Whereas I initially felt too boomer to make use of TikTok, I gave it a attempt to promote The Matriarch and it modified EVERYTHING. Tiktok proved to be the very best platform, by far, to achieve visibility and wishlists for my recreation. I am nonetheless studying tips on how to use it and doubtless may do a whole lot of issues higher, however I assumed sharing my expertise could possibly be helpful for fellow devs who battle to get sufficient visibility.
Final July I began to develop The Matriarch, a Disguise & Search social gathering recreation. A serious mistake I did with my earlier venture was to promote it too little & too late, one thing I needed to appropriate right here. I revealed the Matriarch steam web page 4 months after and slowly began gathering wishlists. Regardless of a couple of respectable Reddit posts, after 3 months it gathered beneath 500 wishlists and was clearly not on monitor to succeed in the 10k wishlist objective I set for myself earlier than releasing the sport (deliberate in 2022). I additionally posted on Twitter, Fb, and Imgur, however with none followers, none of it acquired any traction.
Again then, I gave Tiktok a try to had my first movies making a couple of thousand views, I used to be merely reusing the identical movies as on different platforms (and nonetheless do!) and assumed I would wish to spend a big period of time understanding the codes of TikTok and enhancing movies to be extra profitable (I used to be incorrect!).
I registered for the Steam Subsequent Fest in February hoping to achieve not less than a few hundreds of wishlists.
A number of days earlier than releasing the demo, I barely reworked the trailer and posted it on Tiktok with out anticipating a lot (at this level my high video had 14k views), within the first hours I seen it was gaining views quicker than normal so I went to mattress hoping it might get not less than as a lot views as my high video.
I awakened, growth, 1M views, 100k likes, I could not imagine it, I used to be so comfortable! I verify the wishlists… +1500 in ONE day. My jaw dropped, that was 4 occasions greater than all wishlists mixed since I launched the steam web page! +3500 on the second day, +2500 on the third… whereas I felt immensely comfortable, anxiousness shortly took over considering of the various gamers who had been now awaiting the demo, which I by no means examined exterior my group of mates.
I created a discord server and launched the demo. Regardless of a couple of bugs, most gamers had been capable of play and revel in it so it was a giant reduction. It had round 1000 day by day lively customers and was persistently within the high 20 demos with most gamers. When the pageant began, The Matriarch was within the high 5 fest demos with most gamers.
The mixture of TikTok + demo + SteamFest saved up the momentum and managed to maintain the day by day wishlist above 300 for a couple of weeks. I presently have 23000 wishlists, and discord with 700 members.
What did I be taught from this?
- Understanding and making use of the ‘codes’ of TikTok is not a must have to get excessive numbers. I do not take note of tendencies, and timing and I do not edit my movies particularly for TikTok (I really began doing that with the final video), I in all probability ought to do all of that to optimize my numbers, however as somebody with restricted time, I can make investments my time elsewhere and nonetheless get good numbers. Perhaps I am simply fortunate, however studying different blogs about Tiktok, I really feel folks would possibly overestimate the affect of the development/timing/music/facet ratio. The area is essential although, in the event you dwell exterior the EU/US, utilizing a VPN is perhaps a good suggestion.
- Do not surrender! My first movies did not carry out very properly, and curiously the one which acquired 7m views was virtually precisely the identical because the one which acquired 10k views. After I edited it the second time, I centered on making it extra dynamic and sped up a whole lot of clips. Do not hesitate to iterate on a video and publish it a number of occasions.
- Tiktok customers like to make connections with stuff they know. Coincidentally, the nuns in my recreation die in the identical weird approach as a personality from a well-known anime, and it seems there’s a Roblox recreation with a really comparable idea. And a great 20% of feedback had been about these 2 references (that is good for the algorithm). In case your recreation can join in some methods with references which are fashionable together with your viewers, that is one thing you possibly can play with.
- Tiktok customers like to chime in. In a latest video, I requested them for brand new killing gadget concepts and acquired a whole lot of feedback with inventive concepts that I’ll most positively use sooner or later. Ask them for his or her opinions/recommendations!
- It snowballs! Per week in the past I launched one other video that acquired 500k views, but it surely additionally introduced one other 2m views to the viral video that was stagnating, the mixed views introduced me one other 2.5k wishlist.
- I often construction my movies the identical approach: Catchy description/query on high – video – name to motion on the backside. Preserve it quick!
- When you attain 10k followers, Tiktok permits you to swap to a enterprise account and put a hyperlink in your description. I am utilizing linktree to compile a number of hyperlinks. Inform your viewers to verify your bio! Tiktok is a superb funnel for discord, the final video introduced me 300 extra customers.
- Preserve Tiktok in thoughts when planning upcoming function/content material manufacturing. It is a highly effective device however it’s essential to feed it with attention-grabbing content material. I’ll attempt to produce catchy content material steadily sufficient to ensure authentic movies each week.
- The me of 6 months in the past would have a tough time believing it however Tiktok is definitely enjoyable to make use of! The massive visibility is after all very rewarding, however posting and doing fast enhancing is intuitive and straightforward, customers are enjoyable to interact with and comfortable once you reply them. It positively turned one of the thrilling components of my indie dev routine.
Issues I need to strive subsequent
- Utilizing the matriarch character because the ‘face’ of the sport and displaying it on all movies, so the content material feels extra personalised and distinctive.
- Having a format extra tailored to Tiktok, with extra video and fewer textual content area.
- Decide to 1 video per week
- Deal with shorter movies, <15s is preferable for extra views.
TikTok’s largest benefit is that you do not want followers on your video to achieve traction. As I perceive, each video is proven to a small variety of folks and if the ratio of feedback & likes, replay occasions, and the variety of seconds watched is excessive sufficient, it will get proven to extra customers.
At this level, my largest query is that if the wishlists coming from TikTok have the identical high quality as wishlists coming from different sources, I assume I am going to determine that out once I hit the discharge button!