We're a training and game development company who has been in business for over 16 years (www.gameinstitute.com). We've developed a large collection of very unique, high-quality products and services. We have a ton of credibility with major academic partners already in place (e.g., IEEE, ed2go/Cengage Learning, Excelsior College, etc.) and many of our classes have been accredited along the way. Our customers love our training and we get almost no refund requests, ever.
Additionally, we just expanded our business to include commercial game development and, in fact, rolled out our first game on Steam this weekend to very good reviews (http://store.steampowered.com/app/500750?beta=0). It was Greenlit by Valve after only 18 days; it shot into the top 10 out of over 2,200+ games in about two weeks. Most games take months to get Greenlit, if ever. Since it just went into the Steam Store (Early Access), we'll need to get some separate promotion going for that too. Plus, this game is actually only the tip of the iceberg; we've got a massive (unannounced) game, well into development, which is going to blow people away coming up right behind it. We're getting the pieces in place for a Kickstarter for that one (late September target date), along with another Greenlight campaign.
From a marketer's perspective, it's a dream scenario -- a huge market (gamers and game developers) and access to a range of well-reviewed, high-quality, products over a full range of price points. We can have lower cost, entry-level, packages selling in the tens to
hundreds of dollars and higher priced certification programs with partner colleges in the thousands. We can offer one-time purchases, recurring billing, and payment plans for the more expensive stuff.
Unfortunately, we've never had a dedicated marketing team, and we fell into the product development hole for a very long time, surviving on natural search. When our web development fell behind the times, we lost almost all of our organic search traffic after one of Google's algorithm updates. As it stood, that was pretty much all of our traffic. It is now totally in the toilet and our sales went along with it.
In preparation for the marketing surge about to take place, we just overhauled the entire site and technology back-end, so as of a week ago, the site is now fully responsive and works across devices. We're using more third-party providers as well -- MailChimp, Shopify, Chargify, Braintree, and Google Apps for Business to do most everything. We are currently getting no traffic however from mobile, tablet, etc. It is all desktop and VERY low at that.
Cashflow is very, very tight at the moment as a direct result of all this, so you need to be someone who recognizes a big picture opportunity for themselves here and is willing to factor in our need for low initial costs. You need to be comfortable with the full spectrum of online marketing (SEO, SMM, Email, etc.) and able to be effective immediately.
And just to be clear, there's a ton of fertile ground here... we are currently doing zero advertising. No AdWords, Facebook, etc. We are also doing no email campaigns (auto-responder or otherwise). No SEO was done on the new site and all copy was written by an engineer with very little sales and marketing experience. No organized or managed social media presence. So in other words, no marketing at all. For years. So, our temporary misfortune can be a real opportunity for the right person if they can see what's possible. (Actually on that last note, we're preparing to do a mailing to our database of ~50,000 subscribers this week, ideally with your assistance and input.)
This cannot be a full-time or permanent position to start, simply because of the financial circumstances, but ideally I'd like it to turn into one. I want someone with a proven track record who can step in immediately and be off to the races. Someone who has done some research, is excited, writes great copy, and has a concrete vision for what we can do with our brand and business and knows how to execute it without lots of hand-holding and micro-management. Although it's not required, it would be ideal for obvious reasons if you have prior experience in the gaming and online education spaces.
It will be up to you to create the conditions under which we will be able to expand the relationship. To be clear, I'm not saying we won't pay you for your services, but rather that you'll need to be open to potentially lower rates than you are used to earlier on in the process while the pieces stage up over time with your help.
We have all of the components necessary to be very successful with the right person leading our sales and marketing efforts. If you think that's you, and you're fully comfortable with how this all has to play out, then please drop me a line and tell me what you have in mind.
Thank you for your time.
Joseph J. Meenaghan
President | The Game Institute