Sunday, March 3, 2013

International TableTop Day



What has become International TableTop Day was first announced by TableTop associate producer Boyan Radakovich at the Alliance Open House last fall during his presentation about the TableTop YouTube channel.  Among other topics, he mentioned plans for a TableTop Day either in November or sometime in 2013.  Well, as you may have noticed November came and went with no TableTop Day, though with a TableTop/Geek & Sundry promotional tie-in with Target.
Then, just last week, shortly after TableTop relaunched after several weeks on hiatus, came the announcement of International TableTop Day. At first it appeared a joint promotion with Alliance Game Distribution since Alliance was the only source for the TableTop Day Retail Launch and Premium Launch Kits and was the first organization in the retail industry to promote the event.
However, in recent days, I have seen promotion of the event  from other distributors and Geek & Sundry has opened up a website allowing anyone-retail stores, game clubs, private groups- to schedule an International TableTop Day event, though without access to the launch kits, unless they have an Alliance account.
I debated signing up for the event because, though I have been a fan of TableTop and what it brings to the industry, the descriptions of the launch kits did not offer much information regarding what the event or what came in the kit.  From the description of the Retail Launch Kit:
Retail Launch Kit will include game giveaways and a marketing kit. Marketing kits include event posters, event window clings, handouts, and shelf talkers.
See, no description of the game giveaways or illustrations of what the promotional material looks like.  Ergo, though I assume the giveaways will tie into games Wil Wheaton has played on TableTop, we have no idea which ones so can’t set up games in-store to take advantage of the giveaways.
The blurb for the Premium launch kit makes it a bit more desirable:
: Premium Launch Kits include the following - Eligible retail stores will upload their information to the Geek & Sundry Store Locator and be listed as an Event Center for TableTop Day; retailers will also receive one backlit Geek & Sundry sign. Retailers will be included in a live-streaming event: a G&S Representative will contact the store during their event (Free air time for the store – huge perk!). The Premium Launch Kit also includes everything in the base Retail Launch Kit. This Kit will include game giveaways and a marketing kit. Marketing Kits include event posters, event window clings, handouts, and shelf talkers.
So for $500 or 10 times as much as the basic Launch kit, the store got everything in the basic Launch kit, plus listing as an Event Center, inclusion in a live streaming event and a Geek & Sundry sign.  This listing originally made skip the entire event as it appeared counterintuitive for only Premium Launch stores to get listed as Event Centers (this apparently changed later on or was always part of the plan and just not included in Alliance’s description), as it only made sense that every store participating should get listed as an event center, if G&S wanted to promote the event as widely as possible.  The streaming is only useful to stores with streaming capabilities and, while the Geek & Sundry sign is cool, $500 seems a bit steep for a sign promoting the entire channel, especially when most of my customers recognize TableTop, not G&S.
Anyhow, International TableTop Day looks like a cool event, (I saw photos of Felicia Day and Wil Wheaton promoting it this weekend at the Emerald City Comic Con, so they will get the word out about it),with or without signs and streaming.  I am hoping we find out soon what items are in Alliance’s kit so we can better tune our events to reflect the materials included and I hope this doesn’t go the way of National Games Week.