In a world awash with mobile games, Apple and Google’s importance as gatekeepers, content curators and distribution channels only strengthens, at least in Western markets.
Given this market trajectory, the hiring of the App Store’s gaming editorial manager Matt Casmassina by US consultancy DOD Media is a real coup.
Casmassina takes the position of chief strategy officer, but DOD Media CEO Mike DeLaet says he’ll bring much more than his Apple contacts list to the team.
“Matt was previously a co-founder at IGN Entertainment and has worked closely with developers for over 20 years,” he explains.
“He’ll help us set our strategy for the next five years and provide actionable analyses to our partners as we move forward.”
Indeed, according to DeLaet, the company has never been more busy.
“There’s been a resurgence in mobile gaming in the past 12 months,” he says, “But many developers still struggle with the ‘last mile’ of publishing, which is why we started this company in the first place.”
Previously with Kabam and before that Glu Mobile, DeLaet says mobile games developers often spend too much time focused on their games to the detriment of their release and post-launch plans.
“What we do is get involved at a very early stage to give them feedback on UX, UI, monetisation, gameplay, app store optimisation and marketing assets,” he says.
We’re actively looking for legacy mobile games that developers aren't really focusing on anymore.Mike DeLaet
“We also help them publish the game and obtain featuring by the App Store and Google Play.”
Recent clients include high profile titles such as Disruptor Beam’s Star Trek Timelines and indie games like Craneballs’ Fling Fighters.
Reviving lost causes
But DOD’s scope is also extending. Given its expertise in gaining users through the app stores, it’s now planning to become a publisher.
“We’re actively looking for legacy mobile games that developers are considering sunsetting or aren't really focusing on anymore,” DeLaet reveals.
“We've been able to grow some of these legacy games by three to four-fold by improving their ASO, SEO and live ops and ultimately driving installs into them again.”