Dungeon Masters Guild: Business Update One

Here’s the gist of what’s happened so far on Dungeon Masters Guild for the three products I’ve uploaded. It’s pretty interesting to see some of the intricacies as I experimented with Pay What You Want, had a product go down to incorrect logo usage, and have been tracking freeloaders vs. paying customers (both of whom I like very much, it turns out!). Join me.

Dungeon Masters Guild

Dungeon Masters Guild logo…incidentally, not the one they want you using in your products!

Let’s take a look at my detailed timeline of events:

1/15

Uploaded two products: Calendar of Harptos and Hexcrawling: Wilderness Exploration and Random Encounters, both as Pay What You Want (PWYW) products.

3/8

Changed items to fixed prices: Calendar of Harptos $0.99 (I’ve sold 13 since this change) and Hexcrawling $1.99 (I’ve sold 27 since this change).

Sales up to 3/8 were:

  • Calendar 329 sold (41 paid, or a little over 12%). Gross sales $40.49, royalties $20.25.
  • Hexcrawling 553 sold (81 paid, or a little over 14%). Gross sales $128.77, royalties $64.39.

4/7

Added Curse of Strahd DM’s Kit & Screen at $2.99.

4/10

Total sales up through 4/10 are:

  • *Calendar 54 sold. Gross $53.36, royalties $26.68.
  • *Hexcrawling 107 sold. Gross $180.51, royalties $90.26.
  • Curse of Strahd DM’s Kit & Screen 56 sold. Gross $167.44, royalties $83.72.

*Not including the free downloads when they were PWYW.

Total royalties are $200.66 for about 10-12 hours of work (plus whatever reading I did for Curse of Strahd, as that was super important for building the index and testing story ideas).

4/12

Curse of Strahd DM’s Kit & Screen taken down due to incorrect logo usage. Fixed and resubmitted with no ETA on how long the review process takes.

Hexcrawling and Calendar logos updated to conform, as well (products were never reported, and thus never taken down).

4/13

Curse of Strahd DM’s Kit & Screen still down.

Hexcrawling reduced to $0.99 and Calendar returned to PWYW (suggested $0.99) just so I get a little boost in sales while I wait for the DM’s Kit & Screen to get resurrected. I think this trick netted me like 3 or 4 sales, so keep that in mind: if your big seller goes down, it may take time to juice the sales of other products by rearranging pricing or other tricks like that. Good thing this isn’t my living wage (not by a long shot!).

4/18

Curse of Strahd DM’s Kit & Screen comes back up.

Total sales up through 4/18 are:

  • Calendar 54 sold. Gross $53.36, royalties $26.68. (347 free downloads, so 15% are paying customers.)
  • Hexcrawling 111 sold. Gross $185.47, royalties $92.74.
  • Curse of Strahd DM’s Kit & Screen 78 sold. Gross $233.22, royalties $116.61.

That brings my total royalties up to $236.03 after about 4 months of jumping on the Dungeon Masters Guild train.

Dungeon Masters Guild Product Logo

Dungeon Masters Guild logo <- the correct one for your products!

Marketing Channels

Social Media

Google+ Communities

Anything that says D&D in the title, or is a general Roleplaying Game thing. *ALWAYS* post as a link to my blog explaining the product, not just directly to the product. I want people to discuss this stuff, tell me what they want, what I can improve. The product is almost secondary to getting a discussion going about “Hey, is this sort of thing even useful?” Anyway, there’s so many tech-savvy gamers on G+ that it’s easily one of my most useful traffic tools for my website, and since I post my product info on my website, that works out really well, I think.

Facebook Groups

I’m very, very careful with where I post this stuff, such as the DMsGuild Creators group and Adventurers League groups, but only on posts where people are actively looking for this sort of thing. I try not to just storm in and be all like “Hey I made a thing BUY IT NOW OR DIE.” That’s rude. Anyway, I’ve already maybe 3 or 4 threads where it came up as a solution to people complaining about the organization of the module, or looking for ways to change up certain encounter areas that are covered in the DM’s Kit portion of the product, and several comments (usually) followed. Seems to be working, but not quite as well as Google+, so far.

Twitter

I have about 200 followers, but most are either friends or followed me for reasons totally unrelated to RPGs (much to their chagrin, now!). That said, using hashtags like #DnD or #DMsGuild or product-specific ones like #Ravenloft seem to help the tweets get picked up by other feeds and searches, so it reaches a bigger audience than one might expect through re-tweeting and such.

Others

Forum Signatures

My RPGnet and ENWorld forum signatures include either a listing of specific products (RPGNet since I’m on there all the friggin’ time!) or a call out to my “Author” link on DMsGuild (ENWorld). If you’re on other forums, keep in mind their rules on links, signature length, and so on.

Press Release on EN World

ENWorld.org’s front-page Press Release “feed.”

neuronphaser.com

Keep in mind, my blog has a readership that is mostly looking at my reviews of RPG products, one-stop advice on general RPG hobby stuff (tips on being a better DM or player), or house rules. Product sales is hardly its bread and butter, but see the note below about affiliate programs, because I make some pocket change off of links to everything I review or add as a resource if people buy from Amazon or DriveThru/DMsGuild.

Affiliate Programs

Note that I signed up for the affiliate program at both Amazon (AKA Amazon Seller Associate account) and DriveThruRPG (which includes all sister sites like DMsGuild and RPGNow). All of my links to my own products, no matter where I place them, include the affiliate ID, so I can get a couple extra pennies on the back-end of that deal, as well as making some change off of my website’s reviews and resource links to various products on DriveThruRPG/DMsGuild and Amazon. Of course, since these are specifically Dungeon Masters Guild products we’re talking about, only the affiliate program for DriveThru/DMsGuild applies.

If you enjoyed this article, please comment, like, and share! You can support future reviews and articles at our Patreon. We publish supplements, campaign accessories, and adventures for Dungeons & Dragons at Dungeon Masters Guild as well as other OSR games and Cortex Plus at DriveThruRPG.

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neuronphaser is an editor, eCommerce consultant, web producer, and analyst living in sunny Hollywood, CA. He’s been playing tabletop RPGs of all kinds since 1985.

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