IndieDev Templates We All Know
A game engine is pretty much a template to build a game upon.
Rather than building an engine from the ground up, Indies use templates to hasten the speed of their developments. There’s no reason you can’t do the same for your marketing.
Trial and Error
When starting out in Marketing, I knew nothing. Over the course of the last few months as I built my marketing education, I’ve been searching to find what can make my website, and other marketing materials stand out.
In my search, I’ve purchased some things that turned out I didn’t need, but some things did turn out the way I wanted them.
A Lot of Effort
If you decide to go down the path of using templates, it’s probably not as magical as you might think.
I remember thinking that with a game engine, all I’d have to do is press a button, and voila, an instant awesome game.
Not so much.
Using templates still requires a good deal of energy and learning to get right, but often times, they multiply the quality of the outcome if you hadn’t used templates.
Here’s the templates I use for marketing and why:
- Michael Hyatt’s Blog Post Format (Not using anymore)– I like the way Michael uses personal stories in the beginning of his posts, and then ends it with the advice. The reader gets to know a bit more about Michael, and then gets thoughtful insight. The posts are mostly short as well, making sure the user doesn’t succumb to TLDR (too long didn’t read).
- WordPress – WordPress manages your content so you don’t have to. Pretty much instead of trying to code your fancy website from the ground up, you pick a theme, some plugins, and get started writing. Here’s my post on how to get started with it.
- Salient WordPress Theme (Not using anymore) – I’ve gone though about 4 different themes since starting my website. You can get some free themes, but I found them lacking. You can even buy super expensive ones, but I found them to be overkill. Ultimately, I think this theme is the best, and it’s still supported by the developer (one theme I bought discontinued about 4 months after I bought it). Plus, it’s responsive. (Note from the future: I just use the default WordPress theme now).
- phpBB (Not using anymore) – I don’t know much about forum software, so when I started out, I compared a few, then went with phpBB. I installed it using the Bluehost Installer. It works well for what it’s doing now (not a lot going on in my forums…yet!)
- Marina phpBB3 Theme (Not using anymore) – I wanted a theme that I could color match to some colors on my website, and a theme that was responsive. After some perusing, I went with this one.
- Taurus Newsletter Template (Not using anymore) – I also wanted an e-mail newsletter with color that matched my site, so I purchased this one. I had to do a lot of gutting and learning HTML to get it to the point where I liked it.
- Oceanic Responsive Newsletter Template (New as of March 3, 2015) (Not using anymore)– This is my new newsletter. Since I got some good practice using HTML on my last newsletter and making my IndieDev Side Project, I thought I’d better improve my e-mail template.
- BlauMail Newsletter Template (New as of April 1, 2015) (Not using anymore)– I’m indecisive on things and want to try out new techniques and designs. When I switched back to Mailchimp, I got a theme that could integrate well with it.
- Mailchimp – I really wanted to keep things simple, so I’m using this now.
What Do You Use
These templates I use took a good amount of time to develop, but I also learned a lot of skills along the way implementing them.