Each story I edit teaches me a thing or two — it is the chief benefit of being the Publishing Editor of The Lead South Australia — but one story we published a few weeks ago called “Physical toys plus digital toys equals appiness” has stuck in my mind.
The story was about a South Australian Company called Mighty Kingdom that has developed an app game for the popular Shopkins figurines.
A South Australian company doing amazing things on the world stage is enough to pique my interest but it was the business advice offered freely by Mighty Kingdom General Manager Dan Thorsland near the end of the story that caught my attention.
Speaking about how to develop a successful app, Thorsland said the most important thing was to understand the targeted audience. He then shared a toymaker’s secret:
Don’t watch the game watch the player, don’t watch the toy, watch the kid.
His advice can be used in all industries, but especially amongst the many developers insisting on designing apps and other ‘services’ that frankly no one needs.
“You really need to do your research in terms of what the market does,” Thorsland says. “You get a lot of startup wannabes who think that because it’s an idea they like, that it’s what the world will like and that’s a recipe for disaster.”
“It’s always about observing what the market wants, who your target market is and what they like to do.”
I hope his advice hits the target.