The Story of BDinGD, a Gamedev Networking Community
In this article, my team and I will talk about the Bizdev in Gamedev community, why we created it and for who, where the idea for this project came from, and what benefits you can expect from being a part of the community.
Where it all started: my story
Attending conferences and exhibitions is an inherent part of the gaming industry. Dozens of business goals can be met at these events — from finding new employees to meeting key investors.
My experience attending conferences began in 2013, when I went to GDC (Game Developers Conference) to present my first project, INLINGO, to the world. Everything seemed so simple back then. You arrive, meet people, sell your services, and sign a contract. However, all I managed to bring back from my first conference were dozens of business cards from random people I conversed with because they happened to be standing near me or walking past. How many deals did I close? Zero.
After that, what I really wanted was to forget about events entirely and not spend my resources on them anymore. But I saw competitors going to exhibitions, becoming recognizable, and attracting new clients. I decided that I needed to know in advance who'd be going to a particular conference, and who I should talk with about what. Sometimes getting this done took weeks or even months. The first goal-oriented meeting that resulted in a deal happened at my fifth conference — the first four didn't pay off.
What was my business development strategy missing?
At that time, I lacked one simple thing: a system for setting up meetings that would make searching for new people easier and increase efficiency at these events exponentially. Additionally, I had no way to get in touch with people I wanted to meet with at the event but didn't manage to, so I had to wait months for those people to show up at the same event as me.
The first project to meet those needs was just a web client, and it was extremely inconvenient. Meetings could be postponed or delayed, and I wouldn't know about it if I didn't have my laptop nearby. I'm not even talking about the PRM system (Partner Relationship Management) pitched by Alexey Kekulov (who has the most contacts in Russia according to Forbes), where you can read detailed information about each participant, what they can offer, and what projects they are working on.
A platform for networking
All of these factors combined have given life to my new project, 2Meet. One day, my colleagues came to me and gave me the idea to create our own project to solve the problem of networking at conferences. We offered our solution to conference organizers, went to events, set up goal-oriented meetings, and left with plenty of new deals.
This is the 2Meet application, where the BDinGD community is based.
Based on this platform, Anya Fedorova, who was then Head of Community at RJ, suggested creating a gamedev business community. We spent a long time discussing how this community should work, who it should be aimed at, and what goals it would help meet. Finally, in July 2019, we launched BDinGD (BizDev in GameDev).
What is it for?
Why did we decide to bring this project to life? Because there's still an air of exclusivity today. Some people don't get invited to the parties, others just don't know how to present themselves, even if they are talented. We want everyone to have an equal chance to get their projects off the ground. We want everyone to always have access to work, clients, and investments.
Who is it for?
This is a community for entrepreneurs, founders, developers, publishers, talented game designers and artists, and influencers. Find advantageous business contacts all year round, share your experience, and launch new projects together.
We set up meetings for INLINGO at lots of different conferences using 2Meet. This is us chatting at one of them.
We offer an alternative system for setting up meetings at key events, and we also offer interesting meeting locations and schedules for all official and unofficial parties at major events like ChinaJoy and Gamescom.
Forming a community
BDinGD is an open networking community. Our internal slogan is: Our opportunities lie at the intersection of other people's interests.
We are geared towards high-quality content, so if we notice any spam, we send a warning, and if that doesn't work, the user in question will be banned. For this same reason, you will never see ads in this community.
How can you get the most out of the app?
Follow the advices we've prepared for you.
Fill in your profile with as much detail as you can. That's important. The system will only show your profile to other participants for potential cooperation, discussing a new project, or searching for new employees or investors if it's entirely filled you're your name should be written using the Latin alphabet, and we recommend you fill in your position, company, and the I'm Looking For and About Me sections in English.
Add photos. Our statistics from events show that profiles with photos are opened 80% more often than those without them.
Open the Attendees or Cards section and filter participants according to what they're looking for. Need an investor? Just put Investments in the tag field, and the system will filter all available profiles and show you participants who are ready to invest in interesting projects.
Write to interesting people, chat, and set up a meeting if you feel like you have things to discuss. You can even do so without being bound to a specific event.
Look for new people in the app once a week (or even more often). And contact them.
Look for parties happening during conferences in the Parties section, and add them to your schedule so you don't forget.
Thank you for becoming an active member of the community!
We are always open to your suggestions. Contact us if you have any ideas about what else can we add and what content you're interested in seeing—we're always just a quick message away. You can send your suggestions right to me, Pavel Tokarev, in the BDinGD app or Info Service chat.