Salone Sehgal is a former investment banker with a special focus on European technology. Her passion for entrepreneurial finance led her to TrulySocial. As co-founder and CEO, Salone drives strategic growth, business expansion and fundraising and has been recognised as one of the top 30 women in the mobile sector.
Salone is also part of the Mobile track at NG15, and will take the stage on 21 May with a session named “Engaging a Female Audience and Innovating a New Game Genre”.
“When I saw the chance to be part of true innovation by pioneering a new game genre I jumped at it. I joined TrulySocial and became part of what we call “flirtual reality”. Flirtual reality is a brand new casual game genre that brings the first viable “social world” to mobile by gamifying flirting and dating interactions. Flirtual reality was created to do two things: To introduce to the world a whole new way of producing games and second, to gamify a concept that had never been done before.
When we embarked on the journey of building a new game concept we realised that there were very few games out there which truly replicated the human experience, particularly based around relationships. We live in a social age but very few games are “truly social”. That’s exactly what we aim to do – create immersive and innovative games which are in sync with current trends.
We do this through Flirt Planet Play. We use building romantic encounters as our core game loop while also allowing our users to build “social proof” as people do in their real lives – by customising their own characters, designing their in-game look, going on dates, building up an entourage of friends, travelling and exploring exotic locations, having committed relationships etc.”
Check out the gameplay trailer:
“Creating a new game genre is uncharted territory and “to boldly go where no man or woman has gone before”, you need to be able to preempt trends. It also needs time, resources and, most importantly, it needs guts. We at TrulySocial have been able to chart our own course simply because we saw certain trends. The first of them being non-traditional gaming audiences are increasing. In fact, more than 50 per cent of casual gamers are women. And that number is rising. The second trend we saw was that there is now a breed of veteran casual gamers who are constantly looking for new experiences and new content. And last is that mobile and tablet have become the gamers’ mode of choice.
So that’s why we created a tablet game that was designed to appeal to women and players who like to socialise and explore. Our game concept is complex enough for veteran gamers and simple enough for first timers.
There are always risks to starting something new. We’ve stumbled, we’ve made our mistakes. But we successfully navigated around some of the biggest risks. One of those risks is doing something new but not finding the right audience. At TrulySocial we do constant user testing and extensive analytics. We’re constantly gauging the response of our users. We want to be a company which is creativity-driven but inspired by data points. With Flirt Planet we have a user demographic of 75 per cent women who play for 20 minutes or longer with 3-4 per cent converting from users to spenders. So we know we’ve created a game concept that appeals to and attracts users.
If you have the courage to go out there and do something on your own, you have the biggest reward of all – achieving market dominance. The game with the most innovative theme or a completely new take on an existing game genre generates the maximum mileage and creates a competitive advantage, i.e. it’s harder for copycats to replicate.
We believe it’s important to be a creative company first and leverage great analytics second. With a new product launch in August, that belief is showing itself to be true.” – Salone Sehgal
Salone Sehgal’s talk entitled “Engaging a Female Audience and Innovating a New Game Genre” is scheduled for Thursday morning, 21 May in the Oslo room at Slagthuset. Read more about Salone Sehgal on the conference website here and her talk here.
Feeling flirtatious? Salone Sehgal – entrepreneur and “flirtual reality” pioneer – another great reason to join us for Nordic Game 2015, 20-22 May in Malmö, Sweden. Register today!