Here's what I learned from Angry Birds, beyond the fact you can weaponize fowl and where the Green Ham part of "Green Eggs and Ham" comes from.
I really learned about creating cultural engagement.
Just look at how Angry Birds is everywhere. Its in merchandise, its in jokes, it's in the news. It's on a bunch of platforms. There's talk of movies and cartoons – which seems weird because, let's face it, we're kinda facing limited characterization and specialized elements.
It's part of our culture when, truth be told, we're not exactly talking a deep concept here.
That's something to learn for those of us working to create new tinges.
Cultural engagement, truly becoming part of the culture, is an important path to success for anyone promoting a professional creation, be it software, a clothing line, or video games. You don't just want to sell to people – you need to become part of the way they think. You want to make it cultural.
Just look at Apple. There, enough said.
A lot of creations do not just fill their specific need – a need for shelter or entertainment or word processing software. They fill a cultural need as people are creatures of shared identity and references – if you can give them that, then you have vastly increased your chance of success.
Angry Birds. Apple. Linux. Star Wars. Star Trek. People bought not just products and watched more than television and films – they went for meaning and shared experience.
So, in your endeavors, you want to provide that. For those of us into the geeky scene, we're probably working on something like that professionally or on the side anyway – geeks are beings of shared information. Anyway, shared culture means success.
I also mean this in more than a mercenary way – if you realize that selling meaning is important, you can focus on delivering real value culturally. If your novel is meant to inspire, go all out to make a classic for the ages that will have true meaning. Your game can set the stage for new mechanics or social bonding. Your simple piece of software can introduce useful new terms.
So you want to sell your product, and to do that you need to make sure you become part of people's culture – and if you do that responsibility, you'll do a lot of good, as well as making money. That's a pretty nice win-win.
– Steven Savage