How to take your mobile game on the global adventure
So there it is!
After months of hard work your mobile game is ready to see the app store light. You publish it, waiting impatiently for the first reviews.
At the same time you keep promoting it to reach more users.
But it seems there are hundreds of similar games out there thirsty for attention.
So, how can you make sure your mobile game increases its reach and attracts more users? How to make it more marketable not just in one region, but across the world?
1. Make it more user-friendly for international gamers
Sometimes the reason why your mobile game fails to make it to the top is very simple. Your potential users who would be ready to download the game and spend hours playing it simply can’t understand the content. Easy commands such as Start, Play, Game Over might be no-brainers, but more complicated strings with character descriptions or instructions could be a real headache for your non-English speaking players.
The solution is simple as well: to attract players from new markets you’ll need to adjust the content to their needs. This means not only translating the strings that appear in the game, but also ensuring that the visuals or sounds are culturally appropriate. It might seem like a detail, but sometimes tweaking the details is all you need to succeed and take your game to the next level.
2. Test your localised and translated game before the release
Once your game is translated and adjusted to the culture of your target market, run an extra round of testing to be sure that your mobile product is ready for the world. There’s so much than can go wrong: from untranslated strings and overlapping items to cut-off text and incorrect grammar in strings with placeholders. That is why you’ll need to work with professionals who will carry out the linguistic test for your localised game. Of course, depending on the size of your game it might be impossible to test everything. In this case you could try to identify the most problematic areas or test features and functions that will be used frequently by your gamers or displayed regularly on their screens.
3. Run marketing campaigns designed for the specific user groups
A localised mobile game won’t guarantee an instant success. You’ll need to let your users know that your unique mobile product is available in their language and offers a smooth user experience. To do it you can for example set up social media profiles for your target users in the specific market. Another strategy is to run ad campaigns on Facebook or any other platform where your potential users hang out. Obviously, the ads will have to be displayed in the language of your target users and carry a powerful message.
In case of social media profiles, make sure you keep using the language of your potential players. You can either have separate accounts for every country and language combination or use one profile and write your posts in a specific language to target users from the selected region (this feature is available on FB pages). In this way you’ll be able to reach out to your potential and existing users abroad, post engaging and culturally adjusted content and win real fans for your world-ready mobile games.
Taking your mobile game on a global adventure doesn’t have to be a complicated process. Once you complete this quest, you can gain great rewards: from higher download figures, to increased in-game sales and better app store ranking. So, are you up for the challenge?
About the author: Dorota Pawlak
Dorota helps businesses, organisations and individuals to communicate successfully across cultures in the online and offline world. She is an entrepreneur and a qualified translator specialising in IT and localisation of websites, games and software.