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Social discovery better than app stores, says Unity's Kuusisto

Word of mouth the most effective
Social discovery better than app stores, says Unity's Kuusisto

Unity 3D's VP of business development Mika Kuusisto took to the stage at Pocket Gamer Connects London 2015, in a talk which considered the impact of social features upon player engagement and retention.

Leading with the statement that "social discovery is more important than the App Store," the content of his talk was based on data published in Unity's own white paper, entitled 'Mobile Gaming: Social Motivations'.

The talk began with what was probably the most revealing statistic of the presentation, and that is the fact that, even in a world with a multitude of online sharing options, it is still a verbal recommendation which holds the most weight.

Buzz words

Of those surveyed, 35 percent reported that they 'frequently' discover new mobile games thanks to verbal recommendations from friends.

Meanwhile, 57 percent are 'sometimes' swayed, and a mere 8 percent claim to 'never' discover new games in this way.

For context, let's compare this with social media. 81 percent claim that they never discover new mobile games from tweets, while 57 percent say the same of Facebook invites.

TThe power of social media ranked
TThe power of social media ranked

The idea of developers fostering a player-driven virality on social networking sites, then, seems to be a tough proposition for all but the most engaged players.

Indeed, Kuusisto noted the correlation between those who spend high and those who are interested and engaged with social features, stating that "heavy payers are more than twice as likely to share".

For more insights, the full report can be downloaded here.