The Blue Beard Business Blog
Goal of the Blog
So why keep a blog?
Believe it or not, every business doesn't need a blog. They might need a "news" page, or some way of updating their customers on when their next release is, but they don't need a blog.
Firstly, because I enjoy it. I'm not an extrovert, but I do process new ideas (and big decisions) by sharing them with others. Just writing these blog posts has helped me solidify a lot of my business-related thoughts. On top of that, I'm a huge fan of giving back - so much of what I've learned about running a business has been from Jamey Stegmaier's blog - my hope is that by putting all this information out there, it's helpful to someone.
Of course,if I just did what I enjoyed, my business would largely consist of me eating Tim Tams. Fun, but unlikely to be particularly successful. No, the second - and more important - reason to start this blog: to start building brand awareness.
I love reading about how something was put together. It almost invariably makes me want to play/watch/experience that thing directly. I've no idea if I'm alone in that, but my hope is that by writing interesting and informative posts about how I run my business/assemble games, it'll mean that people are aware that the business/games exist, and want a copy for themselves.
And even though I'm targeting parents (a fairly specific demographic), everyone knows a parent or two. When I release a new game, even if you're not interested yourself, my hope is that you'll pass the information onto someone who is.
Best of all, this blog is fairly low-risk. I'm a fast writer, I plan to update once or twice a week, so in the absolute worst-case scenario I don't get any extra sales from it, I just end up with a blog full of cool posts following the creation of my business.
I can live with that.
What To Expect From The Blog
As I mentioned above, designer diaries! I love designer diaries, and so I'm going to be putting them together even for creative projects that I don't release under the Blue Beard brand. These will include a bunch of game design theory and general creativity tips that I've learned along the years.
Marketing, branding and selling whatever I'm working on at the time. I've always been good at making stuff - getting other people to buy it is where I've struggled, so I look forward to sharing whatever I learn.
One thing that I find myself endlessly obsessed with are the specifics of business finances, and so whenever I'm able to, I'm going to be sharing specific numbers. How much everything cost me, how much I paid artists/graphic designers, and yes - how much I made.
Whenever I have to make particularly big decisions, those will probably get a blog post. Choices on marketing, branding - even stuff like why I decided to host my blog with Silvrback.
Interviews with anyone will let me interview them. (Not just anyone.) (I will have higher standards than that.)
I have plans for a Blue Beard Business Blogcast, so once I stop moving around quite as much, you can look forward to a weekly or fortnightly podcast about business practices, with the very best guests I can get onboard.
Right now, my focus is on Jellybean Games, but I have every intention of starting *other businesses under the Blue Beard brand, so I'll likely talk about those as they happen.
Lastly: anything you'd like to see! If there's a particular topic you want to read a post about, email me or leave a comment, and I'll add it to the list!
As you can see, the scope of the blog is going to be fairly broad, but it'll all be important stuff that relates to running a business (I have a personal blog for the hugely off-topic stuff). If you'd like to be kept up-to-date every time I update (currently aiming for Mondays and Thursdays), just hit the "subscribe to this blog" button below. I also have a few other mailing lists, if you want to be kept up-to-date on all the things:
As I write this, it's the 2nd of February, 2016. These first five blog posts have been written over several months, during which time I've moved country, hired an artist and a graphic designer for Village Pillage, sent Scuttle! to reviewers, and been commissioned to codesign Traitor Mechanic - The Traitor Mechanic Game (more on that later).
By the end of this year, I'll have anywhere between 3 and 5 games out, at least two of which I'll have kickstarted myself. I'll be living in Toronto, Canada, and Jellybean Games will be a registered LLC (or whatever the Canadian equivalent is). Being Honest With My Ex will have been going for over a year, and I'll have started another podcast or two (at least).
Whether any - or all - of that will be huge successes or huge flops, I don't know. But I'm excited to find out, and I hope that you'll follow the blog, and come on that big, scary ride with me!
Up next: Scuttle! Design Diary - Part 1