Marketing and Monetization Interview Series #5. Meds Likes Chicks … and Vixens

Today we talk to Meds, also known on Twitter as JabberWorx. Meds entered the Windows Phone community spotlight when he released Chicks’n’Vixens – a really well made Angry Birds type game.

You are best known for the first Windows Phone Angry Birds clone – Chicks’n’Vixens. Were you genuinely annoyed that the “real thing” wasn’t available for so long or did you think it’s a good chance to show off your skills and maybe even make some money in the process?

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It did bug me that Rovio appeared to be beating around the bush but there was probably some other things going on as well. I did it as a sort of tech demo and to see what I could do with Windows Phone 7 but it kind of blew up from there with the download numbers, emails and threats of violence haha.

CnV got a lot of attention from the media. Was it just a natural interest based on its nature or did you do anything special to attract attention?

There was a lot of luck involved, I don’t think I did anything particularly brilliant. My favorite parts of the game (the music and art) didn’t really involve me at all.

When you’ve reached version 1.0 you did a brilliant business trick, sort of exploiting how marketplace ranking works. You’ve switched your app from free to paid and became number 1 paid app. Was it your idea or have you seen other apps do this? Maybe on other platforms?

I was just making it up as I went along, any semblance of success Chicks’n’Vixens has had has more to do with sheer blind luck than any brilliance on my part.

Pretty much all the commercial success stories in independent Windows Phone apps are from the free apps monetized with ads. Yet, you decided to make the game paid. Do you think this was the right decision? How happy are you with the results? Care to share any numbers? 😉

I wasn’t too keen on doing ad support, I know there’s money in it but I wanted to try and do something a bit different. After being #1 for almost 2 weeks as a paid app I can say that I’m very happy with the results. I won’t give specific numbers but suffice to say it would make many iOS and Android devs green with envy.

An update to the game called Chicks’n’Vixens: No Donuts is an ad-supported free app. Why did you decide to go with ads this time and why did you release it as a separate app?

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Lots of people were asking for a free ad supported version so I didn’t really have a choice but to make an ad supported version. It was going to also be released as an update for Chicks’n’Vixens but technical reasons prevented that.

I’ve seen you tweet about porting CnV to other platforms. How is this going? Have you released anything already? How do downloads/sales compare to the Windows Phone version?

I released it on iPhone but didn’t try to market it very much so it didn’t get very successful, sort of got bored and distracted with other projects I wanted to pursue (also real life work and responsibilities).

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