After developing the official app for Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax Movie with Corona SDK, Blockdot, a nationally recognized agency, turned to Corona to build Chicktionary Coop. Chicktionary Coop is the second generation of the popular egg-citing word game, recently featured in TIME Magazine, MSNBC, Mashable and Tecca as a top educational mobile app for kids.
In today’s guest post, Lyn Pollard, Blockdot’s Marketing Consultant, outlines the monetization strategies her team used for Chicktionary Coop. For more information on the game, please check out Chicktionary Coop’s case study.
Which comes first, the mobile app or the monetization strategy? In the case of Chicktionary Coop™, the sequel to the popular Chicktionary Classic word game app, it’s actually both.
Chicktionary Coop is the second generation of the egg-citing game that attracts almost 250,000 monthly users and was recently named by TIME Magazine as a top 25 iPad app for kids.
When deciding how to expand the Chicktionary app and really take it to the next level, choosing a free app monetization strategy with a multiplayer game model where players can make in-app purchases to both enhance play and customize their chicken coop, was key.
The idea of costumed chicken entered the picture a couple of years ago when Blockdot released a Halloween version of Chicktionary. “The chickens were adorable, all dressed up in their angel, devil, ghost and Frankenstein monster costumes and that got us thinking,” said Todd Cowden, Chicktionary Coop Lead Designer. “What if we could give the players creative freedom to dress up their chickens however they like?”
That was the spark. The Blockdot team honed in on the “dress ‘em up” concept as an innovative and funny way to allow players to personalize their chickens and make them their own. The result? Dozens of different earnable and purchasable costume pieces with over 500,000 possible costume combinations – and that’s just for the Chicktionary Coop launch. The Blockdot team anticipates more than 1,000,000 possible chicken combos with the regular release of new costume packs.
“The idea is to engage new and existing Chicktionary players with one another not just through the new multiplayer Chicktionary Coop gameplay mechanic, but also with the excitement of having their friends see their customized coop. There are so many hysterical chicken combinations, we hope that players will be just as entertained by the chickens as they are by the fun word games,” Cowden added.
Players can earn and purchase “eggs” to use to buy all sorts of garb for their chickens from baseball hats to pirate costumes. Once players dress up their coop, they can invite friends to play – and see their crazy chicken outfits.
While Chicktionary Classic was originally created using software native to each device, after the success of The Lorax Movie’s Truffula Shuffula app Blockdot created for Universal Pictures last spring, the development team knew that Corona SDK was an important part of the formula for Chicktionary Coop.
“The decision to use Corona was based primarily on its speed , efficiency and cross-platform capabilities,” said Chicktionary Lead Developer, Jay Rutherford. “We can now deploy Chicktionary Coop for iPhone and Android with just one build.”
While only time will tell if the Chicktionary Coop monetization strategy is on target, one thing the Blockdot team knows they have right is the game mechanic.
The brainchild of Blockdot co-founder and creative VP Dan Ferguson and Michael Bielinski, Chicktionary became extremely popular when it was released for BING.com. The game stats soared, then increased steadily over the past several years, drawing thousands of parents, moms, kids, schools – even retirement communities. All sorts of folks find Chicktionary a valued educational tool and satisfying pastime.
“Chicktionary is a classic word game that can be easily expanded to lots of different user audiences,” said Ferguson. “We’re excited for users to see what we have planned for the chickens next.”