Category: Social Media

I’m speaking at PAX East this weekend!

Hey everyone – just a quick update…

Tomorrow morning I'm heading to Boston to attend Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) East 2011!  I can't wait to visit Boston again, see all my gamerDNA buddies, and see a PAX East that has been reborn to be bigger and better. I'm also going to be speaking on three different panels, each of them about Community Management and/or Social Media.

Here's the list – I hope you can make it out to one of them (or all!) and say hello!:

How Your Favorite Game Companies Use Facebook
Manticore Theatre

Friday, 8:00pm – 9:00pm

Like this. Like that. Facebook has taken the world by storm and has become a crucial platform for community managers and companies to help keep in touch with and grow their online communities. With the constant evolution of social media and Facebook in particular, you may not know some of the cool things happening on your favorite game studio's Facebook page. Join Collin Moore (Community Management Vet) as he moderates a discussion with community managers from across the game industry (Insomniac Games, Playfish/EA, Harmonix, and Robot Entertainment), about the importance of Facebook to game companies, and how pressing the "LIKE" button is just the beginning.

Panelists include: Collin Moore [Game Industry Vet], Sam Houston [Online Content Manager, Playfish - EA], John Drake [Manager of Communications and Special Projects, Harmonix], James Stevenson [Senior Community Manager, Insomniac Games], Justin Korthof [Community Manager, Robot Entertainment]

 

The Roads to Becoming a Community Manager (East Coast Version!)
Wyvern Theatre

Saturday, 4:30pm – 5:30pm

Based on the great feedback we received after this panel at PAX Prime, we've decided to do it again! East-Coast Style. You hear us on podcasts, see us in videos, read our blogs on websites, retweet us, argue with us on forums, and give us high fives at PAX. But have you ever wondered how we became community managers? From games journalism to forum moderation to public policy and QA, every road is different. Find out the random history of some of your favorite game studio community managers, and hear their advice on what skills and knowledge you’ll need to become one of gaming’s next-generation of community managers.

Panelists include: Alli Thresher [Community Moderator, Harmonix Music Systems, Inc], James Stevenson [Community Manager, Insomniac Games], Arne Meyer [Manager, Community, Naughty Dog], Sam Houston [Online Content Manager, Playfish, EA], Jennifer Kye [Company Blogger, Social Media Editor, Gameloft]

 

So I Still Have This Website…
Cat Theatre

Sunday, 3:00pm – 4:00pm

The community-focused panel from PAX Prime is making its way to the East Coast. You've spent the time and money building your community site, and now you're looking to take it to the next level. Maybe you want to get a job as a professional Community Manager, or maybe you're just looking for tips on how to get publishers and developers to pay more attention to your site. Whether you're just starting out, or have been running a site for years, this panel is the best place to get your questions answered. Together, these community managers have represented some of the biggest franchises, developers, and publishers in the game industry, and most of them started out just like you – running a fan site.

Panelists include: Justin Korthof [Community Manager, Robot Entertainment], James Stephenson [Senior Community Manager, Insomniac Games], Matthew Pruitt [FPS Community Manager, Electronic Arts], Sam Houston [Community Manager, Independent], Jessica Shea [Community Manager, 343 Industries]

 

Please stop by the panels if you can, I'd love to meet more gamer friends, and if you have any questions about Community/Social Media, I'd love to help you.  This is a total vacation for me and I can't wait to relax, walk around PAX, and try to experience the show as a gamer and not as a guy doing press interviews all day.  I also can't wait to see my gamerDNA buddies, as it has been over a year since I've seen most of them.

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First day at Playfish/EA


Today was my first day at Playfish/EA, and I figured I'd give the blog a brief update on the excitement so far.  On everyone's first day at EA, you have to go through new hire orientation – something that isn't too exciting, but it's good to get an overall idea of what EA is up to as a company, how it works and motivates its employees, and the various benefits of being an EA employee.  The whole thing lasts a few hours or so and at times it was hard for me to sit totally still for that long (due to my ADD, more than anything), but at least I got some free EA cups and a copy of Medal of Honor out of it :)

Orientation had me excited about EA, and it also served as a great reason to head down to the EA Redwood Shores (EARS) campus.  Since my last blog post, the Playfish gods pulled some strings and got me a full-time desk at the Playfish office in San Francisco, so I'll now be working full-time in SF.  This is absolutely fantastic and I'm very excited for many reasons, but it does mean I won't get to see all my friends at EARS any more than I would outside of work.  Going to EARS for orientation was fun because the campus was awesome, but also because I ran into two awesome people on my way into orientation and while on a tour of the campus.  The first being Peter (Marketing guy for Crysis 2, Alice 2, and other stuff), who I sat about two feet away from while I was at EA over the summer.  Peter's a hilarious guy with similar music and gaming tastes, as well as a great sense of humor.  It was great to see Peter since I haven't seen him in about four months.

The cherry on top was seeing Jaap Tuinman, though, as he played huge roles in my being hired for both my summer contract gig at EA, but also this Playfish position.  Jaap's a fantastic Director of Community at EA Games, and I'm forever grateful to him for all he's done for me in the past six months.  I consider anyone who gets to work with him very lucky.

After orientation, I headed back up to San Francisco and straight to the Playfish office.  I already had a desk with some nice Playfish swag on it (pictured above), and I even had an inbox full of email.  I was shown around the office, introduced to everyone, and immediately went into a couple community/company briefing meetings.  It felt great to be at a job again, and I'm really excited to get started on some community projects for our upcoming games.

So far, I'm really impressed by everyone at Playfish and I can't wait to work with them all.  Across the board, everyone was very smart, nice, funny, and laid back.  The entire company was very welcoming and people seemed genuinely happy and excited to have me there, something that I'm very happy to see on my first day :)

The Online Content Manager role is new for the Playfish SF office and there is a TON of room for me to grow and make the role my own, and I'm hoping to make a huge impact not only on the SF office, but Playfish as a whole.  Community Management is relatively new at the company, so I'm hoping to take what I've learned over the past few years, add a bunch of new knowledge from the Facebook Game community, and do some great things for both the company and our millions of players.

I'm very excited and I can't wait to get started.  Stay tuned!

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Accepting a position at Playfish (EA)!

Hello everyone!

Great news! Today I'm accepting at position to work at Playfish full-time as an Online Content Manager in their San Francisco office.  The Online Content Manager is basically a Community Manager, handling all community efforts for their particular game, and I'll be working on the games coming out of the SF office.  This comes with just about a week left before my prediction of getting a job before December would be void – I sure cut it close!

Playfish is a Facebook game company that was acquired by EA a year ago for ~$300 million,  and the company has created about 20 Facebook games over the years.  They're probably most famous for titles like Restaurant City, Hotel City, Pet Society, and most recently have recently released EA IP titles like Madden and Fifa.  It's very exciting to see the opportunities that Playfish has, to leverage both original IP, as well as EA portfolio IP's when creating new games.

While Playfish is owned by EA, they still manage to preserve a lot of the startup feel and atmosphere, and in general they're going to just trust me and expect me to do great work.  There won't be a lot of hand holding, just the expectation that I'll be creative, collaborate with the team across the board, and do great work.  This is what I LOVED about gamerDNA, and I can't wait to do it in a company that still has the backing of a company like Playfish/EA.  It's a great opportunity for me to learn more about community in the social gaming atmosphere, as well as a great opportunity to learn more about building communities at a large scale via social media and traditional community efforts.  Not to mention the Facebook casual gaming demographic is pretty new for me, so there will definitely be a bit of learning curve that I will have to adjust to.

From the first call I had with Playfish, things felt right.  All my conversations with the SF Playfish people were great, with very intelligent and easy to talk to people.  You can tell everyone is very talented and passionate about doing great work, but at the same time they want to have a good time doing it.  I've even been contacted by folks on the team already, urging me to accept and congratulating me, saying how excited everyone is to have me on board.  It feels great to be working at a place where people want me to be there and are excited about working together.

I should be starting next week, and I'll be working from the Playfish office in downtown San Francisco.  I'll also get to work at the EA Redwood Shores office occasionally, which will be great because the campus is great and I've got a lot of friends that still work at EARS.

This is just a quick post that I wanted to throw up since I literally just accepted on the phone.  In the future I'll be sure to post some more detailed blog posts :)

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Haven’t we been here before?

Looks like I'm back on the job hunt again!  Yesterday I was let go from Perfect World.

It's a long story, but basically I wasn't a great fit for the company and they weren't a great fit for me.  We saw things quite differently in terms of social media, branding, and other areas..and (in my opinion) that lead to me no longer being at the company.

All in all, it's for the better, and I'm thankful for at least a few things.  I now live in San Francisco, which I love more and more every day, and Perfect World gave me the chance to do things that I hadn't done before.

In my next job I'm hoping to be more community management focused, while still utilizing social media to grow the fan base.  I want to build brand loyality for the game and the company/studio that I'm working for.  I want to do this usual the many social media mediums to give people access to the studio in new and exciting ways.

To echo my post last time I was in this position…I'm so thankful for my time at gamerDNA.  It showed me how a company should work and how people can work together, respect each other's opinions and expertise, and work towards a common goal.  The things I learned about web development, working at a company, branding, social media, and the game industry are invaluable.

Now I just know a bit better what I want in my next gig and some more questions I should ask next time I'm in an interview.

If you know of anything or would like to talk to me about a Community/Social Media position in the game industry, you can contact me on LinkedIn at Linkedin.com/in/SamHouston and via email at Sam at QforQ DotCom.

I'm hoping to stay in the SF Bay Area, but if something is exciting and the opportunity is great, I'm open to moving.

Thanks for your support everyone!

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Just got back from E3 2010

Hello everyone!  It has been way too long since I blogged (as usual), but I thought I should write an entry since I just got back from E3..and since it's been over 6 months since my last entry.  Lots of things have changed since then.  I've moved to San Francisco, started the job at Perfect World Entertainment, went to PAX East and E3 2010, and even cut my hair (which I don't do enough!).

To pick up where I left off in my last blog post: Yes, I've started the job at Perfect World Entertainment as the "Senior Social Media Marketing Coordinator".  The transition from a small, very-flat (organizationally speaking) startup with little funding, to a huge Chinese MMO company with 80 employees (and 2k in China!) has been..pretty tough at times.  I'm not used to having multiple levels of people working on things, big departments of people – most of which I don't even know their names,  and in general the work environment/company is way different than GamerDNA.  

That's not to say things are bad..in some cases it's good, like having access to large budgets to do things like Facebook Games or Facebook Ads, where at a startup with a small amount of funding, you don't really get that kind of opportunity.  Working at a huge company like this definitely has its drawbacks, and I recognize that GamerDNA totally had me spoiled, but I've been given a lot of new challenges and tasks at Perfect World, and I'm going to come out of it with a ton of new experience.  I'm much more marketing/customer acquisition focused than I've ever been, which has been a challenge at times, but it's exciting to see how you can directly contribute to the bottomline with various initiatives.

Right now I'm working on a lot of different Facebook projects, one of which just launched – our Facebook Connect Project which rewards current players with in-game items if they promote our games to their Facebook Wall, similar to the way Facebook Games promote themselves.  You can check it out here:  http://www.perfectworld.com/blog/?p=62661.  We're also dabbling in Facebook Advertising, and I'm working on pushing forward a handful of other Facebook projects that are early on right now.  After we lay a great foundation on Facebook with multiple initiatives, I'd like to move into Twitter and other social networks.  Twitter's Ad platform has me pretty excited, and I hope to check it out later this year.

Being on a marketing team of 3 people (PR Manager, Marketing Coordinator, and myself), and being a guy that has no problem talking to press/the public, has given me the opportunity to represent the company at various events.  I went to PAX East (Boston) in March, and I just got back from E3 this week.  At E3 I did interviews with a lot of press that we couldn't schedule in for one of our product managers, and I talked all about Forsaken World, an upcoming high-quality Free to Play MMO that we have coming out this Winter.  It was great to do game demos and walkthroughs for press, something that I've seen so many times as a consumer, except this time it was me doing them!  It was great experience and I recognized how much fun I have talking to press about games.  Hopefully I can continue to do this at Perfect World and in the future.

Regarding my move to San Francisco:  It's freaking awesome.  I've found a great house full of awesome roommates (and now friends), found a great group of game industry friends that I hang out with every weekend and even during the week, I love my neighborhood, and I love this city.  I hope to live here for a long time, as the area is absolutely fantastic for the tech/game industries, and I love the chill vibe of everyone.   No matter your lifestyle or your interests, it's cool here.  I really love the acceptance of people's differences here..something refreshing coming after growing up in a very conservative town in Ohio.  My transition to SF couldn't be better.  I'm so thankful for my friends here!

As things move forward this year, I still have a lot left I want to do.  I've got a burning passion to get back into music some how…I'd really like to join a band of some sort.  I need to figure out where my professional passions lie…is it marketing, or community, or a mix of both?  I sometimes really miss interacting directly with consumers.  I also may want to start up a video game podcast of sorts, to give myself another creative outlet outside of work.  And I definitely need to explore more of this city.

This week I'm planning to pick up the new iPhone 4, another notch in my bedpost of complete consumer-whoreism.  Earlier this year I bought an iPad, which has been pretty great for me (I don't need a laptop and it's great for reading the internet and watching video!).

Next month I'm going back to Ohio for a much needed week long vacation.  It's going to be my nephew Adrian's 3rd birthday and I can't wait to see him!

See you guys soon.  Hopefully I'll update more often as ideas come up in the coming weeks.

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Moving to San Francisco and working at Perfect World Entertainment

I've got a job!

Senior Social Media Marketing Coordinator – That's my new position at Perfect World Entertainment, a video game developer and publisher in Redwood Shores (South Bay of San Francisco, CA).

After about two months on the job hunt and several interviews and meetings with various companies, I was able to find a great opportunity with an exciting company – Perfect World Entertainment.  I will be joining the Marketing and PR team in just a couple weeks, working alongside ambitious and energetic folks that are trying to take over the Free to Play MMO space in the US.

Perfect World is probably most commonly known as the developer publisher of Perfect World International, their main MMO in the states which gamers can play for free, but can also buy items in-game through their cash mall.  You've also probably seen the Perfect World cash cards at your local 7-11 or GameStop.

Perfect World also has two other games out now, Jade Dynasty and Ether Saga Online.  They've got a number of new games coming out next year, with Kung FOO! coming out very soon.  What most people probably don't know, though, is that Perfect World published the popular PC RPG "Torchlight", which is a game that released this fall and was developed by former Diablo/Blizzard devs at Runic Games in Seattle.

To sum things up – Perfect World is a very ambitious company that is very successful in China and they want to make a big impact in the US.  Their current games are doing pretty well (1 million active players across their three F2P MMOs right now, I read in an article most recently), and they've got quite a few coming out in the new year and beyond.  They're doing some exciting publishing deals (Torchlight for example), and I'm very excited join Perfect World as they transition into a new phase of growth and expansion.

As I mentioned in my last post, the prospect of focusing 100% of my energy on using social media to build game communities and market games is *very* exciting to me..and it is ultimately what made this position a real winner for me.  I'll be joining a great team with some big goals and a totally open canvas in terms of what we can do.

Perfect World has community managers for their games, and I'm very excited to work with them to help build stronger and bigger communities around their games. With three games out now (and more coming next year), we should have a wealth of content to share and talk about with our community.  I'm going to try to really push things forward in the F2P MMO space, which based on some of my research doesn't seem to get a lot of love in the community department.  I'm very excited to get on Twitter, Facebook, build our blog presence, and hopefully get into other mediums/platforms so that we can interact with our community in the places that they are online.

Ironically, the week that I accepted the position, Perfect World relaunched their web portal and launched a new company blog.  I encourage you to check out the site – Nice work guys!

This job successfully rolls up my passion for community, social media and marketing into one role – and I'm very excited.  I've got big goals for myself in the social media/game space, and I think this company and this team will help me attain those goals.  I'm looking forward to starting in just a couple of weeks!

The whole F2P MMO space is new to me, and working directly for a game developer/publisher…but I'm looking forward to learning what works, what doesn't, and taking the journey along the way.  If anyone has any suggestions/insights on F2P MMO community, please feel free to contact me!

On a different  note – I now need to find a place in SF in a very short period of time. If anyone needs a roommate, or knows someone that does, *please* contact me ASAP.  I need everyone's help, since I need to move cross country *very* soon.  Thanks for any help you can provide!

In summary…I'm scared, excited, and very anxious to start a new chapter of my life in San Francisco at an awesome game company and in a dream role of a job.  It was a great Christmas/Birthday present, and I want to thank everyone for all the encouragement, support, and help that got me here!

Thanks!

Sam "QforQ" Houston

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It has been a crazy ride on the unemployment train

It has been over a month since my last update and a lot of stuff has happened in that span of time.  My lack of updates isn't because of a lack of things going on, but has more to do with the fact that all the cool stuff I've been doing I can't really talk about at this time.

I still don't have a job, but I feel confident that that won't be the case very soon.  Just this past week I was out in San Francisco meeting with a few game companies, and all my interviews have gone very well so far.  I'm feeling very good about my chances of finding work soon/in the new year, and I can't wait to share with everyone where I land, and more importantly..start at a new company.

The past few weeks have been very exciting because as I talk to more companies, I'm getting a better idea of exactly what I want to do in my next job.  I'm getting more creative ideas, and getting more inspired about what I can do in my career and how I can be someone in the game industry that is moving game community and social media practices forward.  It has brought me to an ambitious goal that I now have, which is to be one of the best social media professionals in the game industry – and I think I can do that.  I'm very proud of and excited by what I've been able to do over the past year in the gaming social media space, and I hope to be able to continue on that path in 2010 and really make some waves in the game industry.  I think there is a lot of opportunity to utilize new social media technologies to build communities and engage with gamers, and I can't wait to get out there and do that for a company that I'm passionate about.

So far the unemployment train ride has been an interesting one, with lots of different waves of emotions going over as situations change or new things happened.  November was a bit rough, since it was my slow month and nothing was really happening, so it was definitely a tad bit sad and lonely.  Staying at home all day and no longer going into an office of your best friends took some getting used to, but things are much better now.  December in general has been a much better month, and I'm very thankful for all my friends and family that have helped me get through this temporary run-in with unemployment.

All in all, things are looking up, and I'm hoping to have some good news in near future.  At the very least, I'm excited to go back to Ohio for a few weeks of Christmas vacation, with plans to hang out with my nephew as much as possible and get my family together for some Beatles: Rock Band.  Then after that, I'll be turning 22 on January 2nd!  Lots of good things ahead of me :)

Lastly, I wanted to close out with an update on gamerDNA:  Today it was announced that the gaming news website Crispy Gamer has merged with gamerDNA.  I've met Chris (CEO of Crispy) several times, and I've always liked him a lot.  I wish Crispy and the remaining GamerDNA crew the best of luck on their new journey!

Thanks!

-Sam "QforQ" Houston

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Social Media and Game Industry Web Roundup 11/1/09

Since I’ve got a lot more free-time now, I’ve set several goals for myself that I can now attain. One of those is catching up on a lot of reading, online and offline, since for the past few months I basically had to unplug a bit from all the game news, community management articles, books, etc.  It started this summer when I took over all the PR for gamerDNA’s relaunch, and then carried on through to the last couple months when things were still busy and slightly crazier.  They used to call me “The Internet” at work because I knew so much about current gaming and tech news…and I don’t feel so internet-y any more.  So anyways…I’m trying to fix that now, and I thought I’d create a blog post every once in awhile that shares some cool stuff I’ve come across in my internet travels.



BioWare Reveals Dragon Age’s “Massively Single-Player” Details – Stephen Totilo – Kotaku

Stephen Totilo has a really interesting article that goes into the details of the new BioWare Social Network that just launched recently.  On the surface the social network doesn’t look a whole lot different than most other social networks powered by Social Engine software.  The customization is in the rich features, though, and it sounds like BioWare has spent a lot of money tying the game to this social network.  The features described in this article get my really excited about this game and definitely make me want to check it out…at least for professional research purposes  ;)



The Future of the Social Web – Brian Solis – PR 2.0

Forrester Research published a report that describes what they believe will be the future of the social web.  I happen to agree with a lot of it, and it actually describes a lot of what we built at gamerDNA.  Relevance and reacting to what we knew about a member were two huge factors in what we built at gamerDNA.  Definitely worth a read.  Makes me think about how this would affect game community websites specifically (in house sites, like WoW Armory for example), and not just 3rd party internet consumer websites.



5 Ways to Use Twitter’s New List Feature for Marketers  - Influential Marketing Blog

-This past week Twitter launched the List feature, which makes it so anyone can add a Twitter user to their own list, and that list can be shared with other people and even followed by others.  This blog article outlines some ways that people could use blogs and should help you think about some cool ways you could use Twitter Lists at your company.



From Strategy to ROI Model – slide deck from Dawn Lacallade, Community Manager for SolarWinds

As I get ready for job interviews, I’m trying to read up more on some various community manager topics and generally see how people are doing things these days.  I liked this presentation because it was very basic and didn’t skip over much as it explains the process of pitching and creating a Community plan for your organization.



Getting Started 1: Do you know what people are saying about you? -Fresh Networks

Fresh Networks wrote a blog post series/guide to help organizations “Get Started in Social Media”.  It’s all pretty basic, but I liked the list that they put together of free buzz tracking tools.  In the paragraph prior to the list, Fresh Networks says, “The best results come from using paid-for services..”.  I can’t really say this is right or wrong, since I didn’t have experience with paid services at a large scale.  I tried out Radian6 (the service mentioned in the article) at gamerDNA and wasn’t very impressed with it, but I think that probably has more to do with our scale at the time and the amount of conversations on the web. That and the price tag was pretty hefty for a startup like us.

If I remember correctly, it was roughly $5,000+ a year or more for the type of account we would need with Radian6.  It would have been a huge waste of money for gamerDNA, so we decided not to spend that money.  If you’re a larger company and/or have a large amount of mentions (to the point it is truly overwhelming and you need help sifting through it all), I suggest looking into these services.  Radian6 and Techrigy are two services that come to mind, and I know or have met people at both and they’re good people.  Hopefully at my next gig I’ll have the chance to check these services out – They’re doing some interesting stuff, if you’ve got the money in your budget.

The best buzz tracking services that would fit into this blog post are:  Google Blog Search, Technorati Search, Google Alerts, Twitter Search.  IceRocket search was basically worthless, bringing up posts that were (relatively) ancient, so it just turned into a waste of time when you checked your searches.  I covered this last year in my blog post “Are Video Game companies active in Social Media?“.

I think I’ll cover this topic in a bit more depth in a blog post later this week.  There are some decent new, free tools and services that can help you monitor your brand and interact with your community.  They can get you a long way, with no money spent at all (besides time).



Staying Power: Rethinking Feedback to Keep Players in the Game – Gamasutra

Microsoft Game Studios did some user research on gamers completing games and offers some solutions/insight into how game designers could help people complete their games.  This is a pretty in-depth article chock full of data..even with references at the end!  Worth checking out for sure.



That wraps it up for this blog post.  If you have any thoughts on the above articles, I’m interested in hearing them!

Thanks,

Sam “QforQ” Houston

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Community Manager looking for job

As of this past week, I am no longer employed at gamerDNA and I’m now looking for a new job.  Myself and five others were laid off last week, freeing up the company a bit so that it can operate at break even and continue to do awesome things.  A news article about the situation came out earlier this week with some quotes from our CEO Jon Radoff, if you’re interested.

Working at gamerDNA was an amazing experience and has helped my career in huge ways.  I’m very thankful to Jon and the rest of the staff for giving a (at the time) 20 year old from Ohio the opportunity to work at a video game internet startup.  I came on board in March of 2008 as the eighth employee, when the company was still meeting at Jon Radoff’s house and our desks were his dining room table.  I saw the company grow quite rapidly, move into its first office, change our name and rebrand itself, and launch GamerDNA.com in early June of 08′.  I remember the meeting that we had where we decided on the new logo, the awesome work of art from the super talented Sean Duhame.  Everyone was always involved and kept up to date on what was going on in the company, and I came to love our Wednesday “Lunch and Learns”, where the company would have lunch together and update everyone on the progress that we were making and any big news or exciting projects.

I’ve been to PAX twice now, I’ve been to BlizzCon, GDC and E3…all because of GamerDNA.  Two years ago it was just a dream to be able to go to those events (especially E3..such a video game nerd’s dream!).  I even had the pleasure of launching a website at E3 and representing the company in interviews for MTV.com and Current.TV.  Most recently I put together all the PR for our GamerDNA.com relaunch on Sept 2nd, which resulted in the most coverage GamerDNA.com had ever received for one launch.

GamerDNA gave me a huge amount of opportunities and responsibilities, and for that I am very grateful to Jon Radoff and the rest of the team.  What started out as an entry level marketing position (“Game Talent Lead”), later turned into a Community Management role and then ultimately my role as Online Marketing Manager.  It was a great ride.

If you haven’t yet, please check out yesterday’s blog post which included a picture of the product team at gamerDNA.  It was taken last week at our company party at Trapper Markelz’s house, and it shows a great group of guys that have become my surrogate Boston family.

So what’s next?

Now I’m interested in going to my next dream job, a Community Management job at a video game developer or publisher.  I don’t have anything lined up just yet, so I’m still looking and applying to various job opportunities out there.  I’m looking to take what I’ve done at gamerDNA, take all my passion for Social Media and Community Management, and turn that into a career at a game company.  That’s my hope, at least :)

If you’re interested in finding out more about all the cool stuff I’ve done in my time at gamerDNA and more details on my experience, please check out my LinkedIn Page: http://www.linkedin.com/in/samhouston .  I’ve updated it quite a bit and it’s basically a web version of my resume.  If you’d like to get in touch with me directly, please shoot me an email at Sam AT QforQ dotcom.  I’m willing to relocate for a new job, and I’m especially excited about CM roles that will give me the opportunity to interact directly with gamers, as well as work with press and represent the company at events like PAX.

Other things on the horizon are a relaunch of GameIndustryTweet.com with updated pages and a new look….and some time relaxing and catching up on all these video games I need to finish :) .

Thanks for reading this far, if you know of any exciting Community Management gigs in the game industry – Please give me a shout!

-Sam Houston

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What I did at E3: TweetMyGaming.com

Wow…I can’t believe it’s been a week since E3!  It feels like it was so long ago now, everything has been a bit of a blur and I’ve been pretty busy at work.  Lots of exciting stuff going on, and now I can finally talk about most of it!

First off, E3 was tons of fun!  It was a great chance for me to see some new friends (mostly people I met at GDC/on Twitter) and meet lots of new folks, as well as get an introduction to a different side of the industry.  There is a big difference between the attendance of GDC (students/developers and press) and E3 (markters/sales, press, and buyers), so it was really interesting to meet more folks on the marketing/sales side of things.

GamerDNA sent me to E3 to do all of our press interviews for a new project that we launched, called TweetMyGaming.com .  TweetMyGaming tracks all of the gaming conversations on Twitter in real-time, and shows you what the most popular games are right now.  It’s a project that I was involved with since day one, all the way from the conceptualization and finding a contractor, to the execution/product direction and then doing interviews with the press :) .  It’s something that I’m very proud of, and I’m happy that I’ve been able to do yet another project around something I’m very passionate about:  Twitter and Social Media.

So far the project has been quite successful for us, with interviews going up on Kotaku , Joystiq , and Destructoid .  Destructoid’s article even features some quotes from me, as Samit Sarkar was kind enough to do an interview with me earlier this week.  It’s pretty good article, so I hope you check it out!

When I was actually at the E3 Convention Center, I did a number of interviews with Current.Tv and MTV Multiplayer.  These turned in to daily segments, and MTV Multiplayer has put up theirs:

MTV Multiplayer - TweetMyGaming Day 1 Wrap-Up

MTV Multiplayer – TweetMyGaming Day 2 Wrap-Up

MTV Multiplayer – TweetMyGaming Day 3 Wrap-Up

TweetMyGaming/E3 marks for the first project and event that I’ve had the opportunity to speak directly with the press and do interviews.  All the feedback internally has been positive, so I’m really excited and happy that I was able to do this for the company.  My hope is that I’ll get to do this more often, it was a lot of fun!

In the near future I may do a brief post about E3 and what I saw there, mainly with pictures from my iPhone.  So until then…see you around and thanks for reading my blog!

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