3 Strategies to Take Full Advantage of Gaming's New Decentralized Frontier — and Join a $178 Billion Industry
From sharing walkthroughs and tutorials on social media to "litepapers" to the power of livestream gamers as influencers, how to get ahead in the breakout decentralized gaming app space.
Blockchain, cryptocurrency and the NFT gold rush are forcing countless brands and industries to reassess long-term strategies and orient towards a decentralized finance (DeFi) future. The gaming industry in particular — a sector that more and more people will undoubtedly embrace as jobs become increasingly automated and remote work normalizes — has seen a massive movement towards crypto in the form of play-to-earn decentralized applications, or "dApps."
As of 2021, according to Statista, gaming's global market value rose to over $178 billion and is expected to gross more than $268 billion by 2025. While GameFi dApps (blockchain app games in which players can earn cryptocurrency and NFTs) have recently contributed to a major portion of that growth — with crypto.com's February 2020 GameFi: Past, Present and Future report detailing that they boast a current market cap of $40.99 billion — they remain in their adolescence. The volatility of their DeFi nature and complexity of their token economies have proven significant hurdles in obtaining investors and demonstrating legitimacy to the mainstream.
However, content is still king, and a chief asset for developers to harness in overcoming such obstacles. Here are content strategies to lay a foundation for GameFi growth.
Related: 5 Reasons to Get Started With DeFi
1. Utilize Wiki pages, blogs and litepapers
Crypto and NFTs remain relatively esoteric concepts in themselves. Attach gameplay narratives, rules and tokenomics on top of that and it's easy to see why investors, mainstream audiences and even traditional gamers are hesitant to embrace this emerging sector. Consequently, circulating descriptive content that clearly and simply delineates the various layers of a GameFi project is vital for enticing target audiences, reaching crypto newcomers and conveying an intelligible narrative.
While a whitepaper is a prerequisite for explaining and pitching any blockchain project to investors, they're typically exhaustive documents with highly technical and perplexing terminology. Litepapers, however, serve as convenient teasers to whitepapers and GameFi projects, and are more effective at capturing the fleeting attention spans of this digital age. They convey key project pillars and components with simplicity and give potentially apprehensive investors a less intimidating entry point into understanding a project.
In addition to litepapers, developers can incorporate Wiki pages to outline the various aspects of the gaming protocol, from world building to tokenomics. Since GameFi dApps are generally decentralized autonomous organization (DAO)-driven, Wiki pages afford greater community engagement by allowing token holders to modify and contribute to information output.
Similarly, blog posts enable developers to keep NFT communities and crypto newcomers educated and updated on a project's evolution. Recurring posts should provide guidance and in-depth logistics on each game element to demonstrate support and encourage adoption. Both blog posts and Wiki pages are also less formal than white- or litepapers and present the opportunity to exhibit brand personality, a necessary ingredient for enticing broader audiences and assuaging the daunting characteristics of the protocol.
2. Share walkthroughs and tutorials on social media
As useful as litepapers, Wiki pages and blogs may be, both the gaming community and the wider public is infinitely more captivated by dynamic visuals than by listicles or prose (no matter how eccentric your font may be). Moreover, any GameFi dApp is naturally more conceivable and digestible in its visual presentation, which makes social media a key asset for developers to leverage.
According to the Washington Post, about 100 billion hours of gaming content were watched on YouTube in 2020, with Google reporting that walkthroughs and how-to videos were among its top content categories. For GameFi developers searching for growth opportunities and exposure, social media platforms like YouTube and Facebook are essential spaces for circulating walkthroughs, tutorials and even captivating in-game moments en masse. Such casual content introduces new users to the game experience and helps traditional gamers assimilate to the play-to-earn ecosystem by highlighting day-to-day gameplay.
3. Embrace livestream gamers as influencers
Though influencer marketing is often considered its own strategy, it's actually an integral piece of a larger content marketing puzzle. But rather than looking to conventional social media influencers, GameFi projects can find more targeted avenues through livestream gamers and platforms like YouTube Gaming and Facebooks Watch that host their content.
According to Statista, gaming's most popular streaming service, Twitch, amassed more than 5.79 billion hours of total watch time in the third quarter of 2021 alone. Platforms like Twitch, and their streamers, have served as instrumental conduits for gaming brands to generate exposure and awareness. Due to their active forums and high community engagement, they're also effective at generating conversation and gauging impressions.
Just like conventional Instagram and TikTok influencers create trends, promote products and build awareness, livestream gamers can do the same for GameFi projects, bringing their content to the most relevant demographics, familiarizing them with niche gameplay and providing positive commentary.
There's no questioning the potential within play-to-earn gaming and other dApps looking to harness the crypto movement. Still, developers have a lengthy road ahead in persuading the world of its inherent long-term value. When it comes to communicating that value and potential, it's crucial to employ a measured content strategy that generates awareness. Embracing livestream gamers as influencers, circulating walkthroughs on social media and distributing delineative content such as Wiki pages, blog post and litepapers are effective methods that put the most attractive aspects of a GameFi project in focus and lay a foundation for exponential growth.
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