond to help you keep ahead of the monetization game.
Eric is one of the most influential figures currently working directly in the games industry. While working as Head of Marketing at Wooga, he has managed to run the hugely successful industry site Mobile Dev Memo as well as authoring an in depth look at game monetization in his book Freemium Economics. When Eric talks, people tend to listen and for very good reason.
Author of The Curve and editor of Gamesbrief, Nicholas Lovell’s understanding of how monetization of products and services released for free goes beyond gaming. Although free to play games are his speciality, his deeper appreciation of the potential applications of the free model in the wider world mark him out as one of the deepest thinkers currently in the gaming sector.
Mark Sorrell tackles game monetization from two particularly interesting angles. The first is from the perspective of a behavioural economist, mobilising one of the most influential fields of the modern age in his consulting work on free to play games. And the second is through his uniquely ebullient style of presenting and writing that brings a subject that can occasionally seem a little bit dry to life.
Alumnus of Rovio and Supercell, Michail Katkoff’s free to play design experience has proven helpful in ensuring his blog Deconstructor of Fun is one of the go to sites for mobile game developers. Featuring detailed take downs of the top games, he shows you the elements that go into a brilliant free to play title and how that can translate into a money making opportunity. Incredibly useful.
Will Luton is a free to play consultant based in Canada with extensive experience in the industry. Having worked with Tiny Co, Mobile Pie and Sega, Luton has turned freelance and now uses his expertise to advise a series of clients. He also authored the highly accessible Free to Play: Making Money From Games You Give Away.
Bringing developers together to help them promote their games has proven to be the making of Chartboost and that has to be testament to Maria Alegre’s vision. Spying the burgeoning opportunity in the mobile space and exploiting it, Chartboost have become established as a market leader in the ad, promotion and monetization space – making Alegre an important mover and shaker in the industry as a whole.
While many people on this list specialise in helping you to think up the best ways to monetise your game, Martin Macmillan of Pollen VC is helping in a different way: by helping you to self finance your game. With the help of their innovative solution, developers are able to trade weekly access (instead of monthly) to their iTunes connect revenue with Pollen in exchange for a small cut of the takings. A smart solution and you can hear more by checking out our video of his talk at the App Promotion Summit here.
Stockholm based free to play gaming consultant Benjamin Cousins isn’t solely oriented towards monetization: he’s an innovative game designer as well. Noted for his work on the brave attempt at creating a hit mobile free to play FPS in the form of The Drowning, his creative work often pushes the boundary of free to play.
Joakim is best known as the Co-Founder of Next Games, one of the hottest game start ups in Helsinki. With the company working on officially licensed titles using The Walking Dead and Hunger Games IP, Achren and his superstar team, built from Finland’s hottest mobile gaming companies, could well be turning the monetisation skills they learned at the likes of Supercell and Rovio into serious hits very soon. One to watch.
Did you know that players who buy in app purchases and know that some of their sale goes to charity become loyal consumers in the long run? Jude Ower, CEO of PlayMob, knows this, which is why she’s helped set up a company that helps game developers plug in special events or consumables for charitable purposes. A worthy cause and a very positive way of encouraging further monetization of your game.
What do you think of our list? Drop us a tweet to @businessofapps and let us know if we missed anyone out!