123 episodes

The Manaverse Podcast is a podcast created for you, the gamer with aspirations of building your own local game store (LGS), the entrepreneur running an LGS who wants to grow their business, and the player who wants a behind the scenes look into their favourite hobby. If you’re looking for inspiration, new ideas, and interesting perspectives then Tom Traplin has you covered. Learn the business of selling some of the best games in the world including Mtg, Warhammer, Warmachine, Dungeons and Dragons, board games and Euro games from some of the best retailers in the industry. Once a week, Tom talks with some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the game industry and pulls out the strategies, tactics, and systems that make their businesses so effective. With a special focus on Magic: the Gathering, you will learn how to level up your LGS and build a better community with Tom Traplin and the Manaverse Podcast.

The Manaverse Podcast: Magic: the Gathering Business / Game Store Entrepreneurship / LGS Professionals Tom Traplin

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 3 Ratings

The Manaverse Podcast is a podcast created for you, the gamer with aspirations of building your own local game store (LGS), the entrepreneur running an LGS who wants to grow their business, and the player who wants a behind the scenes look into their favourite hobby. If you’re looking for inspiration, new ideas, and interesting perspectives then Tom Traplin has you covered. Learn the business of selling some of the best games in the world including Mtg, Warhammer, Warmachine, Dungeons and Dragons, board games and Euro games from some of the best retailers in the industry. Once a week, Tom talks with some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the game industry and pulls out the strategies, tactics, and systems that make their businesses so effective. With a special focus on Magic: the Gathering, you will learn how to level up your LGS and build a better community with Tom Traplin and the Manaverse Podcast.

    MVP120: Welcome to the Spellenhuis!

    MVP120: Welcome to the Spellenhuis!

    We're going across the pond to talk to Patrick ten Hoorn, the owner of Spellenhuis in the Netherlands! Patrick talks about his journey of taking his dream to open a stylish game cafe and turning it into a reality, navigating the choppy waters of the hobby industry, and how he grew the business into multiple locations.
    Linkshttps://www.spellenhuis.nl/
    https://www.facebook.com/Spellenhuis
    https://twitter.com/spellenhuis
    https://www.youtube.com/user/Spellenhuis1/videos
    https://www.instagram.com/spellenhuis/
    p.tenhoorn@spellenhuis.nl
    AccessiBe Black Friday SaleIf your shop is based in the US, your game store's website may be a huge liability for you. Recently passed legislation has made the internet a public accommodation and that means that if your website isn't accessible, you're at risk of serious fines from the government and especially lawsuits. Game stores in particular are being targeted by a law firm in New York and if you don't want to be served with a five digit lawsuit, you need a solution. The best option on the market is AccessiBe. AccessiBe is an affordable AI based app that automatically makes your website accessible for all sorts of people and protects you with an accessibility statement and litigation support. It's an all in one win-win solution for game stores that only takes 48 hours to protect your business and make it more accessible to the people that need it, and AccessiBe is running a Thanksgiving sale from Nov 23 to the 29th, so you can save 30% on your license. Right now is a great time to make your website more accessible, protect your business, and save money, all at the same time.
    You can grab this deal by signing up for a free 7 day trial by going to manaversesaga.com/ada. That's manaversesaga.com/ada.

    • 37 min
    MVP119: Gnome Games and The Gnoshery, Tales From the Head Gnome Pat Fuge

    MVP119: Gnome Games and The Gnoshery, Tales From the Head Gnome Pat Fuge

    Today we're talking with Pat Fuge. Pat is the Head Gnome of Gnome Games, Wisconsin’s Family Game store, with locations across the Fox Valley for customers to shop and play in. Pat talks about the early days of Gnome Games and how his approach to planning has helped expand to multiple locations and even venture into the world of gaming cafes.
    Linkshttps://gnomegames.com/
    https://www.facebook.com/GnomeGamesWorld/
    Black Friday and Cyber Monday coming up fast, and right after that is the busiest shopping season of the year. If you want to make the most of the last two months of 2022, marketing your game store online should be at the top of your list which is why the FLGS Digital Marketing Bootcamp is back starting Nov 7, 2022.
    We're taking all the strategies that we use for our clients and teaching the frameworks we use to drive online and foot traffic from Google and social media, build up an email list of paying customers, send campaigns that sell, and run ads on Facebook and Google that generate thousands of dollars in sales each month.
    It's going to be 6 days of live training with a value-packed hour session each day plus a little Q&A at the end.
    In case you need a little more incentive, Bootcamp attendees that go on to become MMA clients in the future will get the price of the Bootcamp discounted on the program!
    We're keeping the Bootcamp small so the sessions can have the maximum impact, so if you want to be one of the 10 attendees for the last Bootcamp of the year, now's the time to join us!
    Go to manaversesaga.com/bootcamp and enroll today.

    • 1 hr 38 min
    MVP118: Rob Gruber The Elf King on Good Times Games

    MVP118: Rob Gruber The Elf King on Good Times Games

    Today we're talking with Rob Gruber, aka The Elf King. Rob is the owner of Good Times Games in Prince Rupert, British Columbia and he's built an incredible business by becoming somewhat of a local celebrity and personality. Rob plays the game store game a little bit differently and today we're going to talk about his approach to working within a small community and what sets his business apart.
    Links
    https://good-times-games.myshopify.com/
    Good Times Games on Facebook
    If your shop is based in the US, your game store's website may be a huge liability for you. Recently passed legislation has made the internet a public accommodation and that means that if your website isn't accessible, you're at risk of serious fines from the government and especially lawsuits. Game stores in particular are being targeted by a law firm in New York and if you don't want to be served with a five digit lawsuit, you need a solution. The best option on the market is AccessiBe. AccessiBe is an affordable AI based app that automatically makes your website accessible for all sorts of people and protects you with an accessibility statement and litigation support. It's an all in one win-win solution for game stores that only takes 48 hours to protect your business and make it more accessible to the people that need it. You can sign up for a free 7 day trial by going to manaversesaga.com/ada and protect your business starting today. Go to manaversesaga.com/ada now.
    I'm also looking for a few more stores that want to make the end of 2022 their best quarter yet! I'm opening up a few more slots for clients of the Manaverse Marketing Agency this month so if you're either in the start up phase of opening up your game store and want to kick things off with a powerful digital marketing strategy that's been proven to attract customers and drive sales from day 1, or you're an established game store that wants to expand operations and use digital strategies like email marketing and paid advertising to grow rapidly, let's chat! Go to manaversesaga.com/mma and we'll put together a custom Q4 marketing plan for your business and talk about how we can make it happen for you!

    • 1 hr 2 min
    MVP117: Digital Accessibility Lawsuits Are Here, What You Can Do To Protect Your Game Store

    MVP117: Digital Accessibility Lawsuits Are Here, What You Can Do To Protect Your Game Store

    Here's what we know
    If you've been active in the game store owner groups on Facebook you've probably seen the posts recently about game stores and publishers being targeted by a law firm in New York and being sued for lack of ADA compliance.
    So far they've sued Crafty Games of Washington, Games of Berkeley in California, Black Rowan Games in Tracy, California, GMT Games in Hanford, California, GameScape North in San Rafael, California, GameKastle and more. This is not an exhaustive list by any means but California in particular seems to be a hotspot.
    But let's back it up a bit.
    What exactly is accessibility and ADA compliance?
    Without getting too into the weeds on the legislation, web accessibility is essentially a set of rules, behaviors, code standards, and design guidelines that were created by the W3C and are called the WCAG 2.1. The WCAG 2.1 is a massive 1,000-page guidebook that encapsulates a range of disabilities that go from hindering internet use to making internet use impossible without adjustments. This spectrum actually comprises 20-25% of the general population depending on if we're going with the CDC or WHO. There are many disabilities covered, and the primary categories that require attention are:
    ● blind people using screen-readers,
    ● the motor-impaired using only the keyboard to navigate,
    ● epilepsy, color blindness,
    ● cognitive and learning disabilities,
    ● visual impairments, and more.
    What are the risks of having a non-compliant website?
    Non-compliance penalties are no joke, as they can go as high as $75,000 even for the first violation. The more you fail to respect the requirements, the higher the penalties will be.
    As a small business, it is in your interest to ensure that your website is accessible to people with disabilities. Not only will this increase the number of customers you can serve, but it will also protect you from some nasty fines and lawsuits.
    From what we're seeing, the firm going around and suing game stores is usually looking for settlement amounts in the $20k range and they apparently do this for a living. And part of the shakedown is when they serve game stores the lawsuit, in order to become compliant they suggest working with specific companies they are associated with. So in some cases, not only do they exhort a settlement from the business, they also generate revenue for their associates at the same time.
    What can you do about it?
    So you basically have three options. Two of which I recommend and one that's mostly a waste of time. The first one is to go with a web accessibility plugin. These are usually free or very inexpensive and apparently get a website to about 10% of the way there. You probably shouldn't go this route since your business will still be exposed to the risk of lawsuits and fines, and it's not particularly effective on the actual accessibility side of things.
    The second is to hire a company to make the necessary changes for you. This is the most expensive option, but if you can find a good web developer to work with that can show you what needs to be changed, you can also get your staff to do the work by hand over time. For stores with big websites this can be a major challenge since even just adding alt text to potentially thousands of product images and pages is a ton of work. This kind of work can cost anywhere from $20,000 to $40,000 and takes months to accomplish.
    If you've built out the inventory for your online store you know what I'm talking about. Imagine doing that all over again, or paying someone else to do it.
    The third solution is something more AI based like AccessiBe.
    Full disclosure here. I recently worked with a client to figure out how we should protect their new store from these lawsuits and we settled on AccessiBe because it was clearly the best...

    • 14 min
    MVP116: Magic 30th Anniversary Beta Packs, Game Cafes vs Game Stores, The Future of the Industry

    MVP116: Magic 30th Anniversary Beta Packs, Game Cafes vs Game Stores, The Future of the Industry

    New round table episode!
    Wizard's new $999 Beta booster pack product, The future of the friendly local game store, Are game cafes the natural evolution of the FLGS?What separates good retail from bad,And more.
    Matthew Vercant and Pat Fuge join me to discuss the future of the friendly local game store and speculate on the future of Magic: the Gathering. Are lawsuits incoming? Is the game cafe model the only way to succeed in a world of ecommerce?
    Listen to the episode and let us know what you think is coming over the next 10 years!
    Just Games Rochester
    https://www.justgamesrochester.com/https://facebook.com/justgamesrochesterhttps://instagram.com/justgamesrochesterhttps://twitter.com/justgamesrocsales@justgamesroc.com
    Gnome Games
    https://gnomegames.com/https://www.facebook.com/GnomeGamesWorld/https://www.facebook.com/GnomeGames
    If you're in the start up phase of opening up your game store and want to kick things off with a powerful digital marketing strategy that's been proven to attract customers and drive sales from day 1, or you're an established game store that wants to expand operations and use digital strategies like email marketing and paid advertising to grow rapidly, let's chat! Go to manaversesaga.com/mma and we'll put together a custom Q4 marketing plan for your business and talk about how we can make it happen for you!

    • 47 min
    MVP115: Running a Hands Off Game Store with Jason Garvin from Total Escape Games

    MVP115: Running a Hands Off Game Store with Jason Garvin from Total Escape Games

    Today we're talking with Jason Garvin. Jason is the manager of Total Escape Games, a premium retailer of tabletop games, carrying a vast array of role-playing games, card games, miniatures games, board games, and more in Broomfield Colorado. Jason is going to give us some insight into the origins of the store, dealing with the day to day operations of running a large retail focused game store, how to manage an almost completely hands off owner of the business. So if you want to understand how to build a game store that runs without you as the owner being there all the time, it's time to pay close attention.
    I'm opening up a few more slots for clients of the Manaverse Marketing Agency this month so if you're either in the start up phase of opening up your game store and want to kick things off with a powerful digital marketing strategy that's been proven to attract customers and drive sales from day 1, or you're an established game store that wants to expand operations and use digital strategies like email marketing and paid advertising to grow rapidly, let's chat! Go to manaversesaga.com/mma and we'll put together a custom Q4 marketing plan for your business and talk about how we can make it happen for you!

    • 35 min

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A solid resource for aspiring and experienced game store owners.

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