Ten Ton Hammer confronted several industry insiders on MMO marketing practices that have long chafed players (sometimes using quotes from our Premium Members). Has word-of-mouth made traditional PR and marketing obsolete, or worse: prone to deceit just to get games noticed? Is pre-launch hype important for a game with a potential ten-year (or even longer) lifespan, and if so, is there such a thing as too much hype? Why is marketing used to gather feedback for features that aren't necessarily "final," and what's with the "box promises" that aren't made good at launch? Through their candid responses, you'll find that perhaps the industry has turned a corner. From the article:
"All of the publicists we spoke with realize that if there ever was a time you could fool all of the people all of the time, it has long passed. Net Devil's Grace Wong noted that ÂClever marketing, if the intent is to trick people into buying a game, usually backfires. Players are smart and can spot tricky gimmicks.Â Producer April Burba agreed: ÂI think players are really marketing savvy. They see through overblown promises or gimmicks pretty easily.ÂRead our latest feature article: Bait and Switch? Ethics and Values in MMO Marketing, only at Ten Ton Hammer.