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Important Insights in Last Month's Casual Connect Europe ConferencePublished March 9, 2016 by Lee R
Last month's Casual Connect Europe event in Amsterdam brought up insights and discussions important for the gaming industry. The activities and discussions are too endless to fully describe, and another event is coming up in May for the Asian markets.
Big name iGaming leaders and independent innovators got together in Amsterdam from February 16-18 for a focused brainstorm on how to keep the social casino industry thriving at an emerging casino gaming track.
Gamesauce Provides Lowdown
In a great overview, online gaming portal Gamesauce reports a friendly fireside chat set the tone at Casual Connect Europe. Playtika SVP Elad Kushnir offering fresh insights in a candid interview to GamesBeat reporter Jeff Grubb. The conversation covered the multiple challenges the social casino market faces, including overall growth, different platforms, foreign markets and the top-heavy nature of the sector.
When asked how a company might break into the notoriously top-heavy social casino space, Kushnir offered the following: “Break the rules. Bring something new to the table,” pointing out that smaller companies inherently have the agility and creativity to break the rules because they are not as visible as the big companies. This provides opportunities for unconventional and riskier approaches which smaller companies can try out, as long as they plan out their strategies well.
Kushnir also advised focusing on one target market to start, mastering that region in order to establish a foothold online. This could be accomplished according to Kushnir through “delivering an experience that meets the audience’s expectations.”
More insights came from Plumbee’s Raf Keustermans, who spoke about trends in consolidation, player behavior, and indie development, while pointing out advantages exemplified by current industry leaders.
User acquisition and retention was the hottest topic, with several industry experts providing their opinion on the issue. Google Gaming Industry Analyst Noam Peri provided a deeper look into player behavior by providing an exclusive look at the results of a 1,000-person survey conducted by Google targeting social casino players, shedding light on the current state of trends in discoverability, installation, monetization and retention.
One key insight was the disclosure of a key barrier to players playing after installing games:
“The number one reason is time and attention. Answers like: ‘I forgot about it,’ ‘I played other games,‘ ‘I had no time.’”
Peri had this suggestion for developers: don't assume the problems are technical. Remind the 43% of users not playing that they've downloaded the game.
At night, the two day event featured over 1,000 industry professionals mingling at Vegas World’s party, as well as Facebook hosting over 1,000 gaming professionals at a party the first night.
Next Casual Connect - Asia
The list of speakers and in-depth specialized topics is almost endless, too much to fit into one article for sure. The next chance to get a taste of what a full track dedicated to social casino means will be in Casual Connect Asia, taking place in Singapore, May 17-19, an event which will be covered by us here in Online Casino Reports as well.