Speaker Spotlight: Dodreams' Edvard Groundstroem on adapting to an increasingly savvy market

"Social gaming is definitely not a 'new' thing, but I’m fairly certain the unicorns of tomorrow are going to bring even deeper social dimensions to their audience"

Speaker Spotlight: Dodreams' Edvard Groundstroem on adapting to an increasingly savvy market

Pocket Gamer Connects London 2019 will take place on January 21st to 22nd. To give you a taste of what to expect, we'll regularly be publishing interviews with the speakers at the show.

For more details on PGC London and to book a ticket, head to the website here.

In today’s speaker spotlight, we’re talking to Dodreams head of marketing Edvard Groundstroem, who will be giving a talk called “Games as Ikea - A service design approach to in-game marketing”.

Groundstroem is an experienced marketing and business development professional who has been a part of the mobile gaming industry since 2012.

Before joining Dodreams, he was the marketing director at Rovio, where he worked primarily on the company’s two top-grossing titles, Angry Birds 2 and Angry Birds Match.

Groundstroem specialises in strategic marketing partnerships and has worked closely with organisations such as Apple, Google, WWF, UNEP and Mattel, and on campaigns featuring pop culture icons like Matt Damon, Danny DeVito and Imagine Dragons.

PocketGamer.Biz: Can you tell us a bit about your company?

Edvard Groundstroem: We do more than games. We do dreams.

We’re the makers of the Drive Ahead! portfolio of games. With a perfect combo of casual competitive gaming and surprising fun, our games are the number one choice for local multiplayer, action, sports and racing fans.

Thanks to a large and active fan community built around spectating online video in-game and on social media we’ve grown to 100 million organic downloads and continue to expand our fan base at 100k new users every day.

What does your role entail?

I head up marketing at Dodreams, with the overall responsibility of global marketing activities, ranging from outlining strategy and brand direction to conceptualising creative campaigns, collaborations and coordinating related UA, Social Media and PR activities.

Why did you want to work in the games industry?

First of all, I love being a part of an industry that encourages and rewards creativity and innovation.

As can be expected, games played a huge role in my life growing up, and being able to work with products that hopefully mean as much to the younger players of today as they mean to me back in the day, is immensely motivating.

Lastly, I’ve been fortunate enough to work on projects with educational and charitable elements to them, and using this massive platform for bringing something positive into this world is incredibly rewarding for me.

What advice would you give to anyone looking to get into it?

Especially the mobile part of the game industry is relatively young, which means no-one comes into this with too much experience.

There’s room for a lot of different perspectives when it comes to creating games, so don’t worry about not having worked in the industry previously.

Apply for internships and jobs you think you could contribute to. Regardless of your direct experience, it’s a fast paced environment and you’ll be a multi-discipline veteran before you know it!

What are your thoughts on the industry in the last 12 months?

I think players are growing savvier when it comes to evaluating their return on investment; both from a time and money perspective, which in turns puts pressure on creating better, deeper and more meaningful gaming experiences.

This is definitely a positive development!

What major trends do you predict in the next 12 months?

Social gaming is definitely not a “new” thing, but I’m fairly certain the unicorns of tomorrow are going to bring even deeper social dimensions to their audience.

Playing games is an inherently social experience and the closer we can get to replicating the feeling of physically “being there” with other players, the more engaging the experiences will be.

How has the games industry changed since you first started?

The most obvious answer here is the massive shift from premium games to the free-to-play business model. 

It was foreseeable yet surprisingly time-consuming and challenging to transition to at the time.

Which part of the Connects event are you most looking forward to and why?

The Mobile Games Awards are always fun. Unlike many other forms of entertainment, the teams behind mobile games remain relatively unknown to their audience, so it’s nice to see the people behind the products being recognised for their hard work.

Find out more about Pocket Gamer Connects London 2019 on the website.