It’s been a long time since I’ve given it all I’ve got. The marketplace listing now has everything filled in. You can see the Pie Throwing Game there. I’ve had some feedback already through Facebook and put in those changes as well. The great news is that I’ve already seen a few sales go through for this product. Here is the gist of what I went through trying to get the marketing part of this product setup.
The first thing that I worked on was getting a main image to represent the product. I’m using Adobe Photoshop CS3 to put the images together. Initially, I was working with a 256×256 image. I prefer to keep things small in-world to take up less bandwidth. Unfortunately, I discovered that the marketplace wanted them to be at least 512×512 with a preference of 700×525 – sending me back to recapturing my product in a larger resolution and updating my template.
Next, the market place displays up to four thumbnails of other images on the right of the main images, so I went ahead and started making those images as well. Trying to get some of these pictures required the use of a second viewer running.
I started working on the video that lets people see my product in action on YouTube. I ended up creating in in the format of a 15 second commercial video in 720p HD. The video footage was captured in the Second Life Viewer (2.6.9) with Fraps. Some of the shots required not only a separate viewer, but for it to be running on a separate machine as well. I used a SpaceNavigator 3D Mouse from 3Dconnexion to move the camera around in some shots. From there, I used Sony Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum HD 10.0 to put the footage together. I did a lot of editing panning, rotating, speeding up, reversing footage, and more. For the audio voice over, I used Audacity 1.3 Beta. I have a lot of background noise in my home, so I had to use that to remove noise as well as normalize the audio.
After I had added the voice over, I also started working on creating the background music. For this, I used Sony ACID Music Studio 8.0. I had a ton of loops that I had purchased long ago with Sonic Foundry ACID 2.0 to pick from. I primarily used loops from Pandora’s Toolbox.
The final video turned out quite nicely.
Once that was all done, I started looking into the animated GIF option. This is to let people see your product in action on browsers without flash or video support. I had to be careful to keep the final size of the image to be less than 1 mb. I ended up saving the video in a lower frame rate (12 fps) and then used photoshop to resize and convert only a portion of the video into an animated GIF. I reduced the color palate to 128 colors and worked with different ways of how to apply the palette to the original image. I believe I went with diffusion (other options are patterns, noise, or none) and an adaptive palette.
For the most part of today, I’ve been creating a manual through Google Docs so that I could link to a live version of the document. During the documentation, I was finding a few things that could be refined in the product – primarily the scoring system. The distance score wasn’t quite rite. I’ve made fixes to them as well as added in some ways to get a bonus added to the score. As one last measure, I’ve also setup the menu to provide a link to the marketplace listing, so that it would be easier for others to purchase the product.
As an experiment, I’m going to list the product on the front page of the marketplace for 30 days. I’ll need to sell about 12 of them to break even. The last time I attempted to do this, my impressions were gone in a matter of minutes for a much higher price.