Niche problem solution equation
To grow your server or focus on your existing community, you need these three components. Running a high end Minecraft network is much like a real world business, and the same principles for success in a world is business is what makes people successful in Minecraft. Let’s have a look at the top three most fundamental principles every Minecraft server owner should have in order to run a prosperous network full of royal players and an amazing community.
Step One – Define Your Niche
It is very easy to think that your Minecraft server is suitable for everyone. It isn’t. The best servers in the world focus on a specific niche and have a ‘key differentiator’ that makes them remembered and successful. If you’re creating just another generic server offering everything for everyone, chances are your playerbase will be loose and players will not stay for long.
Step one is therefore to define your niche. That means, define who you are targeting, what is your ideal player on your server. To create this client avatar, I typically use the following guiding questions:
- How old they are? Where they come from?
- How do they spend their weeks? What do their do outside of Minecraft?
- What do the believe to be true? What do they believe to be false?
- Why do people play on your server? What’s the big promise?
- What is it about your server that matters to this person?
- How does it solve a need, ease a pain, or make them feel good? How does it better their life?
- What sorts of thoughts should go through this person’s head right before they decide to spend money in your server? What is the “final straw” that makes them pull the trigger?
Tip: If you’re offering multiple gamemodes, start by finding what is making up most of the play volume and focus on those.
Step Two – Find a Clearly Defined Problem
Once you have your niche selected it is time to do a market research. Most business are either competitor-oriented or self-oriented, however, the most important part at this stage is being customer-oriented. Talk to your core playerbase to find out these.
- What are their biggest problem right now?
- What are their desires?
- What are their daily frustrations? Who they are angry at?
- What problems are people facing on other servers that makes them join yours?
While the above may seem pretty simple, it is true that most people never think about it. In the world of businesses, without these fundamentals you’re out. In Minecraft, the market is slightly different so the effects may not be visible in the short term, but in the long term it’s this what determines whether a server will survive and thrive.
Step Three – Offer a Unique Solution
Now that you know who you are focusing on, and what problems and desires those people have, it is time to craft a unique solution with your server. This is easier said that done, and because we have to limit ourselves to the possibilities within the game itself, you’ll find that most servers are pretty alike. To become truly successful however, you must get this nailed. Action:
Major keys to a great solution:
- It solves a particular market need.
- It delivers the transformation for the target group (in other words, the experience for your players).
- Participants in that target group are willing to pay for it (for Minecraft this can be translated to ‘players are willing to spend time on your server’)
- It brings a strong customer-facing differentiation experience (these are the words from Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon. He means that it must be focused on the customer and bring him something unique and valuable, not just a copy-paste or a quick fix)
I encourage you to take some time now to go through this article and take this as a worksheet. These questions will guide you and are extremely powerful. If you want to learn more about how you can build and grow a highly successful network, start here.