Green Man Gaming spoke at the Europe Customer Loyalty Festival on Sept 17.
Green Man told us what he knows about gamers loyalty. About them being dedicated, seeking gratification and reward, but mostly they just want entertainment, escapism and achievement (Sounds like the rest of us). Yet games give gamers the mechanism to satisfy those needs, for a fair price, regularly and easily. The average game is 23 movies long. If only it was that easy for us all.
This knowledge may be why Green Man Gaming were on the Sunday Times Tech Track 100 “Ones to Watch” list for 2013. Grand Theft Auto V’s release this week may have reached $1b in sales in the first three days but the industry trend is currently in decline (You can read this Economist article for more). Which may explain the heavy-handed advertising approach for the release of GTA V. Miss it? Not likely, not if you have a TV, have been passed by a bus or seen Timeout.
This decline raises the stakes for #customerloyalty in gaming.
Green Man walks us through the levels.
- They create personas of their customers and have them blown up and displayed on the wall to remind them of the wants and needs they are fulfilling. They track playing behaviour, not just purchasing behaviour.
- They offer cash back with the first purchase so the customer comes back for the next game. They offer credits when he refers his friends. One guy built up and spent £2000 in credit through referrals.
- They recognise the contemporary demands for immediacy and instant gratification and concern themselves with not just talking to their customers, but interacting with them. They deal with customer issues when they arise, organising a customer service group within hootsuite, allowing customers the ability to cue jump and get their issue sorted. They use Google analytics to see if 50 people have a basket they are not purchasing from, they recognise there may be an issue with the checkout and fix it.
- Communicate offers as they come in. Green Man don’t hold back.
- They have affiliates write reviews for them, mention them and Green Man pay them for that. They bonus affiliates who get the best response rates.
- They employ hard-core gamers to make sure they are talking to customers in the right tone of voice, positioning things in the right way, they make sure they speak with respect and a real passion to develop an emotional connection. Winning hearts and minds.
An example of a successful product push was a sale called “Green Man Gaming’s 666 Sale”. They had six special promotions every six hours for six days, 24 hours a day. As an international company they published all the deals in advance, letting people know which deals were coming up so customers in different time zones had the opportunity to stay up. Some people complained of the difficulties in getting their desired promotion. Green Man kept every single response from people who missed a deal. They had an encore sale for 30 hours of all the promotions at once. Dividing up the responses, they sent a message to each person via the platform used to contact them and let the customer know they could still get the deal they’d missed during this extension. Not only did that last day conclude in more sales than the other six, people wrote surprised and animated messages on social media commenting on how they were listened to.
At the festival, the Green Man speaker waited for the nod, started his stop watch, and by the end, checked with the organiser that he’d made it within his allotted time. It must be a gamers need, to make it to the end with time to spare.