20 May 2019 | 14 Comments
Recently a few people shared some interesting examples with me recently that I wanted to share with you.
Customer Applications (Hunt a Killer)
Nick B shared this subscription mystery game with me in the comments of a recent article. When I went to their homepage to check it out, I was instantly intrigued by their method of accepting new customers.
As you can see in the graphic below, you must apply to be a customer using a form, and the company only accepts 200 new memberships every day (hence the countdown timer). This adds a sense of urgency to encourage a potential customer to act now in seeing if they qualify.
The application itself is particularly interesting to me, as it’s counterintuitive to the way I think about selling products. But I think it feels good to be selected–that’s part of the allure of the Sorting Hat, right? It also gives you the opportunity to set expectations and to filter customers who really aren’t going to like the product (one of the questions is, “How easily frightened are you?”
Also, I wonder if the company decided that 200 is the number of products they can comfortably assemble and ship every day, making it more than just a marketing tool.
Play with Celebrities (Tiny Towns)
Vitaliy F shared this really clever marketing tool with me recently. There’s a beautiful new game from AEG called Tiny Towns (which I got to play at Geekway a few days ago), and one of the modes of play is akin to roll-and-write games in that your decisions don’t impact any other player.
So AEG reached out to a bunch of different gaming celebrities and asked them to play a game of Tiny Towns in that mode on camera. As a result, if I have a copy of Tiny Towns, I can “play” against these people simply by having a copy of the game and watching any of these videos.
I absolutely love this, and I’m not even a solo gamer. I just like the idea that I could “compete” against the familiar faces I’ve seen on YouTube so many times. If Stonemaier ever publishes a multiplayer solitaire game (or mode of a game), I will absolutely use this brilliant marketing method.
Amazon Brand Registry
While Stonemaier Games hasn’t sold to or through Amazon in years, all of our products are on Amazon due to a distributor partner and hundreds of third-party vendors who buy from hobby game distributors. One thing I’ve realized over the years is that Amazon treats all sellers equally (even the publisher), meaning that a random vendor can incorrectly enter information about your product, and Amazon will still make the change.
That’s why I think it’s worth pursuing an Amazon Brand Registry if anyone is selling your products on Amazon. It helps you ensure that you have more control than vendors when it comes to the way your product is presented. This isn’t just about Amazon, as customers may be referencing the information on Amazon before buying your product locally, so it’s really important that the information on Amazon is correct.
Becoming a registered brand on Amazon requires a few steps and offers more benefits than I’m describing here. Fortunately, Zachary Strebeck outlines the process in detail in this article.
What do you think about these techniques? Have you seen other examples of customer applications or ways to “play” with celebrities?
This series features innovative strategies from non-Kickstarter, non-tabletop game businesses as they might apply to creators and entrepreneurs.
If you gain value from the 100 articles Jamey publishes on his blog each year, please consider championing this content!