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How to harness the volatile power of YouTubers

Seriously’s Phil Hickey on influencing the influencers
How to harness the volatile power of YouTubers

YouTube is a powerful platform for promotion.

That's been well known in the PC gaming scene for a while now, where Let's Play and video reviews are in abundant supply.

But Philip Hickey, VP of Marketing and Communications at Finnish developer Seriously, recognizes this channel it isn't easy to tap into, especially for mobile games.

Playing with fire

During his Pocket Gamer Connects San Francisco 2105 talk, Hickey offered some words of wisdom on how to get the most out of YouTube-driven marketing strategies.

"[YouTubers] are a hard group to work with," he admitted, particularly due to their "connected audience."

Because of how close they are to their fans, Let's Players and game reviewers on YouTube are very cautious about engaging with the industry.

Trying to boss them around or control their messaging is a mistake.

Hickey explained, "You gotta work with them on the creative path, but let them do it in their own voice."

Engaging with influencers

Hickey recounted Seriously's successful experience using YouTube stars such as PewDiePie to boost downloads, sales, and form a community around his company's puzzle battler Best Fiends.

“You gotta work with them on the creative path, but let them do it in their own voice.”
Phil Hickey

Hooks such as themed tournaments that allow multiple YouTube celebrities to compete for high scores on a game are a great way to get them and their audiences engaged with your game.

"More than half of YouTube videos are [viewed] on mobile," Hickey point out. "So you're just one click away from a download."

Promoting your game on YouTube doesn't have to be limited to Let's Players, either.

Rosanna Pansino, host of YouTube baking show Nerdy Nummies, mentioned Best Fiends in her "What's on my iPhone 6?" video, which resulted in Best Fiends trending on the App Store.

According to Hickey, looking to YouTube for promotion can lead to downloads, engagement, reviews, credibility, and community, and because YouTube videos are shareable, results are long-term.