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How the Game Growth program accelerates your game

, 18 декабря, 2020

Unity’s Game Growth program was designed to help indie developers find the right players for their game. Find out more about our industry-leading approach to user acquisition, using data science, machine learning, and automation.

You’ve created a mobile game. Now what? How do you make sure it reaches its maximum potential?

Getting the right players after launch is vital for the success of your game, but without the right expertise and funding, it can be challenging and expensive. 

We believe that every indie creator should have the chance to make their game successful and reach the right players – without making compromises when it comes to studio ownership, creative vision, or player experience. With the Game Growth program, we give select indie developers access to best-in-class user acquisition funding and industry experts from some of the top mobile studios in the world. 

In this blog post, we take you through how we collaborate with our Game Growth program partners to accelerate their games and help them build an effective and sustainable player base. While official partnerships are limited, we encourage you to submit your game.

Setting you up for success

Before we start acquiring users, we need to make sure new players have a great experience when they install your game. If you become a Game Growth partner, we start by optimizing key elements to ensure future lifetime value (LTV) is high and user acquisition (UA) efforts are successful.

Monetization Improvements: Our group of game experts will work with you to improve in-app purchase (IAP) optimization, ad placement, economy balancing, and more. We also help you improve your gameplay balance and core features. This improves the core experience for current players and also helps retain new players in the future.

App store optimization (ASO): Creating an effective app store page is essential for setting up UA for success. We’ll help you optimize ranking features such as keywords and creative assets, all while benchmarking against competitors. Outside of paid UA, this will also improve overall discoverability and organic downloads.

Our team optimizes everything from the game icon to the store description to improve conversion rates. After the fundamentals are implemented, we run regular A/B tests to make sure you’re getting the best results from both organic and paid traffic.

 

Designing your user acquisition strategy

Once your game is optimized, our UA managers build best-in-class campaigns uniquely tailored to your game. We optimize UA for our indie partners by taking a platform-agnostic approach that brings more players into your game and cutting down on upfront cost, management, and fees for attribution. 

Identify channels and buying models: It all starts with the right channels and buying model. We review your game and determine which channels will be most effective for UA based on your key metrics, game type/genre, monetization model, and other factors. Our team explores options across the Unity Ad platform and industry-standard channels such as Facebook and Google UAC.

Predict and maximize revenue: We start running campaigns to bring in new users and use machine learning and data science to predict the LTV of acquired users. This allows us to create and run effective UA campaigns that maximize your net profit.

Specifically, our goal is to maximize the return on advertising spend (ROAS) and the number of installs. We start by estimating the LTV of acquired users as early as possible and how the UA network will react to our bid and budget optimizations. The closer we can predict this, the more effective our user acquisition will be.

Designing advertising creative: Designing and creating awesome advertising assets such as video ads and playables is key for success and early testing. We start with at least 10 distinct concepts and up to 100 variations – including different video edits, sizes, length, and more. These are optimized for each channel and used in the upcoming UA campaigns.

The right creative can be a huge factor when lowering the cost of bringing in new players. We combine our marketing experts and data expertise to ensure your creative is optimized for the best return on ad spend (ROAS).

Accelerating your game

Now it’s time to hit the gas and bring new players into your game. Our goal is to bring in as many high-value players as possible – fans that will stick with your game (and studio) long-term.

 Increase lifetime value : As we start to run more and more UA campaigns, our team works continuously to improve LTV. We work directly with you to identify key channels, locales, and audiences to double down on what’s most effective.

Optimize K-factor: While paid user acquisition is the focus, we work with you extensively to increase organic traffic alongside our campaigns – this is known as the “K-factor.” Our team will use tactics such as optimizing your app store and improving social sharing features to ensure that newly acquired users will also bring in organic players.

Improve core game elements: We can’t stress enough the importance of optimizing your core game. Alongside our UA campaigns, we will be continuously improving core user loops, user interface (UI), menus, and systems in your game. This is hugely important for improving the experience for existing players and making sure new users stick around.

Test, iterate, and test again: Great user acquisition is always an ongoing process. Our team of UA experts will work with you regularly to test the effectiveness of campaigns and develop new ways to improve the ROAS.

 


 

Whether you’re a veteran indie developer or new on the scene, the Game Growth program gives you access to the expertise to take your game to the next level. All you need is a live free-to-play game on iOS or Android to get started – learn more about the Game Growth program here.

12 replies on “How the Game Growth program accelerates your game”

I have never seen a company as out of touch with its consumers as Unity. All these gimmicks about “accelerating” your growth with are precisely what the entire Unity community is completely and utterly sick of hearing about.

You are literally driving users away with this stuff. People are looking everywhere for reasons to move away from Unity and use alternatives instead. It feels downright insulting that you keep posting this useless corporate garbage every single week.

So, does the Game Growth program only helps with new user acquisition funding? Let say I have an online mobile game that is currently self hosted on a small Linode VPS, does the team also help out in scaling the backend?

Your idea or hard work is nothing if you can’t reach the people with it.
Marketing usually happens randomly but people need to think about it.

«We believe that every indie creator should have the chance to make their game successful and reach the right players…» so «…we give select indie developers access to best-in-class user acquisition funding and industry experts from some of the top mobile studios in the world.»

What a wonderful contradiction in that single paragraph.

This is not a great sell. I get that lots of people that work for you used to work on games, but no-one at unity actually makes commercially successful games anymore since coming to work for you — thats sort of the problem. Making small games in their spare time is not the same as trying to actually make good profits using the core engine.

You guys need to start dogfooding your engine, form a damn internal 8 man micro team finally and start making something with all the shackles you get when you try to make a game for profit. Cut them off from all the extra BS that the demo teams get (like custom stuff that is not accessible to anyone else or the safety net of having months to deliver a 10 minute experience) and force them to make a profit with the core engine like the rest of us have to do. Pay them regular industry rates, and hold yourselves accountable to make that team with regular funding make a profitable game.

Until then, what nonsense is this? I dont think involving Unity in ones actual commercial game development as closely as this is going to work — and its a hard sell because of the above stated reasons. Yes, you have lots of potentially useful data you have collected over the years, but no I dont think anyone is falling for you knowing how to actually use it in any way that will benefit real game developers who have to live in the real world and have actually had experience doing so in recent times as opposed to once in the past.

This to me reads as you have not been able to work out how to make money yet, so here is another stab in the dark at that in an attempt to figure it out. Anyones best guess as to how long this stays around, like most of the unity stuff coming out at the speed of light and then being abandoned or half baked, or superseeded by a soon to be released replacement service/feature.

accelerate your development:

Step 1: add a lot of features that you will finish in a decade
Step 2: witch every update make those tools even worst
Step 3: publish meaningless PR stuff on blogs

Did i sum it all up?!

Some features are theoretically almost finished and they are so buggy that Fallout 75 or Cyberpunk 2077 look very polished!

Drop the PR bs and finish what you’ve started years ago!

I have never seen a company as out of touch with its consumers as Unity. All these gimmicks about «accelerating» your growth with are precisely what the entire Unity community is completely and utterly sick of hearing about.

You are literally driving users away with this stuff. People are looking everywhere for reasons to move away from Unity and use alternatives instead. It feels downright insulting that you keep posting this useless corporate garbage every single week.

We need the Unity blog to be all about developers talking to developers; not marketing people talking to corporate stooges.

Thank you for speaking up for the «entire Unity community» and good luck with your launch. Your strategy of not needing stupid marketing rubbish because the reddit post about your PC-based RPG will go viral is rock solid.

Ironically, your attempts at sarcasm prove the OP’s points. And then some.

And this blog post, read with only a mere modicum of criticality, reveals unity inept at marketing, and completely lacking awareness of even superficial insight into the game promotion industry, something even sarcastic developers are more skilled at assessing and informing others about.

Which brings us full circle. Nobody at unity makes games. Leading to enormously irritating workflow issues, which is exactly what’s driving users in search of other options, because every unity user is aware that the failure to make games is causing the decay in performance and usability.

Now unity seeks users willing to believe that a company that doesn’t make games might know how to promote games… a bridge too far, so obviously, that even you might sense some of the issues with these attempts to milk unity users.

Worse, it’s just tacky. Further reinforcing what much of recent add ons to unity feel like.

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