However, unlike the early eighties period of garage development, the ability to get your name out there is exceptionally easier in today's interconnected and digitally social world. Still it may be easier to get your product information out there, but likewise the associated noise from competitors is also hitting those same channels, with the resulting cacophony making it almost harder than ever to be noticed.
And then there are the bigger publishers in the video game industry, Electronic Arts, Activision and the hardware and software companies such as Sony and Nintendo, how do they continue to get folks excited about their (now) expensive to produce product? The answer is in good PR.
Nintendo has remained at the top of the video game tree not only by putting together innovative hardware and software ideas, but ensuring the message gets out to the public. For Heather Murphy, Nintendo Australia's Public Relations Manager for the past four years this can mean a typical working day is hard to define:
'What's a typical working day???!!! I would have no idea!' muses Murphy 'I guess everyone wants to think we play games all day, and yes we do get lots of gaming in (I always try for at least one Mario Kart 7 race a day!). So on a day when I am in the office, I may attend a new production presentation, have hands on time with a new game we are looking to bring to Australia and New Zealand. I may be writing media releases, liaising with media, coming up with ideas for a big launch, working with my PR agency, answering countless phone calls and emails, considering sponsorship proposals, product placement, competitions, locking in media interviews, working with talent, working closely with Nintendo offices all over the world, working closely with the Brand Managers on various activities... I could go on and on. Overall it's fun, fast paced and always different!'
Similarly Snezana Stojanovska, PR Manager over at Electronic Arts Australia & New Zealand describes the role as not far from the clichÃ© that's so often thrown around, but goes onto explain there is plenty of hard work involved: 'Contrary to popular belief, we're not always out drinking champagne with our media friends. (Although it is important we do this every now and again!)' says Stojanovska 'The clichÃ© does tend to leave out the less glamorous stuff which includes producing regular coverage and PR activity reports, liaising and negotiating coverage with my media contacts daily to ensure its relevant to them and their readers, responding in a timely fashion to a formidable onslaught of emails for those requesting game assets, statements, copies of our games and more information.'
According to Stojanovska PR does not end on the day of a games release: 'My focus is to build and support our brands year round - it's no longer just about launching the title and then moving on to the next - it's imperative to continue communication about our expansion packs, add-ons, in-game micro transactions etc. I distribute key media releases and assets, work closely with our international and local Sales, Marketing and Social and Community departments so all of our plans and strategies for our products align and are integrated, lock in developer and celebrity interviews, source and create merchandise, seek brand partnerships, work with our PR, media and events agencies and much more!"
"One of my favorite aspects of my role is event management. This would involve finding the relevant venue, overseeing theming, managing invitations, media list, the content shown at the event and talent and whilst it's incredibly stressful, when it all comes together - I get this thrill and it is incredibly rewarding. I can honestly say I am one of those people who enjoys getting up in the morning and going into the office. No day is ever the same and depending on what franchise I am working on it enables me to learn new genres, technological trends, talent, brands and frankly, I really can't see myself doing anything else. '
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