Sales Report

dchart
Posts: 60
Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:39 am

Re: Sales Report

Postby dchart » Wed May 08, 2019 8:52 pm

Greymarch2000 wrote:
dchart wrote:Looking at my sales, the one star review of the templates does appear to have completely killed sales on that. If someone has found them useful and would care to leave a five-star review, with actual comments on their usefulness, it would be interesting to see what effect that has. I do have more ideas for things to write, but given the sales, they are unlikely to happen unless and until they push up to "must write this now!" level.


Sadly Infiniverse authors cannot rate other Infiniverse products.

But somebody else did! Thank you, Scott S. We will have to wait a few months to see whether that makes any difference.

dchart
Posts: 60
Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:39 am

Re: Sales Report

Postby dchart » Wed May 08, 2019 9:14 pm

Doc Gordon wrote:You said Kickstarters are "very effective marketing campaigns" and, well, I just cannot agree with that.

They are selling over a thousand copies of supplements for a game that was niche 30 years ago. By the standards of TRPGs that are not D&D, that is very effective marketing.

I am certainly not going to say that Ulisses is doing their marketing correctly, because there are a lot of people in this business who suck at marketing (including myself). However, marketing is a real cost, both in time and in money, and without knowing a lot more about what is going on inside Ulisses, I'm not going to say that they are doing it wrong. If they are selling about 1,200 copies through the Kickstarter, and then several hundred more through distribution, the sales figures that they have for other product lines might suggest that they cannot expect many more sales no matter what sort of marketing they do — in which case, it is not rational to do further marketing, as it will simply reduce the viability of the line. (I don't know; obviously, I don't see Ulisses's sales figures. But it is possible.) Further, RPG publishers normally have fewer staff than outsiders think. I would be astonished if Torg could support a dedicated marketing person. In that case, any time spent on marketing is time not spent on the products. When push comes to shove, high quality products are more important than marketing. If your products are good, word-of-mouth might save you, but if your products suck, great marketing just gets you Theranos. When push comes to shove and you are selling 1,200 copies of your supplements, it's a no-brainer; maintain the quality of the products.

The point is that, given the additional information that Ulisses has, they might well be making the most sensible decisions about marketing. Or screwing it up big-time. RPG companies have a history of both of those, and we don't know.

Now, it is true that I cannot, in this particular case, see any reason why they can't do a monthly blog post on their own site introducing new Infiniverse Exchange products; they don't get 50% (because DTRPG also gets a cut), but it is basically free money for them. It does look a lot like good potential return on very little effort. (They could just copy-and-paste the blurbs the authors write.) But even there, they might have reasons for not doing that. Maybe they think the Infiniverse Exchange is full of crap written by schmucks too dumb to know when they are being exploited, and don't want to associate themselves with it any more than they have to.

Obviously, I would like to see Ulisses do more to promote the Infiniverse Exchange, lest it die the same way Scriptorium Aventuris has. But that might not be sensible for them. It might be best for Ulisses to let the Infiniverse Exchange die, sad as that would be for those of us who have written for it.

Doc Gordon
Posts: 62
Joined: Thu Dec 22, 2016 12:40 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Sales Report

Postby Doc Gordon » Wed May 08, 2019 10:48 pm

dchart wrote:I am certainly not going to say that Ulisses is doing their marketing correctly, because there are a lot of people in this business who suck at marketing (including myself). However, marketing is a real cost, both in time and in money, and without knowing a lot more about what is going on inside Ulisses, I'm not going to say that they are doing it wrong. If they are selling about 1,200 copies through the Kickstarter, and then several hundred more through distribution, the sales figures that they have for other product lines might suggest that they cannot expect many more sales no matter what sort of marketing they do — in which case, it is not rational to do further marketing, as it will simply reduce the viability of the line. (I don't know; obviously, I don't see Ulisses's sales figures. But it is possible.) Further, RPG publishers normally have fewer staff than outsiders think. I would be astonished if Torg could support a dedicated marketing person. In that case, any time spent on marketing is time not spent on the products. When push comes to shove, high quality products are more important than marketing. If your products are good, word-of-mouth might save you, but if your products suck, great marketing just gets you Theranos. When push comes to shove and you are selling 1,200 copies of your supplements, it's a no-brainer; maintain the quality of the products.
I will happily say they are doing it completely bass-ackwards, David! Fewer staff only means time MUST be taken away from a product, TEMPORARILY, to do marketing. See, you're looking at marketing totally eschew... without the marketing, the ONLY production is being done for those who already know the product, and NO ONE NEW is coming in, to help build up the base and procure the money to be able to hire the people necessary to help out with other important stuff, such as marketing.

HOWEVER, when all you have are folks working on the product, the only BASE you're going to have, without word-of-mouth or external marketing by others not connected to USNA, is the BASE you started with. The first number of Kickstarter backers was nearly 2,300, while the Living Land Kickstarter had 1000 LESS than that. I rest my case.

The point is that, given the additional information that Ulisses has, they might well be making the most sensible decisions about marketing. Or screwing it up big-time. RPG companies have a history of both of those, and we don't know.
True. However, Cubicle 7, for The One Ring and the new Warhammer 4th Edition, the D&D 5e Adventures in Middle-earth, and the Doctor Who RPG, is now booming. At first, when I saw them taking on too many games, I and many others began to wonder where they were going to get all the people they needed to make all of their games happen... now, they have enough people... why? You might ask. M A R K E T I N G !!!

Now, it is true that I cannot, in this particular case, see any reason why they can't do a monthly blog post on their own site introducing new Infiniverse Exchange products
NOW you're getting it! :D

It does look a lot like good potential return on very little effort. (They could just copy-and-paste the blurbs the authors write.) But even there, they might have reasons for not doing that. Maybe they think the Infiniverse Exchange is full of crap written by schmucks too dumb to know when they are being exploited, and don't want to associate themselves with it any more than they have to.
Well, if that's the truth they need to go and read; I busted my ass to finish Possibility Blackout, I paid attention to THEIR rules and, though I broke a few for personal bias and other reasons, I still obeyed nearly all of their recommendations, and I have written an adventure far superior to the original. Forgive me, I'm honestly not trying to tout my own work, because I know for a fact everyone who applies work to the Exchange does the work they are proud to release and, though many folks may not see the pride and hard work that was put into these documents, I don't believe USNA would see any of these as being produced by schmucks, hehe.

Obviously, I would like to see Ulisses do more to promote the Infiniverse Exchange, lest it die the same way Scriptorium Aventuris has. But that might not be sensible for them. It might be best for Ulisses to let the Infiniverse Exchange die, sad as that would be for those of us who have written for it.
I think you misunderstood, now that I'm here, what I was trying to accomplish. USNA needs to market USNA products, NOT the Exchange products... that should be for those of us who put those products up on the Exchange. However, IF USNA were to spend even the small amount of money I recommended in my earlier post strictly for marketing, including a blog, and promoting that blog among blog centers online, including the various web sites they can get themselves onto, and yes even using AdWords and other similar functions to help with marketing, perhaps even hiring a small marketing firm with that money, to do the job for them, in the subsequent buildup of new players it would spill over into the Infiniverse Exchange.

Perhaps they're waiting to get the rest of the Cosm books out there before they do so, to have at least a mostly complete game, but I'm telling THEM, that is a MISTAKE. You want as many people as possible ready to go in the Infiniverse, to move it forward rapidly, once Year One is complete, all the Cosm books out, adventures having been played, etc.


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