Table Of Contents
No matter whether you’re solo or part of a studio, you could likely all benefit from checking some of these things through before Steam Next Fest starts on February 5th.
This is your step-by-step Steam Next Fest Marketing Guide — let’s go!
It’s admittedly a bit late if you’ve already applied and got locked in… just do your best to keep up with marketing now through launch, and don’t succumb to hype-entropy!
(Note: Valve apparently do make exceptions to this, but those are for the big folks like Devolver, etc. 🤷)
This is a huge marketing beat for you indie devs. You really need to get the ball rolling, so:
Don’t be afraid of rejection!
Making an indie game press kit is super important, but there are aspects to consider:
Creators will be looking to you for transparent-background logos, trailers, and other assets!
Setting one up takes 5 minutes with Press Kitty, so really just do it!
This is your one big shot at connecting with players in pre-release, so:
Be open and transparent with players to build trust, and gently encourage them to stay involved in your comms!
This is a HUGE topic in itself, and others like Chris Zukowski, IndieGameJoe and so on have written posts on this.
In my opinion, for Next Fest, optimise for Demo downloads THEN followers and THEN wishlists.
Why this order? Steam Next Fest is all about the demos.
That may be opinionated though… Discuss on Discord?
Come the start of the festival, you don’t want to find yourself rushed off your feet with other tasks (community engagement, emergency bug fixes, etc.) and neglecting your marketing channels.
Keep. On. Marketing.! (seriously)
Steam is great, but owned, off-platform channels are better. They give you a direct line of communication to your game’s champions.
Treat them like royalty with a:
In this should be your creators, influencers, top fan super invested players, and potential leaders in your game community.
These folks will give you your best shot at achieving word-of-mouth virality.
I’ve just focused on the marketing angle here, but there’s so much more to discuss.
What does YOUR checklist look like for your Steam Next Fest build? I’d love to hear it!
No, it’s not just about refreshing the Steam backend and seeing wishlists go brr.
Not only will all of this data will be useful for your next marketing beat, you can use what’s happening to prolong and signal boost your Steam Next Fest marketing campaign, shares on socials, etc.
For any creators that are interested, you’ll want to reach out, get them into your lists (see point #7) and consider sending them a key around (hopefully before) launch.
With Steam broadcasts, you can:
We know folks enjoy watching people play games, hence Twitch exists. Use this to your advantage.
With tools like RoboStreamer you can set up a looping stream for 120 hours for free. That’s basically the whole festival.
That’s actually it!
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If you have questions, hop into the IMPRESS Discord Community!