Don’t keep your game a secret
I know advertising is horrible. I know it’s a ball-ache. I know it’s horrible being advertised AT. But it doesn’t have to be, it’s just about letting people know what they want to know.
You want new players don’t you?
Our roleplaying games are a collaboration effort. If we were doing this alone, we’d just be novelists. But we’ve chosen to write with others because it’s amazing fun, and it feels cool to be writing socially. You might find yourself in a situation where more members would make this better, which is where youll have to start encouraging other members to join. We can do this passively and wait for them to come to us or we could find and invite them.
Waiting for new players
At the talk I gave at SciWorld last month I made the analogy of a shop in the middle of a desert. The shop might sell the most amazing things that you really like to buy. Let’s say… the best cakes in the world. And you LOVE cakes! But as it’s in the middle of the desert you wouldn’t know the shop even exists. But once they put up a sign, tell some people about it, and word reaches you, you’ll be happy to go find the shop.
Make yourself discoverable
Make your game more easy to find by being everywhere. Be active on social media, create a Facebook and Twitter account for your game and post relevant news that you think new members would like to read.
Be active on forums where you think your audience are. If yours is a Star Wars game, go be active on a Star Wars forum, and make sure you have a link to your game in your signature. Write an article for this blog, something useful that others will enjoy reading and share, and then when they think “this is cool, I wonder who the author is?” they’ll see your name and a link to the game you’re in.
Find players, don’t wait for them to find you
I wrote an article once called “Field of dreams got it wrong. If you build it they won’t come, unless you tell them to” which I still agree with. I mentioned above joining forums and being active. Use this to chat with other fans of your genre – whether that be a specific fandom, or a related fandom, and tell them about your game. Don’t jump straight into the hard sell, nobody likes a jerky salesman. Respect everyone as a person and use your judgement to see if they’d be interested in your game, and encourage them to join if you think they’d enjoy it.
Be active in the chatbox, and let other OngoingWorlds members know about you and your game, just don’t hog the limelight or spam the chat with links to your game.
Invite your friends
There’s nothing better than roleplaying with friends. Josh summed all this up very well in his article (read it here) so I won’t rehash it.
I’s completely possible to find the right people for your games, you just have to let them know you’re there, or go out finding them.