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International Women's Day 2023: Lisa Hau, CSO at Bidstack

We get the real state of play and showcase a world of talent for International Women's Day
International Women's Day 2023: Lisa Hau, CSO at Bidstack

Especially for International Womens Day (and continuing all week) we've created a series of interviews to co-incide with the annual celebration of women's achievements all around the world.

There's great advice for women who want to be part of the gaming world and we find out what's changed, what's changing and what still needs to change if women's voices are to be heard and gaming is to become more inclusive, more entertaining and more engaging for everyone.

We spoke with Lisa Hau, the chief strategy officer at Bidstack. Bidstack works with developers to help them increase player engagement and generate revenue while helping out with troublesome production timelines. Firstly, tell us about your work at Bidstack

Lisa Hau: Our platform continues to scale rapidly and we now support more than 250 games from triple-A publishers and indies alike. We continue to expand our product suite to enable our developers to achieve their commercial goals, as well as enriching their marketing mix with dynamic content and reporting tools for cohort analysis.

We recently announced the launch of Bidstack Sports upon signing a multi-year deal with SimWin Sports, enabling both league and rights holders to communicate with fans within their virtual stadium environments.

What made you want to work in games?

I’ve worked in the games industry for the past three years, building on my experience at WPP and as an analyst for the internet and media sector at Jefferies. I’ve been hugely inspired and motivated by the constant pace of change and opportunities in the games industry.

Technology is a catalyst for disruption across traditional media channels and, historically, advertising dollars follow where consumers spend their time, making games an exciting place to be right now. The opportunity to work at Bidstack came during the pandemic, which was fortuitous timing as the lockdown accelerated the shift towards gaming as a media channel. What I’ve observed during this period has only strengthened my conviction that gaming is a platform for the next frontier for entertainment, socialising and engagement.

Do you feel like attitudes towards female gamers and women working in games have changed, and is changing?

The growing female gamer audience is, at long last, being recognised, leading to developers creating games that cater to a wider range of players, while companies are now also actively recruiting more women asmdevelopers and designers.

“Having more women in the in-game advertising space can help ensure that ads are relevant, relatable and respectful to this audience”
Lisa Hau

But while progress has been made, there is still much work to be done to address the systemic issues contributing to the underrepresentation of women in the industry. However, the growing awareness of these issues and the efforts being made to address them suggests that attitudes towards female gamers and women working in games are changing for the better.

What do you think having more women in games can bring to the industry and the games we all make?

Having more women in the games industry can bring a range of benefits to both the sector at large and the games that are made. One of the most significant advantages is the diverse perspectives that women bring to development, which can lead to more inclusive titles that appeal to a broader audience. Women have unique experiences and viewpoints that can contribute to creating games that are more relatable to a wider range of players.

Women are a significant and growing demographic in the industry. Having more women in the in-game advertising space, for example, can help ensure that ads are relevant, relatable and respectful to this audience. By encouraging more women to work in game development, the industry can benefit from a greater pool of talent and ideas. Women are often underrepresented in STEM fields, but by promoting greater diversity, developers can tap into these new ideas and approaches to increase commercial success.

What's the road ahead? How can we encourage more women to get involved and make a difference?

To encourage more women to get involved in the games industry, promoting diversity and inclusivity, providing resources and support, and addressing issues like discrimination and harassment are crucial steps. Celebrating the contributions of women, highlighting the career opportunities available, and creating a welcoming and inclusive environment are effective ways to attract and retain more talented women.

I am a passionate advocate for diversity and inclusion in the industry and have spoken on various panels and events about this topic. I believe that creating a more diverse and inclusive space is essential for the sector’s growth and reputation as a welcoming space for people from all backgrounds.