The video gaming business is one of the industries that continues to record outstanding growth in Nigeria and the rest of the world. Millions of people globally love playing games. You can find game enthusiasts enjoying a top-notch online slot when they are free, either for fun or profits.
The popularity of video games, especially among the young population, makes the gaming business a lucrative venture. Video games are a source of entertainment for the masses where some people can hardly go a day without indulging in the sport.
If you are an entrepreneur and would like to invest in the gaming business, you must get it right the first time to run your entity successfully and profitably.
Thankfully, there are plenty of gaming business ideas to explore to start an entity you will love. One of them is starting a video game business where revelers can come to your establishment to play their favorite video games.
Below we will give you a comprehensive guide on the 8 most important steps to start a video game business in Nigeria.
How to start a video game business in Nigeria
1. Start with a Detailed Business Plan
The first step towards establishing a successful gaming business is to have a solid business plan in place. It is particularly important if you are going to be seeking funding for the entity. An excellent gaming center business plan will essentially include setting your goals and how you intend to achieve them.
Great plans include details that can help improve your chances of success. They feature information like market analysis, customer segmentation, marketing, competitive analysis, cash flow projections, logistics and operations plans, and the path to long-term growth. These plans can also help you accomplish several things, including:
- Starting your gaming business on the right foot.
- Remain effective in the development and management of priorities and operations.
- Establishing specific short and long-term goals.
- Remain credible and coherent with your employees and partners.
- Launch a crowdfunding campaign or raise funds for your gaming business.
A well-written plan will also help you track the progress of the entity when it begins to grow. Gaming business plans are tools that can help you make crucial decisions. Note that entrepreneurship presents endless crisis management and decision-making.
Gaming business plans can also help you anticipate problems you may face during operations to aid you in coming up with realistic solutions. You do not even have to write the plan on your own. There is an option of hiring an expert gaming business plan writer or accountant to help you out.
2. Get Capital and Equipment
Your gaming business will ideally be in an indoor location that will require some level of structure to attract as many customers as possible. Consider the capital you have at hand if you do not plan on borrowing extra funds.
The capital you will need to start a gaming business will depend on the number of clients you wish to serve and the type of equipment to buy. Seeing that the venture is mainly electronic, it will not come cheap. However, high investments will likely see you get high returns.
You will need several appliances for this venture, and these include:
- A Games Centre- it is the game environment where you will set the equipment for play. Invest in a good space, as this will determine the patronage you will end up with.
- TV Sets and Chairs- flat screens and comfortable chairs are non-negotiable if you want to offer unmatched gaming experiences.
- Games Consoles, GamePads, and Games – Game consoles to invest in include Play Stations and Xboxes. For your video gaming business to thrive, you will also need to buy actual games for your clients. Try and keep up with new releases so that customers get the products they want at all times.
- Generator Set- to keep players busy, you will need a steady supply of power. Generators come in handy when power fails.
Other optional equipment you can get for your business include sound systems and fans that can give your business a better competitive edge.
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3. Get a Strategic Location
Location is everything when it comes to your gaming business. Understand that the location of your gaming business will set the tone of your entity. It may also decide what customers think about your establishment.
Look for a space that gamers can easily access. Good roads and reliable water and power supply are a few factors to have in mind before you settle for a gaming business location.
Avoid dingy alleys as your shop may end up being a hideout for criminals. Pick a secure location for the safety of your equipment and clients as well. Most importantly, before you start a gaming business, it is vital to ensure that it is close to the market to increase your chances of success.
A place with tons of foot traffic, especially from younger people, is bound to be a hit.
If you will be renting out a place, consider the price and determine whether it is within your budget. It is usually best to get a space where you will not need to do a lot of renovations before the gaming business can kick-off.
Remember that you want to pick the perfect location for your gaming business where you will not have to keep moving because it can be inconvenient and expensive.
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4. Choose the Proper Business Model
You must have a good business model to run your gaming entity. Common options available when choosing a gaming business model include:
- Advertising models
- Franchising models
- Affiliate marketing models
- Razorblade models
- Freemium models
- Subscription models
- Reverse razor blade models
- Ecommerce models
- Agency models
Compare the various models to determine the one that makes the most sense for your gaming entity. Whether you want to work with a cloud gaming business model or a mobile gaming business model, there are various factors you need to put into consideration. The most important is thinking about the needs of your clients.
For a flourishing gaming business, you also need to consider how your clients will interact with the gaming business.
It’s vital to also consider your value proposition, competition, and market potential. Be sure to pick a model that ensures you make money and consistently deliver value to your clients.
5. Study the Latest Trends and Productions
Running an outdated gaming business will only see you incur terrible losses. To avoid this, you must be very careful with the products you offer clients. Study the global gaming business to know what works and what does not work.
You cannot only have video games that were produced in the 90s in your portfolio. Extensively research the best companies that offer gaming products for your business.
Learn what’s hot in the industry and the things to avoid if you want your gaming business to remain relevant. Always remember that your customers are key to driving the success of your video game establishment.
You want to make sure the products and services you offer are in line with what they need and want. It’s also vital to get educated about future gaming and business technologies. This way, you will not spend too much time and other resources investing in something that will be obsolete in the next few years.
You can gather information about relevant trends for your gaming business in multiple ways. One is through networking with other like-minded individuals. They can help pinpoint the trends you should focus on.
Doing market research can also help you get information straight from the source. Another option to explore is to look at the industry leaders. They can help you jump on the right trends that will see you elevate your gaming business to the next level.
6. Register your Gaming Business
Never attempt to run a gaming business without getting proper documentation. It will save you a lot of headache and harassment from enforcement agencies as well as other elements. CAC (Corporate Affairs Commission) is the accredited business registration commission in Nigeria.
Register the gaming business in your business name as an entity that is aimed at making gains. Having a unique name prevents other entrepreneurs from using it. In addition to the name, you will need to present other vital information to register your gaming business in Nigeria, such as:
- General nature of your establishment
- Address of your gaming business
- Name, occupation, address, and other details of the business proprietors.
- Signatures from all the proprietors
You can also try and source an operating gaming license from the gaming board of the area where you want to set up your entity. It will aid you in getting the license you need to operate a well as accommodate video game lovers legally without security operatives’ interference.
For this, you will need to write an application letter to the Director-General of the Nigeria Lottery Regulatory commission demonstrating your aspiration to start a gaming business in the country. If you get cleared, you will have a clearance certificate that allows you to operate a business in the industry of gambling.
7. Aggressively Promote your Entity
If you are just starting your gaming business, you need to spread the word about its existence to attract potential clients. Depending on your marketing budget, there are multiple avenues you can invest in to let people know about your video game entity.
If you do not have too much money, social media is your best bet. Open up pages on various platforms like Facebook and Instagram and put in the effort to promote your pages.
You can also offer discounts, especially in the first few days. Everyone loves a good introductory offer, and this is bound to bring game lovers your way. You can copy the 200% bonus model to make your gaming establishment more attractive.
This may even mean that some clients can get to play some games for free. It will allow them to sample what your gaming business has to offer. If they like what they see, they will tell their family and friends, and this is how your establishment will become popular.
Be sure to offer A1 services in your gaming business at all times because it is the only way you will attract customers and retain them for long.
8. Know How to Anticipate and Tackle Issues
When operating a gaming business, you must also understand the environment where your operations are located. In this case, because it is Nigeria, understand that a section of the population deems video gaming businesses as illegal and socially wrong.
You may have to endure police raids from time to time and complaints from parents of young gamers. This is something that can have a significant impact on your entity. To steer clear of such problems, you need to be well prepared.
For instance, if parents come screaming into your establishment demanding that their children leave the gaming zone, try to stay calm. It’s also advisable to set rules for your gaming business such as:
- Ensure that there is a written rule banning teenagers in uniform from visiting your gaming business.
- Prohibit access to the game lounge by students during school hours.
- Have a non-refundable policy for games revelers play.
Keep the rules in a place where everyone who enters the gaming lounge can read. When it comes to unlawful police raids, be sure to have your license in place. Try as hard as possible to ensure that dubious people do not frequent your gaming establishment because they will constantly attract law enforcement.
Running a gaming business in Nigeria can prove to be a profitable venture if you do it right. Following the above steps will put you on the right track to operating a business that will grow, and you will be proud of.
Do you operate or want to start a gaming business? Which steps above have you followed? Do you have any other valuable advice for an individual looking for useful information on how to start a gaming business? We would love to hear from you in the comments.