Article on niche markets

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screeg
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Article on niche markets

Post by screeg » February 15th, 2007, 9:58 am

This article should be of keen interest to indie games fans:
http://www.ashleycheng.com/2007/02/befo ... e-was.html

and this, former G.O.D. heads form publishing outfit aimed at supporting developers instead of exploiting, abusing and destroying them:
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_i ... tory=12769
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Post by BasiliskWrangler » February 15th, 2007, 10:52 am

Nice finds, Screeg! Thanks for the post. I'm especially interested in hearing more about Gamecock and what it'll offer.

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Post by screeg » February 15th, 2007, 11:58 am

Pure speculation: If you're planning on releasing E1 in direct download form only, it doesn't look like they could do anything for you. However, it you meet with moderate success, perhaps they could offer some funding and/or promotional support for E2.
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Post by mytgroo » February 15th, 2007, 5:18 pm

Dot Com spam backed by MBA nonsense. This is not a theory, it is a nice way to say there are niche markets using lots of charts. There is absolutely nothing new in this theory. It is kind like saying flibbety gibbet is a niche market. Wow flibbety gibbet, that is so cool. I never heard of flibbety gibbet. The long tail is the same thing as specialty merchandising rewritten in dotcom speak.
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Post by BasiliskWrangler » February 15th, 2007, 7:28 pm

Mytgroo, I didn't understand a word you just said... :wink: :lol:

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Post by Saxon1974 » February 15th, 2007, 11:26 pm

BasiliskWrangler wrote:Mytgroo, I didn't understand a word you just said... :wink: :lol:
It's ok, I didn't either.

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Post by Saxon1974 » February 15th, 2007, 11:28 pm

Very interesting thanks Screeg. Unfortunately this seems true of almost every industry these days, including music.

Im sure hoping for some niche markets to survive and actually make their mark. Hopefully this game will help!

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Post by txa1265 » February 16th, 2007, 7:25 am

mytgroo wrote:Dot Com spam backed by MBA nonsense. This is not a theory, it is a nice way to say there are niche markets using lots of charts. There is absolutely nothing new in this theory. It is kind like saying flibbety gibbet is a niche market. Wow flibbety gibbet, that is so cool. I never heard of flibbety gibbet. The long tail is the same thing as specialty merchandising rewritten in dotcom speak.
Sort of, but it has as one of its theses that 'Long Tail' marketing has fundamentally changed due to the internet, and that it is fundamentally changing marketing in general.

I am still dubious, as I think the 'central limit theorem' tends to drive things to a highly populated mean, but I think that it can occasionally work.

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Post by mytgroo » February 17th, 2007, 10:14 am

Basically someone came up with a new way to talk about merchandising. That means creating specialty categories focused on niche markets. They took the same strategy used in direct mail catalogs to specialty markets, put it in a "nice new package" and called "The Long Tail". There is very little new or exciting about this. It is mostly packaging. Merchandising is breaking up stuff by category. First the supermarkets used it with the different special sections you can find in the supermarkets, foreign food, wheat free food, teas, etc. Then bookstores turned to merchandising with special categories and specialty sections. Now they are taking the same thing and applying it to the internet and adding a few new sounding bells and whistles-- dotcom speak.
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Post by jcompton » February 17th, 2007, 11:15 am

Mr. Groo is correct.

Also, all of this "Long Tail" business dances around the fact that it is still a very dicey proposition to R&D new product aimed at the "Long Tail buyer" or whatever you want to call them, because it's a whole lot harder to recover fixed costs that way.

Almost by definition, much of that stuff in the "long tail" is, in a word, old. Specifically, it's old and already paid for. Same thing with those catalogs like "Products You've Never Heard Of But Can't Live Without"--it's not like GSK scientists are working through the night inventing those things, they're mostly old, the plastic molds or tool dies or whatever to make those things were built and paid for long, long ago. It's okay that there's only marginal demand because they only incur marginal costs to produce and sell.

This all works particularly well for mail order/Internet retailers, particularly when it's a digital product and inventory costs are virtually nil, because the investment has already been put into the product. GameTap can do well enough selling a library of old games at an attractive monthly rate because the rightsholders of those games aren't looking to make back the whole production cost, just to pad their revenues. Developing a new game for GameTap etc. isn't unheard of (Sam and Max) but it's still not a slam dunk. Guys like Thomas and me implicitly believe that there is some hope for us to sneak into that kind of success as well... but we can't plead ignorance if it turns out we are wrong.

So the way that it has "changed marketing," if at all, is by creating more attention to old stuff that's been bought and paid for. Little different than your standard Foreigner's Greatest Hits album, except now it's "Greatest Hits of NES RPGs" or whatever, and every TV show you've ever heard of on DVD. (Except Herman's Head, the bastards.)

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Post by mytgroo » February 17th, 2007, 11:44 pm

Alright, here goes. Game sights do not have what is called a back list. Steady old fashioned sellers which can be used continuously. I have been lucky to find a few sites that offer discount downloads with a decent starting selection, specifically, Manifestogames-- I bought Kult Heretic Kingdoms there, and Gamersgate-- I bought Evil Islands there, and am considering buying Gothic II Gold at a much cheaper price than in stores. I am not however, willing to subscribe and pay a subscription fee to tie up my computer. I would much rather be able to download and pay for older games. A backlist is steady old fashioned titles that continue to sell.
I actually prefer buying and downloading games.

I also like that free sample sites are coming up listing a variety of older games-- Abandonware, etc. I am waiting for a good publisher to have a free games library like Baen books has a free library of science fiction books online in addition to new titles. This increases their sales.

Free plus backlist is very nice. However, I am not willing to subscribe to something like fileplanet, the chipping away on a monthly basis bothers me. There isn't enough there to get me to pay for it.
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