Speaker Spotlight: Cheesecake Digital CEO on the benefits of industry volunteering

"It is a great way to network, learn new skills and understand more about the industry."

Speaker Spotlight: Cheesecake Digital CEO on the benefits of industry volunteering

Pocket Gamer Connects Digital has returned once again, set to bring together some of the finest voices in the games industry and beyond. 

PGC Digital #4 takes place on November 9th - 13th. To give you a taste of what to expect, we'll regularly be publishing interviews with the speakers at the show.

The conference spans across five days and will feature a broad selection of tracks, talks and speakers, as well as various fringe events and a new and improved meeting system. For more details on PGC Digital and to book a ticket, head to the website.

Today's spotlight is on Philip Wride, CEO of esports and gaming marketing agency Cheesecake Digital. Wride has been in games for 19 years, he's managed esports teams, ran huge tournaments and created behemoth marketing strategies. He'll be heading to PGC Digital #4 to clue us in on the current state of esports in the MENA region. Tell us a bit about your company?

Cheesecake Digital is a specialist esports and gaming marketing agency helping educate and guide brands, rights holders, Governments and event operators. Our services range from consultancy and strategy development through to tournament management and technology platform builds.

What does your role entail?

As CEO I have oversight on the projects we undertake. As a business we have a slightly different model in that we build specialist project teams depending on the requirements rather than having a large in-house team.

Why did you want to work in the games industry?

I've loved games since I started playing on an Atari ST when I was growing up. The ability to immerse yourself in different worlds and narratives has always appealed as a way to take a step away from whatever is happening in the real world. It enables you to focus on something different so I've always wanted to be involved in the industry in some capacity. A lot of that eventually led to esports where the online games provided a different experience every time you played because you couldn't predict what your opponent was going to do.

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

Volunteer. It is a great way to network, learn new skills and understand more about the industry. Growing up I taught myself a basic level of HTML and CSS from writing for community news portals and I helped operate tournament events to understand the inner workings. There are so many areas you can contribute whether it is learning graphics tools and offering those services, writing code in your spare time or helping playtest new titles. 

How has the games industry changed since you first started?

There are definitely too many things to list here but the speed in which technology has developed (console generations, new PC tech, mobile device penetration) has enabled a completely different development process and consumer behaviour and expectations have changed accordingly.

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

Learning from industry peers in areas I don't normally deal with, and networking. 

Want more?

The full conference schedule will be live very soon. Until then, we have a bunch of reasons to come along to PGC Digital #4 right here. You can also check out our other track rundowns and coverage of previous Pocket Gamer Connects conferences ahead of the event itself.

Register for Pocket Gamer Connects Digital #4 today!