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There’s an old stereotype that gamers are lazy. When people picture avid video game enthusiasts, the reigning stereotype is of someone lazy, sitting in their parents’ basement, eating potato chips.
Fortunately, that’s not the reality for many gamers. In fact, over 164 million adults in America play video games on a regular basis, and they come from all walks of life. Playing video games doesn’t make them lazy, as 52% of those players have a college education, and many of them play for stress relief and/or stimulation.
Because gaming is so popular, it’s the perfect time to start a business completely geared toward other gamers. It’s an opportunity to take something you know and love and make it profitable. You don’t have to be a millennial or a kid to make a video game business succeed. If you’re a Gen Xer, you might even have an advantage since you grew up along with a lot of the technology being used today.
No matter your age or background in gaming, if you love doing it and can come up with a creative way to market a business idea, you can succeed. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some ideas you can use to get a “1-up” in the gaming world.
Become a Trainer
Are you the Mr. Miagi of gaming? Have you always just had a natural skill for mastering even the most difficult of games? Why not teach those who love to game but are struggling with it how to conquer their obstacles?
All metaphors aside, there are gamers out there who love to play but can’t seem to get better at it. If you’ve always been good at gaming, training could be a fun opportunity for you. Some pro gamers train for at least 50 hours a week. If you’re at that capacity, you might benefit from starting your own company like Learn2Play — a business that teaches people to play video games from an amateur level all the way up to a skill level where they can earn/win money.
There’s always the option of opening an office or training center where people come to you. But thanks to technological advancements, you can help people right online over streaming service or by sharing screens. Teaching tips, tricks, and best practices to get through different games can really improve an amateur player, and they’ll likely be so thrilled to finally get out of the “noob” category that they’ll gladly pay your fee.
Start Your Own Show
If there’s one thing gamers love when they’re not playing, it’s talking about video games and immersing themselves in the culture. If you’ve got a knack for public speaking and you have interesting topics to talk about, you might consider starting your own podcast or talk show about video games.
There are so many platforms for shows nowadays, and most of them are either free or fairly inexpensive, so you can get yourself up and running with very little cost. For example, you can start your own free podcast using the Anchor app with no prior audio experience. If you get enough listeners, you can even sign up for sponsorships to make money. YouTube offers another free platform to set up a show. There are plenty of gaming YouTube stars who make millions of dollars each year playing games online, unboxing new equipment, and more.
If you want some kind of broadcast show to succeed, though, there are a few steps you’re going to need to take. First, working with others can be a huge asset. As a gamer, you might be more inclined to be introverted since you’re used to playing alone. When it comes to business, though, collaboration will improve your productivity, inspire creativity, and can even make your show more popular if you work with the right people (other influential gamers, celebrities, etc.).
You also can’t do it all alone, so as your show gets off the ground, hiring some people to work with you will make it even better. Technology has made this easier than ever, too, with business tools that include project management systems, document sharing, and other cloud-based applications.
Sell Your Games — In-Person or Online
Do you have a plethora of games that you no longer play? Maybe you have some rare finds that people would pay top dollar for. One option is to open up a resale shop for your games (and other people’s games). You can open a brick-and-mortar store or an online shop where people buy and sell their gently used games.
Yes, there are other places like this online and all over the country, but you can make your particular method unique by coming into it from a gamer’s perspective. You know what other gamers want and you know how you’d want someone else to market it toward you. You can keep things simple by selling your games to an existing retail store, like GameStop. They’ll offer you cash, and it’s a quick way to make money.
But if you want to set up your own business or do something more professional, you can start out by using sites like Decluttr or set up a Facebook or Instagram account specifically for selling your games. That’s a quick way to gain a following, and people who are interested in gaming will consistently come back to see what you have to offer.
By using those skills, you can create a shop that has something other gamers are truly looking for. That kind of buzz can quickly cause your sales to grow, especially as more people get involved in the buying and selling of popular or hard-to-find games.
Set Up Your Own Streaming Service
Nowadays, many gamers play online multiplayer games and use streaming services like Twitch. But current streaming services aren’t perfect and it isn’t hard to do a quick search for user complaints.
Again, as a gamer, you have an advantage in knowing what other people want. You can create your own streaming service with faster load times, better features, and any other suggestions you might have once had yourself for services like Twitch. Of course, you might have to have some background in app development or coding. Creating an entirely new system isn’t easy, but if you have the knowledge and the passion, you can put it to use, or put together a sort of “dream team” with gamer friends of different talents who can build a new service together. Every idea and company has to start somewhere!
Obviously, marketing services like these online is important, but you can really gain the attention of people who might already use other services by marketing offline with community involvement (events), networking, and even trade shows.
Creating any kind of business takes time, effort, and maybe even a bit of capital. But, when it comes to starting a business based on the world of gaming, you’ll be allowed to use your personal creativity and knowledge to reach a greater level of success. You can protect yourself before you start by understanding what certifications or permits you might need, as well as what kind of liability or property insurance your business might need if you’re working with other people or in a building away from your home.
Gamers have done a lot in this world already, but you can continue to break through some of the stale stereotypes by starting your own small business based on what you know and love, and actually succeeding with it.