Success in the Interactive Entertainment Industry is a synergy of market awareness, iterative product improvement, and integrated team disciplines.
My approach for achieving this success is straightforward. Personal experience, observations, prior successes, failures, vision, intuition and opportunity - all play a part. And fundamental to these is determining the direction and scope for the company and the requisite product mix from which all other efforts are derived. In doing so interdisciplinary knowledge is pooled, strengths are capitalized, opportunities vigorously sought and created, risks assessed, and from this a selection matrix is prioritized to target the top contenders.
Even so, the approach must be multifaceted. By this I mean it is not just a matter of picking the right titles. It is about forging strong relationships with developers, IP holders, buyers and ultimately our customers. By garnering their trust, we will build on a strong foundation.
As the saying goes, "we are only as good as our last product." Thus, each title demands full attention from selection through development, marketing, sales and support. Furthermore, it is imperative to stay cognizant of the tendency to focus on the triple-A titles to the detriment of the less glamorous, yet frequently more profitable products.
Risk, as with any enterprise, is an inherent part of an interactive entertainment business. Risk is mitigated by creating a diverse product portfolio, identifying new and/or under exploited opportunities, tying in with recognizable brands when appropriate, creating franchises, considering multi-platform opportunities, keeping an eye on costs and maintaining schedules. Central to these techniques is remembering the audience being addressed. And as emerging markets come into play, products with broader cross cultural and demographic appeal should be tapped.
Furthermore, product strategy should look to embrace the mass-market audience in addition to some of the vertical fields more traditionally pursued. In addition, there are opportunities in television, film, music, books, sports and the military that are frequently worthy of consideration. Many of these aforementioned industries provide synergistic cross marketing opportunities that can compliment and run in parallel with a company's own internal marketing efforts.
Finally, it is important to obtain critical mass. The titles produced need to be profitable and of sufficient quality and quantity to fund the next generation of products, cover overhead, grow the company, and derive profit for investors. A proactive ongoing process must be in place to identify new concepts, venues, and opportunities to generate a viable product mix, and to assure no holes exist in the publication plan.