3 tools to flesh out your indie game business

Dear lab cats, dear developer friends

You’re feeling ambitious. Your game is nearly finished and you want to reach out to people with all the enthusiasm in the world! Then comes the dreaded question: are you sure you’re ready?

Building a healthy business is a big challenge. We creative developers tend to work on our game and expect the business side to follow. Even the best game in the world can fail miserably 🙁

Thanks to StartIt, we have found a new view on how we handle the market and our models.

(You can also read this post on Gamasutra!)

 

Define your Business Model Canvas

We’ll start off with a basic one. Just one page with frames to fill out. Each of them highlights a different aspect of your business model. This helps you to (re)define your focus and strategy.

It helps you to develop an effective game in terms of marketing position. A smart project defines its goals, cost models and value proposition as soon as possible. To get an even better view on the value proposition you can also use the Value Proposition Canvas.

The business model canvas was invented by Alexander Osterwalder in 2008. He started his company Strategyzer thanks to the huge success of his helpful tool.

 

Assess your business plan with the Pimento Map

The second tool is an online questionnaire that requires a critical mind of one’s project. It then grades its success rate. This number helps guide you in the right direction.

The Pimento Map makes you reflect on the vital elements of your project’s business side. You’ll be able to look beyond your game and take into account the different aspects a projects needs to be successful. Keep in mind that you should fill out the steps anew for each project.

The tool was created by three co-founders who did research in thousands of different businesses to find out what makes them tick. Learn more at

 

Be smart with the Crowdfunding Canvas

This tool is actually a modified version of the business model canvas. Fill in the frames to help you set up your crowdfunding campaign. Keep in mind it’s only the beginning of your preparations!

Most of you will think about crowdfunding and associate it with a web of communication channels, rewards and loads of preparation. This tool helps you to get a clear view of the most important aspects of your campaign. Focus on the why of your project and have the rewards follow that phylosophy.

Just a short translation: Waarom = why, project, propositie = proposition, infrastructuur = infrastructure, promotie = promotion, community, kosten = costs, doelbedrag = target amount.

The Crowdfunding Canvas was created by Dutch consultancy company Douw&Koren. If you have any questions about crowdfunding, they’d be happy to help!

 

Conclusion

We see these tools for what they are; interesting tools. We won’t claim they guarantee success, but they can help you to see the bigger picture and find out what your focus is. You’re entering a competitive business after all. We hope these tools can help you to achieve everything you planned out!

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