Wednesday, July 15

Market Research Results 2

Back in April I ran an official BoardGameGeek competition. It cost me a bunch of money, in addition to the cost of seven games for the winners and postage.

Having never done anything like this before, I was wondered whether it would be a good way to spend my meagre marketing budget. At the time someone suggested that I do a questionnaire before and afterwards to judge the effect of the competition on awareness of my company and my games.

To encourage feedback, I ran the questionnaire as a mini competition, if you answer the questions I'd enter you in a competition to win a copy of the Reiver Games game of your choice and free worldwide postage. The first questionnaire ran several months ago and got 399 responses. For a description of the results you can see a previous post.

The second (post-competition) questionnaire I ran in the same way, and it finished at midnight on Monday. I spent pretty much all of yesterday collating the 291 results and figuring out who had won. Running two competitions allows me to remove some of the bias of the questionnaire as I hope similar people would have answered both.

In this post I'll be comparing the results of the two questionnaires and trying to interpret the results. Was the competition worth the cash?

Reiver Games

The first question was about awareness of my company/brand. The question was: Have you heard of Reiver Games?

  • A: Reiver what-know? Never heard of them
  • B: I've heard of them, but I've not played any of their games
  • C: I've played one or more of their games, but I don't own any of them
  • D: I own one or more of their games

For each question I'll show the two graphs - before and after the competition and then discuss what I think that means. As with anything statistical, there's multiple ways to intrepret the data - feel free to wade in in the comments if you disagree with my take on things.

The graphs will all show the results of the pre-competition survey in blue and the post-competition survey in red. Obviously, my ideal answer is D, then C, B and A in that order. Before the competition, 35% of respondents had never heard of my company, afterwards this was 11%. The remain three categories had all improved, but the most noticeable improvement was in the 'I've heard of but never played category. For this first question at least the competition seems to have been successful.

It's Alive!

The second question was about awareness of my first professionally manufactured game: It's Alive! The question was: Have you heard of It's Alive!?

  • A: Never heard of it
  • B: I've heard of it, but I've not played it
  • C: I've played it, but I don't own it
  • D: I own it

Before the competition It's Alive! was my best known game with only 23% of respondents unaware of it. After the competition this had dropped to 15%. The questions in the main competition required a little knowledge of It's Alive! and Carpe Astra - to stand a good chance of winning you needed to look up the answers in the rulebooks of both games so that makes sense. The remaining three categories all improved, with C showing the largest proportional increase. I've also noticed the the number of people who list themselves as owning It's Alive! has dramatically increased since the competition.

Carpe Astra

The third question was about awareness of what was at the time my newest game: Carpe Astra. The question was: Have you heard of Carpe Astra?

  • A: Never heard of it
  • B: I've heard of it, but I've not played it
  • C: I've played it, but I don't own it
  • D: I own it

Before the competition Carpe Astra was less well known game than It's Alive! with 42% of respondents unaware of it. After the competition this had dropped to 15% - same as It's Alive! The remaining three categories all improved, with B showing a massive jump.

Sumeria

The fourth question was about awareness of Sumeria, which was not yet released at the time of the first questionnaire, but had been released by the time of the second. The question was: Have you heard of Sumeria? The options differed between the two questionnaires due to the game's status.

  • A: Never heard of it
  • B: I've heard of it / I've heard of it, but I've not played it
  • C: I want to play it / I've played it, but I don't own it
  • D: I want to buy it / I own it

Before the competition most people hadn't heard of Sumeria - a whopping 72%. With the game still in development and little information available though, this wasn't that surprising. Looking at the second survey, Sumeria wasn't really mentioned in the competition either, just a throw-away line in Chad's introduction, so I expected awareness of this to still be lower. However, Sumeria has only just come out and is getting good feedback. 28% of respondents are still unaware of it. The remaining three categories all improved, with C showing the largest proportional increase.

Overall, 22% of people have either played or own It's Alive!, it's 9% for Carpe Astra and 8% for Sumeria. Ownership of the three games decreases in order of time available - fewer people own Sumeria (the newest game - still not available in many shops) than any of the others.

In terms of awareness-raising, this seems to have been a great success, the awareness of my games and company has jumped much higher after the competition than it was before. Unfortunately, most of the awareness is now in the 'I've heard of X, but not played it' category. I need to get more people playing (and hopefully buying!) my games if I'm going to be successful.

Official Competition

I wrapped up the second questionnaire with a new question: Did you see the Reiver Games Giveaway official BGG competition?

  • A: Yes, and I entered it
  • B: Yes, but I didn't enter it
  • C: Nope, that one passed me by

I didn't know what to expect here. The competition was entered by about 3900 of BGG's hundreds of thousands of registered users. It sat in the BGG News section of the front page (at the top of your screen by default) for two weeks so people who check BGG frequently should have seen it. People who joined in the couple of months since the competition obviously won't have seen it, and infrequent users may well have missed it.

The number of Bs and Cs surprised me. I thought more people would have at least noticed it, but 35% of respondents hadn't. As for the Bs, I wonder why they chose not to enter? Already got all my games (I wish!), not interested in the prizes (i.e. my games), questions too hard? I'll never know... Unless I ask them :-)

In summary, I'm pretty happy with the results of the two questionnaires and the competition. The big challenge now has to be to get people from category B in questions 1-4 into category C or D. I'm not sure how to do that.

7 comments:

jordan said...

For what it's worth I both heard of, and became familiar with your company and games through these polls/competition. Keep up the great work!

Jack said...

Thanks Jordan, it's good to know these things work to boost my brand awareness.

Cheers,

Jack

Tim said...

I'm not surprised that you have so few Bs - after all, the data was gethered via a poll, so you're only going to get to get responses from the sort of people who respond to polls (and poll-style competitions).

Jack said...

Hiya Tim,

Assuming you're referring to the last question, I was surprised I had so many, I expected that everyone who saw it would have entered, or those who saw it and didn't enter wouldn't have bothered with the questionnaire competition either.

Cheers,

Jack

the1jugg said...

I was suprised when I saw the "winners annouced" for this contest, but never saw the actual contest post.

Jack said...

The winners announced post was for the official giveaway competition, which was in the news section on the front page for two weeks! I checked :-) I guess a bunch of people missed it.

Cheers,

Jack

Felix Chesterfield said...

Does anybody have any experience with this market research firm?