Interview

Jampp's Joff Hamilton-Dick: There's no one-shot answer for UA

Jampp's Joff Hamilton-Dick: There's no one-shot answer for UA

Making sure you start the year in style, Pocket Gamer Connects London is happening on 13-14 January 2015 at Vinopolis.

Tickets are now available, and the good news is they are currently 33 percent cheaper than they will be after 15 November.

So to give you a hint at what you can expect, we're shining the spotlight onto our speakers to provide a deeper look at the personalities who will be taking the stage at PG Connects London 2015.

Joff Hamilton-Dick is a games entrepreneur and business developer who heads up the games vertical at Jampp, a user acquisition platform for iOS and Android.

Previously he worked in the traditional card game space alongside companies like Upper Deck, Wizards of the Coast and Top Trumps, before merging his interests with technology in 2009 to help start up a Facebook in-app advertising platform specifically for game developers.

Pocket Gamer: We're showcasing the Best of British at Pocket Gamer Connects so how much of an impact have British game developers had in your gaming life?

Joff Hamilton-Dick: As a child of the 1980s, blockbuster US movies like ET and The Goonies made the longest-lasting impression on me, yet all my favourite games came from the UK.

The pool of creative talent here has always been immense so right up through the ages, from the ZX Spectrum to the PlayStation, it's UK games that made me miss my school-work deadlines or had me stuck in my bachelor pad all weekend.

Classics like Bugaboo, Manic Miner, Elite, Speedball 2, GoldenEye and GTA III are all British made, and I could still lose an entire afternoon to any of them.

Why is user acquisition such a challenge in the mobile business today and what can games companies do to give themselves a fighting chance?

There's no one-shot answer [for UA] which strategy you adopt depends on your type of game, budget, and how much mobile marketing know-how you already have.
Joff Hamilton-Dick

Unfortunately, it's natural selection at work. Games that are proven to monetise well, or successful developers with huge pocketbooks and a spate of new releases, are bidding up the price of ad inventory, making it harder for games that haven't yet proven to monetise. So it's harder to get a foothold.

There's no one-shot answer: which strategy you adopt depends on your type of game, budget, and how much mobile marketing know-how you already have.

If you don't feel confident in your approach, seek advice from either a buddy games developer who has been there, done that, or from a professional app marketing company with a lot more experience than you.

How can indie developers adapt to survive in the mobile economy?

Keep coming up with those whacky, original ideas! The big guys will never think of them.

Will new technology like wearable tech and VR change the mobile landscape?

Wearable tech like watches, no. Wearable tech like headsets, and VR, yes.

The new wave of watches will work as communication devices, not as games platforms. It's not hard to notice the trend in phone screen sizes has been for them to increase, not make them smaller. Mobile offers a richer experience and better control surface than a watch ever will. Headsets and VR is another story.

We already ignore each other on buses and trains, staring down into our phones: It's not a quantum leap to imagine we will soon be staring into screens projected onto our eyes or headsets - it's really not that different.

Apple Watch - for communications not gaming

I'm intrigued to see what companies like Magic Leap and Oculus Rift will deliver. Once we move passed the early 'gimmick stage' in time the VR experience will be amazingly rich, colourful and immersive, and will start to blur the line between reality.

I can see people ditching their mobile game experience for a VR experience that takes them away from the look and feel of that cramped rush hour train they are sitting on.

What are you most looking forward to at Pocket Gamer Connects?

My favourite part of a show like this is meeting game developers who have something really unique or original, and hearing their stories about how they conceived something so elegant, or cool, or impactful.

To anyone who has a creative streak in them, it's very inspiring.

What's your prediction for the mobile gaming industry in 2015?

People are finally going to get bored of match-3 titles! ...aren't they??!?

Grab your tickets for Pocket Gamer Connects London 2015 here!

Don't forget to keep up-to-date with content from our speakers via the Speaker Spotlight hashtag.

And you can check out videos from PG Connects Helsinki 2014 here.

Contributing Editor

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon is Contributing Editor at PG.biz which means he acts like a slightly confused uncle who's forgotten where he's left his glasses. As well as letters and cameras, he likes imaginary numbers and legumes.

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