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This question already has an answer here:

I am building a decent multiplayer iOS-Android card based game. While this game is played with regular old 52 cards deck, it does have unique rules and game play. That makes it little hard to market since no one is precisely looking to play initially.

I have been researching quite a bit about game marketing and most recommendations are to build out fan following which is also quite hard and time consuming (taking away from building game).

I have some indie marketing budget (~5k) I set aside to help gain some traction. While I understand that this not my strengths, what are the best ways to invest it into the game?

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marked as duplicate by Philipp, Tyyppi_77, Gnemlock, Vaillancourt, Kromster says support Monica Oct 12 '17 at 11:33

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Maybe you should try start posting your game in some community driven websites, and see how well people respond. But be careful where you post it: While some communities like imgur are pretty welcoming to advertising your own indie game; others will probably shun any kind of advertising, and could even backfire. \$\endgroup\$ – Leo Sep 1 '17 at 13:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ This is the problem I see too. Unless you've been involved with the community for a long time and have accreditations, any sort of self promotion is shunned immediately. \$\endgroup\$ – xoail Sep 1 '17 at 15:49
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Real marketing with a limited budget is a difficult game. But an important factor is to expose the game and put it on display as much as possible. With some clever ideas and some luck, this doesn't necessarily even require loads of money.

Any publicity is good publicity.

Do whatever other indie companies/developers are doing. For instance post Youtube videos, create a development blog, invite beta testers, ask well-known gaming sites for reviews/articles. Heck, even start a Kickstarter campaign. It really doesn't matter if it's successful or not. Your game would be on display.

Job well done, you might end up having somekind of a low-cost snowball effect.

All of these are things you can do with little to no cost. If you really lack the time to do any of these, it should be relatively cheap to find someone to do them for you.

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Marketing is work. It takes various mixtures of time, money and luck. If you're lacking in one of those elements, you're options are either to supplement with more of the others, or settle for less than you might otherwise achieve.

While communities vary in policy, it's natural that they don't want to be exploited (give something for nothing) & frankly, those are the ones that matter the most. Consider the extreme alternative of letting anyone post anything. The result would be a signal to noise ratio so bad that very little would stand out. Reigning in the chaos to something more useful requires some type of filter. Again we return to the iron triangle: some places filter with time (community participation), some with money (paid ads) & others by luck (getting featured as game of the day, happening to deliver a niche experience to a niche audience, etc).

In general I'd recommend:

  • reading the other marketing questions on GDSE, especially the ones linked to left of this one in the Related section
  • approaching focused communities that your game would resonate with
  • finding promoters that your game would resonate with
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